Before anything, I want to say that I have been getting a lot of questions on Gii. I DID NOT MAKE GII. I said it a few paragraphs down, but apparently a lot of people missed it. A-Chan/Chao-Fangirl made Gii. If you have questions about Gii, please direct them to her, not me!
So my friends were doing a BlazBlue group... And they asked me to join... AND DAMN IT I LIKE TEA AND I LIKE WHEN PEOPLE WAIT ON ME HAND AND FOOT.
Nah, seriously, though. I love this outfit. The overall princess feel of it, the ruffles, the skirts, the layers, everything, I love it. I feel this is my best sewn project yet, and I hope to have many more to come!
I made the hoopskirt from scratch by altering the Marie Antoinette pattern for a hoopskirt from Simplicity. I used it because it was already a short hoopskirt, and since Rachel's skirts only go to a bit past her knees, I needed to custom make the skirt since I would rather make a whole skirt than buy one and butcher it. I made the hoopskirt out of symphony cotton and used ribbon for the tubing for the hoop boning which I ordered from LLC's corset supply shop online. I wear the hoop on about a 115'' circumference setting across the bottom.
The petticoat I also made from symphony cotton and it features a fully hand gathered ruffle across the bottom. The white box-pleat-ruffle underskirt I made from country classic cotton, also completely hand gathered/pleated. Both underskirts were fully serged and/or French seamed for a more professional look. The inner white ruffled sleeves on the bodice were made to match the white underskirt.
The black skirt is made 100% from casa satin in black and navy (save for the ruffles, obviously, which are cotton to match the rest of the ruffles on the outfit. I patterned the entire skirt from scratch using muslin mockup as I did with the "wings" that are on the skirt. The wings are made from red casa satin. I hand-painted the black border around the skirt wings and when the light hits it, it shines a great black-red color which I love! I fully embroidered around the edegs where I painted the border on, again for a more professional and clean look. The wings snap onto the waistband of the skirt and the skirt itself snaps shut in the back.
The bodice I drafted the pattern for completely from scratch as well. For the bell sleeves, I used the pattern I had made for my first Seth Nightlord costume (yay for saving my patterns!) The designs on the sleeves are fully appliqued and embroidered, and the white was done in hand-made casa satin bias tape which I at first had stitched down normally but then went back and embroidered the edges because I decided I would like it better that way. The red bows I made by hand with some red ribbon, and the bodice zips up the front. The giant red bow on her neck was made from scratch with my personal fake-bow pattern that I use for all of my bows and the crosses and crap all over the shawl is fully faced, stitched around all of the edges, appliqued, embroidered, and the shawl as well as the skirt, skirt wings, and bodice, are all fully lined.
*takes a deep breath*
OKAY. I also made from scratch the white ruffled undershirt she wears. I used linen both because it is light and nice and because the rest of the outfit being satin makes it extremely hot, so I wanted it to be made of something that breathes better so that when I overheated (which I did several times, even in the middle of winter!) I could slip off my shawl and bodice and still have a nice (and accurate!) underlayer to wear.
I made the bloomers from an old gypsy pants pattern I had lying around and the bunny ear hair ties I made with casa satin to match the dress and with some aluminum floral wire. The wire slips into the clip-on ponytails and the hair ties also have combs sewn into them for stability.
I made Nago (the umbrella) out of fleece so that he would be cute and plushie! I made him out of a golf umbrella that I bought from Wal-Mart and butchered for a pattern to remake the entire thing. A-Chan/ChaoFangirl helped me pattern out the dome cat head since I fail at making plushies. (actually, I could have done it... but she helped me get the pattern drafted in half the time, and now I have learned something new!). I embroidered the designs and detailing into the eyes and then hand-sewed all of the designs onto the dome of Nago's head.
I bought the fabric for Gii and A-Chan ended up making him for me since I ran out of time. I LOVE YOU A-Chan! (But yes I did pay her for her hard work so there. =P)
Dear god I never thought about how much work went into this until I typed it up just now! Wow! But overall, I adore this outfit, I love my bell skirt and I love how it swishes when I walk... I look forward to wearing her again and again!
Best Master Craftsmanship - Ohayocon 2010