When I make a new costume, I enjoy selecting a favorite reference picture and then
trying to reproduce that one image as accurately as I can. For my first attempt at
making a Mara Jade costume, I chose the cover art from the first issue of the Mara
Jade: By the Emperor's Hand comic series. That picture of Mara, looking so confident
in front of the Emperor and a squad of storrmtroopers, was exactly the way I imagined
her.... so I just had to make a costume based on that image!
My Mara Jade costuming obsession didn't end there, however. I also liked the
way that Mara is portrayed on the INSIDE of the comic books. And, after talking to
author Timothy Zahn about it, I found that he prefers the way she looks in the interior
art. You can't argue with the Maker, so it was time to get back to work! This time
I searched through all of my comic books, and I soon found that it was going to be
very difficult to pick one particular reference image to work from. Each artist has
their own opinion of how a character should look, and the details in their artwork
often changed from one image to the next. I finally settled on a combination of costume
details that I really liked, and I set about making Mara Jade 2.0, the hooded version.
I was much happier with the way this costume came out. It is more comfortable to
wear because the fabric has more stretch, I like being able to pull up the head wrap,
and it was fun to make the holdout blaster.
But, as everyone knows... once you start a costume, it will never be truly finished.
There are still pieces that I know I can improve. And so, my quest to create the
perfect Mara Jade costume shall continue...