Rose Quartz Cosplay – Dress Tutorial, Part 1

Hi! It’s been a year since I did a tutorial, and since I’ve gotten so much positive feedback on my Rose Quartz, and because Rose is such a HUGE CHALLENGE (no pun intended), I thought I’d throw a bit more guiding material out onto the net about it.

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Our whole crew at Awesome Con 2016, for Bleed Geeks‘ first con appearance

It won’t be a straight-up how-to, since I was making it up as I went along, and while I kindof documented my process, I also had occasional panics where I rushed and forgot to take any pictures at all. So sorry about the intermittent illustrations 🙂

My second disclaimer is that I have no idea how challenging any of this is. Usually I post pretty entry-level projects, but this is not one. I got my degree in Costume Design from UMBC 10 years ago, and while I am by no means an expert or master seamstress, I often opt for solutions that would be complicated for others. (part of that is just how I am tho, plus a bit of a perfectionist)

Also, I’m not sure how many parts this will take, maybe 2 or three, and then one for the wig. With all that said, I hope that my process helps others find their own way to being their own Rose! It’s been a wonderful experience for me, ending my 10 year hiatus from cosplay and bringing me back to costuming for fun alone. Having fun is the most important part!

Premade – the Bodice

First thing first, I hate making bodices. Making one for myself is a special hell that would not be any fun at all so I opted to not do it. Instead, I shopped around for an inexpensive white gown with a sweetheart neckline and empire waist that came in XXL. I’m an XX-XL, but it’s often better to take in a larger size than to hope that an XL will be true to size or leave enough space for my boobages.

Rose_Quartz_bodice

Features I was looking for: The sweetheart neckline is a key part of Rose’s look; it is quite romantic and very flattering to the curves of a full figure. The empire waist is crucial for the star cut out, and for keeping the fullness of Rose’s proportions. While I’m often too nervous to highlight my belly with an empire waist gown, this was my chance to really go for it and embrace my full-bellied glory.

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Yes, I’m standing on a stool for this picture  🙂 This is right from the package, before taking it in.

Beyond those requirements, I was looking for something that could gracefully handle expansion into a giant skirt. Something with a lot of movement, that exuded softness. Length wasn’t crucial, but could allow for making the second layer out of the bottom, so it was a consideration for lazy/busy me.

I settled on this one. It was inexpensive and super easy to take in at the back zipper, rather than at the sides. This is where cheap assembly line dress production really pays off for the consumer. The back is like a giant ribbon, and you can remove the zipper, trim or fold the dress to fit, and then sew it back on. I took it in once by myself, as shown, and then recruited my mom to help me fit it more snugly later, closer to completion.

Premade – the Hoop Skirt

Rose_Quartz_Skirt
Fortunately, I could borrow a hoop skirt to build the dress on until I could buy one of my own. I opted for a hoop instead of a petticoat in order to both minimize weight, and to take advantage of the floaty character of movement that a hoopskirt can bring. It ended up being a very fortunate choice that allowed me to very easily keep my stomach bare from the supporting structures.

To the fabric store in Part 2!!

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