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Emperor Lelouch

Costume Design & Construction Breakdown

Project Inspiration

When the "Royal" theme for the "Met Gala" showcase at one of my favorite annual costuming events was announced, I knew I had to revisit one of my all time favorite pieces of media: Code Geass, Lelouch of the Rebellion.

While Geass is primarily an animated series (though certainly aimed at adults; it deals with themes of genocide, racism, and revolution as key plot points), the character designers-- an artist's collective known as CLAMP-- are known for their elaborate and detailed designs that are often far too complicated to animate on a studio's limited budget. Thus I took re-designing the Emperor's garb with the appropriate level of majesty into my own hands.

Project Details
  • Design inspirations pulled from British regents; Medici popes

  •  Hand-dyed silk gradients

  • Custom appliques and beadwork

  • Tens of yards of hand-sewn smocking texturing

  • Custom gold trim

  • 3D modeled / printed buttons

  • Multi-part resin cast gems

Awards & Relevant Media
Design, Details, and Breakdown
Emperor-sketch.jpg
Design Sketch

The detail on this project is immense, and sketching it all out in full helped to balance the details. This sketch in particular outlines much of the beading and gem placement on the garment.

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emperor-applique.jpg
Backside Jacket Applique

Details of the applique on the back of the jacket, featured alongside the crown, and other beaded pieces. This applique is made from lace piecing and hand tacking.

Progress Shots (Compiled)

The dyed cloak with pinned in place trim (left). The gems (top right) have undergone polishing but at this point in the process still required the backfilled resin. The center image is a layout of potential applique arrangements. The buttons at the bottom right I modeled in Solidworks, printed on a Form 3, and finished with rub'n'buff and paint. 

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