Thursday, November 1, 2018

2018: How It Went (Halloween)

Halloween Pierrot 2.0

Hi! Firstly, I'd like to apologize. What kind of a costume/Halloween fanatic DOESN'T MAKE A NEW COSTUME EVERY YEAR??? Where have I been? Why didn't I post in March announcing this year's costume? Well, to tell you the truth, this past year has been pretty hectic for me. Primarily, I started college this fall, which at the beginning of the year made me think that I wouldn't really get a chance to dress up. But it turns out that my college has trick-or-treating on campus, and I really couldn't pass up the chance to get dressed up on Halloween! I mean, it's impossible for me not to.

A closeup of the makeup.
So. I decided to revisit my Halloween Pierrot, this time trying a more Pierrot-like face instead of a skeleton one, as I felt that the skull face had a sort of death metal vibe that I wasn't really going for.

I started this time with the same face painting kit I used last year, except this time I used regular old makeup for the eyes, to give it that smoky, subtle look that I could more easily articulate (the face-painting crayons that came with the Dia de los Muertos kit were very thick and it was hard to draw thin lines with them.)

I also pared down the accessories of the costume quite a bit this year. I ditched the boots for high tops, the wig for my own hair (which right now is about the length of the wig, anyway) and, sadly, the hat, because I forgot to bring pins to pin it to my head (it doesn't stay on very well otherwise.) It just so happens that I own a dark grey flat cap, though, and I feel that it didn't detract from the costume at all—just gave a different feeling to it. I'd say a dark-colored or red beret or flat cap works fine for this costume if you don't want to spend the time making the hat.

Anyway! To the review!

Recognition: 5/10

I mean, honestly, only one person actually guessed, but they guessed right! So that was fun, haha! But before Halloween, whenever anyone else asked me what I was going to be, and I told them "Pierrot," they didn't know what I meant and I had to amend that response with "a sad clown." So, 50/50?

Strength: 10/10

Without the hat to fall off, this costume had no problems construction-wise.

Comfort: 9/10

This was the first Halloween in a while where I wasn't freezing. The bagginess of the shirt and pants allowed me to wear lined jeans and a long-sleeved t-shirt under the costume, making it very toasty! The only annoying this about this costume, I think, are the gloves, because I had to keep taking them off to take pictures and look up the trick-or-treating route with my phone. (Also the pants have no pockets, so I had to put my phone in my trick-or-treating basket.) Aside from those minor details, though, super comfy!

I promise that next Halloween I'll have a new costume, now that I know I'll have the time/opportunity to wear it! Stay tuned for updates, and

Happy Halloween!


Wednesday, November 1, 2017

2017: How It Went (Halloween)

Happy Halloween Pierrot!


So, as I mentioned before, I didn't have a trick-or-treat-ing Halloween this year due to a course I'm taking, but I did get to wear my costume, so I still have pictures of the finished Pierrot!

The finishing touch of this costume is the makeup, which I winged last night without any practice, so it could be a lot more precise. Here is a closeup of the makeup:

The makeup.
I used a Dia de los Muertos makeup kit, which included white base color and three makeup crayons in red, green, and black (I only used the black, though I went over that later with a crayon eyeliner because it wasn't defined enough). 
The sponge brush that was included in the kit worked best if I patted instead of brushed it on, as that  blended the makeup better. I figured this out the hard way (when I brushed it on, the makeup was VERY blotchy; every time I applied more, the motion of brushing would rub the surrounding makeup off).
I tried to do the nose the way I had envisioned (click here to see my original design), but it didn't look very good, so I just left it blank.

I sort of like the costume without the full skeleton face, though, so maybe next time I'll try a more subtle Pierrot face instead, maybe with dots under the eyes instead of spikes.

Anyway, 'till next Halloween, and Happy November!


Monday, October 16, 2017

Pierrot: The Hat (and Pom-Poms)

The finished Pierrot costume (without makeup)

Pierrot is done! I am very, very happy with it!
The above picture is the finished costume without the skeleton makeup (I'm saving that for Halloween.) 
Unfortunately, I might not be able to post a Halloween review, since I'm going to be missing the bulk of my city's trick-or-treating hours due to a course I'm taking, but I think I'll still wear the costume that night, so I might post a review of it anyway.

So, on to...

The Hat

I like making hats. This hat was very fun to make, as it only required a few steps, and only cost $6.85 for the materials.

Anyway, I started with a piece of leftover vinyl for the pattern, but a large sheet of paper or cardboard would do just as well. Here a sketch of the pattern I made:

The hat pattern.

I basically winged it when it comes to shape, I started out with the highest hight and widest width possible (the sheet of foam I got for the hat was the 12''x18'' kind, I think, which means that the brim is 18'' wide) and kept trimming the height down until I liked the length. The brim is too small for my head, so I am using pins to attach it to the wig, but if you can find wider foam that might be better.
Be sure that the top of the hat doesn't come to an exact point, but is 1 or 2 inches wide (this will make it so that the veil can go through the point of the hat.)*

After I figured out the pattern, I cut the foam to it, taped the seam up, then glued felt over it. I made a mistake in the method I used to cover the hat in felt— I rolled the hat onto it while gluing it in place, and so there was a tiny slice of the foam that wasn't covered, but I patched it up with some of the rest of the felt, and since it's in the back, the veil will cover it. Anyway, instead of being silly like me and rolling the hat on the felt in an imprecise manner, I would recommend cutting the felt to a slightly enlarged hat pattern and then attaching and trimming it.

Then the fun part! I glued three black pom-poms to the front of the hat and wrapped some of the bat-patterned tulle around the brim, then fed a strip of the tulle that I had knotted at the end through the hole in the point of the hat (the knot should be hidden inside the hat.)

I also sewed the larger pom-poms onto the shirt, which is a small edition, but really completes the look!

Well, that's all for today.

Happy Halloween!


*Edit Apr. 2018: I now realize that this way of making the hat was going extremely out of my way! To make an easy conical hat, just cut the foam into a circle, draw a radius of that circle, and cut along that, so that there is a split on one side of the circle. Then, overlap the two flaps on either side that the split has created, until it looks fairly conical. Glue the overlapped pieces in place, and then you're done! :)

Saturday, September 23, 2017

Pierrot: The Shirt Collar

Collar, wig, and gloves implemented!

Well, the shirt is almost done! That's exciting!

The collar is made of a very long rectangular strip of cloth (about 50'' long and 10'' wide), which was made very similarly to the neck of the shirt— we used the same cinching technique (a shoe lace threaded through the top hem), but we made the collar wider than the shirt neck so that it would bunch up more.

Then, for a Halloween-y flourish, my father sewed this cobwebby-bat-themed tulle that we had left over from another project in pleats inside that collar while it was un-cinched, and then we scrunched it up again and voilĂ ! A perfect Halloween finish. We left the back unfastened, but you could also sew it up, which will make it less likely to pop open in the back. Now the only thing left to do on the shirt is the pom-pom buttons!

Because the shirt was coming together, I went ahead and tested out the wig (reused from my Ciel Phantomhive cosplay) and black gloves (also from my Ciel cosplay!) — I'm very happy with how the wig looks, I like the longer length for a Halloweenish Pierrot! The gloves also pick up the black in the ruff and, in the future, the pom-poms, which is good.

That's all for now! Happy Halloween!


Pierrot: The Body of the Shirt

Pierrot's Shirt


So, my father used the patterns we figured out the other day to make the body of the shirt, and it looks pretty great! I'm very pleased with the shape. 

As you can see, we extended the sleeves a little past the hemline of the shirt to give it a more floppy appearance. We also widened the body of the shirt from the (already widened) pattern by about 4 more inches, but even with all that widening, I would say that you could widen it even more if you wanted it to look really billowy.

The neck.

The picture on the above is showing where the drawstrings for the collar are positioned inside the shirt.  They are in the hem of the collar and come out in the back on the inside of the shirt. Then you just pull the strings and tie, and you have a lovely scrunch!

I could just leave the shirt like this, because it looks pretty good, but I'm also going to have a collar, which will be discussed in the next post, and some fun pom-pom buttons!

Happy Halloween!


Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Pierrot: Designs and Shirt Pattern

Design 1
Design 2


Above you will see the two designs I created while brainstorming what I want the costume to look like. The finished product will mostly be design 2, except for the shirt, which will be design 1 but with pompoms or red roses for buttons. The makeup in design 1 is basically what I'll be doing, but I won't be adding the tear in the final makeup because it conflicts with the spike accents on the eyes and makes it look too busy.
I'm also going to be wearing black gloves, and black pointed boots (the heeled Victorian kind that you can find in costume shops. ) I'm still deciding on the trousers, but it's between black leggings and the white scrub pants that I used for my Near cosplay.

We're just using a large white sheet for the fabric of the shirt. My father and I worked on the pattern for the shirt yesterday, which we based on this adorable child's smock pattern. (If the link doesn't work, look for a pattern for an art smock that has long raglan-style sleeves.) It's a really simple pattern, and since the final shirt will be so big and billowy, there is a lot of room to make mistakes!

That's all for today.

Happy trick-or-treating!


Monday, February 27, 2017

2017's Costume: Halloween Pierrot


I was somewhat torn between being Quicksilver (from the new X-Men movies, not the Avengers movies), or Pierrot (the "sad romantic" stock character from pantomime), but I decided that I want to try designing and making a costume all by myself (in the past I have been helped a ton by my parents), so in the end I picked Pierrot!

My concept is to bring out the melancholy aspect of Pierrot, with some Halloween themes thrown into the mix. This way I can design my own "look" for this character.

I plan on using spider, cobweb, and skull motifs for the materials and makeup, plus Pierrot's classic white blouse, ruff, and pom-pom decorated cone hat.

I'm very excited to start working on this project! Hopefully it will turn out okay.

Happy Halloween!


(edit 9/20/17: Actually, my father is going to help! Haha, guess I backed out of that one!)