Eloraborealis avatar

Eloraborealis
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I can still remember my sister going to her first Expo dressed as Haruhi, and thinking: "Is she really going out in that?!". Yes, I'm ashamed to admit that at first I was one of those judgemental types who had that that typical preconception of conventions and dressing up. Oh how foolish I was! Somehow she convinced me to tag along the next year, and ever since then I have never looked back! I fell in love with the whole thing, and vow to keep on cosplaying until I run out of costumes! (or money, depending on which comes first)

*****


In general my role in the cosplay-making process is crafting accessories and props (as I am pants at sewing, I leave most of that to my sister). So far my most ambitious projects have been Kotake and Koumes' (LoZ OoT) head-dresses and Juliet Starling's (Lollipop Chainsaw) chainsaw, all of which took days of work, but I am dead chuffed with them! I'd say my speciality is working on a small scale with clay or fimo; I'm especially proud of the digivices I made for me and my sister for our Digimon group!

*****


My all-time dream cosplays would be Samus Aran's Varia Suit (Metroid) and True form Midna (LoZ TP). I probably wouldn't be able to pull them off, for a start I'm not blue, but there's only one way to find out! I'm nowhere near that kind of cosplay standard yet, but give it a few years and I shall have a crack at it!

Last online 2 years ago

Hyrule

Joined: 12th Aug 2010

Completed costumes: 42

Photos uploaded: 226

Progress journals: 26

Events attended: 22

http://eloraborealis.deviantart.com/

Item: Blue Shell
Source: Mario Kart
Time: The time taken to watch series one of Spice and Wolf, and most of Kim Possible XD
Difficulty: 4/10

One of the most fun props to make, and also one of the cheapest! (all I needed to buy was more PVA glue, there's quite a few layers of paper mache!) It was so simple to make, anyone could do it, seriously! First I paper-mached a balloon, then I cut out the leg and head holes and added the brim around the middle and edges. Then I padded out certain sections, like each hexagon on the top and each stripe on the underside to give it more texture as they aren't supposed to be flat (then more paper mache). Then I added the horns (paper mache again) and then the wings (more paper mache). Painting wise, I used acrylics, it was very fiddly to paint the inside black mind you!

Overall I really like how this turned out! My only regrets are that my balloon was a bit warped, so it isn't as symmetrical as I'd have hoped for. Also, I realised only after painting the yellow underside that the colour was off, I was using a green shell charm I had as my reference and didn't realise it was off colour. I swear this thing got more attention than me at Amecon! XD

Item: Bob-Omb
Source: Mario Kart
Time: A couple of hours maximum, plus drying time!
Difficulty: 2/10

Bob here started life as a football! All I had to do was get an empty roll of sellotape, cut out a circle to glue over it, paint it light blue, glue that to the painted ball, and then add a paper mache wick, two card eyes and two paper-mache feet, simple! I didn't get enough time to make a cog for him, but at least it was easier to hold him without one!

Sadly Bob's foot fell off in Transit to Amecon, and as I was in a hurry to glue it back on the super glue dribbled over him, so he doesn't look as good anymore, but I still love him dearly! He was so quick and easy to make, and as all I needed to buy was a football from a pound shop, very cheap too! Next time my Mario group cosplay again I will probably finish him off with a cog!

Item: Juliets Chainsaw
Source: Lollipop Chainsaw
Time: Waaaaaaaaay too long, including one spray paint fume-filled all nighter :P
Difficulty: 8/10

This was definitely a learning curve, I usually work with small props so this was a big challenge for me! I would NOT recommend using the materials or method I used to make anything like this, it isn't a very durable process, as we have found out, but we learn from our mistakes! I basically started with a base 'hilt' from a toy chainsaw, and built onto it with air dry clay, adding the screws and stuff with clay too. I used spray paints for most of the base and the blade, I totally gassed out my conservatory from the fumes as I used so much! :P The blade was made from mount board sandwiched between craft foam (from camping mats, a great source!). The pink bits stuck on the blade were adhesive gems found in a craft store and spray painted.

Obviously the molding around the 'hilt' took the most time, but it was somewhat relaxing! Cutting out all the ridges on the belt of the blade took forever too, as I had to do it twice! This prop was made for my gorgeous Juliet wife Chloe, aka. AlienQueen! Sadly it has disintegrated now, but at least it did get a lot of use! :)

Item: Gym badges, Pokeballs and Geodude sculpture
Source: Pokemon
Time: The time it takes to watch the first 3 seasons of Adventure Time!
Difficulty: 3/10

Badges: Made from Fimo Air Dry Light, painted with acrylics, simple enough! There's a lot of inconsistencies with the size of the badges so I settled with about 3cm long give or take the shape!

Pokeballs: Made from polystyrene balls, painted with acrylics, and Fimo for the buttons. I used masking tape to mark out the patterns on the tops, but I wouldn't advise it as I took of flecks of the paint when I pulled the tape off. Also word of advice: DO NOT use spray paint on polystyrene, I had a bit of a blonde moment and learnt the hard way!

Geodude: I forgot to take progress pictures, so if you're interested in making one you'll have to try making sense of my description! I took a kids sponge football, carved out a mouth, stuck some metal wire through the middle to mark out the base of the arms and looped it at the ends for hands. Then I scrunched up some newspaper and put it on the wire (like a kebab!) to shape the arms, added some newspaper balls for hands and sausage shapes for fingers. I then textured the main body/ball by covering it in scrunched up newspaper and taping into place, and added some lumpy bits for eyebrows, etc. Next I covered the whole thing in paper mache (which took days to dry as it is sponge after all!), spray painted, and used acrylic paints for the mouth parts. I painted the eyes onto card and stuck them on so that they stood out a bit more. I also scratched him up with sand paper to add to the texture and make him look a little more like rock (sadly the only spray paint I could get was metallic, I was too lazy to hand paint!). And that's pretty much it! I do love my 'dude (who has been christened Gerald), he wasn't hard or expensive to make either, just time consuming! He's to 1:2 scale as I really wanted him to have a core but have a mouth carved out, and this was the biggest sponge ball I could find!

I only wore this costume for a couple of hours at Kita which was a shame, so I'm hopefully going to wear this again. Alas my bowler hat never arrived (and still hasn't, RAGE!), and I didn't have time to do the umbrella, so once I've done all this stuff I'll wear it out again fully completed!

Item: Stripes (Stocking's Katana)
Source: Panty & Stocking with Garterbelt
Time: 2-3 hours
Difficulty: 2/10

And the quartet is complete! (I know Panty and Stocking have two weapons each at some points, but their default is one so I'm sticking with that) There's not many good reference pictures of the sword, so I looked at what other cosplayers have done and tried to put the best bits together. I'm not very pleased with the sword at all though, it snapped in half and the tip got squished when I took it home from Uni (CURSE YOU PUBLIC TRANSPORT!) so had to be stripped apart and reinforced, which sucked. Also I painted it in the dark , thus what I thought was a light blue to match Backlace was in fact much darker (even though it looks light here, the sun does have its uses!) Basically, 'twas a bit of a fail, but I have not the time or effort to remake it! I used the same materials (foamboard, acrylics, spray paint) as with Backlace, never again am I using foamboard! XD

Item: Entō Jū (Emonzaemon's Guns)
Source: Katanagatari
Time: The entire length of FMA: Brotherhood ('twas on in the background)
Difficulty: 4/10

I made these for my friend who's cosplaying Emonzaemon to my Hitei from Katanagatari (I couldn't have him let the side down, so I offered to make them!). They're made by exactly the same method as my Scanty guns (one of which even has the same base), only I had to add some funky tassels. These are simply ribbon, with short sections of that feathery trim you get in craft stores glue to the bottom, and obviously a bead shoved on there too. I quite like how these turned out, however I'm a bit annoyed I couldn't find gold hoops in time to attach the ribbon to the guns (I found them in my local shop after I'd already just superglued, RAGE!). I think my friend owes me a hell of a lot of chicken for this! XD

PS. Although you can't see too well in the photo (the sun was too bright D:), the ribbon changes colour at the bottom near the beads, I used watered-down fabric paints for that!

Item: Kongikus Lantern
Source: Muramasa - The Demon Blade
Time: 4-5 hours
Difficulty: 5/10

I'm pretty proud of this, as it started life as the most random list of items EVER (a lampshade, curtain hooks, overflow pipe, curtain ties, etc!)! This was for my sister, she made my kimono for Yuzuruha so it was only fair. Only she only went and BROKE IT! She dropped it on stage, thus there is a tear in the lampshade bit, which sucks! She definately owes me after all the hard work I put in!

The process was simple for this, but hard to explain, so I'll just make a few points. The actual way the lampshade and the hook & loop bits is not the small card rectangles, as it's attached by cord knotted under the cone, if that makes any sense, for added strength. The cream ball bit is just modelling clay, to secure the hoop bits together, hence why it isn't quite spherical! Also, the structure isn't actually attached to the pole at all, they are only hooked together (like the design I must add, not because I'm lazy!), it fell off on stage only because my sister is STOOPID and twisted it so the hooks unlinked!

Oh, as you can probably tell, the lantern lights up, there's a short string of white fairy lights in the middle, I thought it was a nice touch! :D

Until my exams are over I'm unable to start doing any hard-core cosplay progress, which sucks. However I'm using this revision period to order various bits and bobs, so I have everything ready to start on! I'm trying to rely less on my sister's sewing skills for this costume, so I'm going to do a fair bit of customisation. As it stands I have ordered/already got the foundations (i.e. the top, leggings and shoes) and the glasses, which need some heavy editing to look like hers. Next up is the hat!

Item: Double Gold Spandex (Kneesock's scythes)
Source: Panty & Stocking with Garterbelt
Time: hard to tell, most of it was waiting for spray paint to dry!
Difficulty: 4/10

Well that's 3 out of 4 Panty and Stocking character weapons down, only one more to go! (I will probably do a Stocking some time, so it's got to happen!) Anyway, back to the topic at hand! I used my arch nemesis mountboard to cut out the main shapes, and craft foam for the smaller ones, all of which were spray painted and super glued together. I found the sticks in a 99p store (bargain!) which I spray painted and attached with yet more super glue and duct tape. From a distance they look alright, but from close up they are so scruffy, the damn wind blew all the yellow shapes on top of each other when I was drying them outside, so they all stuck together! I managed to salvage them but the paint job looks lousy, it was the last bloody coat as well! Even so, I still quite like these, I recon if it weren't for the bloody wind they would be my favourite weapons so far!

PS. Sorry about the quality of the photo being so pants, I completely forgot to photograph them properly before letting my sister cart them around Expo, and they are now in serious need of repair D:

Item: Double Gold Lacy Tanga (Scanty's Revolvers)
Source: Panty & Stocking with Garterbelt
Time: 3-4 hours
Difficulty: 3/10

I really wanted to make these the same way as my Backlace version 2, in other words from scratch, however due to Uni work I thought I'd keep it simple. I started with two water pistols and used Fimo to add on the distinctive shaped hammers, cover up some of the detailing on the pistol and to build up the top of the barrel. Once that had dried and was glued in place, I spray painted the base black colour, and then painted the yellow lines around the edges. I quite like how these turned out, apart from the really wobbly yellow lines I did, from afar they look alright but from close up you'd think I was inebriated when I painted them! The hardest part was finding out what the design was on the barrel of the guns, it changed in every reference I could find, and in some didn't even exist! Improvisation for the win!

My Kneesocks is the one making the clothing, so I can't say too much about the progress on them, but so far so good! We met up the other day for a body paint and wig test run, we look hillarious! XD Anyway, seeing as I am in charge of weapons, I better talk about them! Scanty's revolvers are complete now, I shall upload a photo to my props page soon! I am currently cutting out Kneesock's scythes, I'm hoping to finish them in the next few days providing the weather holds up so I can spray paint!

Item: Backlace Version 2.0 (aka. Panty's Gun)
Source: Panty & Stocking with Garterbelt
Time: Much longer than it should have taken! XD
Difficulty: 6/10

Here it is, the new Backlace for my sister and her many Panty costumes (that girl is obsessed XD)! It is a vast improvement from the last one, as it's much more cartoonish and has a much more accurate shape. I'm still not 100% happy with it, as I buggered up one of the measurements so it isn't completely symmetrical, but you can only tell from certain angles so hopefully no one will notice! I made it from scratch, using the most frustrating material in the world: mountboard. Seriously kids, don't mistake it for foam like I did, they are not anything alike! But yes, I drew out the shapes for the side on mountboard twice (one for each side), and used strips of regular thin card to adhere the two sides together. Paint-wise I used white spray paint for the base and acrylic for the rest, same as the last one. Simple enough really, if only I hadn't made such a screw up!

Item: Death The Kid's Skateboard
Source: Soul Eater
Time: 2-3 hours
Difficulty: 3/10

This was a spur of the moment prop for my friend who is cosplaying Kid along with me and my sister as Liz and Patti. I had already offered to make him the guns but then remembered I still had my old skateboard from many years ago, and figured I'd throw it in too! It was in pretty bad shape anyway, so it's probably worth more now with my customisations! XD There isn't much to say on the actual making front, as all I did was use acrylic paints to paint the new design straight over the old one, but as for the wheels I used red nail varnish so that the paint will stay on (hopefully, we'll have to see what happens!)

Item: Tags/Crests
Source: Digimon Adventure
Time: 4-5 hours I recon
Difficulty: 4/10
Another pair of Digimon props, the pink one was for my sister's Kari cosplay and the green one was for my Mimi cosplay. These weren't half as fiddly as the Digivices thank the lord! I'm quite proud of them, but I wish I made them a little more 3 dimensional! Made of Fimo and painted with acrylics, as always!

I love doing paper mache, so this was the most fun part! I didn't really need to do this stage but as I don't have one of those hat stand things I need the hat to be strong and retain its shape when I stretch over the fabric. I've only done this once before and it worked pretty well, but the other hat had a round top, so anything could happen with these! As a back up though I will have to spray paint the hats, so I'm going to add a layer of white toilet tissue to give it some texture!

Ok, so not much has happened here, but I might as well put up an update! All I have done is unpick the strip at the base of the hat so it is all one level. Then I extended the side bits with card, why do they have to be so annoyingly oversized?! I have decided to make the side bits slightly further back on the hat to follow the shape of the brim of the base hat, as opposed to making them more like the artwork. I think this way the edges will be smoother, and hopefully look nicer!

Right, let's get this party started! I have been planning how to make these hats for a while (I need to make two, one for me and one for my sister), and finally I have most of the materials so I can get started! The base I am using for them are simple black fedora hats I picked up cheaply from good old Primark, fingers crossed they will work!

Poor old Malon has been sitting around on the 'In Progress' section for too long, I had almost forgotten about her! However now I've left Uni for the summer I figured I'd get cracking! I have had the dress patterns and wig for AGES, so I have no excuses now! I started work on the Bowser broach the other day, I'm making it in Fimo obviously as I am addicted to that stuff! Due to the rain I can't spray paint it gold just yet, but here's the unpainted version. I'm not particularly happy with it as I had to use fan art for a base as the official art was unclear, but it'll do for now!

Item: Digivices (original version)
Source: Digimon Adventure
Time: TOO LONG
Difficulty: 5/10

These are probably one of my favourite projects so far. I made two, for both me and my sister, for the 'Banana Cheesecake Pie Squad' Digimon group, such an epic name, I know! I do love them to pieces, they turned out really well considering I only had the one decent reference picture. Although not particularly complex, they were quite fiddly to make; the writing and shapes around the centre screen were a bitch to do! My only real issue with these is that they are both a little on the small side, and one ended up smaller than the other (Death the Kid OCD mode: ACTIVATED). Made out of Fimo (a cosplayers' best friend) and hand-painted.

Item: Blondie's Tomahawk
Source: Sucker Punch
Time: 2-3 hours
Difficulty: 3/10

A few words of advice: NEVER make a weapon for use at a con the night before! My poor axe head is wobbling all over the place now, but that's what I get for not letting the glue dry sufficiently! Aside from the last-minuteness of this prop, it turned out alright. The axe head is made of fimo and was spray-painted, and the handle was a kitchen roll tube which I cut, spliced and covered in paper mache, with a bit of faux leather wrapped around here and there to secure the bits together (not that it helped too much!). The colour scheme is a little off, but that was because I could only find that one shade of faux leather!

Item: Backlace (aka. Panty's Gun)
Source: Panty & Stocking with Garterbelt
Time: 1-2 hours
Difficulty: 2/10

This is just a temporary prop I made for my sister, but I thought I'd pop it up here anyway. As you may already know, Backlace has a very distinct shape (the barrel of the gun is the shape of pants, strangely enough), however I hadn't got the right materials nor the time to make it from scratch. I shall be making her a proper one in the next few months, goodness knows how it will turn out though! Anyhoo, back to this one, it's just a cheap plastic gun spray-painted white and then with blue trimmings added, easy as pie! Oh, and the little pink bow on the tip is just made from pink ribbon, it's so cute!
NOTE: This photo was taken after several cons worth of use, hence all the scuffs

Item: Visca's Rifle
Source: Fairy Tail
Time: Not too long
Difficulty: 3/10

This was a relatively simple paint job really, so there isn't much to say. The only real issue I had was getting the paint to stick (I used acrylic), which as you may be able to see was not completely resolved as it has chipped in a fair few places. The pre-bought base I used was a cheap cork rifle, as I was slap bang in the middle of exams at the time, so had no time to start from scratch. It's not that obvious but I accidently shaved off the tip of the barrel of the gun during transport when it slipped out of my bag and dragged along the floor, I'm such a fail! *facepalms*

SOMEHOW my sister (codename Eevee, my Kneesocks for this cosplay venture) has convinced me to let us do the demon/transformation versions of Scanty and Kneesocks instead of our original plan for the more demure school uniforms. This is either a very brave decision, or a very foolish one. Probably the latter as it will be worn in October! Wish us luck! :S

That's right, they are FIVE AND A HALF INCHES HIGH! Next to them are a pair of my regular 4 inch high heels so you can see the difference! Before you ask, no, I have no idea how I am going to walk in these either! XD

The reasn for these is that I am an inch shorter than our Death the Kid, so considering Liz is much taller than him in the anime I need every extra inch I can get! (ooh-err)

Teehee, this is my first ever journal entry, go me! I thought I should give it a go!

Anyway, the goggles I bought arrived this morning, they are pretty epic! They are Halcyons, Mk9 for those of you interested. Apparently they are the same brand and make as the ones she actually wore in the film, but my sources are not always accurate! I think they look pretty close anyway!


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