Friday, 16 May 2014

Tess Cosplay - Construction

Tess from Jak II & III

When: August 2013
Where: Home, UK
For What: London Expo Oct 2013

Tess is a character that a lot of people who have played the Jak games might not remember if they saw her on the street. She's a cool character though, a strong bubbly freedom fighter and spy who really, really likes guns. It was a shame I didn't have time to make a gun for her this time.

I had pretty much most parts of the costume but the main one was the top, so I started with that. I used the pattern for a work jacket (which you can see in the picture below) and altered it by shortening it and bringing it in to fit the original better.

As usual I hand sewed the top, folding together the edges of the fabric to create a hem so the edges wouldn't fray and to create a stronger hold.

When I was happy with it I machine stitched the whole thing and added the zip on the front. I got some purple fabric and wrapped it around a hairband, using some strong all-purpose fabric and wood glue to keep it in place. I had to be careful with the glue because it would seep through the fabric and show up when it dried.

The hardest part was the leather straps. I used an old leather coat and created them by cutting out the useful parts of the fabric into strips and folding the edges together an glueing them down with even stronger glue to get them to look tidy. I tried to pin them evenly onto the top and then hand stitched them in a few places to get them to stick as well as using some glue. But even though the leather was very soft it took a while to get the dewing part done because it was so thick.

Using some red fabric I had left over from my Ookami cosplay, I made her scarf pretty easily by hand stitching a tube and turning it inside out. I made it so it would be big enough to go over my head before I put the wig on.

The ears were a bit of a rushed job and I think I'd do them a different way next time. I got some foam and cute them into kind of squarish ear shapes (which you can see below). I then put wire around the edges and folded them down.

I covered the whole thing in masking tape before painting them with acrylic paint, adding shadowing and highlights to make them look like real ears. The problem was the wire kept coming loose, and the pain brought the masking tape off the ears. Next time I think I will have to buy a glue gun and use that to stick the edges down and then spend time paper macheing the ears before painting them. I attached them to the hairband which worked for a while but I had to get a glue gun and stick them in place on the day of the con because they kept slipping off and pointing in odd directions.

For the shoes I used a sandy coloured fabric and made wraps to go around my boots, using cardboard to create the knee pads, and left over leather fabric which I attached poppers to to hold them together. I also used the left over leather and some more poppers to make the belt and used a pair of jeans shorts that I already had for the belt.

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