The Walkthrough: Hannah Alexander Bowsette and Boosette
Editor’s note: if you’d like to see how we putting together a set with these characters you can read about it and see the images here. If you do use this tutorial to make your own costume and post pictures to social media give us a shoutout by tagging @makethemawesome and @tacocat_cosplay. And you find this walkthrough useful consider making a donation via our Tip Jar!
Why Did I Pick These Designs?
I decided to make these specific designs because:
I love Hannah Alexander’s artwork. I am a total sucker for beading, rhinestones, and most things that are “extra”.
I wanted to learn how to work with worbla before using it on a massive armor project.
Mermaid Child REALLY wanted this Boosette design.
The breastplate was patterned by wrapping myself in cling wrap and tape. Then I drew out lines to mark where I wanted the top to sit, the bottom, and marked out the cups. Then the pattern was transferred and I planned out the gold details details. After the patterning was done everything was transferred onto craft foam. The trim and scales were glued to the base using barge contact cement
Then the top was wrapped with worbla and then heat shaped. It was my first time using worbla, so I watched a few tutorials for how to work with worbla. I chose to use worbla on this project mostly just to learn how to work with in in preparation for future armor build. When watching videos I learned that many people used wood glue to smooth out wobla, however gesso could also be used. Then I coated the top with 4-6 coats of wood glue. The top was painted using a hammered black spray paint and airbrushing on the green and gold. Then I weathered the armor by dry brushing on brown paint.
The bracer and shin armor were also patterned on paper, transferred to foam, and covered in worbla. Then they were painted in the same way as the top.
The shoulder shell base was made from EVA foam.
The spikes were made by rolling together worbla scraps into a tube, then this tube was cut into sections, and each section was rolled to look like a spike/cone. The trim on each spike was part of the tube I made. I cut smaller pieces, heated, and then placed onto the base of each spike The gold parts were made from craft foam.The details were cut using an exacto knife and a heat gun.
I was not sure how paint would dry on the Christmas ornaments that I bought to turn into earrings, so I covered them in glue, and then dumped glitter onto the glue.
I patterned and made a pair of black shorts, which were then covered in roughly 250 scales. I couldn’t find any green vinyl that was a close match the the green paint used on my armor, so I got blue vinyl and colored it using Tulip color shot fabric paint.
While wearing the shorts and top I used cling wrap to pattern the gold belt.
The fabric for the sleeves and skirts were originally just some white fabric that I had sitting in my craft room. I dyed the fabric using black Rit Dyemore, however it would not dye darker than a charcoal grey. So I used a sheer black fabric that could get the right color, but maintain the ombre.
Each sleeve is a rectangle piece of the ombre fabric covered on both sides with the sheer black. Then the edges were hemmed with a rolled hem and gathered at the top to be roughly 80% of the length of the arm band. The arm band, and the other bands, were made from a leather trim that was top stitched. I also designed the spikes in TinkerCAD and 3D printed them.
I also designed the base of the crown in TinkerCAD. The inner mushroom piece was altered to fit my crown from an existing design I found online.
The horns were also 3d printed using a design I found online and altered.I made the slot larger because I felt it would make adding wire to the horns easier. I also ended up having the wire from the clowers connect to he horns via the same slot. All of the 3d printed parts were sanded and filled using automotive primer.
Then I dyed some white flowers using black Rit Dyemore. The flowers were then glued to the horns and wire was added to them to attach them to the wig.
The wig is an Arda wigs Jeannie which was dyed using red and orange rit dyemore. It was my first time doing a multi-color dye job to a wig. The pony tail clips was divided into roughly 25 sections and individually dyed to create variation in how high the dye went on the fibers. I started by dyeing in the orange. I folded each section in half and put it in the dye. This allowed me to keep the tips blonde and avoid a weird overlap of orange and red. The red was then dyed by dipping the tips into a red dye bath. I then cut and styled the base wig.
The base bunny suit was patterned by wrapping my sister in cling wrap and tape. Those pieces were then cut out, transferred to paper and had a seam allowance added I then made a mock of the bunny suit to test the fit. This step was very important because I did end up altering the pattern based on how the mock up fit.
The base of the bunny suit was made using white fabric I already had, but i added interfacing to it because it was very light weight Then I cut out the skirt from a sheer chiffon fabric that I got on ebay. I went with a sheer because it matched the artwork well, and the fabric would flow nicely . The skirt is one hi-low skirt and one full length circle skirt sewn together. The sleeves are one hi-low circle and one half of a circle with a larger radius. Then each piece was dyed using royal purple Rit Dyemore.
The purple/silver ribbon and beads were hand sewn on. Then I made a giant rectangle and gathered it. After the ruffle was added to the top I added the lace and silver/white ribbon by hand. The sleeves and skirt were hemmed with ½ inch horsehair braid.
Flat back rhinestones were glued onto the skirt and sleeves using e6000. Sew-on rhinestones and beads were sewn onto the top using clear thread.
The ruff was made after looking at various Elizabethan collar ruff tutorials. The tutorials mostly talked about using ribbon, so I purchased two in wide ribbon. This involved doing a zig-zag type fold to the ribbon, running a thread through the top and bottom of the back side and hand stitching a ribbon to the back of the ruff. This took 10 yards or so of ribbon. Then I added pearls and a gem that I resin casted using Easycast. After mixing the two part solution I added in glitter and some red food coloring. Then the mixture was poured into the mold.
The head piece was designed in TinkerCad, printed, primed, and painted. Then flowers and beads were added.
For the wig I started with a silver base wig, dyed in light purple highlights, and wefted in some pale lilac wefts. This was my first time dyeing highlights into a wig, so I braided sections of hair to not dye and dyed the non braided bits using Rit Dyemore in royal purple. The wig was a bit challenging to style because I typically choose wigs that have bangs near the length I want.
Due to wigs being backordered I ended up with a wig that needed quite a bit of cutting done. Most of the cutting was done using thinning shears.
What Did I Learn?
How to work with, paint, and smooth worbla
How to work with, paint, and smooth worbla
I learned a lot about smoothing/finishing 3D printed items from this project
How to dye a two toned ombre into a wig
How to dye highlights and lowlights into a wig in a more natural way.
I learned about patterning and making bunny suits. I had made one before, but it was done using a commercial pattern and really did not fit Mermaid Child well.
Looking back I probably would have done Bowesette’s skirt differently. The skirt became a bit heavier than I wanted. I also would have made the top band of Boosette’s sleeves stretchy instead of not. Since they did not have stretch it limited Mermaid Child’s arm motions quite a bit.