When making clothes I always draw on my passions for fantasy and science fiction, sometimes even creating my own characters like a Neptunian mining manager or a cyberpunk bio-hacker. Now I am going to go one step further and delve into the world of science fiction and fantasy emulation by way of cosplay!
My last cosplay creation was Seven of Nine for Destination Star Trek London last year. I made a silver catsuit and papier mache cortical implants:
Getting to meet some of my Star Trek heroes and getting complements from other fans made this one of the best weekends ever!
Now I am switching franchise and heading off to Star Wars. I am going to make a copy of Queen Amidala’s red invasion outfit, starting with the headdress.
Padmé Amidala’s first appearance in Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
No real person has hair long and thick enough to become part of the headdress (and if you read the rest of my blog you know I certainly don’t) so I have ordered a wig for the long pigtail at the back and hair extensions for the coil over the head. I intend to pad out this coil with a length of foam tube from a swimming “noodle” and make the rest in papier mache with embelishment.
This will probably be one of the biggest not purely sewing projects I have ever undertaken and I am raring to get going. I hope to post images and a detailed account of every step as I get to work!
So far I have been posting about the clothes I have been making but now I want to pay homage to the pattern cutting book that taught me all I know: Pattern Magic by Tomoko Nakamichi.
This book is invaluable to anyone who wants to move on from basic pattern cutting to creating really modern garments that are sure to stand out!
The reviews on Amazon praise this book but most caution against using it if you are not already a competent pattern cutter. I will admit that some things are not included (eg. instructions on how to draw a basic sleeve block) but these things can be found from a simple internet search so I would say this book is suitable for anyone happy with using shop bought patterns!
There are several projects in the book. Some are very complete (like the lovely “hide and seek” dress on page 77) and some are just suggestions of projects (like the bamboo shoot bodice). When I first got this book I spent hours and hours just looking through. It is so inspiring. The English translation is very well done and understandable even with the more technical instructions and the use of diagrams and pictures guides the reader gently through all the necessary steps whilst allowing room to add flare!
The book is separated into two sections although I can’t really see what distinction there is between them: both contain a mixture of techniques and projects. My favourite parts of the book are those dealing with the sculptural aspects of more stiff fabric such as the “drop hole” technique which I used in my Vortex – N -skirt.
If you are starting out you can easily follow the patterns in the book before moving on to designing your own things that are sure to turn heads! I can’t wait to get the rest of these books in this series but I have by no means exhausted all the possibilities I have in mind for the techniques I have learned so far.