Bellum Pars I Fashion Collection

August 28, 2014 § Leave a comment

Welcome to the Battle :D

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One day Hermsi came to me and told me that he contacted a convention about me doing a fashion show. Some background one me: I have always wanted to make my own collection come to life but without a spot to showcase it I never made it. I’ve drawn countless designs and collections but it was all too generic for me. So Hermsi calls me up and tells me Anime California has agreed to let me have a fashion show at the convention as a main event! See, right there I nearly fainted from shock, excitement, and nervousness. He just gave me about 6 weeks to do everything.. and I mean everything.

So I set out to start drawing a new collection from scratch. Why? Well the collections I had planned were a bit too detail intensive and had a lot more designs in one. Originally I wanted 12 designs but forced to cut back mainly because of time. I decided that since it was an anime convention with a huge game influence I decided to tap into my past where mmorpgs were my life. I always loved how classes were instantly recognizable even though designs varied so much. That is where Bellum Pars (latin for Battle Party) came to life!

And 6 weeks later after long talks about models, lighting, speeches, classes, designs, props, time, transportation, and cost… (just to name a few~)
I finally debuted 9 classes: Wizard, Adventurer, Mystic, Psychic, Ninja, Dancer, Bard, Musketeer, and elementalist!

This is just a snippet of pictures, for the full effect of the show please visit my facebook at: fb.me/kimikotancosplay

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Team 1 Classes : Mystic – Bard – Psychic

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Team 2 Classes: Ninja, Adventurer, Musketeer

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Team 3 Classes: Elementalist, Wizard, Dancer

Yes I decided to be a model as well because… well I can. It’s kind of the same reason why song writers also perform their own songs. Maybe they have the voice, may be not. But normally it stands true that if you work at it, you’ll be fine :D I also offered up model positions to mainly cosplayers as they would be the most familiar with the props and convention scene. And yes, I also have a slight bias as the cosplay community is pretty awesome~

What I found is collections are easier to make if I know what I’m making it for, event-wise. I can’t wait for the next show, with more time I can do some pretty crazy stuff :D Anyways, Thank you to Anime California for having me! Thanks to the models who stuck through all the fittings and craziness, and my team for the props and backstage work! Seriously was a group effort and couldn’t have done it without everyone!

I’m hoping to continue to do fashion shows for events. If you like what you see and would like to see me at a con/event near you, contact them! And have them email me at: kimikotancosplay@gmail.com

–Kimikotan
www.facebook.com/kimikotancosplay

Sailor Scout Bow Brooch

July 18, 2014 § Leave a comment

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For awhile I’ve debated on how to make the brooch of the sailor scouts… because they don’t seem like they shine and they also don’t seem like full half circles (or else I’d just cut half a Styrofoam ball and call it a day). So I decided to look for a big button .. if I couldn’t find that I was just going to plan B which was the Styrofoam anyways xD |

So I actually found a button! It’s a huge one that’s about 3 inches in diameter. Around that at least.
I took the same red stretchy fabric I used for the puff sleeves and stretched it around the button!
(not shown – I cut out a 3mm foam and put that on the bottom so there would be a straight flat surface and give the button more elevation)
Then just carefully and strategically hand-sew the ends together. which you can see in the middle picture!

The key is that the stretchy fabric will keep it looking clean and not wrinkly on the ends. Something about trying to make a non-stretchy fabric conform over something round isn’t very pretty.

And that’s how I made the brooch! Same concept can be applied to pretty much anything round with a flat bottom~

–Kimikotan

Anime Expo 2014 Overview

July 11, 2014 § 1 Comment

Well hello there everyone :D

Let me start this off by … I did not follow my cosplay line-up but I don’t think I ever do xD But I finally got some pictures from the convention and here’s the bulk of Kimikotan Cosplay in one picture!

AX2014 Cos Line
Yep! Everything you see there I basically.. made o.o Mars, Lu Xun was a commission for my partner, Ragnarok, Diao Chan, and Pichu! Yes Ragnarok and Pichu are old but… eh. I still think they are in good condition to see the light of day every now and then xD Diao Chan is incomplete but I wore it anyways (will have it done later). And mars is just an overall comfy costume!

Alright so how was Anime Expo for me this year?

I give it a… 6/10. The downside was mainly linecon. Too many lines and waiting… Registration for me took about 2.5 hours in the blistering sun T.T and in cosplay! while I didn’t get to go to any of the panels I wanted to because the rooms capped out. I also later heard that the con got capped out o.o Then online I read on how some people forged badges which really means there were still way too many people there T.T

Anyhow. I got a few new things including a new Alpaca, Pop!, and a print!

Now as for pictures… Hermsi has put pretty much the majority of them up on his facebook. He’s the photographer so I don’t even bring a camera around now a days xD But I managed to get a few not shown on the facebook album and I’ll post them below! They’re all basically pictures of me with a cosplayer XD I like taking pictures with other cosplayers =3 If you remember taking a picture with me but it’s not posted, it’s because there was a lot of pictures and I only selected here and there xD Or it can be at the facebook album!

So.. let’s start the pictures!!

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Starting this off with… how AWESOME Harvest moon continutes to make BIG PLUSHIES :D ITS SO ADORABLE!!!

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Now this picture was entertaining to do :D She kept bringing her axe closer and clsoer to my neck o.o I don’t think my talisman worked either >.>

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Hehe this guy was cool~ He was really tall o.o So he crouched down to get to me height xDD His cosplay up close was really cool too!! (This is me trying to imitate him btw xD)

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Ahh! Dude they’re on like stilts or big shoes or Textbooks!! They also had the voice mod going so it was really fun to hear them talk =3 Really nice people too! =3

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These girls were really nice to me for me being so dang awkward T.T I really liked the Scheherazade’s staff and dress =3 it was SO pretty~

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Omg. We found MORE DYNASTY WARRIOR COSPLAYS :D apparently we missed a gathering? >.>;; But it’s so cool still =3

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And lastly…  me and my friends switching weapons! And uh. Yea. Bunny girl there trying to be cute xD

And that ends it! I played the cosplayer this year. No promotions or a booth but NEXT year.. I plan to be super busy with everything o.o Kind of looking forward to it actually! Once again… visit my Facebook page @ kimikotancosplay for continuous updates from me and to see more pictures from the con!

Ririchiyo Photoshoot

May 27, 2014 § 1 Comment

Hello once again! :D

Today I bring to you a long awaited photoshoot of my Ririchiyo School Uniform from Inu x Boku SS!

This cosplay was actually made primarily out of scrap fabrics xD So the main black piece is acually a little heavier than I would have liked but it initally belonged to Kirito’s Coat xP The lab coat and the inside shirt was already sitting in my closet (don’t ask why I have a lab coat… I’m not even a bio major xD) And so the main things I bought was the gold buttons and thigh high socks! A few flaws here and there but I was mainly testing out some new techniques. I’m glad I just finished it though xD OH and don’t look at my bangs >.>;; I know they are suppose to be straight bangs but I couldn’t bring myself to cut my own bangs and the wig didn’t look so nice :/

But nonetheless… enjoy the photos!
Photographer: Hermsi 

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Looks close enough to a campus or a lab in the back right? right…
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For some reason Hermsi loves to do reflection pictures ..

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One of my favorites since it’s just a cool picture in general~

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One of Hermsi’s favorite~ I think he just likes the fluffy hair and lab coat xDD
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And the nerdy shot XD

This uniform is actually REALLY short o.o We shot these at a place called crystal cathedral because we wanted a place with glass/mirrors. It was really awkward walking around in such a short dress so I tried keeping the lab coat on which was a few inches longer xD But it was so bad that if I leaned over a railing a little it would be such a panty shot T.T Did I realize I did that to the dress? Sorta… I admit. With thigh high outfits… it usually looks better on me when the skirt/dress part is mid thigh. So I don’t know if I’ll be wearing this to cons unless I but those fake thigh high stockings xD I hope you enjoyed some of the pictures, there are more floating around somewhere on my dA and facebook as well!

So yes! Hoping to get a photoshoot of my re-done Dragon Nest Archer sometime soon =3 And I have a giveaway and tutorial up soon too! =3

Keep updated with me on facebook and twitter!!

–Kimikotan

Fantasy Archer Bow Tutorial

May 20, 2014 § Leave a comment

Hello All~~

So when I made my archer bow for my Dragon Nest Archer cosplay I decided to take pictures at every step! I’m hoping it’ll help out anyone that needs something similar to it since I do get asked what it was made out of.

The bulk of the short bow is made out of cardboard… you know those packaging boxes you can buy at the hardware store.

Materials you will need are:

1. Cardboard pieces cut out in even squares (so if its small you can cut 4 x 4 and if your prop is bigger than 8 x 8 like mine)
2. Glue meant for paper/cardboard!
3. Exact-o Knife or a box cutting knife for the cardboard

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From there you’d want to already have your rough draft of the prop! So draw that baby out on some banner paper or butcher paper (whatever you might call it) and with that you can layer the cardboard! So it’s layers in a way where the creases are NOT in the same place so it’s more sturdy. Think of… bricks. They aren’t stacked right on top of each other but instead in the middle of two! For this bow I used 3 layers of cardboard.. it’s pretty sturdy with that amount. I’d use 3 as a bare minimum if you want it to have some strength to live on, more is always welcomed if you need something thicker though~

So here is just my reference picture and you can start to see some linear process!
Here just glue the squares on top of each other with the cardboard glue.. then trace your pattern down!

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So from here… you may want the extra support in the middle so I put in dowels! I just cut the dowels into pieces that I needed and traced the shape to where I wanted it on the bow. Cut out the slots and used ALOT of hot glue to glue them in! No worries if it’s a little messy on top, this will be paper mache’d later so it won’t even be noticeable~ I even used a thinner square wood piece for the more thinner ends of the bow… it puts my mind at ease that it won’t bend if I accidentally bump into someone.

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Now to use your arm muscles!! Cut your design out! Hopefully yours doesn’t have these curves like mine… it takes a lot of patience! AFter that I cut the same design out of cardstock! The thick hard paper on top will automatically make the paper mache process go a lot smoother~ This step is of course optional but just from my experience… it looks nicer :D

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After a few layers of paper mache… paint it over with your favorite gesso! Mine just happens to be black this time around xD Then I sanded it and painted it again with another layer of gesso. You can keep repeating this process until you get the desired smoothed surface~

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So from here I would just paint on the design and add the big wings you see on the reference picture. Sadly I don’t have an updated picture of it.. but I will update this when I do :D

I hope that helps someone on maybe not just this bow but some other prop they are trying to make! It’s possibly the cheapest prop I have made but just because the materials are cheap doesn’t mean the outcome looks like it :D Just remember to put time but patience into your projects and they will sure succeed~

–Kimikotan

Keep updated with me on Facebook and twitter!

Already Planning for AX 2014

April 28, 2014 § 1 Comment

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Can you guess~?

Anime Expo is definitely the biggest con of the year for me and it’s something I take a few months just to make cosplays for. I’ve been trying to keep it shush shush until I actually get some progress on it but I have 2 cosplays planned and 1 in the making! Can you guess what it is? Yes the one on the right looks like an animal, I’ll be morphing it into a cool looking dress so that’s just the animal~ And the circle on the top is a cosplay I don’t know I’m doing yet! But I’m pretty much planning to keep a spot open for promotional purposes and/or an easy cosplay for like …day 4.

I went to Wondercon 2014 and Anime Conji 2014 this month! They were both on the same weekend so it was quite the rush to go to both on different days. I don’t have many pictures at either so I won’t be posting anything up for them. There is a little on my facebook though~

I’ll be posting progress for my current cosplay that I’m re-doing as well soon and the new ones. I have a photoshoot soon so hopefully pictures up sometime in the next 2 weeks! I also told myself I wouldn’t buy regular clothes unless they are to help my cosplays or I can’t make at all xD So if I really want something… I better make the time to just make it myself lol. It’ll also help clear my closet problem it seems that I have been acquiring.

I’m super excited for AX now and I just can’t wait! I already have my ticket bought and just about to buy my tickets for Anime California in August and Anime LA in January! Yes they are both far off but if I know I’m going for sure why not just buy it now right? (while it’s cheap too! price increases may 1st~)’

Until the next time, bai!

–Kimikotan

 

DN Archer Outfit Progress! –Blue top

March 26, 2014 § Leave a comment

It’s been awhile hasn’t it? I think it’s about time I went back to showing progress pictures and how I do some of my outfits :D Back in January I half debuted an Archer cosplay from the game Dragon Nest! Still alterations to be made but that doesn’t mean I can’t share the progress I did~ So first off here’s a reference picture!

Now the black dress underneath was quite simple. Just a normal sweetheart fitted top with some boning on the sides so it’ll keep shape and stay up. Then I took about… 3 circle skirts, sewed them together to make one huge line of circle skirt and attached that on! To create a more distinguished “poof” I decided to add horsehair on the edge and that made walking around SUPER fun! (like every step the skirt would jump up and little in response xD) So this skirt I didn’t need to have a petticoat underneath but I think I would want one if I decide to have it bouncier xP

Archer PRogress 1Back to making my own patterns! Always a lot of trial and error with this process and I’m sad that I didn’t have more time with it. But I think it turned out well… I just tried to picture the top as a cross between a vest and a halter top.

Archer PRogress 2This was the fun part =3 I got satin ribbon but it was really shiny… I didn’t like that. So I attached it… was not happy still… so I painted it the same color as my bow! It turned out pretty well as the paint hardened (regular acrylic paint) so not only did I have a nice matte color but it also hardened into place so it wouldn’t move. Worked out better than expected~ You can see the fit wasn’t right so there is an unironed seam in the middle of the front sides. (please make sure to iron seams!) Afterwards I just got bias tape from the store and sewed that on! (I’ve been so lazy to make my own bias tape…)

Do you see a slight flip in front on the right picture? That’s with interfacing!  Unfortunately that was with medium interfacing and that part needed a heavier kind or to double up on medium. Make sure to use the right kind and amount of interfacing with projects!

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paint paint paint! In hindsight I would’ve used regular white paint but I used fabric paint. … doesn’t have much of a difference to it in this case xD I always love free handing the designs but I think at one point is was off… in which case I would recommend putting some markings to make sure its even xD

More updates on the bow I made to match it! And the interesting way of doing a lace-up boot from fabric!

–Kimikotan

 

 

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