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ewok question....
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Zurath Kodul (Tim Thompson)
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 31, 2008 2:15 pm    Post subject: ewok question.... Reply with quote

a friend of mine inquired about costuming and she asked what characters she could pull off well....

due to her size (she's a little person) I offered Ewok... well, she's interested.

I'm wondering what would need to be done to make an Ewok costume for her. The face is confusing me... not sure how to make the nose/mouth parts.

Just thought I'd ask...
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Grizza (Heather Miller)
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 31, 2008 8:38 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

not finished with mine yet, and not approved/enlisted, but if you are looking to make it yourself like I did and can't really form latex faces (like I can't) I'll be happy to share the steps I followed.

Head Step 1:
I used a softball catchers helmet as a base, the kind without a visor. Any similar style helmet with a fase mask should work (football?) just as well.
Reason:
It was nice to have something to build on, it comes on and off pretty easy, and you don't have to have your head and face directly covered with fur. Added bonus idea stolen from the stormtroopers: enough room to install little computer fans for air/cooling.

Head Step 2:
Attached the ears - from the standard Mcalls bear costume pattern used for the body - with furry bases to the helmet top. I did add some wire for shape. (this step can come later, just how I did it)

Head Step 3:
Covered the face guard in plastic mesh. Good to build off of, lightweight, good with thread sewing or hot glue.

Starting into the good stuff so here is the photo>



Head Step 4:
Sunglass lenses for eyes (popped out of really large frames). Cut holes in the plastic mesh and mount from behind the mesh or inside the helmet. I found that I could wedge them in perfectly at the open part of the face mask that is designed fro your eye level.
Reason:
I tried all kinds of eye items from the plastic bubbles the cheap toys at the supermarket come in to clear plastic spheres painted with glass stains, but they were all near impossible to see out of. Sunglass lenses aren't ideal, but they get the job done, in a light brown shade (the flash makes them appear darker) and they are easy to see out of so you are less likely to fall down steps or get hit by a car!

Head Step 5:
The nose was made out of Sculpey Clay - http://www.sculpey.com/ - that was molded in the standard brown and baked to harden. I did make a flat skirting base around the noes as well so the fur would look ok if it ended up not butting right up against it. Edit: Forgot to remind to cut out a hole in the plastic mesh behind the nostrils because they are real holes For breathing and fans) and you don't want that white plastic showing.

Head Step 6:
Teeth were again made out of Sculpey and baked, but this time using white sculpey and painting over them to give a glossier finish and yellow them a bit since I figured ewoks didn't have whitening strips or great brushing habits. Edit: same as nose, the mouth is a hole to breathe through, so you want to cut out the plastic mesh so it doesn't show)

Head Step 7:
Eyelids and Lips. I used brown leather scraps from furniture store samples. (it was handy since I used to work at one). I drew the circle area for the eyes on a larger piece and then cut the center like you would a pizza, leaving the circle around uncut. Pealing back the "slices" helped maintain a rounded shape and give a finished edge. to secure the slices down I used a thin line of hot glue that also created some depth to the lids and lips. Same thing for the lips only less of a circle and more of an oval and more hot glue to plump the lips.
All hotglued in place over the eyes and teeth.


More to come.... I'll edit this with the fur today.. I am heading out of work early.
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Last edited by Grizza (Heather Miller) on Thu Jul 31, 2008 9:06 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Zurath Kodul (Tim Thompson)
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 31, 2008 8:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

that is exactly what I was looking for, thank you bow

Is the faux fur form Walmart's craft department decent to use? I was thinking of piecing it together into a body suit for her...
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Grizza (Heather Miller)
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 31, 2008 9:23 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Zurath Kodul wrote:
that is exactly what I was looking for, thank you bow

Is the faux fur form Walmart's craft department decent to use? I was thinking of piecing it together into a body suit for her...


You are more than welcome! Very Happy Like I said, it isn't "professional" but it becomes a passable ewok. I hope! *fingers crossed*

The faux fur I used was an entire bolt from http://www.hancockfabrics.com/. There was a store 45 min away from my home. The thing that is nice about a fabric store is you can get large bolt/yardage for larger cuts and the fur color has more depth because it is dyed with lowlights and highlights instead of a flat brown. I think the craft fur is fine, it all sheds EVERYWHERE, cloggs up your sewing machine and makes a big mess in general. Not a lot of fun to work with hehee

I don't really have a picture that shows how to get the fur on because once you start you have to just keep going. Before you put the fur on you want to build up the cheeks and chin. I used more plastic mesh in layers because it was light weight and I could hot glue the fur down to it (wouldn't be able to with cotton stuffing). TIP: Exaggerate the heck out of the features that will be under the fur. I though I had, but the fur caused everything to lose definition and mine is a little flatter than I would prefer, but it was too late, the glue dries fast! LOL



I simply took a large piece of the fur, long enough that the neck would fall below the hoodie, and tacked it down with a dab of hot glue to the top pf the helmet. Laying it over the face and marking where the eyes, nose and mouth would fall. When cutting the holes, I did much the same as the leather is described above, pealing back slices and folding them under.

One difference was trimming all the fur off the material backing for the "slices", so once they folded under they stayed flat.

Cut the holes about 1/4" smaller than you need them because of the stretch and give of the fabric. It helps it butt up against the nose and you can always pull a little as you are gluing it down.

add a hoodie with all your own flair and ta-DA: Ewok... kinda Razz

I have just finished the body suit base, Zippers SUCK and fur zippers even more so, and I am still working on the hands and feet, but I have some Ideas and rough patterns that I'll be happy to share as they come along. This weekend maybe?

Here is the so far:


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Grizza (Heather Miller)
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PostPosted: Sun Aug 03, 2008 8:45 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

ok, I said I would update with hands and feet. Feet may be a little longer because the hands were more problematic than I thought they would be. Confused I will post some pics of what I have done, but I wouldn't mind any suggestions or criticisms because they aren't quite what I was aiming for. I am happy with them, just had to simplify from my original thoughts.

First off, I knew I was going to have to work with some leather or pleather because like I mentioned above I can't really do the latex mold thing. Smile

I had purchased a good amount of pleather/vinyl from the fabric store because it was the texture and color I was looking for (a lighter fleshy tone) but had to scrap using it all together because the stiffness of the vinyl and backing made curves and tucks impossible. It would form angles and the light color made all the issues that much more apparent.

So, I moved back to the soft leather (a thin cut) that I used on the lips and eyelids. I wasn't intending to go so dark as most ewoks had light/fleshy fingers, but the material was more forgiving of the forms I was trying to force it into. Ewok requirements on this site just say fingers and toes, not what color they have to be! Razz

I also went with an over-simplified "glove" pattern because my sewing isn't quite where I would need it to be to have the thumb placement in a more natural spot. all in all the seems show and it crinkles a bit when I make a fist, but I think it holds up.

For the finger nails, the only part I am pretty dang happy with, I used the plastic capsules that cheap, quarter toys come from - the kind you find in the vending machines at the front of grocery stores. Using the open lip as the base of the nail and cutting out the nails to size. Then I took sandpaper to the side that would show in vertical strokes from the base to the tip, forming lines more natural to a fingernail and taking off the gloss of the plastic. I used a light brown marker to fill in/color the nails where I had just sanded and wiped the excess off, leaving a light layer of coloring. Once they were superglued to the leather I edged with a dark brown sharpie marker to weather and dirty them up a bit.

This is the result:




Again, any suggestions on how to improve on them would be appreciated! Now I have to figure out how to attach them to the arms of the suit and move on to the feet, wich I expect will be just a troublesome if not more so. I had hoped to be done by this weekend. At least it is fun to work on, if a bit stressful.

-Grizza
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Aramys Strael (Bill Kohlleppel)



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PostPosted: Sun Aug 03, 2008 11:06 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

For the head, I would also, perhaps, suggest a hockey mask, or one of those Jason masks. Put some screening (from sliding doors) on the mask. The screen is what you would attach the hair to.

It is just an idea. TK409 suggest doing just that for the Jawas. That is how the lit up eyes attach to the wearer.

Just another suggestion that may help with the face creation process.
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GotWookiee (Matt Pfingsten)
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 04, 2008 12:30 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Tim, that is awesome that a little person is interesting in costuming and joining your base. There are some kick-arse costumes that she can do. Ewoks and Jawas are a good start, but if your friend can do a passable impression of Yoda's voice, you should consider making some prosthetic appliances (silicone or foam latex) in the future to try and make an awesome Yoda costume that can actually interact with kids.

From personal experience, Chewie and Artoo are the top characters as far as the public is concerned, even more popular than Vader or Fett. We've often had kids and parents asking "Where's Yoda!" and I think if you could get an awesome Yoda costumer (not just a mask, but full prosthetic make-up) your friend would probably bring the house down at any events.

A GONK that could actually walk is another possibility.
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Zurath Kodul (Tim Thompson)
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 04, 2008 2:38 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well, I'm not 100% sure she's really wanting to do this.

And I'm doubting she will be willing to do the prosthetics for Yoda.

She's 13 now, but if I can get her to agree to an Ewok, then she will fit in really good at the events.
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Aramys Strael (Bill Kohlleppel)



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PostPosted: Mon Aug 04, 2008 3:27 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I did a six foot Gonk once for the last weekend of the Star Wars Exhibit at OMSI. I know Matt was in town to hang out with us... not sure if he was there that weekend or not.

That blasted thing was heavy!

- Bill
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Grizza (Heather Miller)
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 04, 2008 1:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Aramys Strael wrote:
For the head, I would also, perhaps, suggest a hockey mask, or one of those Jason masks. Put some screening (from sliding doors) on the mask. The screen is what you would attach the hair to.

It is just an idea. TK409 suggest doing just that for the Jawas. That is how the lit up eyes attach to the wearer.

Just another suggestion that may help with the face creation process.


I like the idea of the hokey mask, I think that would work really well. Great suggestion Aramys. Sadly hockey doesn't "exist" where I live. It is just one of those mythical sports you hear about that Canadians play. I am assuming it involves a baby seal and flapjacks. J/K! I'll try to stick to what we know down here in the mountains... pig-pickins, feuds, and moonshine. Razz

The other benefit of the catchers helmet for me that might not work for your friend is that I am a slightly large ewok (5ft) and the bulk the whole helmet provides makes my ewok scale more appropriately than just fabric over my head.
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Qi-Gon Jinn ()
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PostPosted: Thu Aug 07, 2008 3:36 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

A fencing mask would work great for this!!
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Mieal Deneb (Rachel Orange)
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PostPosted: Thu Aug 07, 2008 6:08 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

That Ewok looks great! I've often toyed with the idea of making Ewoks for my kids, but I want them to look good, not just "eh", so it'd be a lot of work for something they'd grow out of.

Putting a lot of work into one for a little person would be more worth it because they wouldn't grow out of it. Though, if she's 13 I suspect she's not done growing yet. Still, it'd be awesome to have her join the Rebellion if you can convince her! Smile
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Grizza (Heather Miller)
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PostPosted: Sun Aug 10, 2008 6:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

well, here is the finished product:
http://www.skeenaharts.com/ewok

If there is any other info I can give ya I'll be happy to. It isn't perfect, but it is done and submitted. *fingers crossed*
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bassclarinets ()
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PostPosted: Sun Aug 10, 2008 7:08 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

if you want faux fur (tim) you need monterry mills (in Janesville) because they have an outlet store (in town) that if you can drive up to, you can save a LOT on the fur..

jen
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Zurath Kodul (Tim Thompson)
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PostPosted: Sun Aug 10, 2008 8:09 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for the heads-up, Jen. I'll look into it once I make sure that an Ewok is the character is what she wants to do.

Grizza, that's a pretty cool costume. I might steal your idea for the face and such.
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