COSPLAY BEGINNER TUTORIAL: CHUN LI BRACELETS (WITH PRODUCT LINKS)
Jan 16, 2019 | By: multiPOPtural Podcast
Here is a cosplay tutorial I’ve been wanting to put together since I had so much trouble getting together the information from the many options online. None of them seemed to produce the quality I was looking for so I’m putting one of my own together for youuu! I know this is super basic foam crafting but hopefully it can help other beginners and I’ll include links to what I used to save the guesswork.
I outlined a roll of duct tape as the initial bracelet pattern on paper a few times until I got it the way I wanted and put the pattern to foam. Using the exacto knife on your foam, trace the ring pattern out 4 times.
For the band portion that connects the rings I used a ruler for the width but winged the length when I had it to the foam. I trimmed the length as needed, modified the pattern, and cut the second band to match.
Next came the gorilla glue. I was pretty sure gorilla glue would be safe for foam but I read to always test glue (and all chemicals) on scrap pieces after reading horror stories of the glue melting the meticulously cut and formed foam. The test came out great so I glued the ring to the band, trimmed the band length because it was too long still, glued the band shut, and glued the second ring to complete the first bracelet base. Repeat for the second bracelet base.
The spikes took the most time to figure out. If i can get the scanner set up I’m hoping to upload these pattern files. Make 12 spikes- 6 for each bracelet. I use the gorilla glue starting from the base to the tip of the spike. The spike didn’t form perfectly but as long as it’s in complete contact it’s ok. Allow all the glue pieces to set per the glue instructions.
Be careful with this next part: the heat gun. It gets extremely hot so be careful where you set it down and mine smoked a bit when I first started it up but it stopped smoking and worked well after it “warmed up.” Use the heat gun and give it 3 passes over all the pieces to seal the foam. Don’t do it so much that you start to melt the foam- practice on scrap pieces if you’re scared like I was lol. This will cause a bit of shrinking but as long as the seams don’t open, the next step will cover the gaps. Run the Dremel on the peaks to even the surface out.
Our next step is sealing those gaps and bringing the spikes to a point. Use the Kwik Seal to fill the gaps and cracks and immediately follow up with a dab of water to smooth out the edges of the caulk. It goes on white, drys opaque clear, and is covered well after primer and paint. I did this step on the connections of the bracelet base and rings connections where I felt it dipped too much where it was glued. Like I mentioned earlier, I also used this on the spikes and to bring the tip to a point where the connection didn’t glue. All the white you see in the picture above needed to be filled. Allow all of these pieces to dry according to the package. I think I did one more pass with the Dremel and a little more Kwik Seal in certain pieces to make it just right (Virgo = Perfectionist).
Next we’re onto painting! But first we need to prime so it comes out nice, even, bright, and the foam is protected from the possibility of the eaten by the paint. I’m choosing to use PlastiDip after being highly disappointed by the streaky mess of ModPodge.
Bring a pot of water to a simmer, let it cool, and let the can of PlastiDip rest in the warm water for a few minutes. This helps liquify the rubber better so it can be applied evenly. I learned my application tips and see how it should look from Kamui Cosplay’s How to Apply PlastiDip tutorial. Apply 3 coats and let dry.
THIS NEXT SHOT IS JUST A TEST SHIT SPIKE. DON’T THINK IT’S REAL. I just didn’t want to risk the paint eating my foam after all those steps and it worked!
This test spike had one pass of primer and one pass of metallic silver and the foam is fine so onto the paint!
Do 3 coats of paint and allow to dry. Wait to do the bottom side that the bracelet base rests on until the top and sides are done to prevent smudging/sticking.
Last step! I was too excited and rushed the hot glue step. I honestly regret it since I can see it so much and wish I found a better way to do it but it you like how mine, I just hot glued one spike, then the opposite side to make sure they’re even.
AND FINALLY DONE WITH MY FIRST FOAM CRAFT YAYYYY!!
Overall I’m super happy with these. I’d like to try Barge Cement Gluenext time especially for the spikes or another project piece that comes to a point since it supposedly dries faster and see if it works for flat surfaces instead of the hot glue.
Thanks to Mishami for the article and be sure to check out her Patreon page by clicking here.