Author: Susanna

Naruto Sage Scroll Tutorial

Yayyyy! I remembered to take photos while making stuff this time so I can put together a tutorial. Usually when I make props/cosplay I look around online to see what other cosplayers do so I can condense it down to the easiest/most efficient process that creates the cleanest prop/cosplay…but I kinda had trouble finding a real definitive process for the sage scroll. So this was a lot of trial and error…hopefully my “tutorial” can help give others ideas on finding a better way to make a scroll…

Here’s pictures of the finished scroll…(Doc Martens for size comparison)…

But yah…anyways for this particular sage scroll I started out with a poster tube (you can easily find them at Staples). The one I picked out was 36″ long with a diameter of 3″. The dimensions worked out pretty well for my height so I didn’t make any changes to it…you could cut it down if you want it shorter…which wouldn’t be a bad idea, because I definitely had trouble fitting through doors with this strapped to my back. I spent most of the day at the con walking sideways OTL.


Knowing that the only the ends of the tube would peek out I painted the ends black…


…It ended up looking really ugly with just black paint over it…so I paper mached over the ends later and repainted it…and modge podge…God I love modge podge and paper mache.

After that I needed to make an armature for the outer scroll part…I don’t even know what to call it…basically the red/black part that wraps around the black thinner scroll part. To do that I cut out a bunch of circles out of foam boards. They were 7″ across with a 3″ hollow area cut out from the middle. IMG_0383


I cut out a lot of them…by hand…my hands hurt just thinking about it x____x If you somehow happen to have access to a CNC machine or a laser cutter, please do use it…it’ll make your circles much more perfect and smooth…which will make your life easier in the step that follows.

Note: I made 11-12 circles. The more circles you make the stronger your scroll will be…I’d recommend a minimum of 6 or so…

So after cutting out all the circles…I put them onto the poster tube like so.IMG_0390

I evenly spaced them out and glued them into place. This part was kind of a struggle because I cut them out by hand…they were exactly perfect so the overall armature to drape the black/red part over was kinda uneven…which bothered me. x__xIMG_0395

After that I took yarn and glued them in circles/loops on the ends.

I used hot glue…be sure to go slowly and carefully and not to burn yourself. (In the pictures above you can also see the end product of the paper mached ends…it just gives a cleaner look…at least I think so :O)

Okay…after that, I went ahead and made the red/black part that goes over the “skeleton” of the scroll. To do so, I glue black fabric over red fabric and then glued that over a piece of poster paper that was long/wide enough to wrap around the armature/skeleton part.

Gluing the fabric to a poster board gives it strength to take the wear and tear of bringing it to a con. But yeah after this is done, I just took the red/black part and very carefully wrapped it and glued it around the rings/circles. In the end I got something like this…

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And I could’ve stopped here if I just wanted a scroll to wear on my back/didn’t roll out. But I wanted it to be functional and I had a bunch of scrap fabric that I thought I could finally put to use…so I sewed it all together to have one side of it to match the black/red pattern as the main scroll and the side the faces up white/red…the white area being the place to write on all the characters. It looked something like this…

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I attached the part that rolls out to the scroll-scroll (lol…I’m getting real descriptive here) part with velcro. I also thought about just completely hot gluing the two parts together but I was thinking that maybe somewhere down the line the part that rolls out might get gross and dirty so with velcro I could easily detach it and wash it.

Next step was to write on all the characters. I used black fabric paint and a stubby paintbrush for the “人” in the middle. And then a calligraphy brush for the other smaller characters…I thought it would be easier using a calligraphy brush…since that’s the kind of brush that naturally gives that “calligraphy” look when writing with it…yeah…no…not on fabric…or at least with the fabric I used. GGRIP…it was such a struggle. I realized calligraphy brushes are meant to be used with very runny liquid ink but fabric paint is really thick. I had a bottle of black ink but because it’s fabric I was painting on, the ink would seep into the fabric and I couldn’t get a really sharp look to the characters.

TL;DR…use fabric paint. Dilute it a bit with water if you’re really intent on using a calligraphy brush…otherwise a normal paintbrush will make life a lot easier.

Also as a note…in the anime/reference photo I used to base my scroll off of the writing is not explicitly chinese/kanji/anything writing that I can recognize. It looks something like chinese/kanji so when I was writing all the small characters…I just pulled up random characters and painted the ones I like…lel…my writing is really poor so most of it didn’t end up looking like real characters 😛

Here’s the reference photo I used…


So after finishing my booty calligraphy…I attached it via velcro.

GG in the picture on the right you can see what I was referring to when I meant that as a result of cutting on the inner circles by hand…the structure became uneven so when I went to drape the red/black part over everything the edges wouldn’t line up perfectly. Also…be really careful when using hot glue with fabric x____x it leaves really ugly marks .

Yahhh…basically the scroll is about finished at this point. FullSizeRender (5)

The only thing to make after this is the brown strap/carrying part…lel…unfortunately I forgot to take photos of this part…but it’s pretty self-explanatory. It’s just a bunch of rectangles sewn together (I used some heavy duty brown canvas) with a strap sewn onto it and velcro (thank you heavens for the invention of Velcro) used to close it.

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Closeup of how the strap was sewn on. Naruto wears it crossbody over his left shoulder. So it’s sewn like this to prevent warping/tangles when worn crossbody.


So that’s it. :DDDD hopefully that was kinda helpful. Comment below if you have any questions!


How to Tie Sasuke’s Rope Belt

Hellooooo! Short tutorial on how I tie my Sasuke belt. If you’re looking to make a rope belt…I highly recommend Faxen’s tutorial on deviantart. It’s what I followed to get mine. It’s a super great tutorial! But yeah the way I detail on how to tie the belt below doesn’t get the precise look that Sasuke has in the anime because my rope belt is incredibly chunky so it can’t do a full knot/loop without looking really awkward. But yeah here’s how the finish product looks…


To start off…wrap the belt in half…and loop it around your body like this…


Then pull it up and through…

You could honestly let the loose ends dangle down and it would look fine.


But I wanted the rope to lay a bit flatter against my body so I took the ends and looped it through the opening..below is a shitty diagram to help explain what I did.

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After some adjusting, my belt looks like this…

But yep…hope that helps anybody looking for another way to tie Sasuke’s belt. 😀




Charles Grey Cosplay Tutorial – Making the Sword

Sooo…just to add to the interwebs stockpile of cosplay sword tutorials…here’s another one for Charles Grey in particular. There aren’t very clear reference images of his sword online…so I referenced what images I could find of Charles with his sword plus stock images/references of rapiers – the kind of sword he carries.




My hilt ended up looking something like this…



It looks nice but I made it waaaay too big. It actually looks kinda dumb hanging on my side. Looks more like a bludgeon than a sword. QQ.

But anyways…to make the sword, I started off with balsa wood as the internal support structure. So the blade, the handle, and the flat horizontal part of the hilt all has balsa wood underneath the worbla covering. I was debating between using foam and balsa but I thought that even covered with worbla, a foam sword would be kinda flimsy. And real wood is just too heavy, so balsa wood was a nice medium. So I bought two long planks of balsa and cut out the blade to the size and shape I wanted it to be. I think for this particular sword, I cut it to be 36″ long and 1.25″ wide and tapered it starting 6″ from the end so the end would terminate to a point. The thickness of the plank was 0.25″.




After I cut out the shape of sword from the big plank with an exacto knife, I smoothed out the hard corners with sandpaper. As a side note, to make it easier on your hands, glue some sandpaper to a block of wood, so it easier to work with.




Yay! Look how smooth that looks after sanding. Whee~~~ Then I had to think about the cross-guard/horizontal part of the hilt. I was planning on using worbla only as my only adhesive so I knew I had to attach the cross guard to the blade in a way that would be structurally sound, instead of just sticking the flat end of the blade to the surface of the cross guard. So this is what I came up with…





Yay! So I was pretty happy with how it looked…I just gave a good sanding between this step and the adding worbla on top step. And then I proceeded to cover the cross guard and blade individually with worbla.




Yahh…so I covered each part individually and then when the worbla was still warm, I shoved the blade into the hole I carved out in the cross guards. Once cooled, it was pretty sturdy but just to be safe and not have my sword fall apart on me during a convention/traveling, I rolled out a thin coil from scrap worbla and coiled it around the joint between the blade and cross-guard for extra reinforcement.

Then, to make the handle,



I also cut out of worbla, a handle. Something along the lines of the picture above. 0.50″ thick and sanded it and covered it in worbla and stuck it onto the bottom of the cross guard. To also reinforce the joint, I added a fat coil of scrap worbla.





So far, so good.



Then this next part (decorating the hilt/making it all fancy) is kinda hazy/if you’re following this tutorial to make your own sword, this is where artistic license comes in. I’ll supply a bunch of pictures of the hilt I made, but most of it was just making stuff up as I went along. I referenced several difference images of rapiers I found on Google images. I used a mixture of worbla scraps rolled out into coils and also craft foam. So yeah, ultimately, I got something that looked like…









But yeah, this is all I got for this tutorial. I’ll try to upload part 2 soon! ^^ Park 2, I’ll discuss what I did to prime and then paint the worbla. :DDDD

Kuroshitsuji Charles Grey Cosplay Tutorial (Spats/Boot Covers)

Okay…so I’m complete crap at updating, but here’s a way overdue blog update/post–a tutorial on how to make a pair of “Victorian” spats (not truly Victorian since I’ve paired mine with a pair of chunky stripper heels x_x and installed a zipper on the side) based off of Charles Grey’s costume design. Here’s a reference photo and a photo of the finished spats.

Also, I would like to warn readers, this tutorial gets kind of confusing because in the middle, because I forgot to take pictures (I get too excited when working on cosplay, so I forget x__x), so there’s a lot of text explanation :< However, if any reader needs extra explanation, please comment and I’ll be more than glad to help walk you through it in better detail.

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So before I did any sewing or drafting I did a quick prelim sketch of where everything was gonna be placed/layers. I was originally going to layer my fabric: Main fabric, interfacing, lining, but the main fabric I bought to make the rest of my suit and pants are so thick/stiff that I cut out the interfacing.

IMG_2814 Okay, to draft a perfect fitting pattern to fit over my leg/foot/shoe, I used a method that a lot of cosplayers use when drafting pattern pieces for Worbla armor, which is to wrap your leg with saran wrap and then take masking tape, tape over the saran wrap and sharpie over where you want your seams to be. I know it sounds crazy and definitely looks ridiculous (see below), but it does get a pretty good fit in a quick and easy way. Fair warning, don’t wear pants that you like while going this, because when I cut myself out of the wrap/tape, I cut a hole into my leggings x_____x


IMG_2446 …naise. (btw, these are not the appropriate seam lines for Charles Grey’s spats, this is actually a picture of me doing the same method of drafting for my Saber cosplay. For CG, draw a line down the center front, center back and each side).

Okay, after I did that/cut my leg out of the tape/wrap casing. I got 4 separate pieces (Be sure to label them! They all look very similar).

IMG_2733Aiight, niceeee. So after that I transferred the pieces onto flat paper so they would be easier to work with. I also added in a 0.5″ seam allowance on all side in this step.

After that, when I had all four paper pieces, I cut them all out of cheap muslin to do a quick mock up before I started cutting into the nice fabric.

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Eyyy, not looking too bad. But there’s still some cleaning up to do. On this first mockup is when I do all the pinning and adjusting and marking up. (Use a sharpie, go crazy, write/redraw seam lines/adjust whatever you want to make it fit nicely in this step. But yeah, after I was done, I was pretty happy. So I took it all apart.


And re-transferred the pieces onto paper. This drafting step of transferring it back and forth from paper to muslin to paper can be repeated as many times as possible until you get a fit you like. I think for Madam Red, I drafted her bodice at least 3 times x_x but yeah, up to you who’s making this on how you want it to fit ^^

After this, drafting is complete and I proceeded to cut out the pieces out of main fabric and lining fabric. Oh and between the last step and this step, I somehow decided that my legs are symmetrical, so I would only use two different pattern pieces and cut each out twice to make one four-piece spat because I’m hella lazy. In the end, it worked out pretty well, but I think I should have still stuck with the four distinct pieces I had above to have a better fitting spat, but oh wells…too late for regrets.

So here’s the pattern piece and fabric and lining all cut out, laid/pinned on top of each other.


My main fabric is this really nice off white twill and my lining is white cotton poplin for those who are curious. But yeah, I just attached them all together BUT, for this project in particular…I did not sew together the outside edge, for sandwiching a black strip of fabric in later.


This is a picture of the boot cover for my right leg, see how I’ve sewn the main fabric together except for the edge that will be on the outside of my leg/the black sandwich seam line.

In the next step, I installed a zipper (non-invisible) in that middle seam in the picture above (it’s actually a basted seam). Pics of the zip placement (I took this picture a few steps after, so bear with my jumping back and forth)…

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Okay, so after the zipper is installed, I attached the lining (the lining is basically the same thing as the main fabric. Face the two right sides together and sew ALL around (except for where the zipper is, that has to be sewn by hand to the zipper inside)


Attaching the lining.

Okay, after that’s all said and done, the little cuff at the top of CG’s boot cover needs to be made. This can be probably a million different ways but what I did was to cut out a strip of fabric that can be doubled over and fits nicely/comfortably around the top of the boot cover. So I cut a strip of fabric around 15″ wide and 6″ tall (not including seam allowances), which would be doubled over to make a strip that is 3″ tall and 15″ to wrap around my calf. To get the strips of black I used thin bias tape that I laid down and sewed down.



After that was done, I handsewed it onto the boot cover itself.

IMG_2793 And for the finishing touches, the flower and buttons:

The buttons I made from this kit I got online. Here’s a larger version of it.


IMG_2794So I followed the directions and tacked those babies on. And as for the flower, I totally cheated and used hot glue. First I started off by cutting a 1 inch circle out of fabric that would hold all my ribbon pieces together. I cut out three inch strips of velvet ribbon (7/8″ wide) and glued that all down.

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I repeated that 8 times and laid the folded ribbon pieces on top of each other.


…that’s a really poor picture, but hopefully it helps you with getting an idea of how I laid it out.

Then to finish it all off, I took one of the bigger buttons I made from that other kit and sewed it down the center and tacked that onto the boot cover where I thought it was appropriate.




Here’s a picture of my stubby legs wearing them. Very swag. Much wauw.

And that’s all folks! Whew, GG now I’m beginning to understand why it takes me so long to update. Writing all of that felt like a marathon. x_____x But yeah, hoped this helped a bit for those who have the same endeavors. Drop me a line if you have questions!

Tutorial – Making of Madam Red Part 2 – Pseudo-Corset Top // Hoopskirt Review

Uhhhh…sooo that wasn’t a week between my last post and this post. My bad. Uhm well…I’m planning on double posting tonight/tomorrow. I’ve made quite a lot of progress on my Saber cosplay so I’m gonna type up my triumphs and woes of what I’ve done so far.

Okay, for the bodice, this (front and back):

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I drafted my own pattern for the pseudo-corset (I call it a pseudo-corset because it actually doesn’t cinch anything). I honestly don’t remember what my exact process was. I recall drafting fabric onto my mannequin that I had and then making a muslin with the pattern pieces I disassembled but it was way too big…basically my boobs are way small x__x. So I pinned the muslin draft while I wore it and took it in a lot. Took that apart and re-did a muslin. Made sure that one fit and then moved onto good fabric.

But yeah, super sorry that I don’t have more of a how-to guide to how I drafted the bodice to fit. I know that drafting, at least for me, is the biggest/most time consuming part of making a cosplay.

But yeah with all my pattern pieces laid out.



Here’s the general shape of them. If I find them in my mess of a room, I’ll scan them and upload them for those who might want to reference. It’s an 8 piece bodice. And as for the fabric I used two layers of cotton broadcloth, 1 layer of cotton sateen, 1 layer of red lace, black cotton sateen for the bow/straps, black bias tape to seal off the edges and I also used plastic boning on the seams to give it more shape.


Yay, cutting out fabric. Blah. So i cut each pattern piece out 4 times out of the cotton broadcloth, enough to make 2 bodices out of the cotton broadcloth. Sewed in all together and then pressed the seams. With seams together (bad sides together), I sewed like 0.25″ away down each seam. So one row of stitches on each side of a seam to make a tunnel to insert the boning. I have a picture down below (yeah…it’s upside down QQ…Wordpress won’t let me flip it but ya’ll get the idea). The center seam already has the “tunnel” created.




I did this for every single seam on the bodice, plus the back. I made two boning tunnels to keep the back upright. Then…then…I forgot to take pictures. QQ Ugh, my bad. Sometimes I get so excited while working on cosplay, I just make and forget to take progress pictures for when I’m going to write up tutorials. But I’ll still explain, and feel free to leave me a question down below if you’re confused. I will absolutely answer and do my best to help/explain!

Anyways, after making the tunnels for the boning. I cut and inserted the boning and made sure to sew a bit of a horizontal stitch across to keep the boning in the casing/tunnel. Afterwards, I cut the same bodice pattern pieces out of the main red fabric (red cotton sateen) and red lace. I put those on top of the cotton broadcloth (so top to bottom is, cotton, cotton, sateen, and then lace) and sewed them altogether.


I finished the outer edges off with bias tape. It was double fold, so super easy to use. Fold it in half over the ugly edge and then voila, disappears!

Next part was fun…hammering the grommets. Although it was just me probably who thought it was fun. My neighbors didn’t seem to enjoy it… x_x But yeah I used this kit from Amazon.  Best kit ever. It has everything you need to install grommets and they stay in naiseeeee. (You just need to supply your own hammer or high heels…I recommend a hammer. Don’t ruin your heels.)


And then for the black bow/strap thing (which was inspired by Audrey Hepburn’s dress in Roman Holiday), I freehanded a pattern and cut it out of black sateen and then hand stitched that on to the main bodice.

And then I was done. Boom.

As an extra bonus…well…I call it a bonus, I don’t really know if it is a bonus, but here’s the hoopskirt I used. Bought it off of eBay, here. I got the 3 hoop skirt. It was nice and poofy but I think it could’ve been bigger, but then I think I would have had to size up for the four or five hoopskirt. Ah well next time, but yeah here’s a few pictures if there’s anybody shopping around for hoopskirts/not too sure what size hoopskirt to get.




Came in a tiny package like this…and then it inflated to…




Here’s a me for scale. Ignore the awkward pose. I’m shy. JK not really.

Okay, that’s all I got for the making of Madam Red. I know it’s kinda skimpy at some parts, but leave me a comment if you’re confused and I’ll work on getting better at this tutorial/progress making stuff. 🙂


Cosplay Update

Wauw, two posts in one day. I’m on fire, aren’t I? But yeah, just wanted to give an update on what I’m working on at the moment.

So aside from working on another blog post, that I’ll hopefully have out by next week. It’ll be part two of the making of Madame Red, I’ll talk about making the corset top and whatnot, I’ve started working on my next cosplay project.





Or more specifically this really lovely, detailed version of Saber. I’m hoping I can have a successful go at her armor and I’ll be able to share my experience with people who are also looking to cosplay this version of Saber/interested in making armor.




Also, I’ve just recently given thought to cosplaying this particular character who’s a creation of a wonderful artist by the name of Sakizou. I’ve seen quite a few other cosplayers online cosplay her characters before and it’s always flippin’ gorgeous. @__@ But yeah…I’m not fully committed yet, but I feel like the more thought I give to it the more I’m falling in love with the idea. Also, I think I look better dressed up as a boy. But actually…

So there you have it. Just a few updates. Thanks for reading!

Tutorial: Making of Madam Red (Part 1) Skirt

OTLLLLL. IT’S BEEN SO LONG. I swear on the cosplay gods and goddesses that I’m going to commit myself to updating this blog when appropriate and not in six month intervals. GG, but yeah, making of the Madam Red skirt below.

So for the skirt, I was originally planning on doing a giant rectangle and gathering it on one end (like a gigantic gathered skirt) but I thought more about it and consulted a few friends who’ve had experience making ballgowns and I concluded it was really stupid idea. For the size of this skirt the bulk that would end up happening near the waist would be too much, so I eventually decided on a 7-piece tiered skirt.

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So I measured out 7 trapezoid shaped pieces of the red sateen fabric. (The trapezoids were just simply trapezoids, I didn’t try to taper the sides or round them out.)

To calculate the top width of the trapezoid I took my waist measurement and divided by 7 (the number of pieces) and added and extra inch to each one for seam allowance. For the bottom width, I measured out ~49″ (which was approximately the width of the fabric.) For the height I think I just measured the length from my waist (while wearing my hoopskirt) to the ground. I think it was about 38″. Here’s a diagram:

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Yay! With that done, I cut everything out and sewed them all together along the long edge, except for 1 (which is where I would have to install the zipper).

photo 3 (7)Between sewing each piece, I liked to pin it up on my mannequin to get a feel of how the shape was coming along.

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After that, I had the main skirt done. So I moved onto the top skirt/ruffle part.

This part was such a pain x___x ruffles…ruffles for days. My fingers were so sore.

To make the topskirt, I also cut out trapezoids, but I only did 5 versus the 7 I did for the main skirt because I was lazy.

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I don’t remember what length my ruffle trapezoids were precisely but I think it was around 3/4ths the length of my overskirt trapezoid pieces. It’s rather long but keep in mind it has to be gathered and as for width, I believe it was 6.5″ around the waist area (waist measurement/5 +1 for seam allowance) and 20 or so inches at the bottom per piece.

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I machine stitched two sets of long basting stitches on each of the long sides and pulled and then gathered.

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The result didn’t look that great just by itself, but after pinning it onto the mannequin and adjusting it a bit, it started to look pretty swag.

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So, after doing that to every single piece, I sewed each piece together along the ruffles to keep the ruffles in place.

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Then I pinned it to the longer skirt and basted it along the waistline.

My next step was to add the ruffled edging along the ruffled layer. Ruffles on ruffles, my fingers ache when I think about it.


For the ruffled edging, I cut out small strips of a darker red color (about 6 inches wide and in long, long lengths because all of it had to be gathered).




I marked the lengths and folded upwards and pressed twice and hemmed the edges.

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I attached it to the ruffled layer and I was pretty happy with the result. Originally I planned on stopping here but I was like hey, what if I really hated my fingers and also attached more ruffles to the hem. I did a small test piece and it ended up looking something like this:

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I sort of liked the result, but in person, the ruffles were rather heavy so it started pulling on the skirt in an odd way and to save myself some headache, I removed it and blind hemmed the skirt and called it a day.

Yep, so that’s how I made my skirt. Thanks for reading!


Edit: Oops, forgot to talk about the zipper and waistband. But yes, somewhere in this process I attached the whole skirt to a waistband, which I would like to warn everybody who decides on using this tutorial to make their own big poofy skirt to not use a dainty small waistband because I did and it was difficult to have it stay on my waist since the skirt was so heavy. So please use at least a 1″ minimum wide waistband. If I could re-do this I would probably choose to attach the skirt to wide yoke or something.

And after the waistband (before hemming), I installed an invisible zipper along the band of the skirt. Not much to say, pretty standard procedure.