FRAN OF THE VIERA
Final Fantasy XII
Fran was my favorite character in Final Fantasy XII
, and several friends suggested I should cosplay her. The armor intimidated me, however, so I told myself I'd try to make the intricate leg armor first, and if I managed to pull that off I'd make the rest of the costume. Amazingly, it actually wasn't as hard as it looked, but it was very time consuming and I learned a lot. Thanks to both Jaina Solo and Penwiper's
craft foam tutorials for lots of helpful advice!
I did a lot of research on different approaches and materials, and closely studied photos of other cosplayers. I decided on craft foam for the armor, which I had never used before and was shocked at how cheap and versatile it was. I began making “mockup” armor by cutting out drawings on notebook paper. Once satisfied, I pinned the pattern to the foam and cut out the base layer, then the secondary layers to glue on top. I also glued down small plastic gems to the design, which, when painted in the final phase, looked like rivets. I then coated the foam with six to eight layers of glue/water mix to seal the pores before painting it with a gunmetal finish. The top is a leotard I bought online and altered, cutting out sections and adding ribbon trim to the sleeves and an organza sash down the front. I then sewed the breastplate foam armor to the front, and the tail armor to the back. For the ears I cut two pieces of plastic into an ear shape and covered them with faux fur and felt. I then threaded them through two “ear holes” in the foam helmet and sewed them on to a headband. I love Fran thus far but I still consider this costume in-progress and look forward to adding chainmail, styling a proper wig, and making a bow to accompany the outfit.