Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney Trials and Tribulations
Last Updated: 09-12-2010
After A-kon 21 and all of the fun with the Phoenix Wright photo shoot, I wanted to make another costume from the series. I had a few options and presented them to my boyfriend (whom I never knew played the series, but now I do and it makes him a million times more awesome.) He ended up picking the most evil of all of the characters: Dahlia Hawthorne.
I had Dahlia as an option because she is the complete antithesis of myself. She is quite conniving with an undisputable charm towards men to get things her way. And if she doesnít, killing is an easy solution. Because whoís going to discredit such an innocent face? I can imagine her on one of those Lifetime Movies ďgood girls gone bad!Ē
Fast forward 2 and a half months later and debuted at AnimeFest 2010. I didnít expect to get quite the reaction that I did from this costume. Even thephoenix (typically dressed up as Seifer or Kefka) came by and complimented me on my evilness. XD That was awesome and it made me smile.
Materials: Satin, organza, satin underlining, cotton, craft foam, gold chain (leftovers from Bayonetta), felt.
My initial plan was to use a pattern for the dress. However the more I attempted to search for one, nothing was coming up that fit the proper silhouette. So, once again, I made my own pattern. The nice thing about Dahlia is that she is one of the few Phoenix Wright characters where you have a shot of her front, side, and back because sheís on the witness stand in two of the cases. The front of the dress is the same on the back, with the stitching along the bust line in the same spot. So it made for an easy pattern.
The dress itself is satin, but I didnít want to have it shiny, because itís not shiny in the game. It needed to have a elevated, flowery look without it turning into linen or cotton. My solution? Flipping it inside out. The shiny is on the inside, and the satin interior is on the outside. It gave me the flow and look of satin without the shimmer. I also made a slip out of satin underlining, so itís more like two dresses instead of one. The straps are a little thicker then Dahliaís. However, it was intentional. I have a chest that needs support. Dahlia does not. :p
For the pink lace pattern, much thanks to Thia Fayne for her help. Its felt laid on top of primrose organza, the same organza that I used to make the shawl. I want to make a real lace pattern in the future and take the time to make it (and itíll probably take me a few months). But this worked out perfectly for me. No itching. No odd bunching. It looks just like the lace in the game.
The umbrella was something I made from scratch. Never doing again. >.> The rib of the umbrella were bits and pieces of old, broken, umbrella parts that were remade. Initially I used a plastic-polymer blend lining with the intent of painting it. But that turned into a giant mess and looked horrible. I decided to cover the entire umbrella over the plastic with cotton, so that the umbrella kept its shape. I ended up making a pattern into the cotton to give it a little more life. It looked dull to keep it just white.
The pink lace around the edge was all thanks to my computer printer. I used a silk lining, created the pattern with paintshop, and let my printer go to town. It looks just like the pattern from the game and it's holding up quite well. Because it's printed on fabric, it was a million times easier to work with then lace and looks quite real.
The butterflies are made from craft foam and feathers, held on by fishing line. They flutter in the wind, or the AC in this case, and it's amusing to watch.
The wig was purchased as a straight hair, not pre-braided. It took me roughly 2 hours to do the braiding. First was to learn the technique of fishbone braiding. Then it was to actually do it, and my first attempt of making the braids was way too small. So after undoing and making them bigger, time flew by. But they replicated the image that I wanted from the game.
The necklace was my little twist on the costume. During one of the cases, Dahlia hid poison in the necklace and gave it to Phoenix Wright for safekeeping (unbeknown to him about its contents). I haven't seen anyone make the necklace before and I wanted one. It's made out of jewelers clay and the chain were excess from my Bayonetta costume (she's been useful a lot as of late).
Another addition to the costume is a handbag, to shove my glasses and badge into. XD Made out of the satin underlining as the slip of the dress. If anyone checks it up close, they'll see that I did a pink stitching that mimics the lace on the dress and umbrella.
Overall, this project was about the finishing. The dress is relatively simple, so I wanted every line, every hem, and every crease to be just right. The costume is something that could be worn on a daily basis because itís finished to function like designer clothing, and thatís what I wanted to achieve.
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