EGL GOTHIC LOLITA MINI CROWN PROJECT: GAKU-X VISUAL KEI COSPLAY MAGAZINE.
I finally received a copy of Gaku-X magazine – I contributed an article for the July issue, which you can buy here. Gaku-X covers Visual Kei/J-rock concerts and artists such as Miyavi; I appreciated the large color centerfold of Versailles! Chu is an AnimeFood publication with style profiles of cosplayers; the girl on the upper left spent 25 hours on her outfit!
Here’s a scan of my article on how to make a Gothic Lolita mini-crown.
If you sneak around a Gothic Lolita’s bedroom, you’re likely to find a miniature crown among her accessories. Worn slightly askew and secured around the chin with ribbon, the mini-crown is a staple item of Lolita headwear. It’s a look favored by model/singer Kana, musical duo Kokusyoku Sumire, and the countless others who want to feel (and dress) like a princess. Such dreamers include myself.
You’re highly unlikely to find a Lolita crown at your local jewelry store, and those by Japanese designers such as Suppurate System can set you back thousands of yen (not to mention the cost of overseas shipping). What’s a poor but intrepid Loli to do? Make one herself, of course! I picked up metal wire and black beads from my local craft/hardware stores for less than $10. Here’s how I turned these basic materials into a royal head-topper.
– Galvanized metal wire (16 gauge): available at hardware stores. Look for a sturdy wire that is difficult to bend without pliers, or else the crown will not stand up. You’ll need at least 50 inches (125 cm) of wire.
Needle-nose (pointy-tipped) pliers: for cutting and bending the wire.
At least 250 round black beads with holes: 1/4 inch (6 mm) diameter beads work best. I found a large packet of beads from a craft store for less than $5. Make sure the bead holes are large enough for the wire to pass through.
Black ribbon, 0.15 inch (4mm) wide: 1.5 yards (1.5 metres). For securing the crown to your head.
Needle and black thread.
I. Cut a piece of wire that measures 17 inches (43 cm) long. Cut three pieces of wire, each 12 inches (30.5 cm) in length.
II. Bend the longest piece of wire into a circle. String the wire with beads (about 70 beads are required). Twist the wire ends together with the pliers. This is the base of the crown with a diameter of 4.5 inches (11.5 cm).
III. Bend the three shorter pieces of wire into a “U”, then add a small curve to the middle so that the shape resembles the top half of a heart (see diagram)
IV. String the three wires with beads (about 50 beads are required for each).
V. Take one wire; with the pliers, twist the ends and attach them across the base of the crown. Take a second wire and secure the ends to the base, but at an approximately 10-bead interval from the first wire. Do the same with the third wire. The crown should now be divided into six equidistant segments that meet in the center.
VI. For the crucifix, cut a 2-inch (5 cm) and a 3-inch (8 cm) piece of wire. With the pliers, twist the shorter wire around the longer to form the arms of the cross (see above diagram). String the wires with black beads, and loop over the ends to secure them. Attach the base of the cross to the center of the crown where the three 12-inch wires meet.
VII. Cut a short piece of wire. Using the pliers, twist it around the base of the cross and the center of the crown where the three 12-inch wires meet. The cross should now stand up.
VIII. For the straps, cut two pieces of black ribbon, each about 30 inches (75 cm) long. Knot the ribbons to the base of the crown, at opposite ends from each other. Sew the ribbons in place with black thread. Wear the crown by putting the ribbons over your ears and tying them together underneath your chin.
Ta da – a crown fit for a Hime Lolita. Now all I need is a Prince Charming on my arm…