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Posts Tagged ‘costume’

This is the larger of the two Nerf guns. The same Krylon paints in brown and silver were used

Nerf "barrel break"

Nerf “barrel break”

on it as on the Maverick, to cover the original yellow and orange. It’s a “barrel-break”, so the barrels pull out and down for loading. I had been a bit worried about how well the painting would go, but there was enough space between the sliding parts and the Krylon paints seem to have very little body so the movement wasn’t affected. (and no seam lines appeared) This one had a trio of

complete steampunk mod

complete steampunk mod

flat panels on each side so it got named “Dragon’s Breath’ and I stuck to a dragon theme in it’s Scrimshaw panels. Luckily, the widths of each panel were an exact match to the widths of the side veneers, on the smaller ones, and the tops for the wider. The only trimming I had to do was on the lengths. For the wider picture panels, each one used a pair of piano key tops. A pair of clock parts replaced the grill, on the back and a snowflake obsidian cabochon, set in copper, was added to the pommel. The joining of it could have been a bit cleaner, but since it was all going to be covered by the reclaimed leather wrapping, on the grip, I didn’t worry about it much.

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Finding a pair of Nerf guns, I decided to Steampunk them up! These are my first Nerf mods,

original condition of Nerf  Maverick

original condition of Nerf Maverick

and I had been more than a bit worried about how hard it was going to be to get them apart, and then back together, with the mechanics intact. It turned out to not be all that hard, but taking photos of their innards before taking things out is essential. For this one, the Maverick, which had held six foam darts, the magazine was cut down and each channel was filled in with vintage vacuum tubes and glass pieces. (always be sure to pull each tube out of it’s package because simply having the same code does not mean

finished Steampunk mod

finished Steampunk mod

that they will all be the same size and shape) Some of the branding patches were sanded off and it was repainted from the original yellow and oranges to silver and brown. Then some of the silver sections were gilded, to give them an even more realistic look and the whole thing was antiqued. (a small amount of accents were gilded in gold too) It got five scrimshaw panels. The two small ones are “TELM Maverick” (for Tesla Electric and Manufacturing) in Elvish script. The other three are all adaptions of Tesla patent drawings. Since it can no longer fire any darts, the end of the barrel was closed over with an antique mother-of-pearl topped brass button. While it can not fire, all the rest of the mechanics still work, the top slide will still cock and the trigger will pull, and spin the barrel. The grip was wrapped in vintage leather.

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While I’ve made up a couple of Steampunk outfits for show garb,

"Dragon's Breath" scrimshaw panels

“Dragon’s Breath” scrimshaw panels

I hadn’t gotten around to much in the way of accessories. A few different concepts had been bouncing around in my head but it was hard to pick one. When I stumbled across a couple of suitable Nerf weapons last month, they made a good focus. Since these would be my first mods, I figured it was best to keep things pretty simple. There was very little change to the body of each but I decided to add in some accents of scrimshaw. I’d been given some antique ivory veneers that were pulled off a piano that was being scrapped and wanted to make some panels for each gun. The larger one was named “Dragon’s Breath” and so it’s panels are two drawings of dragons with the name done in Elvish script. Each piece was cut and trimmed to size first, then the image sketched in pencil. I used my Dremel to scratch in the pictures and then filled using casein paint. Since they are antique panels, each one has a wonderful, aged finish that really adds to the finished look. Considering that drawing isn’t really one of my strengths, I like how they came out.  There is still some work to do on the gun bodies before the panels can be attached, but I will put up pictures of the completed mods.

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The Etsy shop has always been a bit of a melange, considering how many different

red gold gilded leather necklace

red gold gilded leather necklace

things we’re into. It’s main focus has always been the masks but some vintage and supplies were always there and now, the stuffies are part of the mix as well. When I recently started with a new line of gilded leather jewellery, I realized that I just didn’t want to throw it in there too, so I’ve opened a new shop, just for it. I’ve called it Gilty Hearts, since most of the pieces are gilded hearts. It’s been fun to actually use the some of the sterling silver leaf I’ve had around as well as some of the variegated leafs. This tiny heart is one of the red ones. The metal sheets are apparently heat treated to cause the colour changes. I’ve found that it’s hard to predict exactly what they will look like until they are fully finished since most of the sealants that are needed to preserve the finish, can cause some random colour changes. This one turned out really well, with a strong pink/red range.

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In the various batches of watch faces, there were a couple that

cuff with vintage watch face, leather, lace and silk

cuff with vintage watch face, leather, lace and silk

were a bit different from the standard, enamelled faces. I decided to use one as part of a wrist cuff. They have a very Art Deco look to them that makes me think they are probably from the 20’s or 30’s but the faces are paint over metal. They may have been war-time production since the metal is fairly thin. They also, instead of having the usual round edge, have four little tabs. The tabs are how I was able to attach it to a piece of salvaged leather. Slits were cut into the leather and then the tabs were inserted and clamped closed. I then trimmed the leather to make the bow and left an edge for attaching it to the cuff. The holes on the face were both filled with two Victorian black glass buttons. The base of the cuff is some salvaged lace covered with a piece of duponi silk, with it’s edges pulled, both in a soft off-white. The clock piece was attached to the cuff base by beaded details around the edges. Since I have trouble getting bracelets to fit properly, I never want to limit any of mine so it ties on with two pairs of black satin ribbons. (I had a friend point out that it’s actually possible, as a result of the ties, for it also to be worn as a choker)

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This is the second of the jabots I made for my show clothes.

Steampunk jabot

This one is more of a proper steampunk style, as is the rest of it’s outfit. The centre is salvaged brown leather. The bottom is a gathered fall of soft heavy lace. (it came off a wedding dress) Ruched beaded trim edges the centre, and overlaps the lace, which gives thick clusters of the beaded drops. At the top of the jabot is one of the smallest enamelled watch faces I found. It has a pair of brass wings on either side of the Victorian glass button that sits in its centre. Below it are two carved mother-of-pearl buttons. (the top one is what I consider to be the prettiest one from the entire stash since it has lots of detail and amazing colour flash) I’m very happy with how it turned out. Now I just need more occasions that are suitable for wearing the whole steampunk look, including jabots.

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Attending a fannish convention for four days, even if I am there as a vendor,

blue and cream jabot

means that outfits had to be considered and prepped. I decided to go with a Steampunkish style and to keep the overall look fairly consistent. The tops are all dress shirts. They were carefully selected to have the right colours and styles but needed some minor modifications and I made a pair of jabots, to dress them up. This one goes with the blue toned sets. A bit of the soft blue fabric that makes up one of the skirts is the base and then there are gathered falls of lace. Alternating the lace is beaded trim in a soft amethyst. The centre has a trio of carved mother-of-pearl buttons, graduating down in sizes. It has a ribbon tie, at the moment, but I may put a Velcro clasp on it. The problem was that I had the last minute realization that it might be hotter in the venue than I’d expected. With that in mind, I did pack some back-up, cooler clothes and I’m so glad I did since it was hot enough that the Steampunk gear would have been unbearably steamy. It was disappointing to not get to wear my fun outfits, but now that they are done, I’ll just have to find another opportunity to show them off!

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