Saturday, 6 April 2013

How to Create a Princess Serenity Sailor Moon Costume

Create the Perfect Princess Serenity Costume
Sailor Moon was my favorite Anime as a child, even if the 4Kids dubbing was monumentally confusing. (Zoicite is a girl...right?) Like most anime, the costumes are unique, iconic, and a ton of fun to dress up as and cosplay. My favorite of the costumes is that worn by Princess Serentity, Sailor Moon's past life incarnation and denizen of the lost Moon Kingdom. In this post we'll be looking at all the essential elements of a perfect Princess Serenity costume! Be sure to also check out my Sailor Moon costume guide for the regular costume.

Create the Outfit

Cosplay Fantasy's Princess Serenity Dress

First up you'll need Princess Serenity's signature white gown. There are a number of cosplay sites which sell dresses made to be exact replicas of the one in the show as well as the dress in the manga. They tend to be a little costly, but if you have money to spare I definitely recommend them because they are spectacularly beautiful as well as true to the material.

The one on the left is my personal favorite, which is based on the more silvery sleek dress from the manga. You can also find one which imitates the anime dress' more yellowy design, complete with cute puffy sleeves here.

If you are on a budget and want a cheaper alternative then a simple white or cream chiffon prom dress will also look great, such as this cream one or this elegant white one. The most important thing is to look flowing and elegant! Pick the dress that looks amazing on you.

Create the Hair Style

Sailor Moon Princess Serenity silver
cosplay wig with free white wigcap

Creating the actual hairstyle from your own hair requires the right colored hair, the right length and the right hair thickness, meaning only a couple of girls will be able to pull it off. If you want to try, check out the video tutorial at the bottom of this post. For the rest of us, there are loads of super cute Sailor Moon hairstyle wigs to choose from to easily and instantly pull off the look. 

SureWells Costume Sailor Moon
Long Blonde Wig
Which color you go for really depends on whether your are more a fan of the anime or the manga - in the manga Princess Serenity has silver hair, whereas in the anime she remains blond like Sailor Moon. I personally prefer the silver haired look since it goes so well with the white dress, but both are beautiful.

Whatever your choice, finish off the hair style by decorating the buns with beautiful white flower hair clips, just like the Princess. This part is optional if you are going for the anime look since she isn't always wearing them, but absolutely necessary for the manga version of the Moon Princess! Here are some gorgeous ones with crystal centers fit for a princess! Another elegant alternative is this double white rose hair piece.

Have long, thick blond hair and want to have a go at styling it like Sailor Moon? Check out the video below for a tutorial on how to do it. This requires hair extensions (since your hair would have to be really thick otherwise!), and you can find some good ones here.

And there you have it, one perfect Sailor Moon Princess Serenity costume, great for Halloween and Anime conventions alike. Have fun! If you liked this post and want to see more, don't forget to check out the rest of my blog for more great niche costume ideas for women.

Tuesday, 2 April 2013

How to Create the Perfect Effie Trinket Costume (Hunger Games)

Create the Perfect Effie Trinket Costume Based on the Hunger Games Movie

Effie Trinket from the Hunger Games is probably one of the most visually interesting female characters in recent movie history, and while this is a difficult costume to put together if done right can result in something truly special. She has a number of outfits in the first film (I believe one of the drinking rules involves taking a shot every time it changes) but the pink puffy sleeved jacket look that she wore during the Reaping is the one she is most remembered for. In this guide we'll be looking at how to put that outfit together.

How to Create an Effie Trinket Outfit

80's Soap Star Adult Costume
You might think finding that poofy sleeved jacket would be a nightmare, but lo and behold one actually exists online. Sadly the pencil skirt which comes with this outfit is the wrong color, but luckily you can pick up a sufficiently luminous pink pencil skirt here. Alternatives include this range of colored blazers, which you can get in magenta.
Effie Trinket also wears a deep v-neck black top underneath her poofy jacket. This part of the costume is optional since you might get a bit too warm wearing two layers, but if you don't mind or you're partying in the cold you can pick up a cute version here.

Effie Trinket's costume is finished off with a neck scarf made of fabric flowers - I recommend making your own with a combination of a silk pink floral scarf decorated with fabric flowers stitched on. Alternatively you could swap this part of the costume for a more simple floral necklace if you feel the scarf is too elaborate. 

How to Create Effie Trinket's Hair

Jazz Baby Wig Blonde Adult
Since actually getting your hair to look like Effie's would take some seriously hardcore styling, it is much easier here to just pick up a good quality curly blond wig. The one above is my personal favorite and the one I think most accurately matches Effie's hair in the Hunger Games. Every Effie costume also needs an over-sized flower fascinater to finish of the hairstyle, preferably pink or purple to match your outfit. Here's a cute pink one that would work well with the above outfit.

How to Create the Effie Trinket Make Up Look

Effie Trinket, along with pretty much ever other Capitol character, has a pretty difficult look to pull off make-up-wise, but if you can get it right you will look AMAZING. If you want to really go all out, check out the make-up tutorial below, courtesy of KlairedelysArt.

Products Used in This Video include:

And there you have it, one perfect Effie Trinket costume from the Hunger Games film. If you liked this post you might also like this fun guide to dressing up as Katniss Everdeen. Future posts pending while I figure out how to pull off the other twenty outfits Effie wears in the Hunger Games and Catching Fire... 

How to Create the Perfect White Swan Queen Costume

Create the Perfect White Swan Queen Costume

Natalie Portman's depiction of the White Swan in the movie Black Swan has captured the imaginations of millions, and the design makes an elegant and unique costume for any party or Halloween event. 

The White Swan is the flip side to the Black Swan, the innocence to her sensuality, the fragility to her boldness. It is the perfect costume idea for women who want to look beautiful and radiant in the classic sense, not in the 'bearing all skin' sexy sense. 

If you're looking for a way to make your own Swan Queen costume, then read on for my guide to doing it. 

Why not team up with a friend dressed as the Black Swan? I've also made a guide on creating the Black Swan costume.

How to Create the White Swan Costume

Daisy Corsets Burlesque Corset

You can find pre-made White Swan costumes online, such as this cute one, that are good if you are in a hurry but I prefer to put my own costume together. 

You will need:

  • A white leotard with a large and rigid tutu attached. I think that the rigid types of tutus look much better than the more wafty, floppy kinds, and are more faithful to the movie costume. If you live in the EU the perfect leotard/tutu combo is this cute set here. If you don't you can pick up the right kind of tutu here but you'll have to buy a leotard seperately.
  • A white corset. The more beautiful and elaborately lacy, the better! The one on the right is by far my favorite - I think it is perfect for a white swan costume!
  • White feathers. These are for decorating the top of the outfit - slip some into the center of the corset (the cleavage part) or stitch them on if you are feeling confident. You can also use these in your hair if you want a cheap alternative to the White Swan feather headpieces. 

Create the White Swan Hairstyle 


Simply tie back your hair in a bun with a plain bobble and use some hairspray to keep any flyaway hair down. Tresemme Freezehold spray is a good option if you intend to do some heavy duty dancing - it leaves your hair a bit plasticky to the touch, but it'll hold it in place in a tornado if necessary. 

White Feather Hair Headpiece
Finally you'll need two white feathery hair pieces on either side of your head to finish off the look. There are a number of bridal hairpieces that achieve this look, such as the one on the left. If you want a cheaper option, tie a number of white feathers together and hold them in place behind your ears with a hair clip or pin. 

And there you have it! One perfect White Swan Queen costume that any woman is sure to look absolutely amazing in. Enjoy your night out! Don't forget to check out this guide's evil alter ego, the Black Swan Costume page.

Monday, 1 April 2013

How to Create the Perfect Black Swan Costume and Makeup

Create the Perfect Black Swan Costume 

Smiffy Black Swan Costume
(Available in the UK here)

Black Swan is one of my favorite movies of all time, and one of the best things about it are the stark, bold and iconic costumes worn by the lead actress Natalie Portman, who plays troubled dancer Nina - torn between the innocent and fragile white swan and the sensual and impulsive black swan. If you are looking to create a stylish and terrifying Black Swan costume, then you've come to the right place, cause here I'll discuss just how you can do it.

If you want to team up with a friend and go as a White Swan/Black swan pairing, check out my guide on how to create the perfect White Swan Queen costume.

How to Create the Black Swan Dress


You can pick up some cute pre-made Black Swan costumes such as this one, but in my opinion the best costume is made from realistic ballet gear modified with some elaborate corsets and feathers.

You will need:

  • A black ballet leotard with a stiff and large tutu attached. The Black Swan's Tutu isn't a flimsy floppy thin like you'll find on most costumes, which is why its best to go for something like this for authenticity! The perfect example is this one, which is the one I use for my costume. Sadly though that one is only available for shipping within the EU. For US Black Swan enthusiasts, you can pick up the right kind of tutu here but you'll have to buy a leotard separately. Here's one without straps.
  • A black corset. You'll be wearing this over your leotard, so you want one that's beautiful and elaborate just like Natalie Portman's dress. Here's a beautiful one, and here's one with straps that would look fantastic.
  • Some black feathers. You will want to slip these into one side of your corset (stitch them into it if you feel confident with a needle) so that they stick up over one side of your chest (see the picture of me below to see what I mean).

How to Create the Black Swan Makeup

My Black Swan Makeup
The Black Swan makeup looks pretty complicated, but its actually remarkably easy to pull off - I managed to do it even though I have the shakiest hand imaginable. You will need:

  1. White face paint
  2. Black eyeliner
  3. Silver Glitter Eyeliner with fine point applicator

Step 1:

  • Use white face paint (here's the one I used) to lighten your face. The trick is to only use a little bit and carefully blend and blur it out towards the edges of your face. You want your face to be softly lighter - you don't want to look like you are wearing a white face mask. Don't drench the sponge you are using to apply the face paint - using only a little water and dabbing it on your face will help achieve the desired look.
Step 2:
  • Using black eyeliner (gel ones such as this one work best) draw the shape shown in the picture around your eyes, beginning half to a quarter of the way down your nose and ending around an inch past the end of your eyebrows. Depending on how high your eyebrows are naturally you may wish to make the shape cover your eyebrows - if not be sure to make sure you've added some white face paint to them instead (like I did). Color the shape in with the eyeliner so that it is completely black all over. Wait for it to dry. Add mascara or fake eyelashes if desired.
Step 3:
  • Using a silver glitter eyeliner with a fine point applicator (this one works well), make little dashes and lines all over the shape, following the natural contours of your face. Be careful when making lines on your eyelids to keep your eyes closed for a while while the eyeliner drys to avoid smudging. 

Creating the Hairstyle

Black Swan Replica Tiara
This part is easy enough - simply scrape your hair back and tie it into a bun, using a strong hairspray to prevent fly away hairs escaping and hold it in place. Tresemme Freezehold spray is an utterly impenetrable hairspray that is great for keeping the look in place while dancing or going about town. It leaves your hair a little plasticky to the touch, but there is no way in hell that hair is moving. 

Finally, top the look off with a tiara. Here's a replica of the one Natalie Portman wears in the movie. And there we go! One complete and perfect Black Swan costume, ready to go.