From: Chobits
Worn at: AWA 2003

Here we have the very first costume I entered in a cosplay contest. It was a pretty grueling experience. AWA hadn’t yet streamlined the process so it was an all day ordeal. Mostly waiting in hot rooms…and waiting…then waiting to wait…and you get the idea. I had huge lumps on the sides of my head where the headband dug into me all day and open sores on my heels from my shoes rubbing me. I was tired, smelly and generally achy all over by the time it was over about 13 hours later. I swore I’d never enter another cosplay contest again. That didn’t go as planned.

For the dress, I bought a strapless evening gown pattern to use as my base. I mostly stuck to the original pattern, with the exception of the hem line and the lining. The pattern didn’t call for a lining, so I had to figure out how to work it in. It was a little confusing for a beginner, but turned out reasonably well. For the Fleur-De-Lys, I cut the shape out of my satin which I had backed with fusible interfacing. My granny took it from there and appliquéd it on for me because I was afraid I’d mess it up. I fudged on the sleeves by making them separate from the dress. That kind of pattern alteration was a bit advanced for me back then. The persacom ears were made from craft foam and the hair beads are tiny thread spools from a travel sewing kit. I ran a bead of hot glue around the ends to make the white parts more rounded. Those were the days.  I don’t know what the hell I was thinking using that dark red lipstick. The bangs were also cut way too short on my wig.