Yes, I know, Titanic isn't exactly the hottest movie to cosplay anymore, but I'm not making a new gown. Many years ago, when the movie first came out, my sister wanted the Titanic "Jump" dress to wear for Christmas. So, I made a close approximation, which looked great for Christmas and looked very near to the movie dress, and after Christmas the dress went in a box and wasn't seen or heard from again.
Well, a friend of mine who cosplays Alucard from Hellsing asked me what I was going to wear to the formal Cosplay Masquerade at A-kon this year, which made me realize that I actually had no idea! No one I knew actually had any cosplays planned for the event, so I didn't have a group I needed to fit in, so I started to think, "What would Integra wear if she had to attend a formal event?" Well, for some reason, I had always thought that if Integra were to wear a dress, it would be in the Edwardian style. Sure, they had put her in a gigantic black Victorian style gown at one point, but the lines of the turn of the century always said Integra to me more than hoop skirts ever did. And red and black were always her colours, nevermind the horrid green suit she wore in the anime.
I finally put two and two together and dug out the old Titanic dress with a mind to wear it for Integra. Amazingly, the thing almost fits (I have a bigger bust than my sister, so it takes a bit of finagling to get it to close up top), and it's still in excellent condition. All I really need to do is exchange the snaps in the front for hooks and eyes and she'll be good to go. I'm rather impressed with how much research I put into a quick and dirty Christmas dress - it closes with the vest-like front like the movie gown does, it's in two layers - the lace bodice and red skirt underneath, the fabric bodice and sheer overskirt on top, like the movie costume, it even has the two buttons on the front like the movie costume. Like I said, a good approximation. Still, some things are missing, like the round beaded...things...on the bottom of the skirt, another layer of net over the red, etc.
I've actually found a new enthusiasm for this costume. I want to go back and fix the few minor things that need to be done (warped boning, too much lace in some bits, not enough in others), and to add the missing pieces of this dress like the other layer of net and the round beaded bits. I also want to bead the bodice a bit more. The lace overlay that I have on there now mimics the beading pattern of the original fairly well, but I want it to sparkle. I'll probably wear it as-is to the A-kon Masquerade, and after the con I'll work on it to bring it closer to the original.