On Pins and Broken Needles

Kiki (Kiki's Delivery Service)

Character Name:
Kiki's Delivery Service
Costume Variation:
Fashion / Street wear
Debuted At:
YetiCon 2016


  • © Studio Ghibli
  • © Studio Ghibli

Costumes Notes

I fell in love with the story of Kiki's Delivery Service when I first watched it: it's such a sweet coming of age / slice of life story with the usual Studio Ghibli charm. While I never really planned on cosplaying Kiki (I have many friends who have done a fabulous job already), I saw the Jiji purse on the Hot Topic website and quickly decided that I need to make Kiki so I could justify buying it.

Because I like making variations (and I no longer can pass for 20 let alone 13), I didn't want to make a direct cosplay, but something a little more fitted and street-wearable. I quickly found this this gorgeous blackberry cotton sateen at JoAnn's, and chose McCall's M6834 as the pattern because of the fullness of the skirt.

I made up a muslin mock-up of the bodice to check for fit (everything was good) before tackling the good fabric. And despite buying the length of fabric required by the pattern, I seem to have a meter and a half extra once I cut everything out. The dress assemble easily even with the fancy internal box pleat / gores that make up the fullness of the skirt. (This is a fantastic way to add fullnes to a skirt without adding a lot of bulk to the waist. They're just really annoying to iron. Kiki is now on of my least favourite costumes to press.)

The headband bow was surprisingly annoying to make because of simple things that could have been prevented with forethought and a bit more time. I was unable to source quickly/locally a wide headband that was smooth, so I spent an evening making it smooth using hotglue to fill in the ridges. I then covered it in the red satin (leftover from Delphine). But I made the stupid mistake of not cutting the fabric on the bias, so there's no stretch and subsequently it's not near as smooth/fitted along the edges as I'd like. Meanwhile, the bow itself came together quite nicely and easily and was just sewn onto the headband.

The shoes were a pair of patent red pumps that I originally bought for a costume that hasn't been made yet and used briefly for Ember.

WIP Photos

  • Despite buying the correct amount of fabric according to the pattern, I always seem to have excess.


  • © 2016 Dream Land Photography
  • © 2016 Dream Land Photography
  • © 2016 Dream Land Photography
  • © 2016 Dream Land Photography
  • © 2016 Dream Land Photography
  • © 2016 Dream Land Photography
  • © 2016 Dream Land Photography