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WIP Red Invasion Gown
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Aglarwen (Elizabeth Martinez)
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 13, 2018 11:08 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Life kinda got super crazy for the last few months, so I was forced to put this on hold. But I'm finally getting back to work on it this week! I've got all of the piping for the body of the dress sewn and ready to go. I also threw the mockup and hoop skirt on before getting started on ripping it apart to take a quick picture for y'all! Very Happy



If all goes well, I should have the body of the dress sewn together tomorrow night!
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Lora Skywalker ()
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 20, 2018 6:32 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Very nicely done. Very Happy

How are you handling the three layers of sleeves? Do you sew them all together with the outer dress or do you keep the inner layer separate for washability?
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SongofAmazon (Jenna)
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 20, 2018 11:42 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

All those seams! It looks like you're off to a great start.
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Aglarwen (Elizabeth Martinez)
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Joined: 13 Apr 2015
Posts: 182
Location: Tampa, Florida
Medals: None

PostPosted: Thu Sep 27, 2018 1:55 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I've been hard at work in my free time, and it has paid off! The body of the dress is complete!





The fur is so soft, I was so tempted to just cuddle up in all of it instead of cut it out lol

I will be sewing all three sleeves together with the dress. Already have the piping finished and the pattern seam ripped and ready to go!
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Aglarwen (Elizabeth Martinez)
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Joined: 13 Apr 2015
Posts: 182
Location: Tampa, Florida
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PostPosted: Tue Oct 02, 2018 9:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

More progress!

The sleeves are attached and the dress is all done. And boy is this thing super hot already. I was dying after being in it for only a few minutes.





Thoughts so far?
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Lora Skywalker ()
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PostPosted: Sat Oct 13, 2018 7:36 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yeah, don't die of heat stroke. Razz

What does it look like from the sides and back?
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Aglarwen (Elizabeth Martinez)
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Joined: 13 Apr 2015
Posts: 182
Location: Tampa, Florida
Medals: None

PostPosted: Wed Aug 21, 2019 9:15 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

So it's been a long time since I've updated this, but as today, my Red Invasion gown is approved! I got way too busy to update as I finished things, So I'm going to add a few posts to show how I finished it all up in order of how I got it done.

The next piece I worked on after the gown was the collars. I had an embroidery file purchased from CosplayEmbroidery on Etsy. My embroidery machine only works in a 4 in by 4 in space, so with a bunch of trial and error, I resized each file to fit in the space and be proportionate to each other. After all of the embroidery was finished on pieces of duchess satin, I cut the tabards into the right shape and ironed some interfacing on. Muslin was cut out to figure out the pattern for the collars that the tabards attached to. The end result was this.



The tabards and collars had two pieces each of duchess satin that had interfacing ironed on. There was also a piece of quilt batting sandwiched in between each piece of duchess satin for the collars and tabards. The long tabards were sewn onto the under collar and thus ready for trim.



I cut out long strips of my fur (about 1 1/2 inches wide if I can remember correctly), folded and pinned them along the edges of the collar and tabard pieces, and sewed carefully. The under collar was just sewn up in the back, and the neck cut open wide so I could slip it on over my head. The top collar had the tall collar sewn in (I made it 3 in tall) and velcro added to the back.



But is that it for these? Of course not! I had to hand stitch all of the cording into the top collar, bit by bit. It was slow work, but very satisfying when it was all complete.

I sewed a basic double layered hood using the duchess satin and sewed that to the underside of the under collar. And thus, the collars were finally all done!




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Aglarwen (Elizabeth Martinez)
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Joined: 13 Apr 2015
Posts: 182
Location: Tampa, Florida
Medals: None

PostPosted: Wed Aug 21, 2019 9:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Next step: laterns!

My original plan for this was to shape these with transparent worbla using a mold I made from air dry clay. But the transparent worbla does not behave like the normal stuff, and the couple pieces I did shape came out horribly.

I instead went with my backup plan: 6 in clear plastic easter eggs. I bought multi surface acrylic paint, Apple Barrel in Nectarine and Folk Art in Real Brown. I painted the brown part first. I then watered down the orange a bit and painted it onto the rest of the eggs to make it slightly translucent.



I bought a package of small battery powered LED lights from Wish. They can be changed to any color, which worked really well for my purposes.



I keep them set to orange when I wear it so they shine in the proper color under the eggs. I glued them to the brown part of the eggs, and glued the eggs to rings of white posterboard. I made the posterboard pieces wide enough both inside and outside of the eggs so there was enough space for velcro. I cut pieces exactly the same size as the eggs to velcro behind. It acts as a door so I can get into the lights and change out batteries, but also have a white background for the light to bounce off of and illuminate the whole egg. You can see this effect here.



Last step was to create the windows in the dress for the eggs to fit through. I carefully drew out each egg shape in the right place. I made sure that a line of piping ran down the center, and 4 panels of the dress fit in between each egg, just as Naergilien described in her analysis. I cut holes into it and used heat bond to close the hem on each hole. Then, I used velcro to attach the eggs to the underside of the dress. Voila!


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Aglarwen (Elizabeth Martinez)
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Joined: 13 Apr 2015
Posts: 182
Location: Tampa, Florida
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PostPosted: Wed Aug 21, 2019 10:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I was most nervous about doing the headdress. Up until this point, I had hoped to do a 3D printed headdress, but I simply didn't have the cash to pay someone what they would deserve to create the 3D print files. So I decided to try my luck at worbla. It presented a challenge because I am by no means a wizard with worbla, but I was willing to give it a try!

I first started with a styrofoam base for the hair roll. I bought two styrofoam wreaths and glued them together, and cut where I wanted the ends to stop. I cut a couple shapes to bring the back half of the roll close to my head (once again, thank goodness for Naergilien for having the reference for this) and glued them to the wreath. And then sanded, sanded, sanded by hand. Sanded. Sanded. And then sanded some more until my poor arm and hand were sore.



I had ordered one pack of short wefts and one pack of long wefts in Spanish Brown from Arda Wigs for the hair parts. It was after the styrofoam roll was done that I realized that one pack of short wefts was nowhere near enough to sufficiently cover the base. The wefts I needed were on backorder and wouldn't arrive in time for Celebration Chicago, so I put her away for a bit. Didn't get back at it until I finished moving (right after Celebration. It was an exhausting couple weeks). When I did have time to work on her again, I went to the worbla part first.

I used mix of normal and white worbla for all of these parts. Normal was used for the parts with the rough texture in yellow gold, white for everything else (it has finer grain to it, so it doesn't require much sanding at all. I didn't have to sand anything in the white stuff). First piece cut out was the base for the top of the head. I cut out two of these and sandwiched them together. It extends down just below my ears. I also ended up cutting the point back for the widows peak significantly after the fact



Next was the diamond that runs up the center top of the head and up the hair roll. Another easy piece to measure and cut.



I shaped those two pieces together on my head and then up the hair roll base. I went to town shaping the red of the pieces. The blades, the cool bauble at the top, the eggs on the sides of the face, the pieces that would be wrapped in red lace. I bought a leather stamp in a cool geometric pattern and used it to stamp the pattern in the diamond shape in the center of the head and blades while the worbla was heated. You'll see it up close below. This is what it all looked like when it was cut out, shaped and ready for paint. There were a couple things that got fixed with this after submitting for approval that I will go into later.



After it all got spray painted in gold, I began assembling everything. First came the bauble bit up top. I had bought a chinese cinnabar bead that went nicely in between the worbla bits. The pearls and rhinestones took a bit to glue on individually.



After spray painting, the diamond and the blades got painted over with a couple coats of white pearlized acrylic paint to make it look a little more white gold than the rest of the parts of the headdress. The strip up the center and the ends of the blades got wrapped in lace and glued in place. The end of the lace on the blades were hidden under where the lace part was glued to the rest of the blade.





The Swarovski crystal I bought was glued into its place and glued onto the headdress. Pieces of worbla were shaped and glued on to the sides of the head in order to help the blades get positioned right on the headdress, and then those were glued in with the eggs. A strip of elastic was sandwiched on the underside of the base piece with another square of worbla and glued in for good measure so it stays in place on my head.

The new wefts for the hair roll had come in by this time, so I went ahead and hot glued pieces of hair bit by bit around the styrofoam base. Watered down fabric fusion was painted on afterwards to tame flyaways and give it a nice polished finished without using hairspray that will flake off after some time. Clips were sewn into the top of a bundle of long wefts. Strips were knotted and thus it was all ready for MegaCon!



The test wear went really well at Megacon, but I quickly realized that the heat was manageable but having the hair roll be a separate piece that combs into the attachment for the long wefts was way too painful. So I glued a new piece of worbla under the top center of the base piece and attached the head roll to the headdress. Resulted in much less pain for me, and made it much easier to put on!

I submitted my pictures about a week ago, and was thankful for my only feedback to be reshaping the eggs on the headdress so they're more round instead of rectangle, and adding more rough, crinkled texture to the yellow gold parts of the headdress. I did a simple reshaping of the eggs. Thin strips of scrap worbla were cut out and attached to the eggs and the base piece in random patterns. I taped EVERYTHING off, carefully sprayed filler primer down, and sanded them down a bit so they weren't as bumpy. Finally gold paint and clear coat and we were good to go on new approval pictures. These repairs were very much needed, as it makes the headdress look a million times better than it did before!



Here's a comparison before and after


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Aglarwen (Elizabeth Martinez)
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Joined: 13 Apr 2015
Posts: 182
Location: Tampa, Florida
Medals: None

PostPosted: Wed Aug 21, 2019 10:47 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Overall, I'm extremely happy with how it all came out. This has been a dream costume of mine to make, and I'm impressed with just how well I actually did to complete it all myself. One I got approval, I had logged approximately 102 hours of work in from start to finish!

Here's what it all looks like together!







Feel free to ask if you want more elaboration on some parts. This was just a brief summary on what I did with what process pictures I took in the moment, so I'm happy to go into more detail!

I'm excited to troop in her soon! Indoor troops only, its too warm in Florida to be outside in this!
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SongofAmazon (Jenna)
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PostPosted: Thu Aug 22, 2019 1:36 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Omygosh! That turned out so beautifully! Thanks so much for the thorough write-up too! This will help a bunchy of others follow in your footsteps.
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In planning and progress:
Riyo Chuchi, Queen Apailana, Nomi Sunrider, Havoc Trooper, Amilyn Holdo

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Lora Skywalker ()
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PostPosted: Sun Aug 25, 2019 6:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Congratulations on your approval. Very Happy
Thanks for updating this and writing what you did along the way. That will be very helpful to others.
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