Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Merry Christmas!

I hope that during the two days off that I have, I will FINISH fixing the Tali costume and then focus on losing weight. ...I never thought I would ever say I have to do that. For most of my life I was struggling to GAIN weight. Metabolism DOES slow down at 30. LIKE ON THE DOT. Gained 10 pounds in a month or so. /sigh/ Which has made Tali a little snug. ;) I have spanx but they can only do so much. Luckily, I can go on a low carb diet and exercise more.

Still waiting on feedback about jobs, looks like I'll have some unemployment time in January. Boooo!

But I am making plans for my Inquisitor cosplay. And hopefully finishing the Warden. I have sunk quite some time into it and some money but I really don't have a planned event to wear it at so it's hard to really work on it. Also, want to wear the elf armor to the Ren Faire. :)

We'll see how things go though. :)

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Dalish Inquisitor costume

Curse you inspiration. I'm not saying I'm actually going to MAKE this costume since I need to finish Tali and the Grey Warden costume first. But I am half-tempted to drop the Warden for this. Ugh but so much of it is done. Must finish. So here's the plan.

Costume Analysis

There are 4 layers: Chainmaille, Green Armor, Limb Armor, Clothe bits

Chainmail looks like a bit body suit. but most likely shirt and chaps. There are seams that are visible on the chain itself. For the feet, it looks like clothe sandals. Same with fingerless gloves.

Green Armor: A bodice and Tassets. They look like they're a firm leather with some raised designs. Because it's a game, the bodice is all one piece with no discernible method of keeping it on. although I guess you could tie it in the back.
The tassets look simple enough and attach to a mystery belt under the bodice.

Limb Armor: These (on my screen shots) are coppery/Bronze in color. The Arms have pauldrons mixed of leather, fabric and feathers. There's elbow pads and bracers all with obvious belt attachements. Yay.
The legs are a tall leather braid bracer attached with belts.

Clothe Bits: Over the tassets is a cloth hip skirt that looks to be made of a scrunched up clothe. The skirt is a stiffer fabric with applique design. (Argh!) There's also a bronze ornament on the front skirt. (Codpiece?) It's got a vague deer-head design.  
The Belt is a quilted thick cloth wrap with a leather belt and big bronze buckle.

Plan of Attack

Chainmaille: Real chain is out of the question.
Solution: Nylon Mesh fabric shirt and leggings. I can get the brown seams with brown fabric that I have easily and it comes in silver so win!

Feet and hands will be easy enough. I just need a pair of knee high socks. Oooo...look open toe socks. Even better. For the feet I'd just need a pair of disposable flip-flops for conventions. For the hands I plan to just to wear socks on my hands and cut holes.

Green Armor: Now this I thought about a bit. At first I thought Foam and Worbla. DONE. But now that I look at it I'm thinking foam and green vinyl. (Or brown with paint. Either way the armor is going to be painted.)
I've also thought to save on material to split the bodice into two pieces: the upper half and the belt half. Thanks to the mid-section belt thing I can get away with this nicely. I think. But a full bodice won't hurt either.

The Tassets are foam and leather covered too.

Limb Armor: The legs are just another foam and pleather cover so I don't see any issues with that. Even with the "braid" pattern.

The bracers and elbow pad are simple enough too. They will be Worbla and Foam pieces.

The pauldrons are a bit odd. Part of it sits directly on the shoulder, the other seems to float over it. And in the back there's a cloth drape with a symbol on it. Cloth part will be some kind of cotton flannel or whatever I use for the skirts. For my design instead of black feathers, I'll probably use the white yak fur I have from the Alistair costume. (We'll call it Halla fur and say it makes sense.)

Clothe Bits:
For the skirt wrap, Gauze Linen will work nicely. For the belt some quilting fabric plus batting for stuffing. I may sew in the belt because why not? I may line the top with elastic and have it pull over instead of wrap around and velcro in the back. Hmm...nah it needs to be cinched.

The skirts purple broadcloth with Lining material for the trim pattern.

For the buckle and ornament foam and worbla probably. Or clay and gesso.

Extra: Inquisitor Helmet - Foam and Worbla
Dragon Staff: Wooden Dowel +Sculpture (insulation foam most likely or Crayola model magic.)

Proposed Budget/Supply List:

Silver Mesh: Leggings = 1.5 yds, Shirt 1 yd. Sooo about 2.5 yds total = $8 -$12 per yard ( $20 -$30)

Worbla : $61-$88

Green Vinyl:  $5 per yard, need about 1.5 yds. ($7.50)

Green Stockings:$2.50, need 2 pairs so ($5)

Brown Vinyl: Owned

Kyrlon/Rust-Oleum Paint Copper: $6

Acrylic Paints: Owned

 Gesso - $6

EVA Foam 3-5 mm: $1-$4 ea. (I'll need lots soooo let's say about $10 worth)

 Gauze Linen - .5 yards needed. $2

Quilt block - 1yd. $5

Batting - Owned

Lining - ~2 yds. $4

Broad Clothe ~ 2yds $2 per yard ($4)

Elf Ears - $12

Total for fabric (Mesh, Vinyl, Linen, Lining, Broadcloth, Quilt block) ($42 according to Fabric.com order)

Total Cost so far:  $142 - $169

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Keeping things ON.

So various parts of Tali don't stay on well. It's a hodge podge of velcro, glue and tape currently (as a temp solution.

I've also got a couple more pieces to make: Arm Bands, magazine clip holders and Shotgun. OH and the omni-tool. I forgot about that thing. :P

So here are the bits that broke when I put on my costume:

- Left Leg bracer: The d-rings popped off. Needs a better way to keep these together.
- Right Foot Armor: Pieces keep popping off. Really need to glue these down.
-Bandeau likes to slide around. I think I need to sew some of it onto the belt somehow.
-Leather Arm bands, the darn velcro just popped off. Needs to be sew on not glued.
- Arm Bracer: Just a touch a velcro will help keep it from sliding off.

So I know what I'm doing for Christmas. :D 

Sunday, November 30, 2014

Prince Tali Marvelous She...

The fruits of my thanksgiving weekend labor. And then things immediately started falling apart because yeah...temp attachments are temporary for real. So From here on it's fixing and trying to lose weight. XD As you can see, my other bit of leg armor is not on, due to all the attachment rings breaking off. 

Friday, November 28, 2014

The many belts of Tali

So I spent most of the day at my sewing machine working on some of the accessories and cloth parts of the costume. I'm happy to report that I've finished all the purple cloth parts and the belts.

Still to go:
 -Finish up the leather arm bands.
 - Create the Neck wrap.
 - Upgrade helmet
 - Upgrade Leg armor

 The leg armor is turning into a bigger challenge than I anticipated. More research is needed. :)

Pics will come soon. Once I clear some space to set down the camera and get dressed. Probably tomorrow.

For now...sleeeeep. Zzzzz...

Thursday, November 20, 2014


Sorry about that, I turned 30 about a week ago and many things changed at once, including projects I'm working on.

With Thanksgiving coming up, I'll have 4 free days to work on stuff. My plan is to set up my sewing machine and finish up the sewing needs for Tali's Costume. I've been negligent on that part.

I will also remake the helmet to suit the new visor eventually, but first the sewing.

The other project I've been working on and off is an RPG Maker game, currently unnamed.
I made a wiki for it: http://centaurrpg.wikia.com/wiki/Centaur_Game_Wiki

Along with that Dragon Age Inquisition came out...and I had to buy a new computer to run it basically. :P

She's custom built. But now I have spare parts and computers to get rid of. I still haven't played the game yet...but I AM ready to. I'll post about the game on my Gamer blog.

Monday, October 27, 2014

I changed my mind! Again!

So it's only a couple of days before Halloween. I found a party to go to. But at the last minute, I had a change of heart about my werewolf queen. It is awesome and I am proud of it, but for this particular party it wouldn't work out. We'll be playing lots of board games with tiny pieces. Not very easy to manipulate with my claw gloves. (I'll use them somewhere.)

Instead of a werewolf, I'm re-purposing the costume as a Calavera or Sugar Skull from Dia de Meurtos. I just got some extra white makeup, false eye lashes and Skeleton leggings.

I've been having way too much fun on Pintrest and Youtube looking up designs for the makeup.

Lol...dead daisy head.

I love wigs. This adds the right contrast.
Decent look at the design.

Friday, October 24, 2014

Hallowent and Leg armor progress

So I decided to try on all my Wolf Queen costume last night to make sure everything fit. It barely does. Well, part of that is the corset's fault. ;)

However, I'm not seeing any Halloween parties coming up in my facebook feed. ._. I hope I didn't make this costume for naught! Halloween is next weekend! Hrum....

In other news, I painted the leg and foot armor bits for Tali with their base coat. I'll have to detail them which I thought I'd do today, but tonight is Book Club. I might get around to it tomorrow, but I have a baptism to go to and Sunday is D&D day. Augh...social weekend?? WHY???

Also...November 18th comes closer. (SO excited!)

Friday, October 17, 2014


New Arm armor!
Next will be the legs. I LOVE WORBLA!! I also was looking at the video footage of my visor making. Yeah, the angle was not flattering. So, yeah, not uploading that. No need for embarrassing bum shots at birds eye view. :B Or is there? LOL. 

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Inspiration coming back!

I swear shopping for costume supplies does this for me, but I found a new thing. Yesterday I was lamenting on how my styrene armor for Tali wasn't shaped right and was just too stiff. I couldn't walk well in the leg armor and the metal arm barely fits. Then I remembered seeing something about Wonderflex so I went and did some research. For rounded armor pieces, it would be better.

But then I discovered Worbla. My mind was blown. Putty plastic? Glue on one side?

So I ordered some. :) I can still use the styrene cutouts as a base I think.

It's also got me re-evaluating my Warden armor. I have most of the foam bits cut out. The Worbla would be so good to use on it. So excited. Seriously.

I've also got a new strategy on the leg armor. I'll share it after I do some doodles of it.

Update: OMG OMG OMG...there's a place that sells Worbla IN AUSTIN...close-ish to where I live!!!

The downside...I was literally just at that store TODAY and didn't know until NOW. GAAAAH...going back after work today. Gonna get some Worbla and PLAY! Glee!!!

I'm thinking of even re-doing the helmet. :D

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Costume Delays due to new job

Haven't had much to update about because I started a new job. I really like it a lot. So much happier.

...and I got distracted by side-projects. I hope to finally get off my duff and upload the pictures of my new visor. Yeah. I made another one. It's pretty.

Also I have a big birthday coming up so I'm trying to get that situation worked out.


New visor pics

Friday, September 19, 2014

More Leg Stuff, My Flash Game, and New Helmet Visor?

Howdy Again,

 I managed to get the legs to a place that will work for me. I've lined the styrene with foam rings and it velcros at the seam. It'll need painting and weathering. Everything needs more weathering. :D

I've also got the fabric for the veil. It looks nice on the helmet. I first have to sew the trim before attaching it to the helmet. (Otherwise I know it'll just be falling off all the time.)

The glove finger tips have been redone. Now they are tipped with duct tape. Duct Tape, the handy-man's best friend. :)

Currently I'm considering re-doing the visor one more time. I got some violet iPoly Dye this time and this time I won't put ANY Tamiya paint on it. Just for a slightly better visibility.

Still to do: Arm Belts (bicep and forearm), Hip belt, Bust Belts, Boot Knife, Mesh on shirt, Attaching armor to shirt, Shoulder bands, Neck Collar, Veil Trim, Painting boots. Hemming the pants. Possibly also attaching these pants to my capri pants. Hmmm.

Still to Re-Do: Visor, Weathering, Bandeau

And for something completely different. I made a Flash game: Quarian Maker. ^^
Alpha Version

I'm still learning a few things and I need to fix a lot but for now, Yay. It's fun making Quarians.

Thursday, September 4, 2014

Look at them gams (and other updates)

Leg armor...turning into more of a beast than I expected. Looking at other builds, fiberglass seems to be the favored method of making the leg armor.

Sadly, I am not used to fiberglass, nor do I have the space or ventilation to do that. So for now, I'm using Styrene and foam. (note to self...I'm going to need to buy more foam. :P)

I cut the pattern for the boots in paper and then styrene. My plan is to shape strips of the foam around the leg shape dummy I made. Then glue the styrene to it. This will give me some cushioning as well as a solid leg shape.

In other updates, I've affixed magnets inside the helmet so the visor pops on an off a bit easier. I covered the exposed foam with leftover black fabric.

The armored sleeve is done to where I like it. I think I'm going to directly affix them to the sleeves of the shirt I bought for it. I'm also redoing the glove fingertips because manipulating life with the styrene tips on was not happy times.

Thursday, August 28, 2014

Helmet finished-ish and gloves

I still need to do detail work on it and lots of touching up but the helmet is basically made. Yay!!

First the gloves:

Fabric paint got a little sploched. :P Oh wells. 

Here are pictures of the helmet process.

Here are my supplies, sort of.
Some of the first pieces I cut from my earlier pattern pieces.

Some pieces also have Styrene on them.

Before construction, I painted the different parts in Silver and Black.

I cut down the visor using the pepakura pattern as my guide for the size and shape. I cut a little/lot bigger than the pattern. 

The inside of the visor was lined with foamies and the outside was as well, using black foamies. 

 Using a test head band I made, I started construction of the helmet. I ended up scrapping the head band all together later on.
Angled cuts on the foam help here. 
After the foam bits were on, I glued the styrene coverings. 

The mouth piece was made with foam and a clear resin cast mouthpiece.
I left an opening so I could eventually put wiring in there. 

I used velcro squares to hold the visor in, then built around that. I plan on replacing the velcro with magnets. 

Glued on the mouth piece and mesh tubing I found at Michael's. Much cheaper than tubing. 

The veil I found out is too small to fit over it. :( Sad, so I've ordered more fabric to make a longer one. 

As you can see I still need to touch up the exposed foam and add the weathering and details.

TAdah! On and off! 

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Tali Arm Armor

I'm working with styrene. It's hard. New stuff is hard. But I finally made PROGRESS. Also gee...I meant to post images of my wolf queen but I'm pretty lame bots at it. XD Anyway, Yay progress. I wonder how I'm going to do the boots. Yeesh. Research is needed! :D Maybe plastic coating is a better way to go. Hmmm. 

Also, the trigger on the paint can, helps so much. Awesome. 

Anyway, still on the hunt for a job. So maybe I should focus on the helmet since I have all the parts for that. :B 

Also side note, FRUIT FLIES SUCK. Ugh. Can't get rid of 'em. Super annoying. 

Monday, August 11, 2014

Finishing up the Wolf Queen

I can't believe I'm pretty much finished with this costume. I have to finish sewing the skirt and finish making the feet (which has been trickier than expected). I decided it's be cheaper to buy the corset instead of making one myself. It would have been fun but factoring in the cost of all my supplies it was just easier to spend $12.

Speaking of budget, mine just got blasted. I lost my job on Friday which was my source of income. So on the plus side, I can actually spend time working more on the costumes. :D But I can't really buy anymore supplies. :( At least nothing too expensive. Hopefully unemployment doesn't last too long. I don't expect it to.

Tomorrow I plan to get the interfacing I need for the Wolf Queen skirt and then finishing up with the Warden Tabard.

Oh obviously pics soon. It's pretty late and I'm tuckered out.

EDIT: Pictures. One of the feet paws. And the gloves that glow.

Friday, August 8, 2014

Possible Events to Attend

Okay so I find out that next week there's a classic gaming tournament in town. Also a pretty famous cosplayer is going to be there and there's a cosplay contest. I'm sad I only found out about this event a few days ago. :( I'll still go because the cost is pretty reasonable and it's in town.

Come January, PAX South will be in San Antonio, which is also pretty close. Like close enough to be a day trip. I will probably attend at least one day of that. (It's only $30 for a day...sooooo yeah.)

But now I definitely have an event to showcase a costume or two AND it's in a month where it won't be 100 degrees out so I won't be like dying.

And I'll probably definitely MOTIVATE myself to finish the wolf tail today. Yes. Must be done.

Then I'll start, cutting the pattern for the dresses.

Oh, and my mom can be the best...is the best...she got me two rotary cutters. Now my edges are smooth as a dream. I'm in love with these blades. May they never go dull. They probably will...quickly as the fabric I cut is thick and terrible to blades.

Monday, August 4, 2014

August Begins

A new month. And ever closer creeps my personal deadlines for these costumes. October was the goal for the Warden and Tali. However, since I've taken on another project for Halloween, I'm scooting Warden and Tali out to November. And Alistair...the poor chap...hasn't had any construction done what so ever. :( I have all supplies too.

Anyway, I've made a bit of progress on each costume here and there.

Tali: I took the shoes out of the feet and got inserts to put in there instead.

Warden: Put more studs into the Jacket.

Wolf Queen: Made the Circlet, got the beads for the necklace, made some ears and started on the tail. Got some knee high nylons to make the feet.

I've also had quite a few interviews the past couple weeks. I hope to start a new job soon. *pleeeease, better pay, better environment*

Anyway, I've also been going to D&D sessions on the weekends. ...I'm learning how bad I am at improv. LOL.

I hope to finish the Wolf Tail this week and maybe even the necklace.
I'll also be doing more research for Alistair's muscle shirt so I can have fake arms. :)

OH lastly, there is apparently a new convention PAX South in San Antonio. I'm tempted to go because it'll give me a reason to where the costumes but they're sold out of weekend tickets. :(

Monday, July 28, 2014

Distracted: OH NO!

So San Diego Comic Con is going on. And a Tali cosplay appeared on my facebook feed. :) It was fun to see especially since it was a ME 3 version. I think I'm unique in doing ME 1 version.

But I'm distracted. I haven't done costume stuff for a couple of days now. >_> I started playing Dragon Age Origins again. /sigh/ I keep glaring at the Warden Armors. WHY ARE THERE SO MANY BELTS?? GAwww.

Anyway, I'm both distracted and inspired. Perhaps it's time to feed the muse instead of work out. But I'm sure the beads I ordered will be coming in soon. And I'll be moved to work on something.

Friday, July 25, 2014

Foot Fetish - err...making feet

Last night I finished the Gloves for the Wolf Queen. (Pics to come soon).

Once those were finished I began thinking about how I wanted to do the feet. In my drawings you can see they are kind of looking like high heels which is what the concept art for the character had.
I tried on my high heels last night and began to think very seriously. As my feet started to ache after 30 seconds of wear it became clear that much like my Tali cosplay, the Wolf would not be able to long stand the high heel...unless I went with boots.

While doing research on how Fursuits got around this issue, I stumbled upon sock paws.

With a little re-engineering I think I can make my sleek, delicate Wolf Queen feet. Because she is regal after all.

Some of my plots:
2 pairs of socks (ballet/anklet socks + nylons/thigh highs)
Craft foam
Tape: Duct, Masking and more
Glue of the hot variety

Similar to the route I went with Tali's feet I will use craft foam stuffed with scraps and wrapped in tape then covered with fabric. I will not be using long pile fur like the tutorial but rather Lycra/nylon. I also won't be using furniture foam necessarily.

That said this has also inspired me to re-do Tali's feet. I don't like how they look.
It's the heel. It's too long in the back and the outer toe needs more definition. 
It looked better when it was just on my foot. 

I feel like if I just add like a sole insert for a shoe on the bottom instead of the whole shoe things will be a bit better. Also duct tape to form the little toe better. 

I'm also thinking I don't really want to use my morph suit for the armor jumpsuit. 1) It's hard to move in. 2) Hard to get on and off. 3) I may have gotten too big for it. 4) No pockets. 5) I tore the netting up trying to put it on . :(  

So I'm considering alternatives like a tight turtleneck and dance pants. I may have some somewhere and then just wears socks. ;) I like this plan more. Plus if I do things right, I can have pockets on my pants. maybe. 
I can get away with this since Tali's outfit looks like pants. More to come. 

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Costume Plans: The Wolf Queen

Blending Vampire queen seductress with werewolf. It was inspired by the design of the Wolf Queen from the casual game Dark Parables: Red Riding Hood Sisters.

Quite pretty really. Even with those dead glowing eyes and claws.
Here are some designs I've been playing with.
In this design I have a couple of simplicity patterns I'll be working with.
Corsets, Bustle Skirts, and an off the shoulder shirt. (And then while searching the site I stumble upon THIS pattern and think...dang that short skirt is what I was looking for...oh wells. All of the patterns I bought were on clearance for like $2 each.)

Here's another rough sketch of what I plan to do using one of the shorter bustle skirts. Things always look so nice when drawn. LOL...I'll have to use my photoshop template when I get home.

I also plan on possibly making some jewelry too. It's been fun looking at different beads and such. ^^ I'm so excited! (As I usually am when a costume in the plan and acquire mode.)

There's always a focal piece or two that I look forward to the most. For this particular costume it was the gloves. AS you can see in the Wolf Queen screenshot, she's got these massive red claws. I'm looking forward to making that part.

When I started the process of of what to do for the paw feet and claw hands, I had a pair of black gloves that I hadn't used. Now I can! I ordered some Rave lights meant for gloves and some blank false nails that are talon shaped. Unfortunately, I found that Party City pretty much had what I was looking for at a low price. :( SIGH...ah wells.

Project Layers

Layer 1: Dress
This is mostly a matter of layering parts of these patterns together. A corset + Bustle Skirt is the main anatomy of the outfit with a sheer off-the shoulder shirt underneath.

- Sheer Fabric (owned)
- Costume Silk (owned)
- Brocade (looking)
- Interfacing
- Boning
- Trim (owned?)

Layer 2: Hands and Feet
- Black Costume Gloves (owned)
- False Nails (owned)
- Red Nail Polish (owned)
- LED Lights (waiting for shipping)
- Foam (owned)
- Claw beads (shopping)
- Black Nylon Stockings (opaque)
- Fur/Black Feather Trim

Layer 3: Accessories
- Black Long Wig (Waiting until Halloween to buy)
- Ears (Craft Foam and Faux Fur)
- Tail (Faux Fur, Pins/Elastic)
- Choker: (Faux Fur, Fang Beads)
- Circlet (Jewelry Chain, Tear Drop Beads, Moon Pendant)

Make Up Plans:
Animal Eye Eyeliner
Plum Lips
Plum and Gold Eyes
Thicker eyebrows
False lashes

Dye Plastic Dye!

So I found this video on dyeing petg plastic visors. And guess what...it works like a charm! 
I now have a purple visor! 

It obscures my face, but I'll also be having back lighting in the helmet so I'll still be a bit visible...when I want to be. :D
So studly. Currently working on the sleeves. I'll have to finish the armor before adding more. 

Thursday, July 17, 2014

More Warden Progress: Jacket

Things I learned. 
1) Pintucking takes FOREVER. Well...it took 2 Seasons of Red Vs. Blue and Hot Fuzz. 
2) Collars, I don't not think I know how to do them right. I made it up as I went. 
3) I'm going to need a lot more sewing machine needles for my projects. :/
4) Whenever you find the perfect color fabric, there's always not enough. And when you go back to the store, it's never restocked. That is the story of the blue ribbon. I didn't want to go with this bright shiny blue. 

Things I need to do.
1) Stud it up. Probably only on the lower parts of the sleeves and the back because bulky armor covers most of it (aka pressing down points into my flesh).
2) Glue down the ribbon.
3) Before I glue I need to "dirt" things up. Got black spray paint and I'm thinking of pouring tea over it. 

But yay Jacket and tabard and progress!!

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Visualization: Rethinking King Alistair

I've been reading up on techniques for crossplay (that is dressing up as a character that is the opposite gender as the player.) Now, luckily for me, most of the issues can be solved by armor. Yay. However, the armor does have to be tailored a bit differently that normal. So...I took some body shots of myself and colored over myself in photoshop. Here's the deal.

Doable right? I mean I can widen my shoulders quite a bit thanks to the pauldrons and mantle. However, I'll still need shoulder pads to give the required lift. I intend to have my arms padded a bit too just so It doesn't look like stick arms coming off broad shoulders. Also cutting the curve of my legs down should be achieved with the boot covers and thigh bits. 

It was my hips and waist that gave me real worry. Here's what my body looks like underneath this plan. 

Mmmhmm...dem birthing hips. I'm a classic pear shape with a pinched waist if I stand up straight. My shoulders are also round and a bit narrow. The curve can be nixed with the armor which is a cursais. 

I also think I found a suitable wig I can style up and a method to make the chin beard thing. 

*Kermit Yay*
I'm glad I took these photos so I can work on future project planning more effectively. And accurately. Sometimes I doodle myself with thinner arms than I have. 

Also, roughed out the Grey Warden jacket. I'm preparing to pintuck the fabric and pop the collar. Also got enough ribbon for the tabard. 
I'll have progress pictures soon.