Monica, Starlight Leotard - Dark Cloud 2

Debut: Anime Mid-Atlantic 2009

Cost of materials: $180

Awards: N/A

From the first moment I laid eyes on Dark Cloud 2, I fell in love with it. The graphics, the music, the story - it was all so fantastic! And from the instant I saw Monica, I knew I had to make her outfits. They were just too amazing to pass over. The Starlight Leotard is my absolute favorite costume of hers, with the Princess Dress as a very close second. I originally wasn't planning on making this cosplay for this convention, but I was persuaded by various circumstances, and I'm so glad I gave in!

Monica's Starlight Leotard is so cute ^.^ I started with the bodice, which is made from a blue-black shimmery lining fabric and cotton sateen which I dyed yellow. It is fully boned and lined with a yellow-dyed twill for support. The lacing is polyester satin ribbon that I also dyed yellow to match. The skirt petals are the same blue-black lining fabric stiffened with craft foam and supported with wire on the inside to get each petal to hold its shape. The bodice is trimmed with yellow fleece on the top and bottom.

The bottoms are bikini bottoms that I sewed from a navy jet-set fabric to match the bodice. The gloves are a yellow jersey knit trimmed with yellow fleece. The thigh high stockings are dyed yellow to match the bodice and gloves. For the shoes, I decided to make Monica's Spike Boots since they were designed to match the bodice. I used the same blue-black lining fabric and flatlined it with twill for stability. I made the yellow piping and attached it on over the lacing loops, then trimmed the top with white fleece. They zip up the back and are secured with elastic along the underside of the boot. The necklace is made from some blue satin ribbon I had laying around and gold vinyl reinforced with craft foam, and has a toggle closure. The armband is Monica's Star Armlet and is made from fishtank tubing, gold vinyl, wire, and a painted accent marble. The Blue Atlamillia is made from an iridescent ball ornament that I painted blue on the inside, and is glued onto a cardboard backing with cardboard and hot glue designs that I spray painted silver. The Atlamillia is secured onto my glove using neodymium magnets and a wristband.

Monica's wig proved to be quite a challenge. I bought a Clover wig from Cosworx in light pink and Sharpie dyed it with Berry sharpies to get a more berry-pink look. The wig was stubbed and the bangs cut, steamed, curled and set. I then made a foam core for the ponytail using quilters batting and attached it to the stub. After Sharpie dying three lengths of 48" pink extension hair, I sewed them into wefts and wrapped them around the stub to cover the foam core. I made Monica's Zipangu Comb because it was always my favorite in the game. For the hair bands, I used yellow fleece, blue craft foam decorated with gold vinyl trim and a star, and pink cotton with designs in red fabric paint that I drew on after patterning it out from in game references. For the comb itself, I used a flat wooden ornament and cut out and sanded the comb teeth, then used a craft foam overlay for the designs and painted it gold. The fan pieces are craft foam, and the ball sticks are a wooden dowel and wooden ball beads that I painted red and gold. The fold of hair is some dyed extension hair wrapped around a piece of cardboard. All the Zipangu pieces are glued into the wig. And surprisingly, the wig stays very securely on my head with hardly any slipping!

This costume has been such a dream costume for me, and I honestly don't know why I didn't make it any sooner. Dark Cloud 2 is one of my favorite games and I'm so thrilled that I could cosplay as Monica! I was also extremely happy that people recognized me at the convention - it doesn't happen very often, so when it does I am really overjoyed that I can share my love of a character and game with others. I can't wait to make Monica's Princess Dress now ^.^

Picture Credits: David Dunn

2012 D^2 and FireLilyCosplay