I promised I would give more details about my costume — here is Part I: the shirt, the pants and the ascot, and a quick look at my accessories.
Here is again my original inspiration:
This shirt was a last minute decision. I was planning on entering the cosplay competition of the Antwerp Convention with my costume, and the shirt I was planning to wear, a simple fitted shirt I had in my wardrobe, just didn’t resemble the original shirt enough for my taste. My shirt was white with a round collar, his shirt was more off-white/beige with pointed collar. Not that I was hoping to win the competition anyway, but if I was going to have my costume referenced to the original for judging, I might as well do my best to make it as identical as possible, right?
On Easter Monday, I was off to the only “fabric store” I knew would sell unbleached cotton on this bank holiday – IKEA! I use the shirt from Simplicity 2895. It’s a men’s pattern, I made a size 38, the smallest size. My chest measurements were 37 in, and the shirt is extremely roomy, but for the purpose of this costume, it fit the bill. I didn’t make any alterations to the pattern. I’ve avoided making shirts with collars and cuffs for YEARS (well, more like a decade…) because I remembered how difficult it was, but this pattern was quite easy to follow and it gave me my shirt-making groove back! Which is a good thing, because my next cosplay projects also involve making a shirt…
Before you ask about the result of the cosplay competition: no, I didn’t participate after all. The competition was happening at the same time as a panel discussion that I found much more important. It doesn’t mean I will never enter this costume in a competition in the future though — who knows? 😉
I didn’t have a fabric in my stash that matched the color of the original outfit, but I still managed to find a suitable fabric that would at least match the color scheme. I used a very simple pattern I had in my stash, Butterick 5391, view E (bootcut leg). I whipped up those pants in a couple of hours, including cutting time. Very fast, very easy. However, I must say the fit is horrendous: the hips are way too wide, and the crotch line is hanging much too low. Only the waistband is sitting properly and fits really nicely. I didn’t make any adjustments to the fit around the hips because I was aiming at loose-fitting trousers anyway. But if I were to use this pattern again, I would probably go down a size or two around the hips, but keep the original size 16 at the waist.
I didn’t have any pattern to make the cravat/ascot, but as it’s often the case, the Internet was my friend. I found a blog post with instructions on how to make a Neo- Victorian/Steampunk-style cravat/ascot and decided to give it a go. I used plain navy blue satin with standard fusible interfacing. I followed the instructions of the blogger in general, but I made mine slightly shorter, I though 60 inches was quite long for the size of my neck! On top of that, I didn’t have enough fabric. I actually can’t remember my final measurements, but it was closer to 40 inches. I’m quite pleased with the result, maybe I will leave out the interfacing next time, as it was a bit stiff to be worn in a lesser-than-neat way like the original outfit. You can see the result in the 2nd picture: the bad treatment made it quite wrinkly!
I didn’t have the time, nor the materials, nor really the ability to make Edwardian/WWI-style leather leggings (I will one day, though, watch me!), so I went for a pair of lace-up boots that matched the color scheme I was going after, and my budget. On the plus side: they are super comfortable, super funky, and I can’t wait to wear them next winter!
The belt was the recycling of an old belt from when I was 130 pounds heavier. I cut the excess length at the back and stitched the edges back together. No one can see it, and it worked perfectly.
I then found an 8th Doctor sonic screwdriver on Amazon (his sonic screwdriver is not easy to find!), and a pretty fob watch on eBay. It’s all in the details, really…
That’s it for now, folks! In my next post, I’ll take a closer look at the waistcoat! 😀