Final Fantasy VIII
Ballroom Dress

Costume Stats:
Costume Completed: 2006
Debut: Anime Boston 2006
Convention History:
Anime Boston 2006
Another Anime Convention 2008
Masquerade, Another Anime Con 2008
* Best In Show
Another Anime Con 2008
Photo Credits:
Rinoa Heartilly first appears when she asks Squall for a dance at Balumb Garden's graduation ball, a celebration for senior cadets who have passed their final exam and entered the ranks of SeeD. Rinoa gains entrance to the ball in hopes of ambushing the Garden's headmaster and securing a contract of SeeD mercenary support for The Forrest Owls; though she captures the ever-aloof Squall's interest during their dance, Rinoa abruptly abandons him when the focus of her mission comes into view.

Construction Notes:
This dress has all the hallmarks of my early cosplay days - hand sewn, patterned off of real clothes, and made of whatever I had lying around at the time. It was a hot mess from a construction standpoint but ultimately looked right when it was worn, which I'm somehow more impressed by now that I know what I'm doing and know just how bad these costumes were. I recall I happened to have an off-white satin and a yellowish organza overlay lying around the house of some off-yardage; I lay it on top of a off-the-rack A-Line cocktail dress I had and went to town cutting (I can guarantee at the time I would not have known what "A-Line" even meant).

I also happened to have pale yellow ribbon my Mom had used for goodness knows what that I hand-sewed along the top and a matching pair of heeled shoes from a real eggshell dress I'd worn to some high school dance. Regardless, with some haphazard cutting, sewing, and Velcro-ing, this thing got made, and held up well enough to actually be worn more than once. It was even in a skit, where craftsmanship was judged, yikes. I feel like this would be really really easy to remake, but the "not cream but not white but not yellow" color is horribly challenging to find which has so far prevented me from taking another stab at this dress. I wish I knew exactly what I'd used to make this (and could find those old shoes?) because color-wise, I nailed it on this train wreck.

Photoshoot Pics: