DIY Pegboard Organization

I’ve you follow my Instagram or Facebook page, you’ve probably seen my new pegboard! I installed it about a week ago and I honestly can’t imagine my new craft space without it. Even though I have a whole room to myself now, having my pegboard clears up so much space on my sewing table and helps me keep everything in its place.

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Today, I’ll give you a brief overview of how I put it together and some tips on making your own!

To get started, you’ll need the following:

  • Pegboard, cut to your desired measurements (found in the plywood section of your local home improvement store). For reference, mine is 2′x4′.
  • Wood boards for a base
  • Drywall screws (if you’re going directly into drywall)
  • Stud finder (optional, but recommended)
  • Screw driver
  • Wood screws
  • Drill
  • Tape measure
  • Level
  • Pegboard organization tools

Once you’ve gathered all of your required materials, it’s time to figure out where to put your pegboard. Identify the area on your wall and use your stud finder to locate studs. If you don’t have studs available, you’ll need drywall screws and mounts. Otherwise your pretty pegboard will fall on your head!

Confession: I did use a stud finder, but either I calibrated it wrong (likely) or my entire wall is made up of wires, in which case it’s very good that I’m still alive to write this (only kind of kidding. Do exercise caution). 

Mark up where you’re going to place your pegboard. Now it’s time to setup a frame to support your pegboard. Drill the boards into the studs or drywall.

I’m a derp and forgot to take pictures of this step, so here’s a mini-guide (but Positively Splendid has a much better one). For reference, I had a 2′x4′ piece of pegboard and used 3 2′ boards horizontally as the base. The top and bottom boards are about 6″ from the edges and the middle board is right in the center. 

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Protip: Measure your pegboard and aim to fit the boards so that the holes of your pegboard are over the frame. This will make screwing the pegboard to the frame much easier.

Once your frame is in place, find a willing (or unwilling, but bribe-able) set of hands to help you. Hold up your pegboard and drill the pegboard into the base. I used three screws on the top and bottom shelf. I was a derp (again) and didn’t get the middle shelf lined up properly, so there’s no screws in it. If you plan to put a lot of weight on your board, you’ll need those screws, but my tools are on the lighter side of things, so I’m not super worried.

middle frame

Time to organize and decorate! I picked up a large pegboard organization kit ($10) from Home Depot as well as a set of pegboard baskets ($10) to organize my tools. I definitely should have gone with the small organization kit, but I don’t mind having the extra tools in case I decide to setup another pegboard.

I decided to put up all of my high-use tools on my pegboard. My serger and sewing threads were an absolute must on the board, mostly because they take up an absurd amount of space on my desk. I also decided to put up my small rotary board, measuring tools, scissors and rotary cutters, and pliers. I’ve also got a small basket for fabric glue and a quasi-bookshelf that I can use for my iPad. I also put up my color ring from Arda, because it’s too darn pretty to leave in my wig box.

I still have a few things I’d like to sort out and shift, but I’m very pleased with this new arrangement. If you’re interested in making your own, but you aren’t in love with the flat white or brown that pegboard comes in, there are a lot of creative things you can do to spruce it up:

I hope this helps anyone looking to make their own pegboard! Do you use a pegboard to organize your craft space? If so, please share in the comments! Next week, I’ll show you another new favorite in my craft room: my storage-friendly cutting table! 

June Challenge: Hello Bombshell!

Front view

Helloooooo Bombshell! 

Say hello to the last project I sewed up before moving! June was Indie Pattern Month, so I decided to go with an indie company that I’d never used before: Closet Case Files. I purchased the Bombshell pattern last summer, but never got around to it. I’m kind of glad that I didn’t, since I had no clue how to work with spandex last year. 

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The Basics: 

Pattern: Bombshell swimsuit, view A

Fabric: 1.5 yards of green spandex (leftover from my latest Rogue project), and 1 yard of white moleskin for the lining (leftover from my first attempt at Jupiter)

Alterations: Tapered from an 18 at the bust to a 16 for the rest of the pattern. Added 2″ of length.

Notions: Swimwear elastic.

Make it again?: Absolutely. I completely adore this pattern. I’d love to make both the halter and bikini versions! Now I just need to find friends with pools :P 

Favorite parts: Uh, everything? The gathering was annoying to do, but it resulted in a very flattering finish. I love how it’s sexy even though it provides full coverage! I don’t feel like I’m going to have any kind of wardrobe malfunction. 

back view

Other thoughts: I am so, so glad that I waited on this swimsuit. It’s everything that I hoped it’d be. Working on my Ms. Marvel and Supergirl definitely gave me the skills I needed to be happy with the final result on this. I did use the sewalong for extra guidance.

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I made one major mistake early on, and it was such a rookie move. I didn’t look at the pattern pieces very well when I was assembling everything, so I wound up attaching the back side pieces together. After gathering them. Have I mentioned how much I hate seam ripping serger stitches? Re-stitching everything took a teeny bit too much seam allowance off of each side, so the suit is a tiny bit snugger than I’d like, but it’s not too bad. I just have to wiggle a bit to get it off and on. 

The gathering really was annoying. While I love the final result of gathers, the process of making them annoys the crap out of me. Has anyone tried gathering this on a serger before attaching the pieces together? I may try that with my next one. 

inside out

To provide a bit more support in the bust, I harvested some cups from an old bikini and added a bit of elastic under them to create a quasi-shelf bra. I don’t really notice the elastic, but the cups are a great help. They don’t provide a ton of support, but they do prevent nippage. 

I did mess with the front tab a bit. The pattern tells you to pull it down to where you sewed it on the front and stitch in the ditch. I tried it on and pinned it according to instructions, but it made my boobs look super weird. Instead, I sewed it to the top with the elastic. It was a weird process, but it looks much better on me. 

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Close-up of the cups and the tab.

Overall, this suit fits beautifully. I had a tiny bit of gaping with the top elastic, so I’ll have to cut my next one down to 80% of the overall length as Heather suggests. 

Not bad for a stashbusting project! I think I spent a total of $4 for the elastic (an extra $11 if you count the pattern). Now I just need to convince the BF to go with me to New Braunfels for some tubing. 

Have you guys made this pattern yet? What are your thoughts?

P.S. Did you guys see that the Sewaholic Cambie is now a PDF pattern? Yeah, I think it’s time to make another Cambie dress.

Colette Moneta

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Viva Las Vegas! I went to Vegas last weekend for a work conference and wore my Moneta for our first night out. Very comfy considering the insane heat. 110 degrees is ridiculous.

Not going to lie, I am really excited to have some non-cosplay projects on my table right now. I really enjoy making costumes, but it’s nice to have a break every now and then.

To keep things simple, I decided to make Colette’s Moneta with a reversible knit I picked up a few months ago. I originally purchased the fabric intending to make a Lady Skater (which I just purchased, thanks to Indie Pattern Month), but then Colette announced their new knit patterns. I pre-ordered  them, and that’s that.

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Apologies for the mostly dress form pics. I’m in the process of moving and realized the pics my BF took in Vegas are mostly blurry. But anywho, front view!

The Basics: 

Pattern: Colette Moneta, View B

Fabric: 2 yds of a midweight reversible knit.

Alterations: None. I cut a straight L based on my high bust measurement.

Notions: Clear elastic.

Side view. That derpy fold of fabric is the pocket. Apologies for the wrinkles as well. This is just out of the dryer.

Side view. That derpy fold of fabric is the pocket. Apologies for the wrinkles as well. This is just out of the dryer.

Make it again?: Maybe. I’m not over the moon about this pattern, but I’d like to give it one more go with some alterations.

Favorite parts: Comfort, quick finish (around 4-5 hours).

Other thoughts: It took me a few wears to come around on this dress, though I mostly blame the print. It was a bad choice, but I fell victim to one of my “Oh, cute fabric!” whims. There are a lot of really cute versions of this pattern in the sewing blog-o-sphere, but I don’t think mine is one of them.

I decided pretty quickly that this project would be a wearable muslin. Normally, I’d go ahead and add length to the bodice right off the bat, but I only had 2 yds since that’s what I would have needed with the Lady Skater. Turns out, I really needed that length with this pattern, since it hits much higher on the waist than I like. I’m okay with things sitting at my natural waist, but this hits me closer on the ribcage. It kind of feels like maternity wear, which makes me super self-conscious.

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Rear view. I do like the lower back. And look at that gathering! It almost makes the time worth the effort. Just kidding. I’m lazy. Totally doing this on the serger next time.

I’ve seen mixed reviews about the gathering process on the skirt. I gathered my skirt before attaching the elastic, but I think in future versions, I’ll just gather it on my serger with the elastic. Switching machines in the middle of a quickie project is super annoying (#firstworldproblems), so sticking to one machine for the bulk of a project seems a better solution.

Speaking of switching around machines, the hem gave me fits. I originally thought that I’d just do a rolled hem on this dress since it’s more of a weekend/play dress, but my serger and I had many disagreements. I ultimately gave up and used my twin-needle to finish it off like my neck and sleeves.

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Back view on me. It’s still high enough to cover my back tattoos, but just enough for a little peak of skin.

Overall, this is a quick, instant gratification project. I’ll probably give it another go in a solid or a more subdued print and add length to the bodice and hem. I’d also add bands to the neck and sleeves for an easier finish IMHO. And ditch the pockets. I like the idea of them, but they drove me crazy while wearing this dress.

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Since my fabric is reversible, I used the striped side to make the pockets.

Have you guys made this pattern yet? What are your thoughts?

WIP: June Edition

Well, I was hoping to blog about my new Moneta today, but I just realized I don’t have any pictures. Derp. Hopefully that’ll be up next week sometime.

Instead, have some costume progress! I’m working on a couple of different costumes at the moment, so here’s a brief look at my line-up for the rest of the summer:

Marvel Now Rogue: 70%

In my continued efforts to make a new Rogue every year I cosplay, have Rogue’s latest costume. This is a fairly simple costume, and I’ve had most of the materials on hand for about 6 months. I drafted out the changes I needed to make to my existing patterns a few weeks ago (when I thought I’d be able to squeeze this in for Dallas Comic Con), so most of this came together in one afternoon. I still need to finish up a few things, but she’s almost ready to go. I’m planning to debut this costume at the North Texas Comic Book Show in July.

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Bombshell Wonder Woman: 90%

I feel like I’m constantly updating this costume. I’d like to remake my shorts since they’re starting to fray and make a new headband. I’m hoping to setup a proper photoshoot of this costume at A-Fest in August.

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Sailor Jupiter: 25%

My girl! I’m super, super stoked to be a sailor senshi. I originally planned to debut this costume at A-Kon, but I ran out of time and I wasn’t happy with my progress or skirt fabric. I’ve since ordered a fuku pattern from Katherine Zan and purchased all of my accessories and supplies, save the rose hip chain from the manga which I plan to make. I’m going to devote most of July to completing this costume (and moving). I plan to debut this costume at A-fest in time for the Sailor Moon photoshoot.

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Most of my supplies! I’m still not entirely happy with the wig, so I may order a new one. This wig is an okay match for the anime version of Jupiter though. Tiara, brooch, and boots are from Catzia and the earrings are from Etsy. 

Extra costume: Still deciding

I’d like to make one more new costume for A-fest. I’m torn between a couple of options: Chie from Persona 4, Vanessa (Ursula’s human form), Princess Jupiter, School Uniform Makoto/Jupiter, gym Nonon from Kill la Kill, and Mistress 9. All of these are fairly straight-forward projects and I have pieces for all of them except Chie (though she is pretty much my spirit animal. Max that social link!).

I’ll probably keep researching all of them and wait until August to decide. I may also just do a variation of a costume that I currently have or go with a closet cosplay. Indecision plagues me. There are too many options!

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Just a few of the options I’m considering. Left to right: Mistress 9 (manga), Chie from Persona 4, Princess Jupiter, and Makoto/Jupiter in her school uniform.

What are you working on at the moment? What’s your next con?

Costume Notes: Ms. Marvel Ballgown

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Still feels weird to see myself as a blonde.

Completed: June 2014

Hours Spent: 20~

Debuted: A-Kon 25

Why This Costume: I was positively thrilled to see that A-Kon was holding a masquerade ball this year. Any excuse to wear a pretty dress! I hemmed and hawed over what I wanted to wear. I was pretty much set on just costuming up my satin Cambie or thrifting a prom dress, but then I saw this gorgeous artwork by Hanie Mohd. Done.

How I made it: 

The base of this dress is Kwik Sew 3400 (view A with the train), which was gifted to me when I first started sewing. It’s a fairly straight-forward design: empire waist and six panels. Easy-peasy, right? Well, I hoped.

I decided that I should attempt a FBA (full bust adjustment) on this dress since I wanted the bust to be as precise as possible. One of these days, I will master a FBA, but this dress was not that occasion. I made the FBA way too big, despite checking and double checking my measurements, AND making a muslin. I wound up with massive underbust puckers that had me ready to trash this dress. After getting very thoroughly friendly with my seam-ripper (seam ripping serged stitches blows), I finally went back to the drawing board and cut a straight XL for the bust and tapering to a L at the waist. Much better.

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My initial run at this. Bad bust. Bad.

Once I got the bust issue sorted, I had to deal with the lightning bolt. The bolt is made of a gold charmeuse. I double-layered it and applied interfacing to help hold the shape. I topstitched around the edges for design and to help it lay flatter. This was another situation where I checked my measurements multiple times and made up a muslin, but I wasn’t happy with the initial result. I was afraid that the charmeuse would be too shiny and glare like crazy in pictures, so I used the wrong side of the fabric. Meh…

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Bolt the first. Bleh.

The bigger issue was that the shape was just… wrong. To get it to lay flat, I would have needed to add massive darts to the bolt, but I wasn’t liking the look of it. Fortunately, I had just enough charmeuse to cut another bolt, so I used the dart-ified bolt to draft another bolt and use the proper side of the fabric. Much better.

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Once I was satisfied with the bolt, I hand stitched the bolt to the shell of the dress. I secured the neckline by attaching jeweled straps from the top of the bolt to the back of the dress. I ultimately decided to change the zipper in the back to an invisible one and used Tasia’s method for attaching the lining. The pattern instructs you to understitch the lining before adding the zipper. In hindsight, that probably would have been better for my version of this dress, since I can’t get it under my machine to understitch now. I’ll probably do that by hand before I wear it again.

The pattern calls for boning in the side seams, but I also added some in the seams under the bust. I harvested the plastic boning from a crappy fashion corset I got ages ago and used bias tape for the casing.

A moment of silence for the corset that gave its life for a pretty dress.

A moment of silence for the corset that gave its life for a pretty dress.

I hacked off the bottom lining to view B so that it wouldn’t get caught in my shoes and finished it off with a rolled hem on my serger. Hemming the shell was surprisingly fun. I decided to hem it with horsehair as practice for my upcoming sailor fuku. The result is lovely, even if it did take several hours. I used a bit of ribbon I had in my stash to create a wrist strap on the train.

The rest of the outfit was pulled from my previous Ms. Marvel, making this one of my cheapest costumes to date at about $60 for materials. Not bad for a formal gown! I did spring for a masquerade mask from my new favorite costume shop, Dallas Vintage Shop (they carry Ben Nye!), but I didn’t wind up wearing it. Oh well. There’s always the A-fest ball!

I was really happy to shoot this dress with ACCosplay at A-Kon. He’s got a background in fashion photography, and I learned so much by working with him. I love how he captured the lighting with this dress and really made the colors pop.

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Photos by ACCosplay. I love this piano, and we stumbled across it completely by accident!

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You can see more pictures of this costume and my other costumes from A-Kon on my Facebook page! Also, I promise a non-cosplay thing later this week :)

Costume Notes: Pokemon Trainer Serena

Gotta catch 'em all!

Gotta catch ‘em all!

Completed: June 2014

Hours Spent: 12-15~

Debuted: A-Kon 25

Why This Costume: Several of my cosplay friends have Pokemon trainer costumes, so I decided to make one to join them. I couldn’t figure out which one I wanted for a while, but I loved the design of Serena, and I really enjoyed playing as her in Pokemon X! Plus, Fennekin is the most adorable starter Pokemon ever.

How I made it: 

There aren’t too many pieces to this costume, and fortunately it came together pretty easily. I made the top using Sewaholic’s Alma blouse as the base. To make the blouse sleeveless, I just used the band from the cap sleeve version to finish the armhole.

While the Peter Pan collar is cute, I wanted to give myself styling options with this blouse. It’s actually a pretty good work top! I made the collar detachable by adding snaps to the underside of the collar and behind the shoulder seam of the blouse. I used a cotton sateen from Jo-Ann’s with 3% stretch, which was just enough to let me slide this on without a zipper.

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The skirt is my first truly self-drafted piece! I probably made it significantly more difficult than it needed to be, but I figured if I was going to make it, I wanted it to be screen accurate. Most people I’ve seen making this costume just add an extra panel to the sides over the pleats. I only had a yard of fabric to work with, so this was my solution.

I’m planning to write an in-depth tutorial on this soon(ish), but here are the CliffNotes:

I broke it down into 4 components: front/back sides and side panels. For the front/back pieces, I measured myself hipbone-to-hipbone, and I measured the side panels from the front to the back of my hipbone. I also measured out my desired length, which was 13″ (because apparently I like short skirts). Once I had those measurements, I drafted out my pattern. I should note that the side panels flare out towards the bottom, so keep that in mind if you’re drafting this skirt. For the front/back pieces, I split them in half to get the top and the bottom pleated section. For the top, I did a double-fold of fabric and topstitched an extra piece of fabric. The bottom half is a set of deep knife-pleats. I made the buttons with the largest button kit I could find at Jo-Ann’s, but they’re still a bit small for my liking. I’ll have to figure out a better method in the future.

alma blouse side

This fabric is a *super* cheap poly poplin that doesn’t photograph well, but you can kind of see the much too small button. Anyone know of a giant fabric covered button kit?

The thigh-highs are an upcycle project! I had a pair of leggings that didn’t fit me well, so I cut them off at the right height and added elastic to the top to keep them from sagging.

I found the shoes on eBay and used some fabric paint from Jo-Ann’s to make the Pokeball. I didn’t realize this at the time, but the paint has glitter in it!

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Shiny, shiny :)

The bag is based off of Very Purple Person’s reversible handbag tutorial. I used a pink cotton base and fusible fleece to give the bag more of a puff. From there, I sketched out the lines from the game as well as the Pokeball emblem in the center and topstitched everything down. The lining/reversible side is from a failed blouse project, but the colors work well together. The fleece made it a bit difficult to reverse the bag in the end, so if you go with this tutorial/pattern, definitely make the straps wider.

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My glasses and hat were purchased off of Amazon, and I picked up my Fennekin from a con last year. This wig was originally intended for Ms. Marvel, but I didn’t like the color. It’s perfect for Serena, though! I got it from EpicCosplay.

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Double Serena!

I think this may be one of my favorite costumes from this year. Any costume that’s super comfortable is always a win in my book. Surprisingly, I felt super cute! I tend to go for more of the badass/warrior woman characters since 1) I identify with them more, and 2) I feel like I pull that look off better, but this was a happy exception.

Ran into the lovely Yaya Han while I was wandering about!

Ran into the lovely Yaya Han while I was wandering about!

You can see more pictures of this costume and my other costumes from A-Kon on my Facebook page!

Costume Notes: Bombshell Wonder Woman 2.0

When I first started Bombshell Wondie, I had no idea so many people would like her! It’s been one of my most popular and most worn costumes this con season (yay comfort :P). I’ve steadily made improvements for each con, so I thought I’d share some of those with you today!

Wig: My friend Mia recently told me about Gothic Lolita Wigs, which sells wigs with a pre-installed bump. Perfect for Bombshell Wondie! The company is based out of Houston and ships super fast. I ordered  the wig Tuesday before A-Kon and it was in on Friday. Mia was kind enough to trim my bangs before hitting the con floor on Saturday at A-Kon and she did a phenomenal job! I am absolutely in love with this wig.

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Also known as the Gretchen Weiners wig. Left is out of the bag and right is after Mia cut my bangs. Thanks, Mia!

Belt: I mentioned in the original post that I got my belting at Jo-Ann’s. It was an okay solution, but didn’t hold up well and it was too skinny for my liking. I picked up some vinyl and drafted a wider belt to more accurately reflect the figure.

I took my waist measurement and added 6″ in length. For reference, that’s 35″ + 6″ for overlap in the back, leaving me with 41″. The belt itself is 3″ wide, so I added a 1/2″ on the top and bottom to fold over and topstitch using my teflon foot and a leather needle. Wondie has a small loop on her right side for her lasso, so I cut out a small chunk of vinyl (app. 3″x6″). I folded over the ends and topstitched the edges down. Once that was done, I sewed one edge of the lasso flap to the bottom of my belt. I used a small square of sticky-back Velcro to attach the other end of the vinyl flap.

I secured the belt buckle to the the middle of the belt with more Velcro. The only place the sticky-back Velcro didn’t work out is in the back. It worked temporarily, but kept wanting to roll in on itself and fall off. I plan to swap the Velcro out for snaps for the next con.

Nanananananana... Batgirl!

You can kind of see the detailing on the belt here if you look close.

Bracelets: I made my new bracelets out of Worbla (tutorial here). To get the engraved look, I sketched out the design I wanted on to sticky-back craft foam and placed the pieces on to another piece of foam cut to the size I wanted. From there, I sandwiched the foam bracelets with Worbla and molded them to the shape of my arm. After 10 layers of Gesso and more sanding than I ever want to do again, I sprayed the bracelets with a metalic silver spray paint. Once that was dry, I used a watered-down acrylic grey paint to make the “engraved” sections pop. When I was happy with my paint job, I sprayed it with a glossy sealer.

A little WIP collage. Top left: Figuring out placement. Bottom left: After sandwiching the Worbla. Right: After my first layer of silver paint.

A little WIP collage. Top left: Figuring out placement. Bottom left: After sandwiching the Worbla. Right: After my first layer of silver paint.

Boots: My final improvement to Wondie was painting the boots (tutorial here). These boots are a faux leather, and after much research, I picked up a few products from Angelus, which works great with both leather and faux leather. Shoes typically have a factory finish to protect them from wear, so you’ll need acetone or some other deglazer to strip that finish off before painting. I just used painter’s tape to keep the front and top stripes mostly neat. I printed off a star template and used a pencil to sketch it out on the boot before painting it in. Once my paint was dry, I rubbed a finisher all over the boots to seal them.

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I still have a few other touch-ups I’d like to make to this costume (like re-making the shorts and hair tie), but I’m finally happy with how it looks. I’m going to try to get a proper shoot set up at my next con!

 

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