16 February 2015

Holo the Wisewolf - Wolf and Silk

It's been awhile since I made one of these cosplay posts!  As some of you may know, I just got back six weeks ago from a four-month-long study abroad semester in Spain, followed by a beautiful six days in Portugal.  It was a great trip, just not very facilitating for cosplay work.  But I am back now!

I announced that I would be making Holo the Wisewolf from Spice and Wolf last year after Anime Boston, way back in late March.  I haven't forgotten, I promise!  She's changed forms a few times in true Holo style, but we are currently on track for her entry into the masquerade at this year's Anime Boston.

Perhaps the most drastic change is my decision to make a version of Holo's outfit that hasn't been seen on-screen:

Design-wise, this one excites me a lot more than Holo's standard outfits.  So that's why I chose it.  I still have pieces of Holo's standard outfit partially constructed; no idea what I'll do with those, though.

From the start I wanted to avoid making this look too Christmassy even though it was released as Christmastime promotional artwork for the series.  To me it doesn't look super Christmassy in the drawing and more like an Austrian traditional dirndi or something similar.  Except for the corset, of course.  And the ears and tail.

What I wanted to to, then, was choose reds and greens that weren't the normal shades used at Christmastime.  I chose a red silk dupioni that borders more on the orange side than the red:

The seller only had two yards of this fabric, which I knew would be a problem considering I needed to squeeze both a skirt AND a bodice out of it.  It worked out in the end along with a scrap of similarly-coloured poly taffeta from a Victorian dress I made a few years back.  That piece functions as the back of the bodice, and I just hope that it looks intentional enough to not betray the fact that I didn't have enough of the dupioni.

Now, full skirts such as Holo's necessarily have very long hems.  I do not like hemming.  So for the green layer I looked around at things that would not need to be hemmed.  This beautiful used sari came from Etsy:

Saris are nice because they have a ton of fabric in them.  My skirt didn't use much of the sari, so I still have a lot left for a future project.  The only difficulty was cutting up such a beautiful garment, but alas, what else would I have done with it?  Let it sit in my closet unused and unloved? 

Anyway, so I cut out a long rectangle of the sari and gathered it to the waistband using my ruffler(!):

It is so nice not to have to gather things by hand as often anymore.  

A waistband and a zipper later, here is what we have:

I have to say, I am really pleased with how this has turned out so far.  While I haven't worked at all on the corset, ears, or tail, most of the skirt and bodice are complete.  The bodice stills needs its embroidery completed.  One partially-finished piece is already stitched onto the collar: you can see it in the above photos.  Right now I don't have the purple embroidery thread that I need to finish it.  Soon, though, when it warms up a little, I hope to get over to Joann's or Michael's to pick that up.

The purple collar, just so you know, doesn't belong to Holo, but rather to Sansa Stark.  Yes, I am trying to make more progress on her.  After Anime Boston we will see what my schedule looks like.

Besides the embroidery on the collar, I made these two heads of wheat to stitch onto the bodice:

Now that the bodice is mostly complete, I am at a bit of a loss for where to put these.  They don't fit wonderfully anywhere, but maybe that's because I haven't added the embroidery that would surround them yet?  I don't know.  I may yet nix them.

More later!  I at least owe you guys a post on Sibyll Trelawney and possibly also Sansa!

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