I can't begin to describe how frustrating making this costume was. It seemed like whenever I took a step forward, I took two steps back. The gold ovals on the bottom of the white dress are hand embroidered on. I was really wanting an embroidery machine by the end of that project. I want to say thanks to Maridah here on cosplay.com for being kind enough to describe how she made the scallops on the bottom hem of the white dress on her page. I was having such a hard time figuring out how to approach those.
The wig is a bit more poofy in the back than I would like, but overall I'm fairly happy with my first major styling. More thanks must be given to Kukkii-san for her wonderful wig styling tutorials. I highly recommend checking out her gallery.
I opted to go for less defined sleeves than shown in the anime, but even those proved to be an interesting experience. They're stuffed with a few layers of tulle to help keep the shape. I ended up making two petticoats to wear under this since one didn't seem to be enough.
I have never attempted armor like it before. The majority of it is made from a plastic called Komatex, which I cut out with an exacto knife and then sanded down the edges slightly before shaping the pieces with boiling water. Some of the smaller pieces of the armor, such as with the fingers of the gauntlets, were done with Wonderflex instead. The breast armor is all attached with velcro to a corset-like piece that I made.
I made Excalibur with a bit of help from both my dad and my boyfriend. My boyfriend, who was originally going to make it before getting too busy, had already figured out the dimensions and had traced everything out on wood. My dad cut out the shape of the blade and I then spent a long time sanding it down smooth. I used a scroll saw for the hilt, and once that was sanded, my boyfriend walked me through assembling the pieces. I eventually would like to redo the grip sometime when I have access to more power tools. I would love to someday make a clear resin cast of the sword as well.
One of Arda's winners at Anime Central 2012