Cosplay by McCalls M2088 Eventide, M2091 Red Reign, M2092 Cloak: Phantasy

This release from Cosplay by McCalls is characterized by lots of options. Every envelope has multiple variations on its pattern—some not even noted. The real treasure of this set, however, is Cloak: Phantasy (M2092). It has a trick to keep an unwieldy cape in check (something Dr. Strange would find useful), and it has unusual shapes that bring interest to a garment that can often be little more than a square of fabric tied around one’s neck. Still, these are all very versatile and spirited pieces, and one or more of them will be just the ticket to get the look you have been trying for for ages.
Eventide (M2088 sizes 8-16 and 16-22) is a jacket pattern with length and sleeve options. It’s a great choice for vampire or pirate, steampunk, or Lolita coat. To me, it’s the perfect Lolita jacket. It has the popular gathered collar, on a shaped jacket that stops just below the waist or continues on to a full flared skirt in back. There is no waistline seam. It’s basically a princess cut. You can choose pirate sleeves with the big cuff, or enormous double circular ruffles that start at the elbow.  There is something up with the center back drape on view B, and I think it distracts from the jacket in the envelope pics. Make sure you take a good look at the piece to see if it serves your needs. Since it’s just an overlay, you can leave it off if you don’t like it.
The pattern tips are instructions for using jewelry as embellishments, and couching chain instead of using piping. I think Coco Chanel might smile at that.

View B

 

View A

Red Reign (M2091 Sizes: 4-12 and 12-20) This latest design from Ichigo Black is a simple corset and quirky one-sleeved bolero, over a gathered high-low skirt with short hoop support. The crown is not included. It’s a versatile pattern with more options than they illustrate. You can cherry pick sleeve bits to make your own look. You can make them the same or not, with puff or without, with ruffle or without. You can swap the ruffle and the sleeve cap if you want. Just pull the pieces you like and put them together. Try as I might, I can’t find a pattern piece for that cap sleeve under the wing sleeve on the bare right arm, so I don’t know what that is. The available pieces are right sleeve, sleeve puff, upper sleeve (goes under the puff portion to support the puff), lower sleeve, and sleeve ruffle.

The applique on the back is a bat, but there is so much trim down the center back that it’s hard to see. Add in that the center back also laces up, and the identifiable bat shape gets lost altogether. The corset has five pattern pieces. It laces in the back and is without a busk. The skirt has three pattern pieces. The hoop is straightforward, and simple to make.

This pattern is meant to get you out-of-the box and open to using many different kinds of fabrics in your work. It’s a great way to add interest and texture. The pattern tips help you choose needles that will help you sew this wider selection of fabrics.

View A

Cloak: Phantasy (M2092, sizes S-M and L-XL) is an inspired set of cloaks that are worthy of the purchase of an actual pattern. For the most part, not a soul needs a pattern to make a cloak. Most of us have been making them from towels since we could walk. These, however, are not just square pieces sewn together. These have an actual shape.

View A is set on a pretty nice neck corset that you could use on its own. The cloak is reminiscent of an art deco cocoon coat, leaning hard toward elvish. The sample garment on the envelope is not showing the pattern to its best effect. The pattern pieces are not just rectangles gathered onto the neck corset. They are gracefully shaped. The fabric choice does not show this well. I’d love to see this in a softer, floatier silk habotai—perhaps hand painted— with the neck corset in an underlined gold lamé. In short, it’s not your basic cloak.

View B

View B

View B suffers from a poor photo shoot. Don’t let the picture fool you. The vest-front piece is not just a flat piece with shirring on top, as it appears. If you look at the picture closely, you will see that it’s been laced too tightly so it’s pulling at the bottom waistband and it’s not fitting over the bust. An examination of the pattern pieces shows that there is indeed a shaped bust, and if there had not been an attempt to lace the front closed it would not be gaping at the sides. Granted, this is a size XL on a size 10 form, but it’s clear that there is a bust shape.

The point is that it’s not actually a top. It “is a dramatic cape with an adjustable bodice piece designed for keeping your cape in place when fighting super villains.” Anyone who has worn an asymmetrical cape/cloak knows why one would need the vest front to keep it in place. It’s left open in front so that one can see your actual costume underneath. The top strap is actually sewn to the cloak. It’s a fantastic idea, and it’s from the amazing designers at McCalls. I think I might ignore the smaller size range, and just use the L-XL no matter what size you are aiming for. Be sure you baste the vest-front pieces and check the fit before you place the shirred pieces on top to make sure there is enough bust cup for you. You might even just leave off the shirring and cut the base pieces twice and give it a simpler corset look. Any way you approach it, it’s da bomb. Sewing tips for this pattern inspire you to repurpose old jewelry for special details.

Cosplay by McCalls continues to impress. The line is very adaptable, size-inclusive, and has fabulous large sturdy envelopes that will hold project notes, sketches, and swatches. There will never be that fight to get the pattern back in that tiny envelope again. Offered online only, it’s never out-of-stock, and you never have to brave the lines at JoAnn’s. They ship world-wide. Get them at http://cosplay.mccall.com

 

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