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09 March 2006 @ 11:35 pm
Volara foam wins the internets  
Yeah. I really am happiest when I have a bunch of projects going at once. I am working on all of them. RLY. Here is the proof.

The foam has arrived, and I started working with it. I'm now 99% sure that I have located the mysterious Yui foam. This. Stuff. Is. The. Bizzomb. Cutting cleanly and heat shaping are a snap. Scissors rarely leave any jagged edges, and if they do, they can be trimmed off. And because the surface of the foam is so durable, it can be taped temporarily. (I want to shape the pauldrons as well as possible before cementing the seams because I'm rather paranoid about putting dried contact cement over the stove, and I can't shape them properly without joining the seams, so the tape is important.) You can tape craft foam like that, but you have to be careful. (And with regular EVA foam, it's a lost cause. You'll put the tape on for 5 minutes and it will rip the surface when you pull it off. Yuck.)

Feh...I don't really feel up to trying vinyl lamination for this particular project. I don't think that it has enough stretch to fit over the pauldron curve without wrinkles, so I would have to remove the fabric backing, which is uncharted territory. And if you screw up the lamination, you screw up the piece, and I would have several different things to screw up - the initial purple layer, the gold curlicue decoration, the gold outer trim. At least I can use the vinyl I bought for the boot covers or leg warmers or whatever I decide to do. It will be perfect for that.

I patterned Zhu Rong's skirt this weekend. It took about 1 1/2 hours. It's a simple wrap skirt, but it required butt darts to fit properly. I have enough leftover Monterey Mills cheetah fake fur to make the entire costume, which makes me very happy. Said fur ROCKS, but it's expensive, and I didn't really feel like having to order more. I've been figuring out how I'm going to make the top. I'll have to hunt for a good triangle bra to cover, or maybe I can just bullshit a top from scratch. It's not like I need support. Being on the boobie A-Team does come in handy sometimes.

aitai wants to put together a Crystal Chronicles group at some point in the future, and she suggested that I dress up as a selkie. The costume is so cute I couldn't exactly say no. It has this funky mock pleated skirt (the hemline is weird and irregular, so real pleats would be basically impossible) that stands out in a bell curve, and I found a website explaining how to make an Elizabethan ruff by covering a hat wire frame with fabric, so I'm all ZOMG EXCITED to try that out for the skirt. I'd use a layer of cotton twill for the base and sew hemmed twill strips over it and use wide-wale corduroy for the bustier top and YAY FUZZY CRITTER WOOHOO. But the wig is puzzling me, and I'm not having it commissioned because that would cost a ridonkulous amount of money, and it's simple enough that I could probably figure it out myself.

I have this bizarre urge to cosplay Winry Rockbell just so I can wield a GIANT FUCKING WRENCH. I barely have any idea who she is and she's insanely overcosplayed, but still. GIANT FUCKING WRENCH. Somebody stop me.

My dream costume is still Double Dynamite Twinrova, and I sporadically look into the possibilities of making a corset for the top. I've found simple patterns that are good for beginners (Laughing Moon makes one - I forget what it's called), but they have a straight across top, and I don't know how feasible it would be to extend that up into points. I know I could shape the neckline with hat wire, though.
Current Mood: hyperhyper
Current Music: Modest Mouse stuck in my head
カダージュaergryph on March 10th, 2006 05:12 am (UTC)
Oooohhh so what is this foam? :3
How thick is it too?

And Twinrova...wow. I can say I'll look forward to that!
The Heavy Metal Matador: South Park - Happyrydain on March 10th, 2006 06:57 am (UTC)
It's Volara type A foam. It's like the super awesome offspring of craft foam and a camping mat. Its surface isn't quite as paper-smooth as craft foam, but I don't really mind that, especially because it does not damage easily. Craft foam can get dented by pens and fingernails, but I was unable to gouge Volara without a knife.

There are many suppliers that sell Volara. I couldn't find any local vendors, so I ordered mine from foambymail.com, which sells 1/8", 1/4", 3/8", and 1/2" thicknesses. (I'm pretty sure it comes thicker as well, but that particular site only goes up to 1/2".) Judging from the other vendors I found on Google, their price seems to be pretty typical. Even with shipping charges (I didn't bother trying to get free shipping because you have to buy $50 of one thickness, and I don't need QUITE that much), my order wound up being much cheaper than a comparable quantity of craft foam. I got 5 feet of 1/4" and 5 of 1/8", and it's going to last me quite a while.

foambymail.com will send you a free foam sample if you email your request and mailing address to their info email addy. It takes about a week to arrive. The sample is small, but it was enough to show me that the foam had all of the properties I was after. (Incidentally, this is one reason I decided to order from them. Hooray for good customer service.)

I hope I don't disappoint you by saying that it's also going to be a while before I can actually start working on Twinrova. I do want to get the Dynasty Warriors stuff done before I begin another complex project (and I still have my quilt...whoopee). I think it will be worth the wait, though. I have some ideas for making the headdress out of a buttload of wired tulle "leaves" so it would be light and 3-D and look really nifty if I stood in front of a window. ^_^
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The Heavy Metal Matador: South Park - Happyrydain on March 10th, 2006 01:48 pm (UTC)
I loved R&C 2 and 3 (never got around to playing the first), and I've never seen a Ratchet costume. If only I had mad mascot-building skillz or a shitload of money to pay someone with mad mascot-building skillz...
axiasaga on March 10th, 2006 05:53 pm (UTC)
How can you be Zhu Rong if you have an A-cup? It might be historically accurate, I dunno; but you're obviously aiming for a Koei-version of her, in which case...

Wouldnt you be a better Xia Qiao or Yue Ying? Yue Ying can spear me anyday. <333333
The Heavy Metal Matador: South Park - Happyrydain on March 10th, 2006 06:08 pm (UTC)
Zhu Rong's looks change significantly throughout the series. Funnily enough, I look pretty similar to her DW5 cheetah-fur-wearing model - pale skin, thick waist-length auburn hair (mine is more red-gold, but eh, close enough), tall, athletic build. She doesn't have ridiculous b00bz0rz in DW5, either, and the design of her costume is such that I could tape my boobs to make cleavage and stuff the space underneath in the top. I've been reading tips for male to female crossplayers. =P
axiasaga on March 10th, 2006 06:22 pm (UTC)
Well, I've never been fortunate enough to catch DW5. Last time at EB, they had a copy - but it turned out they sold the game without the case. Hisss. :(

Wouldn't taping boobs be at least mildly uncomfortable? Seriously.

I still would love to go as Lu Bu, just for the tassels.
The Heavy Metal Matador: South Park - Happyrydain on March 10th, 2006 07:37 pm (UTC)
You must find DW5. It's the best one ever. Yeah, it's still the same style of game, but the gameplay and level design are especially awesome this time around, so I played the living hell out of the game without getting bored. There are shitloads of peons to smash for a high KO count, the movesets are improved and interesting, the hard levels are challenging for good reasons (as opposed to "Look, Ma! A high morale reinforcement just warped over by your commander! Again! Oh shit run Forrest run!"), and you actually can boost your allies' morale by fighting alongside them. There are no more duels, but I see that as a good thing because I never liked how they were implemented. And there's Musou Rage, which makes you gold-glowing and superpowered for a limited time. The enemy generals can use it, too. Good times.

I think boob taping only hurts if you're extremely flat (or male, or both) and you're trying to mash your entire upper pec area together to make cleavage. In my case, as long as I selected tape intelligently and didn't pick something that hurt like a bastage when removed, it should be fine.

Some guy made a duct tape Lu Bu for ACEN 2005. It was one of the best ghetto costumes I've seen. Duct tape Black Mage Yuna from this year's Katsucon beats it for awesomeness, but just barely. I think if I ever made a Lu Bu, I would follow in that guy's footsteps. A serious Lu Bu costume made to my ideal standards is way beyond me.
axiasaga on March 10th, 2006 07:52 pm (UTC)
Yeah, but see, part of being Lu Bu would be the making of the costume. I wouldn't put TOO much time into it, but I'd make it look good. As long as I didnt look like the Lu Bu from the Three Kindgoms movie... http://www.3kingdoms.net/gallerylp/LuBu07.jpg

The gameplay sounds good, I know - although I will miss dualing/kicking Lu Bu's ass with my maxed out Xia Qiao. I hope her musou is less useless in DW5? :D
aitai on March 10th, 2006 08:01 pm (UTC)
heeee...xiao qiao's the best ^_^ SUUUPER MOOOVE!