Cosplay Coversation: Fox Arcada

Tell us about yourself:

Name: Ashley
Location: Atlanta, Georgia
Website: http://foxarcada.wixsite.com/cosplay
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/FoxArcada/
Instagram: @FoxArcada

About this specific Cosplay:

Tell us about your cosplay. What was your inspiration?/why did you choose this character?

Raven has been one of my favorite characters since I was 8 years old. Even back then, I was begging my parents to buy me the Halloween costume for her because I just HAD to be Raven. They never did, and I kind of gave up on being her until someone I was hanging out with said I’d make a really good Raven and I was like “Wait… Yeah, I really want to be her. I’ve always wanted to be her.” And so, I finally completed my childhood goal of becoming Raven, at 21 years old.

How long did it take to make your Cosplay?

This one only took me about three days overall, it was a fairly easy construction, I just had to wait a while to get materials in.

What was your biggest challenge?

The wig. I was being very cheap with this one and didn’t want to buy a lacefront wig, but also didn’t want the cheap-looking false widow’s peaks that most Raven wigs have. So, I bought a wig in the right color without bangs on eBay and trimmed it to the correct length, and then I made the fake lacefront widow’s peak with tulle and gluing the excess hair that I’d trimmed off onto the tulle piece. I’d never tried something like this, and it was kind of scary, but it turned out alright for a first try! I’d like to go back and fix it up a bit, but I was proud of my efforts.

What was your budget? Approximately how much did you spend?

I wanted to spend under $100, because I was already making a competition costume for the con I was making her for, and I couldn’t afford to make Raven really expensive, as well. I ended up spending about $70 total.

What special techniques did you use?

Custom “Fake lacefront” wig styling, clay working, stretch stitching.

What was the most satisfying about making this Cosplay/What made you proud?

Definitely the most satisfying part was just being Raven, and fulfilling my childhood dreams. What made me most proud was my cloak, though. It’s so beautiful, especially in motion.

If you had to remake this Cosplay, what would you do differently?

I’d like to fix the wig and keep it a little longer, I trimmed it a bit shorter than I really wanted.

About Cosplay in general:

How often do you Cosplay?

Pretty often, I go to cons and photoshoots throughout the year, and at least get into cosplay once a month.

How many cosplays do you do?

I’ve done 24, but only 15 of those are still ones in my con/photography rotation.

What do you want to make next?

I’m gearing up to work on Widowmaker from Overwatch, Empress C.C. from Code Geass, and Keith from Voltron right now.

Favorite cosplay moment?

My friends and I were cosplaying from League of Legends, and so we were all in very cumbersome, very warm costumes, but we had to go outside in the hot Georgia summer sun for a photoshoot. We suffered through it for a little more than an hour, as we had more photos to take after the shoot was officially over. So, we all finally go inside and start moaning and screaming, then one of us sits down and realizes the floor is cold, so we all end up laying down on the floor, basically sob-laughing because the floor feels so good. Bonus: we got some excellent death pictures as we lay there, actually dying.

Favorite fandoms to follow?

Danganronpa, Voltron, League of Legends, My Hero Academia, Kakegurui

What sewing machine do you sew on?

I use a Brother PC420.

What materials do you like using?

Faux fur, faux leather, and spandex are my favorites. I like matte satin, too.

What materials do you want to try?

I kind of want to work with PVC and Neoprene, but I can’t think of any cosplays that would suit those fabrics at the moment, so I’ll have to wait on it.

What materials do you wish were easier to work with?

EVA foam and worbla. I know they’re easy in theory, but I have the hardest time with them.

What techniques are you dying to learn?

Proper armor making. I can make gauntlets and small things but I have no idea how to even begin tackling a full armor build.

Thanks for sharing your cosplay with us, Ashley!  Want to be featured on our site?  Check out our Submissions page and send us an email! 

Read More

Interview with Fantasy Photographer Bonnie McCaffery

We sat down with Bonnie McCaffery after seeing her incredible fantasy and magical portraits online.
Bonnie is a portrait photographer and artist from Hawley, PA. You can see more of her incredible work at www.BonnieMcCaffery.com/photography.

What made you decide to incorporate fantasy style photos into your regular photography work?

I love Magic and fantasy. There’s something about the beautiful and slightly surreal that I find intriguing. I’m an artist. The camera and Photoshop are the tools I use just as a painter uses Paint and a paintbrush. After taking a bunch of model photos, I have a collection of my own Stock photos that I rearrange to create a scene. I love being able to create a piece of Art for someone that includes themselves.

On average, how long does it take to edit one of your photos to what we see on the screen?

I might spend a couple of hours playing with a photo or I could spend days. The ones online don’t have to be perfect. Those for print need to be more refined so I might spend several days on those.

We know you from the fiber arts world, where you are a celebrated quilter and author. Do you make any of the dresses in the photos? If not, where do your dresses come from?

Even as a quilter I had a love of Fairies and Fantasy. I don’t have the passion for sewing that I used to have so I don’t sew anything. Salvation Army, Goodwill, yardsales…those are the places I find costuming. The shape of the garment and the movement of the fabric are what I look for. It doesn’t matter what size it is because I have pinch clips or elastic clips (used to hold an ironing board cover in place) that will hold a dress on a model.

The color of the garment doesn’t matter either because with the Magic of Photoshop, changing a dress color is possible. I also love making the flower crowns.

The flower shawl below was made by gluing artificial flowers to tulle. Her wings are from a bird photo.

For the creativity of “fashion design” I do play with combining elements. The shoulder adornments on this are necklaces I picked up at Walmart. Her headpiece and arm tattoos were Photoshopped in.

What’s your favorite part of this style of photography?

I love taking the photos, making people feel good about themselves. And then sitting down to Photoshop and playing with the photos to make Magic happen. Anything is possible. I can make Magical Fantasy Photos that might not exist in reality.

Have you worked with any cosplayers?

I have not yet worked with cosplayers. It would be so much fun to collaborate with cosplayers who make these awesome costumes and I could set them into a Magical and mystical scene. I’d get to play with their photos and they’d get a beautiful piece of art!

To see some of Bonnie’s videos on how she makes her Magical Portraits, click here!  Be sure to follow her on Facebook too.

Read More

Cosplay Conversation: Devon Bell

Tell us about yourself:
Name: Devon Bell
Location: Calgary
Instagram: @werewolfprincev

Character: Deku (My Hero Academia)

Photos by: Mackenzie Shaw (twitter @magitrash, WyvernPhotography)

Tell us about your cosplay. What was your inspiration?/why did you choose this character?

I decided that I wanted to cosplay Deku pretty quickly after I started reading the series; as a protagonist, he’s very easy to relate to, and it’s not very often I find characters are shown to be both physically strong and broad but also have very round and open faces, so I felt he was a character I’d look good as, as well.

How long did it take to make your Cosplay?

I actually decided to make him fairly last minute, and so I only had about 2-3 weeks to get him done.

What was your biggest challenge?

Building the leg armour was something I really didn’t have much of a plan for and ended up winging completely. Also, I ended up having to make a number of adjustments to the body suit that I hadn’t anticipated.

What was your budget? Approximately how much did you spend?

I didn’t have much of a budget, since I already had almost everything I needed besides the green fabric and a few accessory things. I even had the wig already by the time I got to making the hero suit. In total I think I spent probably between $80-$100 over the course of the entire cosplay? It was spread out, so I’m not entirely sure.

What special techniques did you use?

This cosplay was actually my first time using Worbla, and that was quite the learning curve.

What was the most satisfying about making this Cosplay/What made you proud?

The leg armour was probably the most satisfying, as well as the hood of the suit, which while I have no photo evidence of it, it does actually fit over my head like a real hero mask!

If you had to remake this Cosplay, what would you do differently?

I would probably start with a different suit base; I pieced the pattern together and it ended up being more difficult to fix than I had hoped. I’d also like to think if I made the face mask again it would go a little smoother now that I’ve had some experience with it.

How often do you Cosplay?

As often as I can find cons to get to, but not as often as I would really like considering the amount of time I’ve put into some of my cosplays. I have three local(ish) conventions that I go to and cosplay at every year, and I travel to others when I can manage it.

How many cosplay do you do?

Usually a different cosplay for every day of a con, but that depends on if I’m with a group, or whether I have the funds/time to get something new together.

What do you want to make next?

I have a few cosplays that I have the materials for but haven’t gotten together yet, such as Giorno Giovanna from Jojo’s Bizarre Adventure, and Judal from Magi; I’ve also got a few that I’ve been stewing on but haven’t had the funds to start.

Favorite cosplay moment?

It’s tough to pick any one moment; I’ve been cosplaying for 10 years now, so there’s so many to choose from. In general though, any time I see someone getting really excited by my cosplay, or any time I get to just hang out with my friends in a group cosplay and goof off, those are the moments that make all the hard work worth it.

Favorite fandoms to follow?

I don’t really follow fandoms all that much, but I definitely have some series that I’ll always return to cosplaying from; D.Gray-Man and HunterxHunter are two big ones, as well as Persona 4 and Persona 5 for the group cosplay shenanigans.

What sewing machine do you sew on?

My main sewing machine is a Pfaff that is probably older than I am; it’s the machine I learned to sew on when I was a kid, and it’s tough enough to get through vinyl and stretch leather. Thanks to my mom being a prolific quilter all my life, I’ve also got a back up machine and a serger.

What materials do you like using?

I’m partial to a lovely structured twill for jackets, and while sewing it is a pain, I love the way fake leather looks. I’ve also had some real fun with foam, but in all reality my biggest love is the bargain bin at fabric and craft stores.

What materials do you want to try?

I’ve got some plans that involve LED lights that I hope someday will come to fruition, and I’d love to work more with resin.

What materials do you wish were easier to work with?

Stretch leather and spandex. They look amazing and are comfy to wear, but getting zippers into them is a skill I’m still mastering.

What techniques are you dying to learn?

Prop making; I’ve dabbled in it, but never done anything super elaborate.

Thanks for sharing your cosplay with us, Devon!  Want to be featured on our site?  Check out our Submissions page and send us an email! 

Read More

Check Out These New Geeky Fabric Lines That Debuted at Quilt Market

Cheryl took a very quick tour of some of the booths at Quilt Market, a sewing industry trade show where new fabric lines and machines debut.  Here are just a few of the coolest licensed fabrics she saw at the show!

Justice League has hit the fabric lines with some awesome panels and prints of the DC superhero lines.  You can see on the wall that Wonder Woman is going to have a few solo fabrics too.

How cool is that new ladies of DC print?  Plus the Superfriends panel is sure to make a few folks happy to have classic Flash and Aquaman in the mix.

The Game On line designed by Elizabeth Silver is great for the gamer in your life.

We must have that controller fabric!!  The “cheat code” fabric dots are also pretty great.

The one that really blew us away was the new fabric line for Star Wars: The Last Jedi.  Bold in black, red, and grey, the styling of this booth wanted us to take ALL of it home or make it right away!!  We loved the “Chewie, we’re home” welcome mat! The character panel (under the TV) is going to be a bit hit.

This pillow and wallhanging needed to come home with us right now!  This booth also had Cosplayers in it for photos, but Cheryl was not able to catch any because she was running through so quick.  Boba Fett, a Stormtrooper, and Chewbacca were all on hand to take photos with sewing machine and fabric store owners.

We hope you enjoyed seeing some of the new fabrics coming out in the spring at a sewing store near you!

Read More

The Sew Much Cosplay™ Line of Products is Here!

IT’S FINALLY HERE!  The day we have been waiting for has arrived!  The Sew Much Cosplay™ line of products is out and we couldn’t be happier.

The line debuted at a major sewing trade event in Houston, TX called Quilt Market.  It’s not just for quilting as all sorts of sewing vendors are there, and this is the set up and booth by Sew Much Cosplay™!

You can see the new Purple Mage cosplay Cheryl has been working on and teasing over on Instagram for a while, as well as the Steampunk cosplay and Game of Thrones cape that was made recently.   The Purple Mage costume has every single one of the cosplay line of products in it, so we are excited to have it finished for the show.

It’s a real treat to see the products in their retail packaging and in the displays that retailers can order.  Here’s what our Hero Foam looks like in it’s display!  We are super proud of this foam made specifically for cosplay.

Here’s the full display of products!  Including our Power Boost Interlining, Super Structure Foam, Power Shine Glitter and Foils, and yes, that’s a 3D printer that retailers can carry along with the rest of our products!!  How cool is that?

Want to check out the line?  Click HERE to see the line.  Want to see retailers who are picking up the line to buy it? Click HERE to find our list of retailers.  It’s growing every day so check back often. And be sure to ask your independent sewing or comic store to carry it if they are not on the list!

Read More