Hi there Reader! Meet COT-chan, the super hero princess from Cosplay Token! I conceptualized her design based on elements I thought would suit her character, also taking into consideration materials I had at my disposal. Find out more about each element and how I made them here!
I want to start off by thanking the people who helped me resurrect and maintain my cosplay spirit which went through a REALLY low time. Without them this costume would definitely not have been created! Thank You to the Cosplay Token team for choosing me as the South African ambassador of their project & my Overwatch clan sponsor White Rabbit Gaming – both entities trust me to serve them well, and that I shall! Also, thank you to my beloved friends Baka Sakura & Maggie who both donated the fabric I used to create this costume! I haven’t created anything new in over a year and thanks to the support I have received from not only those mentioned above, it feels really good to be back at it!
Nearing the end of this costume creation Maggie helped me decide on some direction with this doodle based on the vision I explained to her. She is a beast at characterization and sewing!
I started off by sewing some gauntlets as I know I want COT-chan to be a fighter that can stand up for her self and others who are unable to protect themselves!
With the gauntlets done I moved on to a skirt that would hopefully be decently flattering on my body (you never know until you fit things on) & decided that I would like to pay homage to box pleats by feeding the skirt section in along those lines. Obviously since I am using fleece as the main fabric, the box pleats would not be ironed down and just left to look kind of ruffled. I did add elastic into the waistband but it might not even have been necessary as this fleece is somewhat stretchy.
I made sure that the skirt covers my bum at the back & that there won’t be any ‘public indecency’ if I wear this out to an event! That is what based the skirt length on.
Maggie provided me with a very cute pattern for tops which I tested out for this costume. With fleece being so stretchy I actually removed a few panels at the back so that it would fit me better. No zip or anything needed thanks to the stretch!
I created some tubes tat were inverted and top stitched along each edge after the part you see in this image. These were to serve as the straps for the top! Strapless tops are a pet peeve for me to personally deal with so I made sure that I would be as comfortable as can be in this top.
This is the part where I pinned the finished straps onto the top before sewing it on securely. I always do thi to make sure the fit is perfect and that the straps are symmetrical.
Once the top was completed I actually did not have the whole costume fully conceptualized in my mind yet. This costume was very much created in the moment. I decided to deconstruct an old Japanese school uniform top of mine to salvage the collar as a pattern. While Baka Sakura supplied me with the fleece for this project, Maggie supplied me with the perfect matching pink fabric to line the collar with. Without the lining there would not have been enough fabric for me to make a decent quality costume with as I did not want to go without lining some of it. Below you can see the lining pinned onto the fleece.
After sewing the lining on I inverted it and pinned it again to top stitch the lining to the fleece. The pinning process also helped ensure that the inversion is done to the very edge of the desired shape. This collar design is also an homage to Japanese style and provides me with coverage which adds to the overall comfort, particularly in case of wearing this to an event where I may promote Cosplay Token.
I was really stuck after making the collar as I felt something was still missing from the top design. I decided a hood would be fun as I could pay tribute to kigurumi which is of Japan as well & could add a COT-chan face onto it. Maggie provided me with a new pattern for a hood, but only digitally. I eyeballed the pattern from my pc screen and created it onto my fabric based on measurements alone. This caused the hood to come out a little off in my opinion but still good enough to continue with.
I really wanted to upgrade my hood sewing by adding a little panel in the middle of the two side panels. This prevents the ugly bunching that occurs when you just add two panels together. I stuck to top-stitching the excess of the seams down to add to the cohesion of the overall look.
I made sure to also line the hood.
After the hood was lined it made sense to actually attach it directly to the fuku collar. This would then be attached onto the straps of the top so as to form one piece. The idea of this piece is also that of a type of cape which you see on super heroes. The hood also adds a little bit of mystery. As you can see on my COT-chan cosplay photos I also added a lined bar from strap to strap which adds some detail but also gives me a perfect spot to feature the Cosplay Token ticker, COT.
The white face on the hood and COT ticker on the front of my top are cut out of white fleece. I used hot glue to gently dab it onto the pink fleece. This is a very tricky technique because you can either glue it on too softly or too harshly. If you don’t press it enough it can fall off, but if you press it on too hard the glue can permeate through the white fleece and basically destroy the appearance, after which you would have to remove it and start over – without messing around the area you are gluing onto. Hot glue is mostly frowned upon among cosplayers who strive to create higher quality works, but I do reckon that it does have a place in the crafting realm. I have tested this method in the washing machine in the past on onesies and can confirm that it does hold up well through that process. Throwing this into a washing machine will not ruin the white parts but I will probably wash this by hand with cold water just to take better care of it overall.
After the top was basically done I wasn’t sure how else I would add more detail. I thought up a type of arm accessory which would serve not only as a magical-girl type puffed sleeve but would also add a touch of royalty. I thought it would be nice to that COT-chan is a princess of Cosplay Token since this crypto currency can really financially aid cosplayers and it raises them up on a pedestal for their hard work and sacrifice – which often goes unseen!
The puffed sleeve was made by once again incorporating box pleat folds & I made sure not to iron them down (even though they could be) just so that they would puff a bit more.
I added elastic into bands that would go on either side of the box folds. I was unsure of whether I should do some of my thighs as well, but after Maggie made her drawing of it I thought that it does actually come across as cohesive enough & that I liked it, so I went ahead and made a total of 4 of these pieces. Having these above my knees and below the skirt also reminded me a little bit of not only a lolita bloomer but also of a jester – these are both ideas that relate not only to Japan but also to entertainment in my mind – suitable for COT-chan!
Below you can see an example of this piece once completed. I could possibly have gotten away without adding in elastic but wanted to make sure there is a little bit of help with holding them in place.
I have a pink wig sponsored by Baked Bagel for a future Elfen Lied costume I would like to make which has a bob hair style. The colour suits COT-chan and since it is safe to cut the wig for Elfen Lied, I decided I would definitely want a shorter style since long wigs are a messy pain!
So that’s it for how I conceptualized and created this costume! I started some production in this cosplay and there is a bunch more incoming which I will keep as a surprise. Keep an eye out for that in my social media channels!
If you want to see where this character hails from you can visit her home here at the Cosplay Token website!
Until next post,