Process – Sailor Mercury

One of the main reasons I decied to go to Anime Expo this year was because the original english cast of Sailor Moon is going to be there!! I have loved Sailor Moon ever since I was teeny tiny! I remeber running to my baby sitter’s house after school and watching it on cartoon network with her daughter. I remeber prentending I was Sailor Moon using “Prism Power Make-up” when I would raise my hand in class. I would go to the mall to buy the trading card game and attempt to play it with my Dad (though we never really figured it out). I had the prop toys, the plushes, all the manga. The first costume I ever made myself was Sailor Moon, yes it was made out of paper, but I still think it counts. Let’s just say that Sailor Moon and the original english dub have been a really really big part of my life.

So it makes sense that I would want to make a Sailor Moon costume!  I’ve actually tried multiple times to make Sailor Moon related costumes. I first tried my hand at Queen Serenity. This is something I’d like to finish someday. It was the first thing I ever actually patterned all by myself, but I didn’t like the way it made me look and the fact it was hard to walk in. This was an easy fix though, last year I did fix the dress to make it fit my body better and now I really like it and hope to finish it at some point. I’ve also attempted to make Super Sailor Moon. My favorite sailor outfit is Super Sailor Moon, I love the colors and her wands for this version! Again I made most of the outfit but ended up not liking the fit ofr the flow of the fabric. So I again scrapped it (But this one I do think I’ll be remaking soon!).

While I had originally planned to make Princess Serenity as my main Sailor Moon costume for AX when I heard about the ACP casting call for the inner scouts I just HAD to make something to apply with. So while Sailor Moon is my favorite scout I decieded I would apply with Sailor Mercury, my second favorite scout. I figured that there would be a whole bunch of people applying to be Sailor Moon, and many who would be better suited for Moon than I, so I choose Mercury.

Now to get started!  Sailor Fuku are deceptivly simple looking, however they are very very very difficult to get right. So I made a research board on Pinterst of Sailor Moon cosplay I’ve like and what I liked about them. With that in mind I set off on making Mercury.

Luckily I already had a leotard made from when I started work on Super Sailor Moon, so I pull it out of storage, removed the skirt and tried it on. My body has changed quite a bit from when I made this leo so I had to take it in a couple inches on both sides. After that I decided to tackle the sleeves. I took at look at other Moon cosplayers to see what sleeves I liked and I decided that I like sleeves that conform to the body and are round and fluffy. So I took my body padding training from my Costume Crafts class and set about making the sleeves. I never really thought I’d be able to use the body padding that I learned in class, but now I’m lucky that we went over it! I started by cutting a basic sleeve shape out of my knit material. I then shaped it a bit to make it more of an almond shape (so it was curved on the bottom and very thin at the ends where it would be seamed together). After I had my basic shape I cut a larger almond shape out of my knit material. Then I put polyfil between the layers and pinned where I wanted my seams to be, stitched it and now had a puffy sleeve like shape!  Now I seamed the sleeves together at the thin points, then attached them to the fuku. After they were attached I blind hemmed the open edge! I’m really happy with how these turned out! They are puffy and structured but still look like sleeves and not armor! I added some snaps and hook and bars to the crotch of the leotard and was ready to start work on the next part!

Next I started on the skirt! To me the skirt is the hardest part of the Sailor Fuku. There are just so many ways to do it and they all look different! I decided to make my skirt using the multiple circle skirt method! I make 3 and a half circle skirt out of my Casa collection satin and then french seamed them together. This makes the skirt very very full! I’ve almost found that I think it’s too full, but we’ll see!  I then attached the skirt to my fuku, I did this while I was wearing the fuku so that way it would be pinned where it should sit when the leo is stretched to fit me, however I would have done this on my dress form if I had it. I made one box pleat in the front and in the back of the skirt then knife pleats all around the sides. While I didn’t notice this when I first attached it one of my pleats was not even and was falling in a strange way, this would end up causing me a bit of greif. After I attached the skirt I set about french hemming the whole skirt! This was a bit crazy! It’s a very very long hem since it’s 3 circle skirts so it took me quite a while. After I hemmed it I tried it on and saw that the front of some of my pleats was shorter than the back of the pleats, so you saw this strange bunch of extra material behind the pleats, so I had to re-hem quite a bit of the skirt, ugg! After I finished fixing it hem was when I realized I had an uneven pleat. So I seam ripped that bit of the skirt and fixed up the pleat, again I had to rehem this chunk of the skirt, but once I finished this I was much happier with it! I have come to realize though that If and when I make another fuku I’m going make my skirt just a single pleated circle skirt like Sparkle Pipsi. I really love her Sailor Venus skirt!

After the skirt I started work on the Sailor Collar. I already had a pattern from my Super Sailor Moon, so I simply traced that to make my new collar. I made all the bias tape out of a white casa collection satin since I wanted it to match. I first made it a bit to wide so I had to remake all of it, which was kinda lame, but oh well! I then attached it to my collar and bag lined the collar! When I put it over my shoulders I really liked it, but then once I attached it to my fuku it wasn’t laying straight! I thought this was just because my knit material had moved a bit from when I first pinned the collar so I took it off and tried it again, but it still wasn’t laying flat on my shoulders! So I took a day off then came back and google for some sailor collar tutorials and came across this tutorial by NyuNyuCosplay. I was super lucky I found this and that it had the small diagrams to show what the different shapes of collars did! My collar looked like the one on the left which stood off the shoulders when I wanted it to look like the one on the right. So, I printed off her pattern, recut my fabric ripped off my bias tape and attached it to the new collar, re-bag lined it and then reattached it! Now It looked waaaayyyyy better! I’m totally in love with it now!

Next was the bows! I made my bows using Sparkle Pipsi’s sailor fuku tutorial! I love the way her bows look and I’m so happy with how mine turned out!! I used the wrong side of my casa collection stain for these (partly because they only had the stain with sparkles and didn’t think that was very suiting), but also for a bit of texture contrast! After I interfaced them and made them just like Sparkle Pipsi explains I attached them to the Sailor Fuku! In addition to attaching them at the knot I also tacked down the tips of the bows to my leo, this was just so they would for sure stay up and fluffy!

After this I moved onto the gloves! Gloves were made of the same knit material as my leo! Gloves with knit materials are pretty easy. I simply traced my hand and then stitched next to the line! Once these were finished I turned them inside out and got to work on the rolls. I also used Sparkle Pipsi’s method for the sleeve rolls. I then hand stitched them to the gloves!

Now all that’s left was small accessories! I now moved onto the boots. These started as Blue gogo boots from Funtasma, if you buy these be sure to order a size above as they do run small, they are also very tight on one of my calfs, but that may be because of my varacose veins. After I got these I began to alter them. I first folded my light blue satin in half and traced the shape of of the boot top onto the fabric, then I stitched it together trimmed it and turned it inside out. I made two of these. Next I put on the boots and held up my new toppers to them, I then traced the bottom of my toppers onto my boots. I cut the tops of my boots off around half and inch above my line, I then pinned my satin topper to the boot with a satin stitch. This is one of my new favorite methods to put trim on complicated shapes! I really makes it easy and makes it very clean!

Then the wig! The wig is an Inigo from Arda Wigs in Dark Blue that I trimmed down and layered a ton! Then I teased up the bangs! Pretty simple! The Tiara is made of wonderflex and was originally made fot Super Sailor Moon, I just took of the moon and replaced it with the gem!

That’s all I have for right now, but the brooch is on it’s way! It’s a plastic fillable ornament that I am going to paint the inside of then attach to my fuku! I also order things for her computer and glasses! The glasses are simply blue saftey glasses and the computer is a small flip open calculator that I will be painting! I’ll be sure to add photos of those once they are done~

That’s all for now!
Thanks for reading guys! I hope you enjoied!

Till next time!
-Eli~

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