Foxy Cosplay: The Torso Part 1

Foxy’s torso was a rather complex part of this cosplay, and thus the time-consuming process involving its creation must be covered in multiple posts.  Part 1…begin!  Before I could even start, I had to figure out the shape to cut out of the foam.  After quite a bit of pondering, I eventually decided that I would draw out a shirt pattern twice on upholstery foam, where they are joined on one side.  (I forgot to take a photo of this.)  The concept of making parts of a character out of upholstery foam seems confusing on the surface, but when you really think about it, all you’re doing is making clothes out of thick material.  What is the clothing equivalent of a torso?  Why, a shirt, silly!  Brilliant!  So I cut this out and used the spray glue to bond the shoulders together, creating this fairly, well, torso-shaped shell.  It appeared my efforts were off to a good start.

I had to do a lot of trimming to get everything to fit me correctly, as I have a habit of cutting out my material, fabric, foam, or otherwise, a bit larger than necessary, as it’s always easier to make something smaller than to make it bigger.  I expanded the arm holes and neck hole to accommodate my limbs and my big noggin, and I also worked on the shape I wanted for the shoulders.  And, last of all, I trimmed the sides until the torso was snug, but comfortable.  I wanted to avoid making it too loose, as I didn’t want to look too bulky.

Elsa's responsible for quality control. I hope this meets her exacting standards.
Elsa’s responsible for quality control. I hope this meets her exacting standards.

After this, I decided I wanted more shape to his chest, so I made a paper pattern in the shape of his upper chest and tummy (this is the part with the brown fur), and then I used this pattern to cut out a piece of foam.  After a bit of trimming and sculpting, I had created Foxy’s rather manly pecs, which I attached with the all-important spray glue.  I figure being a pirate and sailing a ship and all is hard work and would lead to a fair amount of exercise.

It's not every day that you see your own chest lying in front of you. Call a doctor, Foxy!
It’s not every day that you see your own chest lying in front of you. Call a doctor, Foxy!

Next, I added the holes, including a huge one in his chest (Foxy should stop using his hook to scratch at his itches, I think), and I rounded off the edges of the foam because I think this creates a more natural look.  All the while, however, I had trouble finding time to work on my costume because my cat Elsa kept using Foxy’s torso as a little fort, where she enjoyed curling up inside for many restful naps.  Silly girl.  Eventually, despite my kitty’s interference, it was finally time to add Foxy’s lovely fur coat (it’s actually fleece with an odd texture like short fur).

The chest has been attached, only to have a large portion torn out. Foxy, if you won't call an ambulance, I will.
The chest has been attached, only to have a large portion torn out. Foxy, if you won’t call an ambulance, I will.
Elsa's new secret lair. Shh, don't tell anyone. It's secret.
Elsa’s new secret lair. Shh, don’t tell anyone. It’s secret.

I first sewed fur around the borders of the holes, since if you neglect to do this and start adding the main fur first, there won’t be enough fabric to wrap around the edges of the holes and cover them.  Once the borders were done, I got to work attaching Foxy’s red fur first.  I wanted his fur to be smooth and wrinkle-free, so I started on one side and slowly worked my way along, alternating between sewing around the neck hole and the bottom border.  The way I had placed the fur, the top edges of the fabric ended up meeting at the shoulders, so I had to be extra careful here to sew the fur down just right to create a nice, tidy seam.

Foxy's vibrant red fur. Soon, I shall poke holes through it, mwa ha ha!
Foxy’s vibrant red fur. Soon, I shall poke holes through it, mwa ha ha!

Once the red fur was done, I cut out a piece of light brown fur in the shape of Foxy’s chest using the paper pattern as a guide.  Unfortunately, during my initial attempt, I accidentally cut this piece with the fur going in the wrong direction, so I had to do it over again.  After all this hard work, I certainly wasn’t going to allow such a silly mistake, darn it!  Once I was sure his chest fur (that sounds weird, for some reason) was just the right shape and size, I sewed it on.  The last step before his fur was complete was to poke a hole through the fabric where the holes were and sew along the borders.  Looking good, Foxy.  Looking.  Good.

Foxy's completed fur, before the damage has been done. Enjoy being intact while it lasts, Foxy.
Foxy’s completed fur, before the damage has been done. Enjoy being intact while it lasts, Foxy.
This is why all pirates must complete a safety course in proper cannon usage.
This is why all pirates must complete a safety course in proper cannon usage.

After that, I sewed on some sticky Velcro (I know it’s already sticky, but I didn’t trust it, so I sewed it to make it extra secure) to the edges of the open side of Foxy’s torso.  Unfortunately, the Velcro isn’t very strong, so when I wear the torso, I have to be careful that the Velcro doesn’t pop open again.  Which it already did during a fairly short period of testing.  As aggravating as this is, I suppose it’s important to be aware of my costume’s weak points so I can fix them before the day of the comicon.  I eventually want to add a zipper or extra Velcro to make the open end of the torso more secure, but that is a job for another day.  There is still so much to do, and I’d rather get the main work done before I return to these annoying, extra tasks.

Now, if you are familiar with Foxy’s appearance, you may have noticed that you can see a portion of his endoskeleton through the massive gash in his chest.  Well, that was the next major step of his torso and will be covered in part 2.  And let me tell you, while this part of the costume started out fun, it didn’t stay fun for long.  Then again, that kind of describes every part of every cosplay I’ve ever done.  Ever.

Duck Torsos Don’t Make Good Homes For Cats…

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