Last year at Katsucon my friends and I decided to bring along some cookies for a shoot. Spinel is normally very stern, and most of the time I reflect that part of his character in photos. However, Spinel at his core can be a total goof when given sweets, so it was fun to be silly and do a few group photos with Spinel having a bit of a sugar high. The final group shot is pretty funny, and I think showcases the dynamic between the guardian beasts pretty well!
The design for Spinel Sun is one that I came up with, as part of a small illustration series of designs based off the guardian beasts from Cardcaptor Sakura that I drew back in 2018. The Clear Card season of Cardcaptor Sakura had just come out, and I thought that designing costumes for the guardian beasts would be a fun cosplay homage to the series! I had actually wanted to cosplay one of the Clow Cards for years, but somehow cosplaying a guardian beast ended up being the idea that stuck. I actually wore Spinel last year at Katsucon with two of my good friends as Kero and Momo, so wearing it to MagFest was actually a re-wear for me. I unfortunately, haven’t made any gaming related costumes in a while, but still wanted to have some fun in cosplay. Spinel is surprisingly easy for me to get around in and has become one of my favorite costumes, so I knew I had to bring it!
Spinel was constructed with a black neoprene mini dress as the base, which is worn underneath. The skirting worn over it was made using a stretch satin and has a total of 59 matte vinyl butterflies that were heat ‘n’ bonded along the hem. The butterflies were vectorized in Adobe Illustrator and cut using a Cricut, which has quickly become my favorite tool for cosplay. I then satin stitched along the butterflies on the edge of the skirt, and then cut away the excess fabric to create an organic edge. The corset was made from a silk dupioni for the outer shell with black vinyl trim, and features black beading that was strategically attached to create the draped effect. The mantle is actually a modified capelet pattern that I adjusted the collar on and removed unnecessary length from. The chiffon for the cape portion was then added, which has satin stitched detailing to create the butterfly wing markings. The ears on the wig are a worbla base and are covered in wig fiber that I harvested from a second wig that matches my main wig. Both the butterfly brooch and cuff bracelet were made from worbla.
Cosplay has definitely kept me connected with art as my main passion. Drawing was a large facet of my life ever since I was a child, and I actually lost my drive to draw for several years. I ended up being inspired by the many talented artists in the community to pick up a pencil and reconnect with that part of myself. It has also taught me to just keep pushing forward to make progress if you have a goal. I love looking back at my past projects and seeing how much I have grown. Even small incremental progress can lead to something bigger, and I think that is a good lesson that applies to life in general.
MagFest brings me back to the days of arcades in malls, but on a much larger scale! It’s a fun and chill con that offers a myriad of programming that appeals to a wide range of gamers. I personally grew up on console video games and arcades, so I would have to say that wandering the arcade in the rhythm game section is my favorite part. I also really enjoy connecting with others and discussing our favorite games. I actually brought a Rydia costume also, and ended up talking to another fan about our favorite sprite Final Fantasy games. I’ll have to see if I can return with some more video game cosplay next year. There’s so many on my list!