dress dreamer


I could post pictures of new cosplay, but why do that when I can post new pictures of old cosplay!
So here’s more pictures of my dreamer roxy! This time in an even better setting than a library, a hotel attached to gen con! You may have seen me, and if so, hello!

I didn’t have my usual bracelets on in these photos cause it was 1 in the morning and I was a very tired bean.

Photography: my mum again!
Cosplayer: me! @participlepotato
(And the wonderful little Mutie given to me by @firegodjr)
You guys, these chairs were even fancier than last photoshoot’s chairs!

Another note, soon there will be more fancy dreamers joining me at conventions! (I’m calling them the dreamer teamers haha)
I can’t post the designs right now, cause some want to keep it a surprise, but if all goes well there will soon be an Aradia, Kanaya, Rose, Jane, and Dave!

Have a great day everyone!

Instagram: momma_molotov
Times Are Hard for Dreamers: Dressing Phillipa Soo in “Amélie”

Welcome back, dear readers! After the lengthy Here Lies Love review the other day, I’m going a little bit simpler this time and focusing on a single costume once again. By request, I’ll be looking at the main costume worn by Phillipa Soo in the 2017 musical Amélie - A New Musical.

Based on the 2001 romantic comedy starring Audrey Tautou as the title character, this is a whimsical, charming musical set in contemporary Paris. It follows the titular Amélie as she dreams of a different life, and sets about solving the mystery of a man appearing in a stolen photo album. It really is an interesting musical and I found the music for it to be soothing, especially after reviewing a few peppier productions over the past month.

The costume designs for this production, including the main costume I’ll review today, were done by David Zinn, who also designed the sets. Mr Zinn traditionally uses simple designs in his costume work, and his prior credits include the 2015 musical Fun Home. For Amélie, he clearly looked to the original movie for inspiration, while putting his own touch on the costumes themselves.

In the interest of providing some variety in my reviews, I’ve once again chosen to focus on a single costume; this time, it’s the main costume worn by Phillipa Soo as the titular Amélie. Let’s take a look:

For much of the musical, Amélie is outfitted in this ensemble. It’s a black-and-red checkerboard skirt that is almost floor-length, with a floral top and a light red sweater. The red in the sweater and in the skirt match, while the blouse is a bit paler to allow the floral design to stick out a little bit more. It catches the eye because much of the scenic design (also done by Mr Zinn) is a bit washed out, and the color palate is in shades of blue and green. Many of the other costumes for the production are similarly designed to contrast with the red of the main character.

Normally, I’m not a huge fan of mixing and matching patterns, and I’m not entirely sure I think it works here–however, I do think that I understand why Mr Zinn made this design decision. The character of Amélie has been extraordinarily sheltered her entire life, and even living in Paris (fashion capital of the world to many) has not imbued her with a tremendous sense of style. Instead, this is a character who would make her fashion choices based on what was comfortable and appealing to her, rather than necessarily dressing to please those around her. And in that sense, this costume does a great job of helping to reveal a little of the character’s personality.

As I’ve noted in review after review, one of the most important things a costumer can do is ensure that their designs can be appreciated under the stage lighting. Here, Amélie is illuminated both with a standard spotlight and with a softer, blue-purple lighting. That imbues the skirt she’s wearing with a little bit of a dreamy quality; the light makes the black appear to take on the color of the lighting itself, while the red checkerboard squares are lightened and softened. This allows the audience to see a contrast between the skirt and the sweater which might not otherwise be apparent.

Let’s take a closer look at the blouse, because it’s an essential element of the costume that the main character spends so much of her time wearing:

The pattern of the blouse is a simple floral. The red background gives way to white and blue flowers that are somewhat delicate and dainty, but which still retain the visible hallmark of being flowers–that is to say, they are not abstract, but clearly resemble what they are supposed to resemble. The pattern is abstract, however, and the flowers do not repeat themselves in any meaningful fashion.

I actually do like this pattern in contrast to the skirt. While I’m still not sold on the skirt itself, this is a rare case where I think matching a non-repeating pattern like the floral blouse with a repeating pattern like the checkerboard skirt actually does provide a nice effect. The blouse is pretty and I can easily see it being available in either a Parisian department store or (knowing a little about the main character) some kind of thrift or consignment shop.

One thing I really like about the whole ensemble is how it matches with Young Amélie, another character, the 10-year old version of herself that appears at different junctures throughout the musical. Mr Zinn had a number of options for how to costume Young Amélie, but he chose to go the route of using the same rough color scheme with different patterns and one consistent design element. Take a look at Amélie and Young Amélie (Savvy Crawford) in this scene for an idea of what I’m talking about:

Young Amélie is costumed similarly to her older self, but the patterns are much different and a bit more childlike. Her skirt is a simple striped pattern, while her blouse is a geometric design that repeats across the garment. But noticeably, at least to me, the white of the polka dots sticks out as a kind of mirror image of the flowers on Amélie’s blouse. It’s as though the abstract design is the genesis of the older design, as though the clothing has matured at the same rate and time as the character herself.

I noted a moment ago that there was one element which was identical: it’s the red sweater that both of them are wearing and that is the closest thing to a replica of the movie’s costumes as I have reviewed in this production. It’s not a complicated garment or design, a simple cable sweater designed to provide some color and warmth, but I think it really is notable that both Amélie and Young Amélie wear identical sweaters in their shared scenes.

I like the use of a single garment to tie these characters together; it’s a subtle reminder that despite being distinct to the audience, they really are just different embodiments of the same character. While there are great differences between them, especially the age, there is this one design element (alongside the color scheme) that will always remind the audience that they are both an aspect of Amélie. Unlike other productions with a “split” character, I like that the costuming was subtly different while keeping consistent through the use of a single piece of costuming.

Amélie as a production has not gotten rave reviews on Broadway, and it was stunningly snubbed for any Tony nominations despite a great cast and interesting scenic design. While the costuming is simple, I still think that it is neat in the way that it helps to tell the story, especially regarding the parallels between Amélie and her younger self. That’s not something you always see on Broadway, and I’m glad I was able to review it.

Like I promised, today’s was a shorter review of a single set of costumes. I’m reshuffling my show queue this weekend and will hopefully have a few more reviews to put out in short order. As ever, my dear readers, your feedback is wanted and welcome! Just drop an Ask, a Submission, or a message and I’ll do my best to respond!

Until next time, stay tuned!