My good friend Silas adores the series Your Lie in April and asked if I would be interested in cosplaying Kaori, the main character. I agreed, but on the condition that I didn’t have to make the costume. Although I have the sewing skills to make everything on her school uniform, it would be a pretty time consuming project – lined blazer with notched lapels, collared shirt, pleated skirt with a pattern I would have to make – no thanks! We shopped around for a pre-made cosplay and found a this one from Etsy seller TailorShop88 for a moderate price ($61.99 USD).
Disclosure: This is NOT a sponsored review.
The shop offers general sizing but also does custom orders. I decided to just go with the general sizing and went with a small, based on my measurements and rounding up a bit just in case, with the idea of being able to tailor the costume to fit me better if I had to. It took about 4-5 weeks from the order date to me receiving the package. Keeping in mind production time, overseas shipping time and clearing customs, we ordered well in advance just to be sure the costume would arrive before the photoshoot date.
Upon arrival, the costume was in a poly shipping bag and all the pieces were packed neatly in plastic wrap. The seller also included information on what to do if the sizing was incorrect. It was all very helpful and gave me a positive feeling as a customer.
The costume came with 4 pieces.
- Skirt: The material is a lightweight polyester, which feels okay but a little cheap to the touch. It is screen accurate with stripes printed/painted on. Some areas have mistakes where the stripes don’t look as neat, but not in a way where it would be obvious in photos unless you were looking for it. The pleats are neat and true to the character, though personally I would prefer them to be “deeper” since I have wide hips. The skirt closes with a regular zipper and velcro on the waistband.
- Blouse: Probably the best made piece of the whole outfit. The weight of the shirt fabric feels just right for this type of garment, and is a rich beautiful baby blue. The inside seams are all serged, and there’s some great craftsmanship with the collar, sleeves, and cuffs. I was worried the sleeves would not be long enough for my arms, but they’re perfect.
- Blazer: Matches perfectly with the skirt fabric. The blazer is lined with a lightweight polyester lining fabric. I would prefer something a bit more heavy, but it does make this costume easier to wear in warm temperatures. The construction on the jacket is quite nice, especially on the lapels. The school crest is an embroidered patch on the breast of the jacket which looks very professional.
- Tie: The color blocking on this looks so beautiful! The stripes were top-stitched onto the red fabric, but it looks very nice. This piece is well-made.
This costume is a good match for the price point. It’s not the cheapest Kaori uniform, but also not as expensive as buying an official one from a Japanese vendor. Although I have different preferences for fabric choices in school uniforms, it is something I am willing to compromise on to save myself the time of making one of similar design. I am also pleased with how this costume looks in multiple settings (indoor photo studio, outdoor garden) and look forward to future photoshoots cosplaying as Kaori! I recommend this uniform for cosplaying as her, and would definitely be willing purchase from TailorShop88 again in the future, at least for a simple school uniform.