It’s easy enough to just buy yourself a onesie and say “look at me, I’m a Pikachu”. Hey, it’s a lot of fun; I’ve done it many times! But if you want to go a step further than that, then why not consider making your own Pikachu ears and tail? Join Timlah through this incredibly easy tutorial.
All of these conventions are sneaking up on us as of late, however it’s come to my attention that next week, on Saturday 26th, it’s BristolCon! This marks the third year I’ve attended this event, which is a really fun local Sci-Fi and Fantasy convention. There’s some interesting talks, a lot of nice merchandise and an art room to go with it. Couple this with the fact we’re right next to a bar at all times as well (… I’m saying nothing about hanging about at the bar, it’s not like last year we had a huge game or two of Zombie Fluxx there or anything, ) I like to make use of my time as a cosplayer.
Why? I dunno. I just enjoy this stuff. So with that said, what am I going to BristolCon as?
I can’t remember for the life of me if I’ve mentioned it, but it’s time to retire Oskar. He’s been great and I’m sure in the not too distant future he’d be fantastic to return to the world, but his old bones are weak and weary now. It’s time to look towards the future and decide what will become my latest casual cosplay? I’ve got one… And it’s another Original Character. Whereas Oskar was developed from an existing character (Oscar Kass), this one I wanted to make completely unique, a definitely unique costume.
For all of the Facebook and some of the Twitter fans of GeekOut, you may have noticed I’ve been tweeting and posting about a wizard hat. After all, to debut a new costume at BristolCon, a fantasy convention, it’d make sense to make it relevant to Sci-Fi or Fantasy. Last years BristolCon, I went dressed as Twoflower. It’s only fitting then that this year, I go as a Wizard. For those unfamiliar with Discworld and The Colour of Magic, Twoflower is a tourist and he travels with Rincewind the wizard. Instead of going as Rincewind himself, I decided to make a character somewhat inspired by his antics.
So to be a wizard, I need a wizards hat. There it is above. Want to know how I made it? It’s pretty simple… But pay attention to the equation part!
- Material; I used Pleather. Felt is the traditional material of choice for this type of hat. The pleather gave this a really extra floppy feel which was kind of my goal.
- Thread & Needle; I used a matching thread, but later I went over it again with a black thread so it stood out.
- Pattern Paper; I just used normal paper and taped them together. It worked wonders!
- Scissors, craft knife, a pen (or chalk, depending on your preference.)
- Measuring tape, Ruler
Material cost: I bought several metres worth of pleather for £10. I didn’t even use 1 metre for this. This hat cost approximately £4 to make.
First, get your measuring tape and let’s figure out how we’ll make the pattern:
- Measure around your forehead for your heads circumference. Add some extra on for how low on the head you want it to sit. You do not want it to be the exact size of your head, as it will barely fit. Write down your heads circumference and any give. anything between half an inch to one and a half works wonders. I put up half an inch extra.
- Figure out how wide you want the brim. I decided to add 4 inches for the brim.
- You can suss out the brim circumference if you want, I found it didn’t matter too much.
- Find your heads radius: That’s half of your heads circumference (with the extra give you gave in step 1.)
- Figure out how tall you want your ‘peak’, that’s the long pointy bit!
For a better explanation of how this works, I’d highly recommend this page, which has some amazing information about the maths behind making the hat. Once you’ve finished writing all this down, you’ll be making two patterns: One for the peak and one for the brim.
The peak is interesting to make the pattern for. You need to think that you’re making a whole cone. You need to make what is close to three quarters of a full circle, which seems like a bizarre thing to do… But the reason is simply that you’ll be folding the peak on itself to sew it up. You’ll notice my brim (the big circle) didn’t have a hole in it: This comes afterwards. I used my craft knife to score out the part and it popped out quite easily. I used scissors when I was unsure of how well the knife scored it. I also used the scissors to cut out the main shapes.
When you go to sew the peak, remember to sew the “wrong way”, as when you’re finished, the untidy bits of your sewing should be on the inside. If you’re going to use pleather, I might advice that you use a lining of some kind. I didn’t mind so much, I personally prefer it without lining, but I’d probably recommend a simple lining for the brim. It would make it look a lot tidier. But heck, my guy is an accidental wizard.
With two pieces now, you need to sew them together. The way I did it is probably not the recommended way, but: I used some extra room I left on the bottom of the peak (the hem) and pinned it to the brim. Then I sewed the peak to the brim by sewing along the hem and whallah. I had a pointy wizards hat! Well then, that’s that.
Couple this with my blue robes, commonly used with Oskar and armed with a brand new book (That I made), I’ve just got one thing remaining: I need a wizardly weapon. Y’know I already have one..? Cast your mind back to this image:
You might notice what appears to be a large stave of kinds and you’d be correct. I already had a staff made up, which was the basis for the scythe. The staff needs a tiny bit of love (some duct tape sounds good) and we’re good to go. Therefore, by reusing things I already have, this costume has cost me no more than £4 to make. Bargain cosplaying if there ever has been some!
Well, that’s it folks. There’ll be pictures of Timlah, the Accidental Wizard no doubt some time after BristolCon is over. For now though, we roll onto Saturday. I’m looking forward to the event and hopefully people will get a bit of a chuckle out of my attire. If you’d like to make your own for Dummies book, please check out this website, a generator. As a warning, there’s a small watermark on the printed page, but it’s not so bad. I’d recommend doing what I did which is copying the embed code into a text file and adding <html><body></body></html> tags around it. Change the size to something more appropriate (I chose 1024 x 768) and then display that on screen and print it. That was, for some reason, the only way it would get larger for me.
That’s all, the Accidental Wizard is about ready to go. Let me know what you thought in the comments below, or over on Facebook and Twitter. The costume has taken no more than 4 hours to make and at just £4 to make the hat..? This was one of the easiest decisions and simplest costumes I’ve ever worked on. This will become my future casual cosplay pieces. Keep your eyes out over the coming weeks whilst I work on my horror Original Character, Ashe.
There are much better ways of doing this, I’m certain of that, but I thought I’d try my hand at using Foam Board and Worbla to make this badge. Over all the effect has turned out okay, but the effect is from a distance.
So how did I do it? First of all, let’s cut some foam board.
With this cut, I stuck these two pieces of board together with a hot glue gun. I probably could have done this with a Pritt Stick or some PVA glue, but never mind! I wanted it done quickly.
Next up, I took a large cut of Worbla, big enough to not just cover the two pieces, but to completely melt over them. This would mean that the worbla would sort of melt into the nooks and crannies of the top piece (the one with the bits cut out). Needless to say, the Worbla happily contorted with some persuasion from a heat gun.
Now what? I stuck some cork on the back, making pinning easier later.
Finally, I added the detailing of the scales of justice. They’re not the most perfect scales in the world, but hey, they’ll do.
All that’s left is to cover in one or two layers of Gesso, paint the correct colour (a somewhat golden colour), then cover in some more gesso and we’re done! I’ll put up pictures of the shiny badge later.
Time taken: 30 minutes.
Material cost total: Approx £1.50.
OBJECTION! Could I not have made it ‘better’?
What would I do differently in future? I’ll probably do this at some point, actually…
So I could make a silicone mould for the badge and cast it from that. That’d give it the absolute smoothness that you’d expect. The mould could be made simply by the method shown above, but instead of putting Worbla over the foam, I’d cut a hole in the middle of the top piece, then make the scales stick out of the foam. Possibly the scales could be done in Worbla. Then, The silicone should be able to pick up the details of the scales and thus leave a little imprint inside of the badge.
Once this is done, spray in the correct colour and gesso it up.
If anyone thinks this should be my first experiment with silicone, give us a Like!
If I get more time at the end of the night, I might completely remake this and make it look a bit more “Sunken in” like the actual badge.
A while back, I was lucky enough to be contacted by a fantastic comic creator who goes by the name Little Nando. I liked his manga so much, I worked on an awesome interview with him.
Since the interview, Little Nando has been tirelessly working on his comic and has wound up getting it over on Comixology! For those unaware, Comixology is a brilliant site that sells comics in a digital format. It’s a superb way to let artists reach fans they wouldn’t normally be able to.
Now this is where you come in! I have had the pleasure of reading Silverthorn 20xx and you can too, for a mere $1.99. For us here in the UK, as of time of writing that’s only £1.49, that’s cheaper than any coffee you buy from a cafe!
Why don’t you go check out Little Nando‘s Silverthorn 30xx and let us know what you think in the comments below, over on Facebook or Twitter?