KakarotVersion5 avatar

KakarotVersion5
Progress

Well, I've been attending conventions since I was 16, but didn't really get involved in the more otaku ones until about 2 years later. Since then, I thought that it'd be awesome to do cosplay, but doubted if I'd ever get into it myself, since most of the costumes I saw were more works of art.
With this in mind, my first costume was an ebay purchase. As a result, I never entered into any competitions, believing that I didn't have the right to stand alongside other who'd poured so much effort and dedication into their cosplays.
Having said that, I'm 6 cosplays in now and going strong with each new project becoming a synonym for constant growth, adaptation and learning.
For the record, none of the photos on my page are mine. Where possible I credit the owner/photographer.

Last online 5 years ago

London

Joined: 22nd Mar 2012

Completed costumes: 6

Photos uploaded: 46

Progress journals: 13

Events attended: 5

No social links provided

Arduous is really the only word to describe this part of the project.
To complete both sides top to bottom took about 6 hours in total.
Considering it was all done free-hand, I wasn't displeased with the outcome.
My back, however, was.

Nothing fancy here, just 12mm EVA foam layered, cut to size and glued together before being treated with PVA/water.
Excess foam was used for the raised edges, and some find coarse sand was added for the texturing on the fronts. The knees were hand-painted as well.
Velcro for attachment.

Once shaping was completed, I needed to add the details. Double layered wonderflex would suffice as it would stick without extra adhesive when heated and still leave enough room for the minor details when finishing.
The patterns were something of an endurance test. Minor variations meant I couldn't simply trace, flip and repeat. It was all painstakingly measured by hand.
Small gaps left afterwards were filled with decorators caulk before sanding.
Afterwards, the piece was primed with 3 coats of gesso before painting with acrylic and sealing.

Dracula's coat is made up of 7 pieces. I made a template out of some old newspapers taped together, took some measurements and labelled the pieces.

As work progressed on the coat, I realized that I'd have to organize which parts I worked on in which order.
That is to say, I wouldn't be able to do the gauntlets if the coat was still drying as I'd need to be able to wear it to measure the circumference and diameter.
Similarly I'd need complete the shin guards before starting the waist piece or I wouldn't be able to judge just how far down it was supposed to measure.

There were still parts of the costume I hadn't decided upon yet. The design at the rear, for example. Initially, I'd planned to use applique but in the end I decided on the hand-designed approach for the added personal touch. True, it may have looked a little sloppy, but I'd have the prestige of saying I'd done it all by hand and eye.
The same went for the designs on the lapels. At first I wanted to use some kind of stamping technique, but creating it proved more difficult than expect. Also, it left a distinctive texture on the leather afterwards that I didn't care for. Anyone who got too close would easily be able to spot it, so I decided to hand-paint that as well.

I always knew that the coat was going to be made out of leather. The only question that remained was what kind and texture.
In the end, I settled on a faux leather with a polyester backing for the 2 thigh pieces and upholstery leather for the other pieces. I was quit happy with the find - it matched as well as I could hope for and was within budget.

Toyota SuperJ15PE Special Edition.
Thanks to some sound advice from fellow cosplayers with more sewing experience, I was able to pick up this machine.
She held up surprisingly well considering the circumstances.
I did end up bending a needle, but that was with a Size 16 Denim after 6/7 metres of 4-layered faux leather.
I still want my man card back, though.

Ruby WEAPON complete. Credit to EricaSharlette Promotions Ltd. (ESP) for the photo.
I didn't have time for photos of some pieces as they were constructed ad lib in haste.
The LED's were twist-operated battery-powered procured from ebay and glued in place.
The condition of the cosplay was fairly consistent until my......oh, let's call it a little tumble.
After that, there was more and more tape added throughout the course of Hyper Japan to keep it intact.

To summarise, a steep learning curve and an experience I wouldn't trade for anything. And I also have a new appreciation for why the WEAPON's aren't heavily cosplayed.

After endless brain-wracking, I finally came up with a solution (in the loosest definition of the word). I decided on 7 upturned 250ml buckets with some old flip-flops bolted through.

Next idea for the feet.
Smallworths brand pedal bins concealing 25cm 4x4 Scandinavian Spruce wooden platforms. Secured with 100mm screws.
The theory was that softwood would be easy to cut easy to walk on. Unfortunately, it proved to be too heavy. I could have drilled holes to reduce the overall weight, but I didn't want to compromise structural integrity at the risk of them collapsing under my own weight.

15mm Foam Sheet and a block of TR27 Loft Insulation.
The foam was used to pad the base of the feet to reduce noise made by walking.
I had the idea of packing the feet with insulation to walk on. However, this was flawed in its inception as it expanded in an outward as opposed to upward manner i.e. the seams of the feet would have split if I'd followed through.

Preliminary photo taken on the feet.
I decided to work on these first as they would help to illustrate the proportion of the overall costume.
Figuring out to to shape these was a nightmare.
Cardboard base with duct tape.
Several layers of old-fashioned newspaper and PVA glue in a 50:50 water mix.
Coated in fibreglass with a 100:1 ratio of resin to catalyst.


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