Sparkly Costume for J-Pop Singers

sparkly costume for jpop singers by Vivat VeritasLast year, I was asked to make the costumes for two J-pop singers’ re-debut. The group was originally made up of six girls, but they reduced the number to two. To celebrate the re-grouping, they performed at a live house in new outfits. I don’t have a much experience in sewing costumes save making myself a Halloween costume a few years ago. From that one experience, I learned that you have to use “costumy fabrics” in order to have the costumes stand out in a crowd or on the stage. The design that the singer’s PR company presented was relatively simple without extravagant decorations or a massive amount of boning. I’m thinking I could even use the same pattern and make a wearable romper for myself in the summer. I further refined the design and suggested the main fabric to be sequined paired with cape of all white fur.
j pop costume sketchHere is my sketch for the costumes. cape muslin for costumeAbove is the cape muslin. I drafted the pattern based on this pin. Then I made the cape with white fur and lined it with satin. The process required a surgical mask and vacuum cleaner…it created so much fuzz and mess! Every time I made a cut, I had to use the vacuum cleaner to remove the excess hair. I used velvet ribbon to tie in the center and added the straps on shoulder so the singers can use it to keep the cape in place while dancing. white fur cape and sparkly romper inside fur cape copy close up of romper costume fur cape inside the costumeBra cups are catch stitched inside. Underneath the sequined skirt, there is a white shorts attached. The sequined fabric almost destroyed my good scissors… I recommend using old pair or cheap ones when you have to cut sequins. sparkly rompers for j pop singers昨年末、某J-POPアイドルのコスチューム作りをお手伝いさせていただきました。

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MADE | Navy Blue Lace Dress

Navy blue lace dress for wedding via Vivat Veritas BlogIn November, I attended two weddings. This meant I had an excuse to make myself a new dress! I was browsing through etsy and came across  Fabric Bistro, a fabric shop based in California with a collection of great lace fabrics. Good lace fabrics are hard to find in Japan. Nippori is not a good place to go for quality lace.  Iwai lace has beautiful French lace but, very expensive. Fabric Bistro is great, except that it is hard to sort through the more than 4000 items in their shop! 

I imagined my dress to be like this one; long sleeve, I-line skirt using scallop at dress hem. The problem I had was the lack of fabric. I ordered 1.75 yards, but since the fabric width was rather narrow, I did not have enough fabric for the long sleeves.

I went ahead and started cutting the fabric without a pattern. I just used my measurements and adjusted as I went along. There were some hiccups – the dress is so hard to walk in, especially going up the stairs. I did not add a slit or vent in skirt back because I feared that it would ruin the scallop lace design. Being uncomfortable at the wedding for a day was something I was willing to deal with:)

I wanted to place the scallop in a way that would show off the lace pattern, so I used it for skirt hem and back V neckline. The front waist line is not connected with a seamline to use the scallop as well. I added a hidden button and a loop in center front around waistline so that the front would not keep opening. Back waistline is connected together and elastic band was inserted for cinched waist. I’m not a huge fan of sleeves but for Japanese weddings, it is taboo to reveal too much skin as a guest, so I added small cap sleeves.

I made a slip to wear underneath with four way stretch fabric. I am happy with the decision not to line the lace fabric, but to add a slip because yon switch the look around depending on what color of slip you wear. I might make a slip in nude color to really show off the navy blue lace in the future.
Dainty navy blue lace from Fabric Bistro
DIYed blue lace dress for wedding
Navy blue lace dress for wedding

Here is a photo from the wedding – I made Kiko’s dress too! She helped me design it. Will be posting about it soon.Navy blue lace dress at winter wedding

With my sister and her husband. The wedding was a lot of fun!
P.S. Here is the dress I made for the last wedding I attended.Family photo at winter wedding


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MADE | Ox Blood A-Line Skirt

Ox blood red A-line skirt by Vivat Veritas

I’ve seen A-line mini skirts with front buttons popping up all over the place. So, I added it to my to-sew list for the fall. When I saw this ox blood color corduroy at Nippori Tomato, I snatched it. Also bought the same color lining at the sale section in Tomato.

Below is my inspiration board for the skirt. I wanted it high or just waist, A-line, about 10cm above the knees and with the line of buttons in the center front. I also wanted it in some kine of winter fabric, like velvet, suede, leather or corduroy.
A line mini skirt inspiration for fall 2015

Source 1 | 2 | 3 | 4

ox blood red handmade skirt

I cut the fabric based on the patterns I made for the Alice in wonderland skirt (blogged here). I like how this pattern has the side pockets. Since the patterns are for I-line skirt with back vent, I changed up the skirt shape, omitted the vent and shorten the hem. The skirt closure is placed in center back with an invisible zipper and the front buttons are faux. I added a stripe of fabric in the front and added six metal buttons I bought online at Nakamura (ナカムラ), my favorite place to source sewing knickknacks.
Pretty metal buttons silver metal buttons for skirtinside construction of corduroy skirt1

The lining was added in a bagged way so that the hem seam is invisible. This finish makes the clothes a bit more expensive! inside construction of corduroy skirt2

Now it’s time to wear! Today I wore his with cropped sweater I DIYed last year from an old thrifted cardigan. I’m planning of wearing this skirt with white turtleneck, chambray shirt or polkadot shirt this fall.


A-line skirt for fallhandmade dark red A-line skirt by Vivat Veritas

P.S. Shopbop is having a big sale! Hope over here to take advantage of the biggest sale of the year. I’m eyeing this as a gift to myself…The sale will begin at 7am EASTERN TIME Tuesday November 24th and will end at 11:59pm PACIFIC TIME on November 30thchie sig2Find me elsewhere: