Tenchi Muyo! was one of the first anime series I watched, and I still love it now! When a group was forming for KitaCon 2012 I couldn’t resist joining in as the best scientist in the Galaxy, Lil’ Washu!
This design screams “90s”: hot pink spikey hair, clothes with random shapes on them, high waisted shorts and BRIGHT tights. I was originally going to make her formal clothing, but figured this would be more recognisable. It was a lot of fun balancing all of the colours and proportions together!
Washu’s wig was the biggest challenge here. It’s still not big enough for her crazy hair, but it was my first successful wig dye attempt and my first time making wefts. A steep learning curve, but for her hair it was a must!
This costume has such crazy happy memories attached to it. Tenchi has been a huge influence in my life and I was very happy to take part in a group celebrating the series for the 20 Year Anniversary.
I recently looked over this costume and was surprised at how nicely it’d been made – everything was finished really nicely! Good job past me!
The wig was made using a “Pretty Cure Blossom” Wig from AyanamiSatoru, dyed with FW Ink. You can see a comparison of the original wig against the dyed colour in the Construction Gallery. I dyed the wig with Flame Red & Magenta Ink using the 70% Isopropyl Alcohol method and a spray bottle. Once the wig was dyed, the ponytail was thinned and backcombed to create volume and the base wig was styled with wefts made from cuttings from the ponytail sewn along the crown to create the “crab legs”.
There are a few things I would change about this costume if I made it now – most of them involve the wig. At the time I was making Washu I don’t think I even knew what a lace-front wig was, nevermind where to buy one or how to style one, and I’d barely styled any of the wigs I’d worn before beyond trimming fringes or adding some hairspray. I do think my attempt wasn’t too terrible for the materials at hand, but it’s definitely a project I’d like to redo eventually if I do another costume of hers.
The hair tie is made from dupioni. It’s a long strip of material with a section of padding inside for where it fits around the wig, sewn and tied into place.
The jacket is made from a lovely navy bi-stretch. The body is lined with the same material, with purple cotton to line the sleeves and collar. The jacket is based on a kimono pattern similar to Karol’s which extends across the chest and has large capped sleeves. The jacket does not have any closures attached, it was safety pinned when worn. The orange triangles are made from sculpey and are glued in place.
The blouse is made from a lightweight linen. It has a placket at the back of the neck and on both cuffs for closure. The blouse itself is a little oversized and tucks neatly into the shorts.
The shorts are made from light green cotton. Patterning these was interesting! I made them by adapting McCall’s 5391 Misses Shorts Pattern to match the seams on the design. The pockets are fully functional. The belt is sewn to the shorts directly, closing with a hook and bar hidden by the triangle above the zipper.
The tights are bought. The shoes were also bought and had cute little red bows sewn on the front.
I originally wanted to make the Washu A & B puppets but ran out of time, so I got my little Ryo-Ohki backpack pal out instead! I’ve had her since I was 11. I cut the straps off her so now she’s just a cute, cuddly plush (with space inside, handy for events)!