Simplicity takes another whirl at Cosplay Kimono dresses with another Japanese inspired pattern. This pattern is by no means a real kimono, or even an attempt at one. What you have here is a top and bottom that go together to create a really cute dress. Simplicity’s website describes this pattern as a kimono style robe and ruffle skirt. That is a fairly accurate description, although I would describe this more as a kimono style blouse and ruffle skirt since the tops are only torso length. The longest variation of this pattern, C, actually features a long skirt, not a long robe.
Here are the specs:
Skill level: Intermediate
Pattern number: 8317
This pattern is really cute and will find many uses for cosplay and even formal wear, if you picked the right colors and fabrics. There are three main components to this dress – the top, bottom, and a cincher. This leaves you plenty of room to play around with modifying the pattern for your personal needs. This means even if you chose not to deviate from the original pattern, you have many options to choose from when combining the different skirt lengths, styles, and trim options. I personally can see myself combining the C top and over skirt with the skirt seen with A.
Now, before you get all excited, keep in mind this pattern has a lot of pieces and requires over six yards of fabric. In a sense, this is a reason to celebrate because it can be really enjoyable to make and wear a dress that is ruffled and weighty. This pattern will be a slow start because of all of the pieces that need to be cut, pinned, and sewn together. For me, the worst part of sewing is laying out the fabric and getting it ready to cut. The kimono and cincher are easy enough to construct. The ruffles, contrast bands and skirt are several pieces that when carefully laid out according to the directions reduce fabric waste. Sewing this pattern together will be a lot more pleasant than cutting the pieces.
The end product is a cute dress that can get you through many conventions or festivals. My only disappointment is the cincher. I don’t find that the shape is very flattering against the female chest. It appears that the arched design causes fabric to bunch along the ribcage. Darting the top would probably fix this, but might be difficult or frustrating for novice cosplayers who just wanted to follow the pattern.
I think this is a cute outfit that can inspire many cosplays or festival attire. I don’t think it would be detrimental to follow the pattern accurately if you’re a smaller woman; however, you may need to add darting or experiment with stretchy blends to get the fit you want if you’re a bit more shapely. I do think changing the shape of the cincher could solve this issue, too. While this pattern is not perfect, there is enough here to work with to make something beautiful.
*This item was provided for review.