So, I cut down the fabric for the skirt, I ended up cutting it to 12" long total, the bottom was already hemmed, so that's 12" with the hem finished on the bottom. I repleated everything and stitched it down, and then, based on the tutorial I was using, cut the V shape into the front and back, but I didn't cut my V as deep as the tutorial did. I believe in front I cut it to 10" and in back I cut it to 11". I have very long legs, I didn't want the skirt to end up too short.
I made the padded hip rolls with the same tutorial and sewed the skirt to it, it turned out to be kind of a perfect length. Still short, like it's supposed to be, but not so short I'm uncomfortable in it.
Ignore the dirty mirror. I should really learn to clean my mirrors before taking selfies in them, this isn't the first time I've made this mistake. Anyways, this is before the skirt was fastened down, so it's hanging a little low. I did end up sewing the collar to the leotard, I had intended to just do snaps so it could be removable and replaced with a different colored collar if I ever make a Sailor Jupiter costume, which is the next one I'd want to do, but I decided I didn't want to fight with it. But it only has two lines of stitches going down around the collar in front, it would be really easy to remove and replace if I wanted to.
For the bows I used this tutorial: http://amishanda.deviantart.com/art/Sailor-Moon-and-Sailor-Scout-Bow-Tutorial-363194911 There is one for the bows with the other tutorial, but I like the look of these ones better.
My front bow is roughly 13"x11", with the tail being 15"x9" or so. I think. I honestly don't remember, haha. I'm just pretty sure I added an inch on the measurements in the tutorial because I wanted a little more oomph. I think the back bow is 15x13 with the tails being 17"x11". The front bow is pretty perky, but the back bow droops a bit, I'm thinking about adding a few hidden stitches to the bow to make it stand up, but I haven't decided exactly how to work that yet. I was worried the front of the collar was too narrow, but I think it looks fine. The skirt is attached with four snaps, one on front and back and one on each hip. So far the one snap in back holds up the bow just fine.
With that, all the sewing is done. I only need two more accessories:
Jewelry! I made the earrings myself out of Sculpey using a youtube video I found ages ago. The choker gem I bought off of Catzia's Collectibles on Etsy, which is the same place I bought the tiara, although I realize I don't have a picture of it. I had to attach a little metal loop to the back of the gem so I could attach it to the choker, which is just a black ribbon with eyelets in it to connect everything. So now, technically, I can dress as Sailor Pluto more or less completely. I still want to pump up the wig by sewing the two I have together, but technically it works as it is. And of course, I don't have the staff yet.
Man, this thing is a hell of a project.
I already showed you the paper pattern for the head. Well I traced it onto cardboard twice:
Twice for front and back of the big main heart piece and the little one that goes on top. My experience with expanding insulation foam is that you want to do it all in one go, there's no spraying one side and letting it set then spraying the other because the foam hardens in the nozzle of the can and then that can is just done.
My weapon of choice. Great Stuff Gap Filler, the kind meant to fill gaps larger than 1". This is actually a leftover can from when I made my sewing mannequin, you remember Space Princess? I kinda wondered if it would still be good. And gloves, because goddamn do I remember what a pain in the ass it is to get this stuff off your skin.
And spray! The little hearts were too small to try and outline them so I just straight up covered them in foam. Too much is better than not enough, right?
Incidentally, the really big heart piece there is for a different project, that is eventually going to be a large replica of Majora's Mask that I am going to hang on my wall. Basically it's just something else I've been wanting to make and I wanted to have something else to do to make sure I didn't waste any of my can of foam, because I knew it wouldn't take a whole can just for the head of my staff. It'll be a bit before I get to really working on that mask, but rest assured, you shall get updates when I do.
I let them sit for like a day, which is longer than necessary, but I just didn't have time to get to them sooner. I brought them in and kind of roughly trimmed them with a serrated knife. As you can see, I still hadn't cut out the middle of the small heart.
Later, I VERY CAREFULLY cut the cardboard away from one half of each piece, and then glued the foam to the cardboard of the other half, making a very thick foam sandwich. You can see the line of the cardboard in the middle of the small piece. Obviously these pieces are way too huge for my purposes, but that just gives me lots of room for error, right?
Still using the serrated knife, I trimmed the pieces down even more. Look at that pile of scrap! I tried to use a utility knife for this at one point, but you really need the serrated blade to bite into the foam.
Haha, god, look how lumpy and uneven and malformed those look at this stage. It's so bad! My confidence wavered a bit here.
But then my Dremel entered the picture. I just used a basic sanding bit and just smoothed and trimmed and rounded everything. Look how pretty they are now! Not like 100% perfect or anything, but pretty damn good, enough that it made me happy.
The next step is covering everything in papier mache. This is kind of funny actually, I was trying to figure out where I was gonna get the paper for this step, I certainly don't get the newspaper and I don't think I know anyone who does, and I'm not gonna go out and buy one. And then suddenly it occurred to me, we have had a phone book sitting on our front step for literally months, it's actually less useful than a newspaper and we'd all been too lazy to pick it up and throw it away. It was just waiting for me. So I finally brought it in and shredded a bunch of pages. The paste is just a basic flour and water mixture, boiled. You can find a million recipes for it online. Incidentally the little round thing is a clear plastic Christmas ornament I found at a craft store and it will be my Garnet Orb in the staff. It's covered in papier mache because I want to paint it and I didn't think paint would stick to the plastic very well.
This is the step I'm at now, these pieces are still sitting on my kitchen table drying. I want to add a few more layers of papier mache just for strength, then everything will be sanded smooth, sprayed with Plasti-Dip and then painted. I'm going to be making paper clay for some of the details on the staff, but I'll document that more when I actually do it.
I have all the pieces for the rest of the staff ready to go as well.
There's supposed to be one more segment at the bottom, I forgot about it before taking this picture. Basically I will be drilling holes through everything and gluing those metal bolts in the holes to connect everything as firmly as possible. I'm very proud of those key shaped bits too.
I just used lined notebook paper, a ruler and some close up reference pictures of those pieces of the staff and kind of drew it out by hand until I liked the way it looked and felt like it matched the staff pretty well. I traced those onto a plank of wood I bought from the craft store with vague intentions of cutting them out with my Dremel or a hacksaw, but it took all of 30 seconds of trying that to realize that super wasn't going to work. Luckily, my stepdad is very handy and owns just ALL the tools, so I took the stuff over there and he cut it out for me with his jig saw.
They still need some sanding and refining of course, but I'm pretty pleased with how they came out. My stepdad also cut my wooden dowel into the segments I needed, which saved me all kinds of time and effort. Man, I need to get my own power saw...
Anyways, that's where we're at now. I'll be doing more papier mache tonight, and either some drilling or wig sewing. Probably drilling. I can bring the wig to work with me and do it there, but I can't do the drilling. And somewhere in here I have to find time to finish my daughter's Sailor Chibi Moon costume. Sigh. And here I thought I was gonna have plenty of time. That's what I get for moving too slowly on things.