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Here's where the magic happens. I'll be posting about all of my experiences and experiments (both failed and successful ones), introducing you to my costumes, sharing fun stories, linking tutorials and useful products, and who knows what else!


Mikey Does Some Commissions, Part 2

Michael MacWolff

Welcome back! You know what's going on here, so let's get right into what I've been making! As I told you guys last time, I had another Fire Emblem prop to put together (also for Youmacon, just like the Adam Syringe), and it probably comes as no surprise to anyone that it's from Fates.

Yes, I had the privilege of making Xander's awesome sword of doom, Seigfried!

Ok, well I also have the privilege of making his armor, but that part wont be done for another few months yet. Yay winter when I have nothing else to do but craft for hours on end.

This was a very exciting prospect, because 1) I love making swords and I'm confident in my methodology and 2), this sword is a very interesting shape so while it makes my job more difficult, it also makes the finished product a lot more interesting!

So, how did I do it? Well, it's pretty much the same as most of the other bladed weapons I've made more recently. The first thing we need is a wood core, jigsawed into the shape we need. In the past, I've done blades exclusively out of foamcore, but for this one the wood base is pretty important just because of the shape of the sword, and how thin the blade is in certain parts. I've also been using a wood base a lot more frequently now because it meant the sharp tips of the blades have some structure and won't immediately crush in on themselves if you put the sword down on its tip (not that I recommend doing that anyway)

Of course, as always, I started by patterning out half of the sword (so I could make it smymmetrical), then transferring the pattern to the wood, and jigsawwing away!

Finish it up with some sanding (and by some I mean over an hour's worth with all of those edges), and you're ready to move on to the next step.

Now we take that same pattern, and trace it onto some foamcore board (two pieces, to be exact). Once the whole pattern is put onto the foamcore, use your X-acto knife to cut out the shapes.

You'll probably notice that it's not all one solid piece. I made separate pieces here because of the contours in the hilt. I didn't want to make the hilt overly bulky, so instead of cutting a full layer, then adding the other hilt pieces on top, I just used the wood base and cut the pieces separately to achieve the contouring I needed. Once the beveling was done (by cutting a line, pulling off the paper, and sanding the foam down to a sloped edge), everything went together.

Most of you know by know that for all of the raw foam edges, I smear on a good helping of spackling paste, then sand it smooth once it's dry. This helps get rid of the texture on the foam, adds some stability, and helps seal & protect the foam for our later steps.

The handle details were achieved using craft foam, cut into the raised design, which was then covered with worbla. If you're doing something like this over foamcore, BE CAREFUL! The foam in foamcore board will melt if you apply too much heat, even when it's sealed with mod podge, or has spackling paste on it (you don't have to worry about the craft foam, you can heat it up plenty without it melting, it'll just get droopy when it's hot).

Also, that jewel/dome thing on the hilt was cast in plastic, but you can find oval domes of all sizes by searching for "Oval Dome Cabochon" on Amazon.

The rest is pretty simple, coat in a few layers of Mod Podge (I probably did 3 for this one), prime it (I used black spray paint + primer), then paint away! Another coat of Mod Podge to seal in the paint and give it a nice sheen and you're done!

And that's all there is to it! We have one more installment here since I was working on 3 projects at the same time, so look out for "Part 3" shortly here!