Costuming at Comicpalooza 2017

Comicpalooza, Texas’ largest comic book, pop culture, and entertainment convention, happened over the weekend (May 12-14, 2017) in Downtown Houston.  I attended all three days and treated it as a costume deadline and cosplay dress rehearsal for the larger convention that we attend, DragonCon during Labor Day weekend in Atlanta, Georgia.  It was a good venue to try out new costumes and bring back old favorites from the past.



I wore four costumes in three days, and my husband and niece joined in on the fun for some of the costume changes.  I wore Artemisia from 300: Rise of an Empire on Friday during the day, and my husband and I wore James Bond and a random Bond Girl from the film Spectre on Friday evening.  On Saturday, my husband, niece, and I brought back our DragonCon 2016 favorite: Labyrinth, and on Sunday morning my husband and I dressed as Alex Vause and John Bennett from Orange is the New Black.


Image: Photo of a page from 300: Rise of an Empire: The Art of the Film by Peter Aperlo


Inspiration for Friday morning’s costume was the villain Artemisia from 300: Rise of an Empire (the sequel to the 300 film).  Eva Green is a scene stealer as Artemisia, and she wears the fiercest costumes in the film, including another dress I’ve previously worn.  So this time, I wanted to make her gold dress from her fiercest scene (um…yeah…you’ll just have to watch it).



As far as a costume dress rehearsal goes, I’m very pleased with how the dress turned out and I don’t think it needs any modifications before I wear it again.  And thankfully, it was very comfortable to wear (well…without needing to lift my left arm, which isn’t happening with that strap).  Although, I could work on making her scars a bit more convincing.



Would anyone care to see the costume build for Artemisia?  Let me know in the comments below and I’ll add it to the queue for later this year.


Image: screenshots from the film Spectre (2015)


Inspiration for Friday evening’s costume was the opening scene in Spectre, the most recent James Bond (Daniel Craig, *prrrrrrrrr*) film where 007 himself walks through Mexico City on All Saints Day, or Day of the Dead stalking a villain during a parade.  It’s exotic and sexy, much like pretty much every James Bond scene, but this one spoke to me on a creative level.  I wanted very much to paint that skeleton tuxedo and I did exactly that!



I’m tremendously proud of how well the skeleton tuxedo jacket turned out, as well as my random Bond Girl dress and accessories.  We were both very comfortable wearing these costumes and I think they’re ready for DragonCon without the costumes themselves needing any modifications.  In the pictures above, Jerome is using my cane from Labyrinth, but we could find a more screen accurate skull top cane for him to carry in the future.  I could also purchase a more screen accurate skeleton key like the one she held up in the elevator scene.  That should be easy to track down on Etsy.



If you would like to see the costume build for Mr. Bond or his Mexico City Bond Girl, read Costuming James Bond from Spectre and Costuming Mexico City Bond Girl from Spectre.  I really enjoyed painting the skeleton tuxedo jacket and I’m happy to share the painting process and the rest of the costume builds for Mr. Bond and his lady friend.


Image: screenshots from the film Labyrinth (1986)


Inspiration for Saturday’s group costume was from one of my favorite childhood (yes, I’m that old) films, Labyrinth featuring David Bowie being typical gender-fluid David Bowie in his portrayal of the Goblin King.  When he passed away last year, the three of us (my husband, niece and I) attended a midnight showing of Labyrinth at the River Oaks Theater here in Houston.  After a couple glasses of wine that night, which is how every creative idea happens, I was inspired to recreate the Goblin King but with my own personal feminine spin (yet gender-fluid).  I do love playing the misunderstood villain, and I do enjoy a good gender swapped costume.  To add to the gender-swapping fun, my husband wore Sarah’s vest from the film, and my niece dressed up as a grownup Toby.



I just love this so much.  Since I have worn it before to DragonCon, it doesn’t need any modifications.  No, I’m not going to buy a spikey wig, and I’m sorry to disappoint but I’m not going to add an “angry cod piece”…y’all crack me up.



I am so in loooooooove with this one and would be happy to share how I created it.  You’ll find the costume build for my Goblin King, Sarah’s vest, and Toby are here.


Image: promo still and screenshot from the Netflix show Orange is the New Black


Inspiration for Sunday morning’s costumes were inspired by Alex Vause and John Bennett from Orange is the New Black.  Usually on the last day of a convention, I dress for comfort, so I had comfort in mind when choosing these characters.  Plus, I just love the show so damn much.  Would you classify Alex as a villain?  I tend to pick more villain costumes, don’t I?  We still need to have Jerome’s shirt embroidered and my scrubs were way too big, but otherwise these modifications are quick fixes.  I will order smaller scrubs, remove the pockets at the bottom of the shirt, and relocate one of the pockets to the left breast.  Easy!



These two costumes were super easy to put together that required basically no creativity, skill, or time on my part.  Would anyone care to have a supplies list for an inmate or prison guard?  Let me know in the comments below and I’ll add them to the queue.


Photos by my super adorable niece, Brittany (follow her on Instagram here:


More costumes made and worn by me here:

2 Comment

  1. Miranda says:

    I’d love to see more on the James Bond AND OITNB costumes…but then you probably already knew that. ?

    1. Sheila says:

      Thanks Miranda! Yay! I’ll add James Bond to the calendar for July(ish). Can’t wait for the new season of OITNB to come out! That should be an easy blog post as well, so maybe September after I wear it at DragonCon and get better pictures.

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