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Winter Soldier Cosplay

I promised pictures, so here they are!

At the end of February, I made a joke on my FB about how I haven't been able to afford a haircut, and as a result, I have "Winter Soldier Hair" - well, naturally, many of my friends decided that I HAD to do the costume. Since I was planning to go to ECCC at the end of March, I thought, sure, why not!

Well, really, it was because my friend, Tash, commented and said "I know how to make costumes. I can help." And since I don't know how to make costumes, I was like "this is the only way that this costume will happen, so, yes, please." It took us about 4 working days in total when it came down to it. Plus, some last minute trouble shooting on my end, but we managed to pull it off!

Since I don't have a job and am broke, costs had to be kept low. So, everything that we could was purchased at Value Village or the dollar store. Velcro and elastic was purchased at a fabric store, duct tape was purchased at a hardware store, and friends gave/loaned me the binder, undershirt, boots, and leather glove.

Jacket was $15 at Value Village:

First thing's first - let's cut the sleeve off that thing (but keep the sleeve! It's a good jacket!)

Using craft foam from the dollar store (10 thin sheets for $1), we cut out the pieces that would end up wrapping around my arm. Because the craft foam was thin and we had so many sheets, we then cut the "grid" pattern out of another sheet of foam and then glued it too the arm pieces to achieve a 3D "plated" effect.

Obviously, although the craft foam colours were very playful, they needed to look metal - so we did a base coat of white glue, let that dry, and then spray painted the pieces silver. The layer of glue is essential when spray painting craft foam - without it, the spray paint doesn't stick very well and ends up with a really bad looking matte finish that slowly rubs off.

We made a mask too, though I didn't end up using it. This is a picture of us midway through making it. We made it so that it could just be tied on.

I had to trouble shoot a little the day before I left, because we had accidentally made the shoulder piece too small to tuck up under the jacket - so I used some of the left over material from making the mask (.59 cents at the fabric store, btw) and cut something that I could tie over the top of the shoulder to cover up the fact that the shoulder piece ended too soon.

And here we have the completed costume! (The harness and Utility belt were made out of laptop straps - also from the dollar-store. I've got no progress pictures for that process though!).

I DID make a fake front piece to more accurately represent Bucky's jacket (which has cool leather strips across the front that do up with buttons), but on the day of the Con, I decided that it was too cumbersome to wear, and it detracted rather than added to the costume (or so I felt.)

If you're wondering where my boobs are - we designed the costume with me wearing a binder, because The Winter Soldier is a dude... and when I wear a binder it looks like I have huge pecs, so, added bonus. However, looking at pictures, I also think that when my boobs are gone, you really notice my chubby stomach - or, at least, I do. (Also, I'll never be more thankful that Sebastian Stan has fairly substantial ass and thighs for a cis-dude, because I felt like my luscious ass wasn't TOO out of character. :P)

A more pressing, and less vain, problem with the full costume was that I couldn't really use my arm. I couldn't move my shoulder at all, and could barely bend my elbow. So, for about 6-7 hours, I had my arm just hanging by my side... that was fine, I got relatively used to doing things mostly one handed - though, man, I have a strengthed respect for one-armed/handed people. What I didn't forsee happening was that my body wouldn't be able to efficiently drain blood from my hand... so, by the end of the day, my left hand and fingers were all swollen, almost painfully so. Also, my shoulder started cramping up from not moving.

This all meant that on Sunday, I decided not to wear the full costume again. I went with what I call "Minimalist Winter Soldier". I ditched the binder (although I was comfortable wearing it, I did get super dizzy at one point, and I'm either blaming it on the swollen hand, or the fact that I might not have been taking deep enough breaths because of the binder - concentrating on my breathing seemed to prevent any further dizzy spells anyway.)

I had brought the sleeve with me, so I reattached it using black gorilla tape - but only under the armpit. The top I left detached. I then dismanteled the upper-arm/shoudler a little, so that I could tape just the shoulder into the jacket... the result was an understated Winter Soldier cosplay that allowed for almost complete mobility of my arm. (I also did away with the harness, because I wanted to carry my own bag, and I knew the bag-strap would end up wrecking the harness if I wore it.)

(Also, please note that all sad-faces in photos are intentional - gotta be in character!)

All in all, a successful cosplay, I think! I had one girl tell me that my arm (the complete one) was the best she had seen all weekend! And I agree with her - out of all the Winter Soldier cosplays that I saw, and there were at least 10, if not more of them (and all women - which I found fascinating), only ONE other arm looked cooler than mine, and all the other ones looked pretty crappy.

My only slight regret is that I only saw one REALLY good Captain America cosplayer, but I was on my way out the door for lunch (and bathroom) and only had food (and peeing) on the brain, so I didn't stop to get a picture - I figured I'd probably see him again at some point... but obviously my food deprived brain is an idiot, because Emerald City Comic Con is HUGE and I never did see that dude again.

I might do another post about ECCC itself, we'll see... it DID kick off with not only meeting Kelly Sue DeConnick, but also escorting her to her booth! So, that was cool! :)


( 21 comments — Leave a comment )
Mar. 31st, 2015 07:15 am (UTC)
Kelly Sue is the LOVELIEST and your costume is FANTASTIC. And yeah, every Winter Soldier I've ever seen has been a woman too.
Mar. 31st, 2015 05:06 pm (UTC)
Kelly Sue really IS the loveliest! I also found out that the girl who runs the Bitch Planet tumblr (I think it was Bitch Planet) is also named Alix! When I got my Captain Marvel volume signed, Kelly Sue was like "Are you my Alix?!" and I was like "...uh, I want to be?" Hahaha!

Glad you like the costume!

I'm interested in the fact that all Winter Soldiers are women - I'm wondering if it's because of the hair... or something more profound, like the fact that women might identify with a character who has absolutely no agency and is treated like a possession rather than a person.

Mar. 31st, 2015 05:13 pm (UTC)
We managed to catch her when there was no one else around we we chatted with her for about half an hour - or at least what felt like. And literally the nicest person! Hands down. Her and Emma Rios are the loveliest people I've ever chatted with at a con. And everyone at cons are super lovely.

I think it's a combination. And also it's a relatively easy cosplay to make, he's a very badass character, and Sebastian Stan is hella good looking. And also the Steve/Bucky element - as a girl being Bucky is easier re: hair.
Mar. 31st, 2015 05:17 pm (UTC)
Agreed, we only got to talk to her for a little bit (as we made our way across the showroom floor), but she was great - and we saw her in two panels too, and she was hilarious and awesome.

And yes, I think you are correct about why girls like to cosplay Bucky. :)
Mar. 31st, 2015 05:20 pm (UTC)
I've never actually been to a con with proper panels yet, so I've never been to any panel ever. Does that mean you were at the Image panel (or whichever it was) with Noelle Stevenson? Cos she's awesome too. :D
Mar. 31st, 2015 05:23 pm (UTC)
No, there were a few Image panels, but I wasn't at the one with Noelle. But she IS awesome! :)
Mar. 31st, 2015 09:03 am (UTC)
Wow, that is amazing! Great cosplay, right down to the face expression. :D
Mar. 31st, 2015 05:06 pm (UTC)
Thanks! :)
Mar. 31st, 2015 11:35 am (UTC)
Yay pictures!

And VERY cool!
Mar. 31st, 2015 05:06 pm (UTC)
Thank you! :)
Mar. 31st, 2015 03:09 pm (UTC)
That is awesome!
Mar. 31st, 2015 05:07 pm (UTC)
Thanks! :)
Mar. 31st, 2015 04:34 pm (UTC)
Awesome! You did a great job on the arm, it looks fantastic. Similar method to what I did, I just had a duct tape base underneath (in retrospect, reading what you did, I'm not sure that was necessary) and I did the arm in 2 pieces so I can move my arm a bit. Did you have any trouble with the spray paint rubbing off on the jacket/your hands/everything in its vicinity? Because I had coated mine in about 3 layers of glue and it didn't seem to help. I'm spraying plasti-dip all over it now and repainting, then will do another layer of plasti-dip trying to seal the darned thing.

(Also good idea with the binder- the harmess does kinda make my boobs stick out underneath it even though I'm not very large, and it's a bit funny looking! And great find on the jacket. I struck out at Value Village this time and has to go to Walmart instead.
Mar. 31st, 2015 04:59 pm (UTC)

My arm was two pieces too (technically 3 - shoulder, bicep, forearm), but I then did an elbow piece as well, just so you couldn't see any of my arm underneath, and the elbow piece wasn't very flexible.

I didn't have any trouble with the paint coming off the arm - Mine was layered Glue->Paint->Varnish. So, maybe it was the varnish that did the trick of sealing it in. I can find out what kind it was if you want? Tash had it in her supply cupboard already. I DID notice that the paint was slowly coming off the cotton glove that I used for the fingers - but not in an overly noticeable way - where it rested on my thigh just ended up looking a little sparkly in some light.

And yeah, we made my harness adjustable, but I really think it looks best over a flat chest rather than boobs.. which is another reason why I didn't wear it on the second day.

Edited at 2015-03-31 05:00 pm (UTC)
Mar. 31st, 2015 05:08 pm (UTC)
Wow, I've been curious to see you since I read your amazing spn quick reactions and metas and some convention reports and now here are photos. Thank you!

And the costume is awesome!!!
Mar. 31st, 2015 05:15 pm (UTC)
Yeah, I usually wouldn't post pictures of myself (though, I have in the past with convention photos) - but figured what the hell. I mean, I haven't exactly kept my identity too much of a secret these past few years - so I might as well just go all in.

And thanks for the compliment on the costume! :)
Apr. 13th, 2015 05:53 pm (UTC)
Sorry for not answering immediately - I tend to loose comments in different folders.

I'm just glad you thought what the hell ))
Apr. 1st, 2015 01:34 am (UTC)
That totally rocks! The jacket and the arm...so awesome.
Apr. 1st, 2015 02:20 am (UTC)
Apr. 3rd, 2015 12:57 am (UTC)
Great costume, and even better that it was made with thrift store and dollar store finds. Very creative!
Apr. 3rd, 2015 01:56 am (UTC)
Thanks! :)
( 21 comments — Leave a comment )


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