This costume holds a very special place in my heart. Ever since I began playing RO, I fell in love with my adorable little pink dancer sprite, and I knew I would HAVE to cosplay her someday. That desire only grew more as I continued to level my dancer, Suzako, in game. I looooove my little dancer, even now that I don't play RO anymore... to become her in real life was a fun experience for me, and something that I absolutely had to do!
The dancer costume was pretty intimidating to me at first, but I thought it out so much before I even bought a scrap of fabric, that in the end it didn't turn out to be that hard at all. I decided to base my costume off of the in-game sprite pretty early off in my planning phases, because the sprite is the character that I got to play as in the game, and it's the version of the dancer that I fell in love with! The bright colors and "chunky" aspects of this costume are inspired by the sprite version. I used the dancer character art as a reference to add a bit more detail to the costume. The sprite is really cute, but it's not too incredibly detailed (what can you expect, it's about 50 pixels tall... >___>;;), so I refered to the character art for the fabric textures and jewelry.
I made most of this costume without patterns. I only used a pattern for the pants, and I didn't even follow it really. I thought I was going to, but in the end I altered the pants so much that I probably didn't need that pattern in the first place, either. I guess a bikini is simple enough that you wouldn't really need a pattern anyways, lol.
The bikini and arm cuffs are all made from the same gold stretch dance wear, which turned out to be quite versatile! I used a good ol' sharpie to put the scale pattern on the bikini. The "butt flap" was a combination of hot pink satin on the outside and red velveteen on the inside. The texture difference between the two created a really cool effect, I think :D. The pants are rose pink casa organza from Joanns... which is really pretty, but required an unhealthy dose of fray check ^___^;;.
The accessories on this costume are the only things that truly require any explanation... xD. The ringed necklace baffled me at first, but the solution I came up with turned out really well I think... I used a soft plastic tubing that I got at Petco of all places (it's used to blow air into fish tanks, you know?) and I spraypainted it gold. I then wrapped it around my neck, punched small holes in it wear the loops met up in the back, and then laced it up in the back like a corset. It stayed on really well and didn't move much, but the soft tubing allowed me to be able to move my head around and stuff. I would highly recommend this method for anyone who is trying to achieve this sort of effect. The jewels on the necklace and on the belt I molded out of sculpey and then painted by hand. These were especially fun to make!
I loooooooove my wig and headpeices because that's what distinquishes my costume as being my dancer, Suzako, rather than any other dancer! My elven ears I molded from model magic, and then painted with several different colors of skin tones to give it a slightly more "fleshy" look. They are attached to a headband and worn under my wig. The heart hairpin is also made from model magic. The wig I bought from cosplay.com (*suttle advert!*) and styled into the double ponytails style like my dancer wears.
The whip was a sort of last minute idea that I had and was really easy to make, and only slightly ghetto. I just used a rope and wrapped it with masking tape, and I rolled all the little thorns out of masking tape, too ^^;. I spraypainted that green, and walah! I used an ultra cheesy yet functional golf club handle to finish it off xD.
My bestest prop for the costume was my boyfriend Mikee Jouee (who has since then become my fiance... *^____^*) who dressed up with me as his Bard! For those who don't know Ragnarok Online, Bards and Dancers are male and female versions of the same classes, and they have skills that can ensemble with one another. I love my hunner, and it was really fun to get to do a couple cosplay with him again.
Best Group in the Animagic 2005 Masquerade
Hall Cosplay Award at Animagic 2005
Hall Cosplay Award at Anime LA 2006