Maria - Silent Hill 2
Time to Make: 16 hours
Timeline of Construction: April - May 2009
This costume was a joy to make. Back in 2005 Silent Hill 2 was the first horror game that I played and it really got me interested in the genre. It's sort of funny to look back at my write-up about my Heather costume when I said that I couldn't find female characters from the games that I really felt comfortable Cosplaying. Since then I've Cosplayed Angela, Alessa, Lisa and now Maria.
Maria's role in SH2 and her personality have always fascinated me so making this costume was a blast. Her outfit looks fairly simple but it turned out to be quite challenging. I asked Alessa, a SH Cosplayer whose Maria costume is the best out there, for advice on finding material for the skirt. I had actually been looking on and off in vain for several months for skirt fabric before I started officially working on the costume. Alessa suggested a couple of different fabrics from eBay which I really liked. It turned out that the seller wouldn't ship the fabric to Canada so a friend offered to get the fabric and then ship it over to me. The fabric turned out to be excellent for the character. :D I drafted my own pattern for the skirt and that worked with mixed success. It turned out to be slightly too tight and that made it problematic to hide the invisible zipper. I also made the bottom a little uneven so the hem is a little wonky. XD
The details on the skirt were a lot of fun to do. I bought the chain from a second-hand store and removed the jewellery hooks. Sewing it to the fabric was pretty straightforward, but because of the positioning it was a little heavy and pulled down on the top of the skirt. I wasn't willing to make the flesh hook which Maria seems to have in official images though. XD My favourite part was the little gold discs on her skirt. I scoured jewellery stores and eBay for weeks looking for anything that would work. Eventually I found a seller selling custom pet ID tags and I ordered several blank tags. They turned out to be perfect. The final blue chain decoration on the top of Maria's skirt was done using blue ribbon.
I found the boots at the second-hand store where I bought the chain. They were a little big on me around the knees but they seemed to be comfortable. They turned out to actually be very uncomfortable boots. I think I'll try to find a replacement pair or at least some insoles that will make walking or standing for long periods of time less painful.
It was actually quite difficult to find white pantyhose for my costume at stores. I eventually found a young adult accessory/clothing store called Ardene that was selling tights. I forgot, though, that with the style of the skirt my midriff would be exposed so keeping the top of my tights hidden was a bit of a pain. The tattoo on my stomach was a temporary one that I got in a set from the dollar store. It worked out quite nicely.
I bought two sweaters before I finally purchased a third sweater that I was happy with to use for the costume. I adored the colour and the style of the sweater was perfect for Maria. I cut the bottom of the sweater and hemmed it so it was the right length. I then cut off the original buttons which were the wrong style and I replaced them with buttons from one of the sweaters that I had vetoed. The grey tank top she wears underneath was a tank top that I also bought from a second-hand store. I cut and hemmed it so it wouldn't poke out from under my sweater.
The choker was made from a piece of the skirt fabric with two strips of black bias tape as a backing. I sewed a snap to the back to hold it in place. I was a little bit worried about attaching one of the pet ID tags to the choker but it stayed on the necklace quite nicely. I used flash tape to make sure the necklace didn't move when I wore it at AN, but the tape ended up giving me a bit of a rash that was visible for the rest of the con. XD
The wig was a bit of a challenge. It took me several weeks of searching and quite a bit of money to finally get a wig for this costume. I had to trim it because it was an uneven bob (the hair was longer in the front than in the back). I didn't end up cutting that much so it was still sort of uneven. I used sharpies to create roots around the skin top and I sharpied the tips of the bottom of the wig. It took me several hours to colour the whole wig. In the end I think I overdid it a bit. I tried to even it out a bit by stripping some of the dye from the hairs but it only slightly helped. I actually didn't end up washing the wig enough and when I got to the con I realized that my wig was bleeding on my neck, cheeks and on the sweater I wore over my costume on the way to con. (~_~);; I ended up spending about half an hour in my hotel room washing the tips of the wig to remove the excess dye and blow drying it but a major disaster was averted. :3 I got a lot of compliments on the wig so I was happy it turned out nicely.
I ended up buying new eyeshadow, lipstick and nail polish for this costume which I think were worth it. The nail polish especially stood out really nicely. I based my colour choice on the scene where Maria touches James face and says, "...see I'm real". I also had to do some shopping to get a silver ring. Finally, I bought a dollar store gun, which my dad painted part of silver, to match Maria's gun from "Born From a Wish".
I was really happy to have made this costume but it's a little difficult to wear it in public and feel comfortable. XD At AN my friends didn't really want me to walk around by myself and I'm not sure when or if I'll ever wear this costume again. I'm glad that I was able to do a photoshoot with Stillvisions at Youmacon so I have great photo evidence of this costume. (^^)
Events/Conventions this costume was worn to
Anime North 2009 (Friday) & Youmacon 2009 (Friday)