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In need of guidance
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Post new topic   Reply to topic    Rebel Legion Forum Index -> Costume and Prop Making -> Royalty/Senatorial -> Leia
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General Princess (Jordan West)
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PostPosted: Fri Jun 10, 2016 1:08 pm    Post subject: In need of guidance Reply with quote

I posted in the Central Base forum, and the CO suggested asking over here.

So I've been working on my costume submission (Hoth Leia) for about six months. Now that it's almost done, all the fixing and re-fixing and double-checking and re-double-checking has got me in a serious anxiety spiral.

There's nothing specific I need help with, but I'd really appreciate a chance to chat with a current member and go over some of the costume details, even if it's to confirm that I'll have to do somethings over or just scrap the whole mess and go back to square one.

I can post pictures, or I'm in Minneapolis, in case anyone local is able to meet up.

Thanks in advance!
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Lora Skywalker ()
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PostPosted: Sat Jun 11, 2016 9:55 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I would suggest posting some pictures up here for others to see. That will give people something to give feedback on. Smile
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SongofAmazon (Jenna)
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PostPosted: Sun Jun 12, 2016 1:01 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Please do share some photos. We can help you a lot from here.

And if you're still working on it, I'll be in the Twin Cities at the end of next month, and I may be able to meet up and give you some tips. Leia Buns
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General Princess (Jordan West)
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Joined: 17 Mar 2016
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Location: Minneapolis, MN
Medals: 2 (View more...)
2016 Dragon Con Medal (Amount: 1)

PostPosted: Thu Jun 16, 2016 3:47 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ok! Some of the pieces I was working with weren't cooperating, so I ended up starting over and making a new jumpsuit from scratch.

The pattern I'm using is McCall's M7330-ZZ0, with these changes:

zipper instead of buttons
stand-up, padded collar
non-rolling cuffs on the sleeves and pants
no pleats/gathers
no external pockets
a point added to the back yoke
dart seams added to the back

This is what the back looks like:



For your additional entertainment, here's me looking super dorky in the unfinished jumpsuit:



I've since taken it in and finished all the seams, so it actually, y'know, fits and doesn't look like an exterminator suit. I'm planning to use stitching to fake the front yoke seam and will add all the panels once the base is done, then use a tea rinse to age it and make the whole thing less blindingly white. Plus adding the belt and belt loops, obvs.

One thing I'm not sure I've got right is the panels. The standards specify "rounded and contoured diagonal quilted zig-zag design", which is ??? I can see what that means in this exhibit photo:



but you really have to squint to see the "rounded" and "zig-zag" parts of that.

What I did was take a standard diamond quilt and remove all the stitches in one direction to create a diagonal pattern. The end result looks like this:


Assuming that all you'll be able to see is the diagonal (and that the rest of the costume is fine) is this close enough? It looks like members with this costume have mostly freehanded the panel design, with varied results.

As far as the rest of the costume, I'm having the rank insignia and arm comm printed from this design: http://www.thingiverse.com/thing:1410462 and should have them in a few days.

I modded the boots from an existing pair. Here's the before/after:


I'm in the process of replacing the vinyl straps with webbing, so those are 95% done. (Also working on a tutorial for those, including how I made the heels.)

The vest is a whole other saga. More on that story as it develops.

It would help me a lot to get a sense of how much flexibility there is on the smaller details - things like the quilting on the panels, seam angles, adjustments for sizing, etc. How much consideration is given to the quality of the costume in the case that a detail isn't quite right? I've been cosplaying for about 15 years, so I'm confident that the end result is going to look great, and I don't want to be disqualified because one thing is out of whack.

For reference, I did a version of Leia from the recent comic that's not Legion-standard but is pretty badass: http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v187/shadowen/Leia_zpseanxtycm.jpg

So that's a very long update on where I am with this costume and why it's the single most stressful thing I've ever made. Thanks in advance for your input and patience.
help

Quote:
And if you're still working on it, I'll be in the Twin Cities at the end of next month, and I may be able to meet up and give you some tips. Leia Buns


That would be fantastic! I'm hoping to have it done for CONvergence, at the beginning of July, but who knows. Confused
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SongofAmazon (Jenna)
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PostPosted: Fri Jun 17, 2016 10:32 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

It looks like you are off to a good start. What is your jump suit made out of? I am concerned with how thin it is. We can see your under-things through the fabric. You're aiming for a snow-suit look so usually something with a little polyester or nylon in it is good.

What you've done with the boots is very clever. I like that idea. My only caution is to make sure that those boots look definitely gray. Right now they still look almost black in some photos.

For your patches, I don't think that solution would work. We'd still see the residue lines of the seams that you took out. It is also important that the lines are not just straight across but in a winding zig-zag. You can see it pretty well in this image: http://www.padawansguide.com/c3/hoth14_med.jpg The arm patches do the same thing.

As to what we are looking for as judges, the standards are our starting point. You want to make sure that you have all of the details and parts listed in there. Then, we look for quality craftsmanship, fit, and proportions. The costume should look as baggy or tight on you as it did on Leia, and the proportions of the pieces (like the quilted patches, etc.) should look roughly the same on you as they did on the original.

Also, we totally welcome comic book Leia costumes. If you've got reference photos of head-to-toe from both the back and the front, it can be a legion-approved costume. We've actually had standards in the works for that costume for a while now, but we haven't been able to get our hands on any good scans of the comic to verify the details.

If you're unsure about anything, just keep posting reference images, and we'll give you feedback as soon as we can.
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Riyo Chuchi, Havoc Trooper, Amilyn Holdo, Lilac Handmaiden

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General Princess (Jordan West)
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PostPosted: Mon Jun 20, 2016 5:55 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The jumpsuit material is a single knit polyester. It looks much more substantial in person and should read better with photos not taken on my phone in a house at night. I also got it to be just a smidge darker - more eggshell or ivory - which helps it look heavier. I'll be sure to post some better test photos before I submit.

It has some weird lines in this pic because I have a shirt on under it, but here it is post-resiszing:


Looking at them again, you're definitely right about the boots. I should be able to get them a few shades lighter with some extra buffing and a little paint.

After some significant trial and error, I managed to get a satisfactory pattern on the panels, so now the arm ones look suspiciously like maxi pads:


So here are some of the questions that I have at this stage:

1. For the belt: Is there a recommended type of closure? It looks like the vest is covering it in all of the Hoth pictures, and she's not wearing it in the Bespin ones. Is there any preference, or does it not matter as long as the front is flat?

2. For the boot straps: Is there a recommended width? They look like they're about an inch, but through a miscalculation, I ended up with webbing that's 1 1/2 inches. For comparison, the ones in the pic above are just under an inch.

Re: The 2015 comic costume, the last time I checked, it looked like the standards hadn't been approved yet? Once I get through Hoth, I'll probably get that one updated, since they're the same base, but there were some details in the proposed standards that I didn't think were quite right. (e.g. They describe the same vest as the Hoth costume, but it's a darker color with totally different construction. etc.) What's the procedure for giving feedback on proposed standards? Is that something only active members are allowed to do?

Which reminds me of another (OT) question about weapons props: Since weapons are 'optional' and not 'required', do they have to be screen-accurate colors? Some events, like conventions, don't allow realistic-looking weapons. So the DDC blaster, for instance, wouldn't be allowed at a certains cons if it's all black, but the factory orange/white version from Ruby's would be fine. Are there any guidelines for things like that?

Apologies if that's been answered elsewhere. I just thought about it and figured I'd ask. Leia Buns
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General Princess (Jordan West)
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PostPosted: Fri Jun 24, 2016 2:29 pm    Post subject: Vest diagram Reply with quote

I've been flipping through reference pictures to figure out all the different details on the vest, and I have engineer brain, so I made a diagram. I thought this might be a useful quick reference for anyone else working on this.

Please let me know if I missed anything or noted anything incorrectly.

ETA: No sooner did I post this than I noticed some things to fix. Here's the new one. Razz

Hoth vest diagram by Jordan West, on Flickr
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General Princess (Jordan West)
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2016 Dragon Con Medal (Amount: 1)

PostPosted: Mon Jun 27, 2016 4:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

By some miracle, I got the vest 99% finished this weekend. I still want to press the seams to make it fall better, but I'm generally pretty pleased with it.

(mostly) Finished vest by Jordan West, on Flickr

Here's a close shot of the rank insignia next to the exhibit photo:

Finished rank badge by Jordan West, on Flickr

I also got my new wig, so I was able to get it styled. I'm going to reset it before submitting, since it's a little messy, but the color and weight seem about right.

Wig test 1 by Jordan West, on Flickr

Had a weird set-back with the jumpsuit in that I finished one of the panels in the morning, left for the day, went to attach it that night... and couldn't find it. I suspect my cat may have stolen it for nefarious purposes. In any case, I expect to get it 100% finished tonight, so pics soon.

Re: my previous questions - I found an answer about the belt closure and was able to get 1" webbing for the boots, so yay!

I'm still curious about weapons' colors and inclusion as optional items. Not relevant for this costume, but I'd like to include the E-11 blaster in the Bespin version, so it would be good to know.

I did put up a bunch of reference scans for the comic book costume, and I'll throw the link in here, since it's come up and they're similar costumes: https://flic.kr/s/aHskCa3FMV
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Lora Skywalker ()
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PostPosted: Mon Jun 27, 2016 8:24 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Congrats on getting so much done. Smile But it looks like your quilting sections are too tight; they're quite large on the original.

Look forward to seeing the suit soon.
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SongofAmazon (Jenna)
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 28, 2016 1:38 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Lora is right about the quilting. When you look at the original, it looks like the quilted squares are about 2" per side, whereas yours are only 1" per side. You *might* be able to take out half of the stitching lines and iron out evidence (maybe even washing might help if the fabrics can handle it?), but if it still looks 1" quilting after you've removed the threads, you'd probably have to redo that portion of the vest.
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In planning and progress:
Riyo Chuchi, Havoc Trooper, Amilyn Holdo, Lilac Handmaiden

Charter Committee | Galactic Senate DCO | RLGS Web Site

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General Princess (Jordan West)
Active Legion Member


Joined: 17 Mar 2016
Posts: 185
Location: Minneapolis, MN
Medals: 2 (View more...)
2016 Dragon Con Medal (Amount: 1)

PostPosted: Wed Jun 29, 2016 3:22 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Alright! It's not submission-ready, but I have a convention this weekend, so it's at least wearable.
(Mostly) finished costume

I worked on it for a few hours after this photo and made some fixes:
- set boot straps so they don't flop at weird angles
- moved leg patches down
- moved forearm patches forward
- tacked down vest placard

I know there are some other fixes I still need to make:
- put the wrist comm on the LEFT side, like it's supposed to be. *headdesk*
- lengthen vest
- wider quilting on vest
- baste seams (sides, interior)
- stitch down vest collar base

I painted the boots with a lighter grey, but I feel like they're still showing up dark. This is what they look like in indirect, natural sunlight, so the pic is true to color. Too dark? Acceptable? Awful?

As far as the rest of the costume, is there anything that immediately jumps out as wrong? Aside from the fixes I listed, what specifically doesn't work?
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SongofAmazon (Jenna)
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PostPosted: Fri Jul 01, 2016 6:43 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The boots are looking lighter now, so I think you're in the appropriate range. You may want to find a way to keep your straps on the boots from sagging though. I admit, I'm still fighting with that on mine.
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Riyo Chuchi, Havoc Trooper, Amilyn Holdo, Lilac Handmaiden

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Lora Skywalker ()
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PostPosted: Fri Jul 01, 2016 8:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The boots are better, but if you can get them a little lighter still it would be good. Smile
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General Princess (Jordan West)
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2016 Dragon Con Medal (Amount: 1)

PostPosted: Tue Jul 12, 2016 8:09 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think I'm ready to check off the vest. The quilting is at 2", and the stitch marks are completely gone. (Pro tip: http://www.makery.uk/2015/07/how-to-remove-stitch-marks-from-fabric). I lengthened the bottom, so the flaps now hit at the waist, and I cleaned up the edges, so it just generally looks nicer.



Some cosmetic fixes to the jumpsuit are in progress, and the boots are getting an upgrade, since the first ones were pretty worn out *before* I started pulling them apart. No being clever this time, just stitching on a shell and straps, using these as a base:


(Bonus: These boots are actually the right size!)

And now back to weeping over my sewing machine. ;_;


Last edited by General Princess (Jordan West) on Thu Jul 14, 2016 6:36 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Lora Skywalker ()
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PostPosted: Wed Jul 13, 2016 12:10 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Good luck with it and keep going. Smile The new vest is looking much better.
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