It’s gotten to that point in the year. When I have less than 3 weeks before a con, and 6 weeks’ worth of costume work to do. I’ve spent long weekends wrapped in paper mache, body filler, velvet and leather, just hoping and praying that the whole thing will work out.
I do this every. Single. Con. I start a costume, and then dilly dally my way through the six month window until I can smell the deadline. Then, usually around the time it becomes too late to order anything from China and get it here beforehand, I start to panic. Sleep drops, work is distracting, and headaches become second nature.
And I become the worst roommate to ever walk the planet with the sheer amount of crap left in the kitchen and living room, but to be fair, I’ve had roommates who lined the living room with cooked chickens, and this lot left a game of scrabble filled with nothing but sex words on the coffee table last night, so most don’t have much room to talk.
I can almost smell the all nighters that will inevitably come with the last 3 days in August. I have the week off and fully expect to still be working on the stupid thing before I leave. 3 years ago my record was only packing my bag 30 minutes before my train left, shoving in hand sewing to do on the said train. A very similar event the year after, when I spent 2 nights trying to work on a ball gown, only to get snowed in and have my work be for nothing (I never got an opportunity to wear it until last year, when I had to rip it apart because I’d lost so much weight too).
This convention cosplay is looking to be no different. Had the day off so spent it in the kitchen sticking paper mache to foam. Looking at my deadline, I have to get the armour up to a certain point if I’m to have any chance of having the costume done in time. The problem is the paper mache pulp that I use to sculpt takes a long time to dry, so I keep having to stop working on things. And when I start work on something else? I usually discover I’m missing something and have to go to the shops. Again. Which gets a little depressing after the fifth time.
So what does this costume consist of? At its most basic, it consists of one bodysuit, made mostly from velvet and a gold corset type middle. Added to this is a pair of leather-type jodphurs and a warped belt made from similar fabric. There’s also a pair of red knee-high boots. The upper body is mostly an American Football armour piece, front, back and shoulder pads, and finishing it off is a full helmet. I have worked with ‘most’ of these things at some point, but nowhere near as much as I’m having to do now, and mistakes have been rampant.
So, where am I now? Helmet has 75% of its first layer of body filler on. The front still has pulp drying – but the filler seems to be doing what I wanted it to do, which is a plus. Only problem is the sheer weight the filler has added – will not be able to wear the helmet for long periods, that’s for sure.
As for the armour, I wanted to get the shoulder pads done but got bogged down by the frontal armour. Decided to wait until that’s dry, then hastily get the 2 pieces together so I can get a better idea of what side my shoulder pads need to be. They will be done this weekend, just not as early as I wanted.
And since everything is drying or on hiatus, I can hopefully either finish off the sewing part (80% of the body suit done, mostly just stitching the back up properly), or buy the right sized sheet foam for the gloves and/or boots. If I can get just one of those jobs up to a point where it won’t take much to complete, I’ll be clear sailing for the first time in a while. Just need to properly buckle down, ignore my roommates, the sun and anything else that-SQUIRREL!