ArcaneArchery
 


Costume :Scarecrow
Variant :Arkham Asylum
Source :Batman
Progress :Complete
Worn At :London MCM Expo Comic Con October 2013


Costume Photos

Full costume

Scarecrow

Mask close up

Syringe claw

Scarecrow

Glowing wires

Coming to get you

Finished costume - trial run

Preview

Gauntlet assembly

Mask detail

Full body reference

 


Costume Information

General
Cost : £180
Awards : Cosplay Island Showcase 1st December 2013
Time Taken : 3 months initially, plus 2 months on improvements

Description
Worn to:
London MCM Comic Con October 2013
London MCM Comic Con May 2014 (including Saturday masquerade)
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I'm planning this for the October 2013 MCM event in London but I may have left it a bit late as I am quite slow at making costumes.

I’ve chosen this costume for several reasons other than the fact that I like the design and thought that the Scarecrow sections of Arkham Asylum were really well done. I like costumes that have masks as it makes it easier to look like the character and hopefully easy to recognise (but also harder to breathe). I wanted a costume that would give me a chance to try using electronics and I have seen people online that have used EL wire for the Scarecrow’s gauntlet so am planning to try this. Also, there always seems to be a large number of DC characters at events so it should be fairly easy to find groups for photo shoots. Finally this will work well as a Halloween costume too, which will be useful if I ever get invited to a Halloween party.

30-Dec-2013 Update:

The hardest parts of the costume were the gauntlet and mask as it was difficult working out exactly how to achieve the right look and deciding on which materials to use. It was the first time that I have used craft foam and EL wire but both sections came out OK in the end. It was also quite painful sewing all of those large jute stitches onto the fabric sections, as it tends to give you rope burn on your fingers after a while. Speaking of rope burn it was also very difficult to tie a hangman’s noose and I spent about an hour trying to get that part right. The whole costume was fairly difficult though but it is only the second costume that I have made from scratch.

The easiest part was making the loincloths, as these were just rectangular pieces of hessian rolled over at the top to make a tube for the belt to go through.

The main thing that I learnt from making this costume is that I need to use more layers of PVA glue to seal craft foam as my gauntlet ended up getting scratched fairly easily when I was wearing it at the convention.

Despite what I said about masks earlier this was actually my easiest mask to breath in so far (although that is not saying much). It was still not very comfortable to wear though as the spray painting mask part was too tight and put a lot of pressure on my cheekbones and the bridge of my nose, leaving me with a bruised feeling by the end of the weekend. It also caused the theatre mask part to sit too far away from my face leaving me with tunnel vision and making it hard to navigate around the convention without bumping into people. I think I will need to cut away some of the edges of the spray painting mask where it was pressing against my face and that should hopefully ease the pressure and cause the eye holes to sit closer to my face, thus improving the vision. Overall I enjoyed wearing the costume and received a much better reaction than I expected. This has encouraged me to try entering this into the masquerade at the London MCM event in May 2014. I will try to make the mask changes before then as well as repairing and improving the gauntlet slightly by cutting away the excess EL wire from inside the wrist section. I’m just slightly concerned that this might break the wire and stop it lighting up. If I do this early enough though it will give me time to order more wire if required.

Comments

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what day are you planing to wear this at october expo ?

by nurseaiddy on Friday, 20 September, 2013 - 18:42
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If I can get this completed in time I will be wearing it on the Saturday of the October Comic Con

by ArcaneArchery on Friday, 20 September, 2013 - 20:51
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Looking great so far!!

by Afireinsidegirl on Friday, 27 September, 2013 - 22:48
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This looks AWESOME, but also creepy as fuck. Bring that syringe hand near me and I'll cry.

by TheEmoEmu on Monday, 14 October, 2013 - 20:27
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Thanks for the comment on my Nurse. This is looking pretty swish so far, good job. :)

by Pudding on Tuesday, 15 October, 2013 - 20:34
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Flipping epic job! Defo need a pic with you at Expo!

by LilMuseSash on Tuesday, 22 October, 2013 - 01:55
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very badass! good job!

by Mothfox on Thursday, 31 October, 2013 - 23:54
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Hey man, I'm the guy who was taking photos of you on sunday i put some of you up on my FB page www.facebook.com/machinegorilla :D

by VicVII on Friday, 1 November, 2013 - 17:59
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Epic Scarecrow! Awesome job :)

by FierceAndRed on Saturday, 2 November, 2013 - 19:32
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This is super cool, really nice work. :)

by Nesabi on Sunday, 17 November, 2013 - 18:28
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congratulations on the showcase
brilliant work

by SamanthaKaiba on Sunday, 1 December, 2013 - 23:34
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Grats on the showcase :) awesome costume!!

by Afireinsidegirl on Tuesday, 3 December, 2013 - 23:06
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This is amazing! ^_^ Its a shame we didnt run into each other at MCM but id love to get a shot with you sometime in the fure.
I loved reading about your working progress, its turned out amazing

by Moonlight_Requiem on Friday, 25 April, 2014 - 11:05
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Nice to see you again! The guy whose camera I used was Dave Collier on the MCM Facebook page - I did take loads!

by CosplayMutha on Saturday, 31 May, 2014 - 19:39
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Hey thanks for the comment on my Scarecrow, this is awesome and I will deffo be picking up some tips from your journal. :D If you're going to AmeChibi 2015 you should join our Arkham group, so far it's me and Zomboi BOTH being Scarecrow. Army of Dr. Cranes anyone? lol. ;P

by Pudding on Tuesday, 1 July, 2014 - 20:03
 

To-Do List

HoodHighComplete
TrousersHighComplete
MaskHighComplete
SleevesHighComplete
Syringe gauntletHighComplete
Rope nooseMediumComplete
LoinclothMediumComplete
Draw muscles on TshirtMediumComplete
Add electronics to gauntlet?LowComplete
Rope BeltLowComplete
Leather straps/beltsLowComplete
Make Hessian satchel to match costumeLowComplete

Shopping List

Leather straps 54" x4£22.20Bought
Jute twine 1m black£0.99Bought
Buckles x10£9.00Bought
Spray painting mask£5.69Bought
Extra EL wire components£13.29Bought
Theatre mask (for mask base)£4.74Bought
Natural cotton Tshirt£3.24Bought
Waxed linen cord with needle£2.95Bought
Black packing foam£8.49Bought
Brown fabric pen£3.49Bought
Extra 10 Buckles£6.50Bought
Leather straps 54" x3£17.70Bought
EL wire kit - Orange£10.89Bought
Bandages£3.00Bought
Jute twine 50m natural£3.99Bought
Hessian - 1m£4.15Bought
Brown polycotton drill fabric - 5m£24.95Bought
Plastic test tubes (orange) x3£4.09Bought
Rope 14mm - 5 meters£9.89Bought
20ml Syringes x4£2.19Bought
Craft Foam£2.40Bought
EL Wire Replacement 4x1M£12.10Bought
Total£175.93

Journal

New Electronics (Posted 4th May 2014)

Today I removed the old EL wire from the gauntlet, which had started randomly shorting out, and replaced it with four new pieces of EL wire. The new stuff seems to be working ok so hopefully it will light up successfully during the masquerade. This time I tried gluing the weak points of the wires in place so that they do not get moved too much when I put the gauntlet on, as I think this is what caused the old wires to start malfunctioning.

I decided to use some of the leftover old wire to enhance the mask with glowing eyes. I did this by adding a figure of eight loop of wire around the eyeholes. The wire will then connect to a spare inverter that I will clip to the neck of my T-shirt which will then be hidden from view by my hood. I just need to remember to avoid using the strobe setting on the eye wire as it is not pleasant with the flickering wire so close to your face.

Achievement Unlocked – more belts than Lulu (Posted 22nd April 2014)

After ordering another leather strap I have been able to make three more belts, which brings my total up to 20 hand-made belts. I have also added some extra belt loops to the costume to hold these new belts in place.

I will now have 13 belts on the trouser legs plus the standard belt around the waist so there is quite a bit of weight on the trousers now.

Gauntlet repairs (Posted 23rd February 2014)

I repainted the scratched sections of the gauntlet and then resealed it with lots more coats of PVA glue, as I don’t think I used enough the first time. Hopefully the paint will not be worn away so easily the next time I wear it. Unfortunately the EL wire has become a bit intermittent so I think I will replace it with new wire if I get a place in the masquerade as I don’t want to find out that it no longer lights up when I go on stage.

Mask modifications (Posted 9th February 2014)

I cut away some of the plastic around the inside edge of the filter mask so that the complete mask should sit closer to my face and hopefully will not dig into my nose and cheeks so much the next time I wear it.

Enhancements started (Posted 8th February 2014)

I ordered two more long leather straps and another pack of buckles so that I can make some more belts for this costume, as I felt that 12 belts was not enough. The reference picture shows a lot of belts on each limb and while I may not end up with exactly the same number of belts, it should hopefully look ok when I enter it in the masquerade.

Bag completed (Posted 23rd October 2013)

I managed to finish making the satchel to match the costume today. I will now be able to carry around my camera, food and drink without it drawing attention away from the costume.

The toggles are made out of small pieces of arrow shaft that have been cut and sanded into shape. I then drill holes in the toggles so that I could sew them to the main bag, and then added buttonholes to the flap so that the bag can be fastened. The strap of the bag has a piece of camping mat foam inside it, positioned at the midpoint so that it will be more comfortable on my shoulder.

Trial run (Posted 20th October 2013)

I tried on the full costume today to get a clearer idea of how long it would take to put on. With all the assorted belts to do up it took around 20 minutes to put on. Once I had the costume on I took some photos so I could see how I looked and work out if anything needed adjusting. Overall I am quite pleased with the result although it is not perfect. The main thing that I could improve is to add some extra holes to the arm and leg belts as a couple of them slipped down during the photoshoot.

Instant muscles (Posted 19th October 2013)

Instant muscles

As I don’t really want to walk around bare-chested (especially in October) I bought a natural cotton coloured t-shirt and then drew on the muscle definition using a brown fabric pen. It actually looks a bit too muscled for Scarecrow but it was difficult to work out how to make it look scrawnier.

Mask nearing completion (Posted 14th October 2013)

After putting it off for ages I have finally got around to gluing the Hessian mask over the base mask. I think I was worried that it would not come out correctly but it worked out ok. It may not be 100% accurate but hopefully it is close enough to the source material to be recognised.

I still need to do something with the excess Hessian around the back of the mask. I was thinking of making a cotton lining to keep it from scratching my face but now I think it might be quicker and easier to just cut away all of the excess material and then use some watered down PVA glue around the raw edges to stop it fraying.

Lots of stitching (Posted 13th October 2013)

Another machine-stitching day today. I stitched some thin tubes of fabric that I will be cutting into small sections and using as belt loops for both the main waist belt and the smaller belts that go around the arms and legs. I will just have a single belt loop for each of the arm and leg belts just to stop them slipping too far during the day and I will try to keep these fairly discreet.

I also stitched together the majority of a kind of hessian satchel, lined with some of the leftover polycotton. If I can get this completed in time I will use it to keep my camera bag, drinks and snacks in as well as using it to store my gauntlet when I am using my camera (I don’t think the syringe fingers will work that well when taking photos).

Multitasking (Posted 12th October 2013)

I completed lots of smaller tasks on various parts of the costume today:

* Finished sewing the remaining 5 arms belts
* Added foam rings around the openings of the gauntlet to hold in place more securely
* Decided there is not enough room for the battery pack in the gauntlet so will be attaching this to one of the arm belts – it makes it easier to turn it on and off as well
* Made the loincloths from two pieces of Hessian with a rolled over part at the top for the belt to go through
* Came up with a pattern for a satchel/bag that will blend in with my costume and then drew pattern onto the fabric and cut the parts out

More mask progress (Posted 11th October 2013)

I cut the hessian for the mask and carefully worked out where the holes for the eyes and filters needed to go. I then added black jute stitches to the face to match the reference pictures. I also sewed some extra folds (I think they are called darts?) into the mask using normal thread to improve the overall shape.

Tying a noose (Posted 9th October 2013)

I just spent the best part of an hour trying to tie a hangman’s noose. It took a while to understand what the guides and videos were getting at and then when I thought I had it right I noticed that the noose was far too small to go over my head, so I undid it. My next attempt was the right size but I got the second to last stage wrong and when I tried to tighten the knot at the end I just ended up pulling the loop through and watching it unravel everywhere. I eventually got the hang (ha,ha) of the knot but it took about five more attempts to get the size of the noose correct as it kept on coming out far too big. And I thought that this was going to be one of the quicker jobs of this cosplay.

Sewing leather (Posted 8th October 2013)

I spent most of the MCM podcast sewing loops in five of my leather belts to hold the buckles in place. The leather was too thick for my needle to get through and as I did not have an awl I had to use a miniature hand drill to make the holes first. I was then able to get the leather needle through the two layers of leather and used waxed linen cord to hold the pieces together. This was quite painful, especially when I jabbed myself with the leather needle. I still have five more of these loops to sew as well but I will let my fingers recover a bit before I start on those.

Arms completed (Posted 7th October 2013)

I completed the arms by cutting a ragged edge around both openings. I will let this fray naturally although the fabric that I am using does not seem to fray much.

Gauntlet assembly (Posted 6th October 2013)

I glued the test tubes and brackets to the main part of the gauntlet and threaded the EL wire through all of the holes that I drilled previously. Now I just need to double check that there is enough wire between the gauntlet and syringes before hot gluing each wire in place. The excess wire will be coiled around the inside of the gauntlet which will then be lined with soft foam to hold it securely in place on my arm (and to hold the battery pack). I’m quite pleased with the way this is progressing as it has been in separate pieces for a long time but now I can finally see the overall effect. Also, I might actually complete this cosplay in time…

Trousers nearly complete (Posted 5th October 2013)

Last weekend I stitched the two halves of the trousers together and then during the week I finished adding all of the large jute stitches to the seams. Today I hemmed the waist and fly so I just need to add the buttons to the fly, add the belt loops and cut a ragged edge at the end of the trouser legs.

Gauntlet components painted (Posted 4th October 2013)

Finished painting the gauntlet components with silver acrylic paints and then sealed them with watered down PVA glue. They are now ready for the final assembly.

Syringe fingers almost complete (Posted 2nd October 2013)

For the needles I cut up some cheap biro refills and removed the ink before sanding and painting them silver. These were then glued into the nozzles that I made from some small pieces of arrow shaft that had been cut to size and drilled out. I used PVA glue for this and added a small drop of glue to the end of each tube to seal in any remaining ink. All I need to do now is add some soft black foam around the opening so that they grip my fingers more securely but I can’t do this until the EL wire has been threaded through.

Mask progress (Posted 30th September 2013)

Last weekend I sprayed expanding foam around the eyes of the theatre mask that I will be using as the base of the Scarecrow’s mask and today I shaped and smoothed this using a hotwire cutter, sandpaper and a curved file. This will need to be sealed and painted and will then be covered in Hessian. The image shows the filter mask placed on top of the base mask but I will eventually be cutting a space in the base mask for the filter mask to slot into.

Gauntlet started (Posted 30th September 2013)

I finally got around to working on the main gauntlet pieces. I started by cutting the ends off a lemonade bottle and then glued a layer of camping mat around it with impact adhesive. This was then covered with a thinner layer of black craft foam which I had scored grooves into using a pencil. The ends then had another layer of craft foam glued around them. I also created six craft foam brackets to hold the test tubes in place one the gauntlet has been painted up.

Mask filters completed (Posted 25th September 2013)

After spaying the mask filter holders and the new end caps with two layers of Plasticote paint I glued the end caps into the filter holders and screwed them back onto the mask. They look quite effective and are definitely better than just using the ends of the filter cartridges which have more of circular a grid pattern on them.

Stitching progress (Posted 24th September 2013)

This is the progress that I made on the trouser stitches while listening to the MCM Podcast – Yes, it took nearly 2 hours sewing on those 53 stitches…

Filter end caps (Posted 23rd September 2013)

These are the replacement filter caps for the gas mask as I wanted to make it look more like the reference images than the filters that came with the orignal mask. They were made by cutting out two discs from a thin sheet of black plastic and then carefully measuring out nine equally spaced holes which I then drilled through. The raised circular pieces are made from craft foam (the outer rings were already in the mask to cushion the filter cartridges which I removed to make breathing easier).

Leg sections (Posted 22nd September 2013)

I finished sewing the pieces to make the two leg sections today. I now need to sew all of the jute stitches into them before joining the two halves together. This is going to take a while…

Added stitches to arm peices (Posted 17th September 2013)

I spent the last two evenings sewing the large jute stitches over the seams of the arm pieces. The jute thread is not the easiest material to work with and leaves your fingers feeling rope burned but the finished result is quite effective.

Trouser pattern (Posted 15th September 2013)

I adjusted the trouser patter, broke it up into the different segments, transferred them to the fabric and finally cut them all out ready for sewing together.

A bit of everything (Posted 15th September 2013)

I did some minor painting work on the syringes/test tubes and started making the syringe nozzles out of some small pieces of wooden arrow shaft. These will need to be carefully drilled out so that they can fit over the existing syringe nozzles and to allow the pen refill ‘needles’ to be inserted in the other end.

In addition I have started adding the large jute stitches to the hood which looks quite effective but is painfully slow to do.

Test tubes progress (Posted 14th September 2013)

The progress on the test tubes that will go on the wrist part of the gauntlet. I still need to sand and paint the transparent bits at the end where the wires will come out

Hood and trouser progress (Posted 14th September 2013)

I stitched the two halves of the hood together as well as the test versions of my trouser pattern. The hood is now ready for the large jute stitches to be added while the trouser pattern just needs some minor adjustments before I start on the real trousers.

I also did some more work on the gauntlet test tubes and syringes, cutting more sections of craft foam and attaching them with impact adhesive. The syringe fingers are progressing fairly well but I still need to make the needles and nozzles and then thread the EL wire through the holes that you can see in the sides.

Progress! (Posted 8th September 2013)

I machine stitched the arms and hood sections together but for now I have left the two halves of the hood separate and the sleeves open so that I can add the large stitches with the Hessian thread more easily. There are a few curved seams that I will need to hand stitch first but the costume is finally starting to show a bit more progress.

Cutting (Posted 6th September 2013)

I finished drawing and cutting out the pattern pieces for the arms and hood sections. The picture shows the hood pieces all matched up ready for pinning and sewing.

Pattern work (Posted 2nd September 2013)

Patterns – one of my least favourite parts of making a cosplay. I spent ages looking at reference images to try to make sure that the joins on ‘patchwork’ pieces of clothing matched the in-game model of the Scarecrow. Trying to find pictures of him from behind was very difficult. I then spent a couple of evenings drawing out the duplicate patterns for the hood and sleeves, as I need 3 versions of each – one for the left hand parts, one for the right hand parts (which will be cut differently form the left) and then a master version of each piece which has the ‘map’ that shows how to stick all of the pieces back together correctly. I made sure that I labelled each piece clearly so that it will make it easier to match the pieces up. I then transferred the patterns to the huge piece of brown fabric (I bought way to much) ready for cutting.

Craft foam (Posted 22nd August 2013)

After making paper versions of the patterns I cut out the shapes needed for the craft foam that will be wrapped around the syringe fingers. These are basically just rectangles with a small oblong window cut out of them so that you can see the glowing contents inside. I then painted these with silver acrylic paint, leaving visible brushstrokes for that brushed steel effect. I will create the circular end pieces once the side pieces have been glued around the syringe, to make sure that I get the diameter correct.

Fabric and test pieces (Posted 20th August 2013)

I purchased the brown cotton drill fabric that will be used for the majority of the clothing and finished ordering most of the other materials that I need for the costume. The remaining components should be fairly easy to get hold of and will not require much modification so I don’t need to buy them just yet.

I also modified my test patterns made from an old sheet to get the shape of the hood correct and to make the arm fit better.

Syringes and more test tubes (Posted 19th August 2013)

I started work on the gauntlet by cutting two of the remaining orange plastic test tubes in half and sawing the open ends of the syringes off after removing the plungers. The half test tubes were then hot glued to the inside of the syringes to make it look like they contain something orange. A hole was then drilled in one side of the syringe and test tubes so that the EL wire can be inserted later. I had to re-glue a couple of the test tubes as the force of the drill caused them to become unstuck.

Test tubes (Posted 18th August 2013)

The test tubes will be added to the wrist part of the gauntlet to look like containers for the fear toxins or whatever it is that the scarecrow injects with his gauntlet. I drilled holes in the end of two of the orange plastic test tubes for the EL wire to be threaded through. A third tube had holes drilled through one side and out of the other as one tube has two wires coming out of it. Unfortunately the first time that I tried this the drill pushed through the first side and smashed the second side when it hit. I had to change to using a hand drill to drill the holes in the one spare test tube as I only had six and need two of them for the syringes fingers

Components (Posted 16th August 2013)

I now have most of the components that I need for the costume

Scarecrow Begins (Posted 20th July 2013)

I bought the first component for the costume today - nothing too exciting, just a few sheets of craft foam from Hobbycraft for adding detail to the gauntlet. This is the first time I have used this material so it will be interesting to see how I get on with it.