Monday, July 31, 2017

SDCC Masquerade Evening

From previous posts, you already know that our group did a tribute to David Bowie at the SDCC Masquerade. We had a total of 18 (!!) people in our group -- 16 Bowies and 2 Ninjas, who helped get our backdrop set in place. We were the last act of the night (#39) and we got a rousing reaction from the crowd.

Unfortunately, we didn't win any of the awards this year (we can't win every single year). It wasn't quite comic book related nor was it really "media" related (such as the Game of Thrones presentation or any of the Star Wars skits), so we didn't quite fit into the general theme of the convention.

However, we got a lot of compliments from members of the Motion Picture Costumer's Association, John Landis (the director), and many from the crowd, including our MC host, Kaja Folio, said that it really touched them and made them cry for David Bowie, who passed in 2016.

And as a cosplayer and performer, that's the best prize we can ask for.

Here are a few photos from the various Bowie. (courtesy of: The OCR)

Photo by Jennifer Cappuccio Maher/Southern California News Group

Photo by Kevin Sullivan, Orange County Register/SCNG

In this one, you can see the whole of the skit.

This video is a bit better in terms of getting a good look at our costumes.

For a complete list of elements for this outfit:

Sunday, July 30, 2017

Building a Suit for SDCC: Lazarus

Now that SDCC is over, I can finally reveal the cosplay that I had been working on two months leading up to SDCC.

Our group was doing a tribute to David Bowie at the SDCC masquerade, and I was going to be his final incarnation, Lazarus, from the Black Star album.

It's not your typical cosplay outfit, but one that I enjoyed making. I'm a big fan of David Bowie and making this outfit was somewhat cathartic.

Insofar as costumes, it's not the most difficult one I've ever made, but it was time three-piece suits generally have quite a bit of tailoring. An added benefit is that I'll be able to wear this outfit outside of any convention.

In addition to his suit, there were a few other things that I needed to create --- his hair as well as the blindfold.

The hair was a bit of a challenge since Bowie's hair is shaved along the sides. I thought some of that could at least be mitigated using the blindfold. I purchased a lace-front wig from Arda Wigs and did a bit of styling -- mostly to have the hair standup along the crown.

The blindfold was a bit trickier only because I needed to be able to SEE well enough on stage to walk around and perform without falling over. I found some light weight gauze at the fabric store that I cut into a long strip.

After wrapping my head while wearing the wig, I marked out where the "eyes" should go that would look about "right" but still allow me to see well enough on stage.

The last thing I needed was the Black Star "bible" that Lazarus carries around.

It looked to be about the size of a trade paperback. So, I took one of the books on my "To Read" stack and drew out a paper template, and traced it on some leather that was in my Leather Stash. My intent was to make a book "cover" that I could use for any book the size of a trade paperback.

I used some matte board to stiffen the sides, and used BARGE glue to attach it to the leather.

After making the book cover. I drew a perfect 5-pointed star, transferred it to suede leather, and attached it to the front of the book.

I'll have a few more posts on our group, video, and other photos.

Saturday, July 29, 2017

Building a Suit for SDCC: Button Down Shirt

The last piece that I made for this cosplay was the button down shirt. Now, you may ask yourself, "WHY did you make a button down shirt? Couldn't you have just bought one?"

Well, yes I could, but I wanted to be able to say that I made a full three-piece suit for myself. It's just my sense of crazy.

I made a simple mockup out of muslin, which fit fairly well. I had to do a few alterations, primarily to the sleeves and armscye, which are my primary problem areas.

One of the things that I changed was to have a French cuff instead of a simple sleeve band. This particular cosplay "appears" to have unfolded French cuffs.

The final shirt, sans buttons.

For a complete list of elements for this outfit:

Building a Suit for SDCC: Jacket

SDCC has come and gone, and I really need to catch up on these costuming posts. I'll have a full write-up on SDCC soon.

Insofar as THIS cosplay, I'm really enjoying making outfits I've made before. You don't need to re-tailor, re-work, or fit the piece to you because you've already done that work. You can just cut the fabric, sew, and you're done!

I tend to save all of my mockups, because you never know when you need to remake an outfit or create another. Plus, it's helpful to understand how costumes are put together. Here's my bedraggled mockup from the previous costume.

I tried it on, and it still fits perfectly, so I proceeded to cut out all of the fabric pieces and begin immediate assembly.

I had very little issue with making this coat again, except for getting the sleeves eased into the coat.

It's also very hard to take a photo of the black fabric of the costume.

Here's the nearly finished coat.

You'll see the final coat in the upcoming posts.

For a complete list of elements for this outfit: