“Travel isn’t always pretty. It isn’t always comfortable. The journey changes you; it should change you. You take something with you. Hopefully, you leave something good behind.” – Anthony Bourdain

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After her first debut at Anime Expo this year, I took a moment to reexamine what Celes has become. For my first attempt at designing embroidery elements and then doing all my own embroidery on her, there are many things about this cosplay that I am proud of. Where my disappointment snuck in was with her sewn aspects – which surprised me.

Time frankly ran out. Corseted shapes are still a challenge for me to drape and the hard fact that doing a fitting on yourself is the worst thing ever.

Because of these main points, her bodice was a complete wreck. Short of the embroidered elements on them, the fit was terrible and it pulled and puckered in ways that irked me.

For the next leg of the journey, I will be scrapping the bodice and the corset style in hopes of achieving a better result. More embroidery will also be added.

In preparation for the new build, I traveled to the Utah Opera Company costume shop for help. There, I was able to consult a duo of professionals for their input and thoughts. I took quite a few notes, a list was made and I was happy to hear what they had to say. I was happy to find that many, if not most of the changes to be made were in harmony with my own.

Sometimes its nice to hear that you aren’t completely crazy.

We agreed collectively that Celes’ bodice should reflect the 18th century robe à la française that the top skirt and decorative elements elude to. The bottom skirt and hoops would remain in the 19th century as the reference suggests. With that train of thought, the 19th century corset was out and a new 1790’s corset would have to be constructed.

With that, kiss this girl good night – big changes are coming her way!

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