My dream cosplay was Final Fantasy X’s Shiva. This majestic Aeon is one of the most beautiful characters of not only Final Fantasy, but of the entire video game universe. I love using Shiva in all of the games she is available, but Final Fantasy X was the prize for me. Tetsuya Nomura and the Square Enix design team truly broke the mold when crafting this breathtaking Summon.
My primary guide as a starting point for “Summoning Shiva” was Katie Bair’s tutorial.
The wig was quite an ordeal. Parting the 51” wig into 11 sections was tedious as it kept tangling. It was so bad I almost gave up—but I’m not a quitter. After law school I can do anything! Thirteen packages of 4’ blue and purple hair extensions were mixed together into eleven twisted “braids” and sewn into the base wig. 24 yards of gold ribbon and 9 painted rings (made from purse holders and Styrofoam wreaths) finished off the 20 lb. wig.
Shiva’s sarong was hand-painted, and I created the “tie-dye” effect by blending yellow, green, and blue on white silk. Shiva’s top was comprised of painted bra cups. I initially planned to attach the bra cups to a dyed body-stocking. The stocking failed, and I was forced to paint myself using Ben Nye body make-up (which worked very well). I had to sew the bra cups onto myself while wearing it (not in my skin, ew, just so that they would be tight enough). The string was nearly invisible… it gave new meaning to the term “string bikini”!
Has anyone tried to make a paper snowflake since Kindergarten? I sure hadn’t. I didn’t know it was an important skill to keep up with, but apparently it is! The snowflake pattern I used was made particularly difficult because it was a six rather than eight sided design. I traced the snowflake onto the bra cup, and painted with sparkly fabric paint.
The ice-chest plate was sewn onto myself as well. I used two tubes of silicon and poured fine glitter over it before letting it dry. I used silicon to make the ice found on Shiva’s face as well. Be careful when handling silicon as it emits noxious fumes. I went overboard and wore goggles, gloves, and a face mask…outside of my house of course!
(Shinji Hashimoto, producer of Kingdom Hearts and various Final Fantasy games [and Advent Children] was curious how I managed the “ice.” His interest in my costume was one of the highlights of Comic-Con!)
The tail was extremely difficult. Feathers do not like to be glued. I cut out two heart shaped pieces of sticky vinyl, attached the feathers to the un-sticky side of sticky vinyl, then stuck the two pieces together over a ring.
The bikini was just a plain, white string bikini that I painted. I molded gray craft-foam and painted it metallic silver for the swirly design on the bikini.
Painting my entire body took nearly 4 hours.
Final Fantasy Distant Worlds Concert; First Place