Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Yang Xiao Long - RWBY Cosplay Worklog

This has been long overdue. I've been meaning to post this earlier but I've been pretty distracted with a lot of stuff. Yang has been the most complicated costume I've made so far with it's many pieces and intricate design. I had to learn a lot of new skills along the way but it had been quite a learning journey and I feel really achieved being able to complete this project.

Yang's top is made of several pattern pieces. First I sketched a simple bodice pattern and marked where the pieces separates in color. For the the front piece, I followed the princess line seam/dart (I'm sorry i'm not sure what to call it) design and the back piece is cut across the middle of the armhole.

top pattern

I used running stitch instead of pinning especially on difficult curves so it's easier to go under the sewing machine. You can easily just pull them out right after.

For the sleeves, I first drafted a simple sleeve pattern, divided it into four parts and separated the first and last 1/4 pieces since they're a different color. Then I inserted an additional 6-7 inches width in the middle half for gathering to make them poofy (there are actually other better methods than this but this is the one I came up with and works just fine).

I gathered mostly on the upper-arm part since that was where the extra width was.
No point making the bottom part poofy since it's gonna be pressed most of the time.

After I finished gathering, i sew over the hemline again to make sure the gathering stays in place before attaching them to the bodice.

Don't worry about aligning the colors of the sleeves and bodice together. It's fine as long as you keep the difference small(mine's about 1-2cm apart).

Next is attaching the bias tape which was really tedious as there were looots of it i think i consumed more than four yards around the entire costume.

this is how i basically go around the corners

I used a snap buttons for the front rather than a zipper as it was easier to sew in.

For the sleeve cuff, I made a strip from a black fabric and inserted an interface to help it keep its shape and the sleeves poofy. Then I added the two yellow buttons on the side.

For that additional piece on the bottom of her top, I just traced the last 2cm of the top's pattern and added an additional 3cm length on the sides and 5cm on the center back. I used the entire back width but for the front I only took about 5-6cm of each side, Then I cut a triangle slit(? idk what you call it) on the center about 3cm tall and 3cm wide baseline. Hemmed and lined with bias tape then attached to the top.

If I don't make sense, here's what the final pattern looked like

Next is the pleated half skirt which I've been a little OC about. I wanted the box pleats to be exact without any leftovers. First I measured around where the skirt would go(upper hips), just a little beyond around from side to side because I'm not really doing a full skirt then multiply the measurement by three since it's a box pleated skirt

For the width of the pleats, i decided to choose between 6, 7 or 8 cm whichever perfectly divides the total skirt width. If none of the numbers divides perfectly, try adding a cm at a time until conditions are met. I then sewed the bias tape along the bottom before I marked, folded and pressed to keep the pleats in place.

For the flap on that one side of the skirt, I cut off two pieces of fabric in rectangular shape. 10cm wide with pleated skirt length plus an additional of about 1/3 of that length but one side is about 2cm longer (I hope that makes sense - see photos below). Sew around the sides except the top and then turn it inside out and finally seal the top by folding the hem inwards and sealing it with stitches.

NOTE: Make sure the longer side faces outward towards the front of your right side.

Then I attached the bias for the details. Sew the flap in place but make sure there's enough space for a belt to go through.

For the white drape that goes along with the skirt, i measured the same way with the pleated skirt: width was multiplied by two for gathering and length with one side twice as long. I hemmed the sides and the bottom edges first then do the gathering, making sure it doesn't go any lesser than the width measurement.

Then I attached the drape on the inside of the skirt(making sure the longer side is on my right) before attaching the waistband.

After that is done, I attached the flap on the rightmost pleat of the skirt lining the fold right where the belt goes through(see fig.xx left) and then added some belt loops.

I had plenty of black shorts but they all have zippers and buttons on the front which Yang doesn't have any so I decided to make one myself and placed the zipper on the side. It was my first time making shorts and I used the generic pattern but it still ended up a little off. However, it was still wearable so might readjust in the future.

fig.xx: so far so good...

For her scarf, I just sew a long rectangle strip and smaller ones for that stuff that wraps around her knees.

For the pouch, it's made of two pieces of rectangular fabric inserted with interfacing for stiffness. Width = pouch width + (thickness*2) and height = pouch height + thickness. I think the total dimensions are 12cmx9cmx3cm.

I sew around the two pieces of rectangular fabric, right side facing together and leaving the top open. Then I open up the material as I pinch each of the bottom corners into triangles until the base is 3cm wide then sew along it. Now the pouch has depth and I turn it right side out to hem the opening

Next I cut a new 12x9cm rectangle for the cover: two pieces sewn together, leaving one side open to turn it inside out then folding the open hems inward and seal the entire thing by stitching. After that is done, I sew one of its longer side on the top center back of the pouch where it should go over the opening. And finally added some snaps for locks and belt loops on the back so a belt can pass through it.

I hope I make sense. I accidentally deleted some photos of these so i couldn't show the rest of its progress but here's what it looks like when done:

Finally her emblem details. I left it for last(which was prolly a bad idea) because I have absolute zero experience in fabric painting. I had to practice on a spare fabric first to see how it goes. I see plenty of cosplayers use acrylic paint for stuff like this but before buying one myself, I tried to see if I can make any use of what I have at my disposal first.

I tried oil paint, poster, and even a sharpie but in the end, the oil paint worked surprisingly well so I went ahead and chose that option. Saved me some cash too.

First I printed the emblem and then carefully cut the shape out for the stencil. Next I placed a piece of rubber sheet underneath the fabric of the material I'm painting the emblem on. Then pinned the emblem's stencil on top of the fabric.

Since Yang's emblem has really complex pattern, i had to use a lot of pin so that I don't easily move them around or get any paint out of the shape. The rubber sheet at the bottom will serve as a cushion for the pins to sink deeper and keep the stencil in place.

I first traced the out line with a hard, angled brush and had to be extra cautious around the pins. After outlining , I removed the stencil then gradually fill in the shape and blend the gradients.

I also outlined the entire thing with a black (permanent) brush pen to make the edges look cleaner.

The downside of using oil paint though is that they really take ages to dry, i had to at least leave it alone for 24hrs before I was completely satisfied that they don't leave smudges on my fingers anymore. Then I covered the print with scrap fabric and ran an iron over it to make sure the paint sticks to the fabric and smoothen the entire thing out.

Her boots are also DIY bootcover and I made a tutorial on it here.

I also made a tutorial on how I made her Ember Celica. They're made entirely out of rubber sheets and some recycled materials. Feel free to check them out.

As for the fingerless gloves, which I totally forgot to bring with me to the event, is made of spandex and pattern traced using my own hand.


That's about it. I was having a really hard time wording things out and some stuff got really too complicated for me to explain in my 2nd language. I hope this post makes sense but feel free to ask me anything you'd want to understand and I'll try to explain as crystal as I can.

Yang out
(Credits to Sylvester Ichon on fb for the cosplay photos)

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