Claudia's Final Fantasy XII Fran Cosplay: Hair

Total Time: 9 days | Total Price: $177.64 | Status: In Progress

How I made this costume:

Hair:
The hair was one of my biggest challenges. Just because there's so much of it! Fran's hair is extremely long and thick. It actually comes down to her low thigh even with it being in a high ponytail (I'll write more about this later when I'm done styling the wig).

Another part of the hair was the ears. Which are actually useful because of the way that I designed them to help keep the wig on straight and anchors it a bit more to my head. I worked using a Styrofoam wig stand and used a light silver headband for the base. As always, I took my head measurements first, created a pattern using Photoshop with my Wacom, printed it, cut it out with craft scissors, traced the back of the pattern over my light box with a black pastel pencil this time instead of white, and carefully pressed the pattern down onto white craft foam to transfer the design over. I then shaped the craft foam over the stove top on med-hi as usual. Following that, I shaped a thick 12 gauge wire, attached it to the headband using super glue, and lastly glued the shaped white craft foam to the wire. That way the ears will be sturdy, not too heavy, and can bend and flex a bit like real ears would. If you've ever pet a bunny before, you know exactly want I mean. So I was definitely going for something flexible, and that's the reason I used craft foam instead of Wonderflex.

Then I started to prepare the fur to go over top. I bought a wonderful short white fur for the ears and used the same ear pattern to cut out (using my sewing shears) two of the same-shaped pieces of fur with an inch seem allowance all around. After that, I pinned them together with straight pins, and used my sewing machine to sew around the sides and top, leaving the bottom open so that I could gently slip the fur covers over the base.

When the fur was in place, I then attach the material to the base with a combination of super glue and white thread. I specifically hand sewed the bottom area where the ears fold over down by the head. This worked out great, and once again, it was loose enough to be flexible but strong enough to hold up. After I made sure that everything was held down really well, I used a pair of haircutting clippers to trim the fur according to Fran's high-res model because her ear fur is different lengths and I wanted to replicate that precisely. After trimming, came painting, and I used a combination of black makers, and a standard watercolor set to paint on the spots and colors accurately. This not only was a nice way to build up all of the colors, but it helped add realism to the previously all-white fur (I'll write more about this later when I add more hair to the ears).

Lastly, it's so important to store the wig and ears properly. I keep them in a large cardboard box with plenty of space so that they don't get squished together. Anything that's made of craft foam will bend and bow out of shape if it's not packed properly in a cool dark place. That's why I also stuff the ears and the surrounding area in the box with packing material that I've collected over the years. It would be a shame to spend all that time on a brilliant costume, only to find it misshapen when it's time to wear it.

MORE COMING SOON!

Useful Websites:
Create Lacefront Wigs Like a Pro
Complete Guide to Wig Care and Styling
Sewing a Pair of Ears 

Materials:
Tape Measure - Superior Tailoring Rule, 150 cm/60 in
Pre-owned
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Wig Stand - 200201 Styro Head WI
Purchased from Sally Beauty Supply
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Wig & Hair Extensions - 1 Silver Delilah Wig, 1 Silver Matilda Wig, 2 Silver Long Clip Ponytails
Purchased from Arda-Wigs.com
---
Adobe Photoshop
Pre-owned
---
Wacom Intuos3
Pre-owned
---
Inkjet Printer - HP Photosmart 7200 Series
Pre-owned
---
8.5"x11" White Print Paper - Hammermill Premium Multipurpose Paper 24 lb
Pre-owned
---
Craft Scissors
Pre-owned
---
Light Box - Artograph Light Tracer 10" x 12"
Pre-owned
---
Stabilo CarbOthello Pastel Pencil - Neutral Black 1400/750
Pre-owned
---
White Craft Foam - Creative Hands or Creatology 11.8" x 17.7" Foam Sheets
Purchased from Michaels
---
Floral Wire - Darice, Wired Accents, 12 gauge, 5 yd, Silver (Aluminum)
Purchased from Jo-Ann
---
Silver Headband - Goody
Purchased from Target
---
Super Glue - The Original Super Glue, 4 Pack, 0.10 oz Each
Purchased from Michaels
---
Ear Fur - Davos White, 400078612554
Purchased from Jo-Ann
---
Sewing Scissors - Gold Handle 8" Knife Blade Gingher Shears
Pre-owned
---
Straight Pins
Pre-owned
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Sewing Machine - 1950's New Home Metal Sewing Machine
Pre-owned
---
White Thread
Pre-owned
---
Haircutting Clippers - Wahl, Color Pro 25-Piece Color Coded Haircut Kit, WAH 79300-1001
Pre-owned
---
Black Sanford Sharpie Markers
Pre-owned
---
Large Flat Tapered Paintbrush - Utrecht 209-F Finest Interlocked #10
Pre-owned
---
Crayola 8 Color Watercolor Set
Pre-owned
---
MORE COMING SOON!

Feel free to leave all comments and questions below.
♡ Claudia (AKA Fran)

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