First thing first - Tharja's bodystocking! I purchased a full, seamless bodystocking off e-bay and simply pulled the neckline below my bosom!
For Tharja's bikini top, I took apart an old +2 Cup Size bra and re-assembled it, using the pieces as a pattern for the stretch velvet. I made a pattern for the fabric to wrap around the cup itself. I sewed the back of the cup directly on, however, for the top, I stretched the fabric over it and used E-6000 along the edges of the back, clamped it in place, and waited for it to dry.
Once the band was cut out, I cut out two strips of stretch faux gold leather, zigzag stitched the edges, attached one to each velvet band, then sewed both bands together. I then turned them rightside out and top stitched the gold faux leather to keep it flat as you cannot press this fabric. I also did not want to use heat n' bond hem tape, because the band needs to stretch.
Honestly, I bought a super cheap thong, took it apart, and used it as a pattern! However, I made the triangle (for the crotch) in the front and back, as Tharja has more of a "cheekie" than a "thong", and I found that this made a much better effect given that, according to the figurine, you do see a significant amount of gold in the back, as well as a how wide the navy fabric is!
For the long, triangular piece that hangs - I essentially followed the same process as the gold and navy for the bikini waistband, but I used Heat n' Bond hem tape to keep it lay flat, just like I did with my cape! (See cape section for more info!) Unfortunately, this piece was giving me a lot of difficulty and I did not have enough time to make a new one!
BIKINI BOTTOM WAISTBAND
1. Fold gold fabric in half, right sides facing, and stitch folded edge together as close to the edge as possible. Turn right side out. Do not press as the gold faux leather will curl rather than flatten.
2. Cut out two strips of stretch navy velvet the same height as the gold fabric.
3. With right side down, fold over one edge of each navy strip about 2cm long. Pin, press and stitch (with contrast thread such as white) 1cm from edge.
4. With right side of velvet down, bring one edge (length wise) of the gold (right side down) over the folded edge of velvet. Align the gold right over the contrast stitching and zigzag stitch in place.
5. Repeat step 4, but align the other edge of gold with the second strip of velvet.
6. Fold the velvet strips under the gold fabric, place a scrap cloth over the project and press (medium heat).
7. Place the project gold side down and stretch the fabric lightly so that it lays flat and not curled. Lay one strip of navy velvet flat down and trim as needed about 1.5cm below the seam on the gold fabric. With the other velvet piece, fold the raw edge over so that is just above the seam of the gold fabric. Pin in place.
8. Flip the project over so that the velvet is on the bottom and stitch together right along the gold seam.
For the cape, I followed Simplicity Pattern #5794 and nixed the hood!
For the gold trim, I didn't want to top stitch it, so I used a lot of Heat n' Bond hem tape to help keep it flat! First, I cut out my gold trim including seam allowance. I pinned the gold strips to the navy velvet, sewed them in place, and used Heat n Bond to bond the trim to the velvet (as seen in the photo with my cat laying on it under the "Cape" section). I placed the Heat n Bond as close to the stitching as possible on the wrong side of the gold trim, using a scrap piece of fabric or rag to press the Heat n Bond on. (TIP: You may have to use two strips of Heat n Bond, depending on the size purchased, in order to cover as much of the wrong side of the trim as possible.) I made sure not to cover the entire trim with Heat n Bond and my seam allowance untouched, so that I could sew the lining on later as you can't stitch Heat n Bond - it will ruin all your needles!
Once the trim was added on, I sewed the lining to the cape and added a strip of Heat n Bond along the edge of the hem to bond the wrong side of the lining to the wrong side of the cape. Being that I did not want to top stitch the gold, this step was essential for keeping that edge seam lay flat! Lastly, I top stitched the seam between the navy velvet and gold trim to help keep things in place. I took my sweet old time with this as to not get any stitching on the gold what-so-ever!
I also used Heat n' Bond hem tape on the gold dangling pieces that hold the tassels. What I did for these was very carefully cut out my fabric so that the edge was relatively straight as I did not want to top stitch them. I then added the hem tape to one half of the strip on the wrong side of the fabric (as close to the edge as possible), folded the fabric in half so that wrong sides were touching, placed a piece of scrap fabric on top and pressed! This way, I was able to obtain a nice, even effect as if I sewed two strips of cotton together, turned them right side out and pressed.
Also, as an added bonus considering Tharja has no pockets...I inserted two double welt pockets inside the cape! This came in SUPER handy at conventions as I was able to hold my phone, wallet, badge, cards, a large comb, and even a breakfast bar! Really convenient!
As for the tassels - I purchased (I believe) seven yards of gold rope and 1 yard of matching trim. Each tassel is made up of seven, one-foot pieces of rope that were gathered and glued together (three in the middle, and two on each side between the crease - think as though you were makinga pyramid!) Once those were glued together at the top, I wrapped around the trim at one end to my liking (so that it was not too wide, but not too thin) and glued it in place.
I purchased a black Silky Nina wig from Arda Wigs as well as a pack of their Silky Short Wefts. I created my own little pigtails by sewing wefts into a rectangular piece of felt, rolled that up, glued it together, and sewed it directly into the wig so I could get the pigtails to lay exactly the way I wanted them to!
The collar and headpiece were made from craft foam covered with black worbla, and the tassel triangles, bangles, anklets and...thighlets? were made from EVA foam, shaped with a dremel, and covered in black worbla. The rings and tassel caps were made from black worbla only.
For the book, I took a puzzle book that looked spell-bookish, painted the covere purple, and added foam-covered worbla detailing!
I purchased a pair of Bloch ballroom shoes and they didn't even last me a day! Unfortunately, after only a few hours of wear, the gold started ripping and coming off. I would not recommend these shoes, although they are the perfect shape!
HUGE SHOUT OUT to my friend Steve who sponsored this costume!