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Blog

Here's where the magic happens. I'll be posting about all of my experiences and experiments (both failed and successful ones), introducing you to my costumes, sharing fun stories, linking tutorials and useful products, and who knows what else!

 

Filtering by Tag: fate apocrypha

Happy 2019!

Michael MacWolff

Hey everyone, hope you all had a fun and safe time ringing in the new year! Since I still have minimal new projects progress to share (but I will soon, I promise!) I thought I’d take a look back at my 2018 cosplays. This was a big year for me for a couple of reasons, I definitely expanded my horizons this year and I’ve grown a lot as a crafter. 2018 also marked my 10-year cosplay anniversary! That’s right folks, I’ve officially been cosplaying for a whole decade! It’s amazing that you can be doing something for that long and still be learning and growing in your craft.

My first cosplay of the year really highlights that. I’m referring to my favorite member of the Fire Emblem A**hole Archer Squad: Innes.

I really need to do an actual photoshoot in this cosplay because this is the only good photo I have of him where I’m not hunting dinosaurs *facepalm*

I really need to do an actual photoshoot in this cosplay because this is the only good photo I have of him where I’m not hunting dinosaurs *facepalm*

Ohayocon has become kind of a weird convention for me cosplay-wise, because my usual folks who I tend to cosplay with don’t always make many plans for Ohayo, it tends to be our chill con and I’m perfectly happy with that, because it usually means I can work on something personal over the winter that doesn’t rely on anyone else (because we all know how much of a whore I am for cosgroups). Innes was that personal project this year and I have to say, it is probably my most well-made cosplay to date. The amount of time and effort that went into the elaborate applique, the trim that I had to attach entirely by hand, the gold filigree on the belts and breastplate, and of course the construction of Nidhogg, made for a lot of work but I am so pleased with the result. Innes has been a favorite character of mine since playing FE:SS and when he was released in FEH with an even more foppish design I decided it was finally time to make this cosplay a reality. It’s also surprisingly comfy with is great because I can hang out at con in it all day without wanting to die (a sentiment that is not shared with my two other major cosplays from this year).

My second project was a good bit simpler but was also a blast to make and wear: Mordred from Fate/Apocrypha. This cosplay came together kinda last minute when I discovered RiteoftheFrozen was coming up for Colossal and wanted to cosplay Astolfo. Since they don’t live in the area any more I seized my chance to make a good excuse to hang out with them a bunch at the con by making Mordred (who I already kinda wanted to cosplay anyway because a Fate cosplay was way overdue).

RiteoftheFrozen  is the Astolfo we all need in our lives

RiteoftheFrozen is the Astolfo we all need in our lives

The cosplay itself was super simple, and I thrifted everything but the jacket which I had to order online. I even got a prestyled wig because I really don’t enjoy styling wigs and it turned out great! I did have to do some work but I’m gonna do that whenever I can now, assuming I ever pick another character that’s mainstream enough to find one.

The major build for Mordred was of course the sword: Clarent Blodod Arthur. I have a lot of fun making swords, they’re one of my favorite type of prop to make and this one turned out beautifully. I even had the fortune of meeting Erica Lindbeck, who voices Mordred, at Matsuricon later in the year and had her sign the sword! She was super cool and as I was leaving she said Mordred’s opening line from the show and I just about died because I was not at all prepared for it.

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Matsuricon was also a debut for another major cosplay project: Vaida from FE:BS. This was my first attempt at sculpting a breastplate out of EVA foam and it worked out surprisingly well!

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The best part of this was having our huge Blazing Sword Group and getting to work with Cosplay In Black and White, who as you can see take beautiful photos!

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Priscilla:  ollyodd_cosplay  Eliwood:  kobblecosplay  Lloyd:  vmcosplay  Hector: ? Lyn:  dia.dove  Serra:  nekoyasha  Erk:  kazeninja  Florina:  mecchan_chan  Nino:  mint_amethyst   Lucius:  styleshinjuku

Priscilla: ollyodd_cosplay
Eliwood: kobblecosplay
Lloyd: vmcosplay
Hector: ?
Lyn: dia.dove
Serra: nekoyasha
Erk: kazeninja
Florina: mecchan_chan
Nino: mint_amethyst
Lucius: styleshinjuku

This photoshoot was insanely fun and I got to meet a bunch of awesome people who I will hopefully get to cosplay with again in the future!

My last big project for the year was for another big group and it was definitely something different than I’ve constructed in the past. I’m talking about Frankenstein’s Monster from Fate/Apocrypha.
The wedding dress was definitely a first for me but it came out surprisingly well! A lot of trial and error went into the pattern, the crinoline, the giant mace, and pretty much every other aspect of the cosplay, but it came together and I am super happy with the result! This was another great time to hang out with other awesome cosplayers and work with a fantastic photographer (Robert Tate photography)

I still can’t get over how beautiful this photo is

I still can’t get over how beautiful this photo is

Mordred:  candlewaxcosplay  Jack:  holy.grail  Shiro Amakusa:  emma_the_fantastic   Semiramis:  nekoyasha  Seig:  tomoyoichijouji     Astolfo:  nihopalaoa     Seigfried:  fang_soul  

Mordred: candlewaxcosplay
Jack: holy.grail
Shiro Amakusa: emma_the_fantastic 
Semiramis: nekoyasha
Seig: tomoyoichijouji 
Astolfo: nihopalaoa 
Seigfried: fang_soul 

2018 really was a great year for cosgroups, between the ones involving my new cosplays, and even a few involving older cosplays! Tekko had another great FE: Blazing Sword group where I got to dust off Guy and get some lovely photos with the talented Cosfame - Cosplay Photographer.

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Lyn:  chattyanzud  Hector:  marjolycookie  Eliwood & Ninian:  Raptors in Rhythm  Nils  Light Inheritor  Florina:  mecchan_chan

Lyn: chattyanzud
Hector: marjolycookie
Eliwood & Ninian: Raptors in Rhythm
Nils Light Inheritor
Florina: mecchan_chan

I also got to bust out my favorite lazy reaper for a partner duo with SMZeldaRules and do a great photoshoot with Headphone Studios

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And last, but certainly not least, I was involved in yet more Fire Emblem shenanigans with a return of King Ashnard to Youma 2018.

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So all in all I had a lot of fun this year and I hope all of you did too. I’m going to be doing some updating this week, particularly with my con schedule for the year, and I might put together a 2019 cosplans post soon too… not to mention that Ohayocon is next weekend and I have no idea what I’m doing for it yet x_x

Anyway, may your 2019 be blessed, love you all and Happy New Year!!!

Youmacon (at last)

Michael MacWolff

Hello friends!

Sorry for the long hiatus… I realize you’re probably used to that at this point but I’d love for that not to be the case lol. Since I last posted a bunch of stuff has been going on, which is mostly why I haven’t been posting. Youmacon was a couple weekends ago, and it was super fun! I have a couple photos to share from that, and eventually I’ll have my hands on some more when I get photos back from the shoots I was involved in.

The other big thing that’s been going on, and the main reason I haven’t been super active online lately is that Jordan, Donner and I have moved! We didn’t move far, we’re just a few minutes down the road from our old place, but the new house has a bit more room, which will hopefully be filled up in the not-too-distant-future with an expanding family. We’ll see how that process goes. Anyway, things are kind of a mess right now but when I have most of it put away I’ll make another post to show off my new craft areas!

So Youmacon. I had a blast at Youma; despite having a pretty full cosplay schedule it was a pretty chill con, which is always nice. The impromptu Fire Emblem gathering we had was waaaay better attended than I was expecting! Look at all these folks!

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And look at the wealth of game representation we had! We planned the Tellius stuff around my friend’s Lord Ike and my Ashnard, but we got folks from Blazing Sword, Fates, and Geneaology/Thracia too!

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This is exactly what we’ve been waiting for.

We also got some fabulous derp photos with all of the caped characters (and Rhys (and Reyson)).

Look, a flock of birbs!

Look, a flock of birbs!

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I’ve also wanted to get something resembling this art forever and I finally made it happen!

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Also, while we were hanging out waiting for the official shoot to start, we got our photo taken by the folks at MLive!

Apparently they think my friend is a very salty solution lol  Here’s a link to the article , there are lots of great cosplays to see!

Apparently they think my friend is a very salty solution lol
Here’s a link to the article, there are lots of great cosplays to see!

So Ashnard got to have lots of fun this year, and the other major thing was my debut of Fran! I’m so excited with how this cosplay turned out and I love her so much I want to wear this all the time!

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I had so much fun wearing this cosplay even though it was a bit of a chore between the somewhat unruly weapon and the giant hoops, but I was so happy it didn’t even matter.

I definitely learned some things wearing it the first time too, so I can improve my experience next time. Mainly that the horn needs to attach to the wig, because as soon as I started sweating a bit the lace front tape just gave way. I’ll still use the tape to keep it in place but I need a strap or something integrated into the wig to keep it on my face when the tape gets loose. I also need a pair of flat shoes because I would have worn this on the con floor way longer if my feet didn’t want to die in those boots after the 5-6 hours I was in them. When I took them off to eat some dinner my feet were so happy lol.

We had an awesome Apocrypha group and did some shooting with Robbie; I’m super stoked to see the results since he always does an amazing job. It was cold as shit out by the river but it was so beautiful! You know I’ll share them as soon as I have them but for now, ta-ta!

A Beautiful Monster

Michael MacWolff

Alright, as promised last week, I wanted to show off the making of my new cosplay for Youmacon. For those of you who don’t already know the details, it’s Berserker of Black (Frankenstein’s Monster/Fran) from Fate/Apocrypha!

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Now despite all the cosplays I’ve made in my life, this project was pretty daunting for me. I’ve never really made a dress like this and I wasn’t entirely sure where to start. Thankfully, once I did a little research online and started drafting my patterns, it wasn’t as scary as I thought.

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I started with the structure that would be underneath the dress: the hoop skirt! This is basically a waistband with some hooks & eyes, several lengths of satin ribbon with loops sewn into them, and some galvanized steel wire. I had to adjust the size of the hoops several times before I was really happy with it, and I ended up using packing tape to keep the ribbon in place with respect to the wire hoops. So yeah, it’s kinda janky but it’ll work. I had some help from this tutorial to get the basics. She uses thin, flexible PVC instead of wire, which probably would’ve worked better but since I already had the wire and I’m a cheap S.O.B. I figured I’d try it this way.

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With the hoops themselves done, I needed to soften the edge of the lowest hoop a bit so my dress didn’t end up looking like some sort of flying saucer, so I used a loooooooooong piece of tulle that I gathered (by hand, I might add) that falls just beyond the lowest hoop.

I also lucked out in that I already owned this cute white petticoat to use over the hoops and under the skirt of the dress. It’s even the right height, YAHTZEE!

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Now came the fun part of patterning the dress. I had a decent idea how to do the bodice and the skirt, but I wan’t so sure about the actual breast cups so I cheated and just built them off of an old bra.

Yeah, the UFO shape is what I was trying to avoid. This is from before I added the tulle and reduced the bottom hoop a bit.

Yeah, the UFO shape is what I was trying to avoid. This is from before I added the tulle and reduced the bottom hoop a bit.

With the pattern done and tested (both on my dress form and on my body), I was ready to put the dress together for real!

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The red details were attached using a satin stitch, the same way I usually do those types of details on my csplays (maybe some day I’ll own an embroidery machine…. yeah I’ll keep dreaming). Also, the center bit is actually lace instead of ruffles because I thought it would look nice. Also I was too lazy to make ruffles and already had some lace trim that would work.

The breast cups are literally attached to the bra you saw in the last photo, and I hand-sewed a bunch of the top part together on the dress form just to get it situated properly. The last bit to add to the dress was the top part with the sheer black fabric and strappy bit… which apparently I don’t have a photo of it after I added that part, oops.

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The gloves are in two pieces, with the actual gloves parts being an antique pair I found at a thrift store some time ago. The sleeves are a separate piece made from rayon/spandex knit and the red sections are literally from an woman’s t-shirt I thrifted (since they don’t make stretchy enough fabric as Joann’s in this color).

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Next up we have some headware! Yes, those are headphones that I built the ear thingies off of, and the veil actually attaches directly to the band across the top. And the unicorn horn is cardstock with worbla over it, and miraculously enough it’s lightweight enough to stay on my face just using lacefront tape.

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And moving right along we have some legggggggies! The base boots are actually something I’ve owned for a long time because any time I find heels at the thrift store I can actually fit in they refuse to leave my basket. I’ve even performed in drag in those boots, but sadly they’re old enough that the outer layer of the faux leather is literally disintegrating everywhere so they’ve been making a huge mess of the house. I finally chopped the tops off (cause they don’t need to be that tall anyway) and scrubbed as much of the outer layer off as I could manage. The front metallic bits are craft foam that I attached permanently to the front of the shoes (contact cement), because obviously I’m not going to be using these for anything else anyway with shit constantly falling off of them. The legs are metallic 4-way stretch knit (yes, I broke down and bought the Yaya Han shit cause it was the best thing for the job and thank christ I had a coupon). To keep the leggings from riding up, there’s a small piece of velcro that attaches them to the front of the boots. And to keep them from falling down, I pretty much turned my hoop skirt into a garter belt, and there’s ribbon with buttons that goes down the back of my legs, with an little elastic loop to hook around them on the tops of the leggings.

With all that done I was too excited not to try the whole thing on! (sans gloves so I could hit the button on my phone)

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I’m so pumped to wear this, cause it’s super pretty on it’s own and you’re not gonna see my dumb face most of the time with her hair like that. I do have two details to finish: the egg & the weapon.

The egg is finished I just need to make it attach to my hip somehow (probably velcro).

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The weapon is gonna take a while longer to finish because I’m a little overambitious with it. I really want the globe at the end to light up, which only makes sense if the plates are extended out. So naturally I’m using giant styrofoam bowls and a translucent globe light fixture to achieve that.

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Thankfully the rod is fairly straightforward, even though it is rather detailed. Also thankfully I found an actual fixture to attach the globe with, which means it’ll be easy to remove.

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Details on the rod include: cardboard mailing tubes, MDF discs, Foamcore board discs, worbla, wooden knobs, toothpicks, dome stickers, an actual light fixture, and a Mason jar lid. So this is the most “me” part of this cosplay, obviously, given the random trash incorporated into it :-D

That’s all the progress I have, since the plates on the top are nowhere near ready to start painting, but soon I’ll have a fully functional light-up mace! Soooon. Hopefully soon. Dear god I hope it doesn’t take as long as I’m expecting. Pray for me.