mentioned the other day, I’ve been building a Boba Fett costume for Halloween. It began with my wife’s innocent comment that it would be fun to dress up as Star Wars characters as a family, and when the costume I bought online didn’t live up to my expectations, I began to research how I might build my own costume. Fortunately, there’s a ton of great tips online, and I quickly found myself totally hooked. I love a good project, and without a doubt, this has been the best project I’ve ever attempted.
Below are photos of my costume through the process. I’ll continue to update this post as I add new components.
Rather than just serving as an example of my compulsiveness, I hope that others attempting to build a Boba Fett costume might find some ideas here and avoid some problems I encountered.
I started off by trying to paint the toy blaster to look more realistic.
First coat of paint.
Finished Boba Fett blaster.
Cutting my torso armor from and old box.
Front armor cut out of cardboard.
This is the flight suit that I purchased from an military surplus store. Wrong color and wrong pockets but a nice fit.
Cutting out sheet aluminum and wrapping the cardboard. I took a break to get some gloves after cutting myself.
First piece wrapped. Nice start.
My wife took this pic with my son right before I was banished from the living room, never to return with this project again.
Covering the sharp back edges of the aluminum with duct tape.
Spray painting the finished armor.
Armor after battle scarring.
Starting work on the knee armor.
I learned that PVC can be heated and shaped using a heat gun.
With the pieces shaped, I marked up each piece for my trim lines.
Using a dremel to cut the PVC. This is a very messy process. PVC dust everywhere.
Knee armor is completely cut out.
Side pieces cut from wood and screwed to the PVC using a countersink from the inside.
Beginning the shoulder armor.
Wrapping the shoulder armor in sheet aluminum.
Both shoulders cut and wrapped.
Both pieces shaped by hand.
First layer of paint for the knee and shoulder armor. This is the point at which I knew there was no going back. I was completely hooked.
The only canvas I could find for the cape was the wrong color, but through experimentation I discovered that I could bleach it to the army green color I was looking for.
By this time, I realized that there were too many fabric components in the suit to continue without learning to sew.
Next up were the side belt pockets. I had no pattern, but I figured out how I wanted to try piecing it together.
Nearly finished side pocket turned inside out for sewing.
Finished belt pockets! I left the belt loop material unattached until I had the belt created and knew how big the loops needed to be.
Side view of the completed pockets. This was a proud moment. :)
Distressed and finished knee armor. Though the side blasters aren’t exactly the right size, I love how these turned out.
Masking off the left shoulder for the Mandalorian insignia.
Beginning work on the neck piece. I just zigzagged the material back and forth and taped it down as I went along.
Side view of the neck seal in progress.
I attached a round piece of cloth at the bottom so that I’d have something to tuck into my shirt and keep there from being any gaps.
Neck seal laid out flat.
Using one of my daugher’s markers to rough in the design. I should have checked to make sure I could wipe it off before doing this. Ended up being a pain.
Design painted onto the shoulder armor.
After painting over all the marker.
After failed attempts to bleach and dye the flight suit, I resorted to trying spray paint. This was a pretty miserable start, and I wasn’t sure how to proceed.
Beginning work on the ammo belt.
Cutting out the ammo belt.
Finished shoulder armor.
My wife helped me to finally come up with a solid solution for attaching the knee armor.
This rope belt is worn under the ammo belt. I didn’t have to make it since it’s a horse belt (not kidding), but here I spray painted the belt.
Velcro sewn to the back of the belt to match the look of the movie and eyelets installed. This was another very happy moment.
Rope belt dry and ready to go!
Since all the pockets on the flight suit were the wrong size and in the wrong places, I ripped out all the existing pockets. I would salvage this material for the new pockets I would make.
Beginning work on my first thigh cargo pocket.
Thigh pockets installed. It’s looking pretty patchy here, but things are starting to come together.
Working on the pocket flap.
Thigh and shin pockets are complete with hardly a scrap of leftover fabric.
Beginning work on the ammo belt. Here I used my chop saw to cut eight identical blocks of wood.
Blocks of wood sanded and ready to go.
Creating a pattern for the material to wrap the block.
Copying and cutting the pattern. Tedious work.
Detailed sewing. Stitching the flap portion for each pocket.
Attaching the pockets to the belt.
This was a mess!
The belt with all the pockets attached.
Now, I began wrapping each block and gluing it together with super glue.
All the sides wrapped.
Completed ammo belt with pouches! Hurray!
Sporting the ammo belt! So happy that it turned out like I was hoping.
Flattening out a section of PVC for the shin tools.
Sketching out the shin tools.
Cutting out the back portion of the armor from my old box.
Cutting the aluminum to wrap the cardboard.
Bad side of the back armor.
Armor shaped by hand and sanded to prep for paint.
Back armor painted.
I laid a tshirt on top of my fabric, lined up the seams, and traced that shape for my armor vest – making adaptations for the vest fit.
Vest in process. I think it was mostly luck that the thing fit. Backwards from what I anticipated. Setting seam marks, and wondering how to get this thing off of myself without waking up my wife for help in the middle of the night.
Vest shoulder pieces cut and stitched.
Using epoxy to attach bolts to the corners of the armor. I never would have thought this would be a good idea, but someone online suggested it.
I started out with the JB Weld steel stick epoxy at first, but I wish I had just used the regular JB Weld.
Fitting paper to the back of the armor and marking the bolt holes to get a good fit when making holes in the vest.
All armor fitted with paper patterns.
Taped the paper patterns in place and marked the bolt locations.
Vest with eyelets installed at each of the bolt locations.
Vest with armor bolted onto the reverse. From here, I attempted cutting off the extra bolt on each one, but that was a miserable failure. Should have cut all the bolts before attaching them to the armor. Had to reattach most of them.
Considering using the pvc for the ground-level buildout of the gauntlets. Not sure if this is a good idea or not.
Cutting out the shin tools from the flattened piece of PVC.
Beginning to shape out the knife.
A lot of imperfections due to the inexact process of shaping with a dremel tool, but still looking close enough that I was happy with the results of these two pieces.
I had to make a new front neck piece in order to make it connect to the back piece.
Drilling holes to connect the front and back.
Underside of connecting slot.
Old keyboard keys used for shoulder studs. Used JB Weld to secure nut to the bottom of each.
Top of the shoulder studs after painting.
Beginning work on the gauntlet missile.
Front cone near completion.
Hoping I can turn these canvas shoes into boots.
Using superglue to affix vinyl to the shoes.
I purchased this piece for the gauntlet on Ebay. It’s a resin cast of a calculator that was used for the authentic suit.
Beginning work on the gauntlets.
Cable fittings for the flame thrower.
Starting on the second boot.
First layer of pain on the boot uppers.
Weathering the paint. Here you can see the elastic side of the boot that is stitched in.
Applying piping to the boots. I used painted stereo wire and superglue.
Masking the visor on the toy helmet to apply paint.
Back of the helmet before paint.
Side of the helmet before paint.
Silver and black paint applied.
Helmet pieces glued together and filled with Bondo.
Green paint applied.
Masking off the helmet for red paint.
Ready for red paint application.
Back of the helmet.
All paint applied. Way too clean and neat for Boba Fett.
After distressing and battle scarring.
My garage workspace with several pieces in progress.
Forming aluminum for the front of the shoes.
Metal screwed into the front of the shoes and filled with Bondo. Sharpened wooden dowels added for spikes.
Other than a bit of paint on the front of the shoes, they’re pretty much complete here.
Starting work on the left gauntlet.
RadioShack buttons for left gauntlet.
Beginning work on details for right gauntlet.
Bottom half of left gauntlet.
Gauntlet halves are starting to take shape.
Fitting the missile.
Installing nails for right gauntlet weapons.
Button area masked off and ready to paint.
First layer of paint!
Pics of completed costume
For a few weeks, my daughter and I have talked about making a tree house for some of her toys. This weekend we decided to go for it.
Update 1/10/15: I am now selling this same treehouse through my
Sketching the Plans
Cutting out the Pieces
Sanding and Rounding Edges
Dowels for added stability
Ground Level Complete
Gluing and Clamping
Waiting for the Glue to Cure
With Toy Animals
Total material cost was about $20.
This was a fun project, and I anticipate building additional elements over the next few months.
Update 1/10/15: I am now selling this same treehouse through my
To follow up on my previous
post on illustrating, here’s a video that nearly made me pee my pants with laughter.
It seems that our nation has this one figured out pretty well already, but just in case you’ve missed it, here are nine ways to ruin your kids:
Always expect the worst from your kids. You’ll eventually find out you’re right.
Give them everything they want. If you’re consistent with this, you’ll trick your children into thinking that the stuff of this world can buy their happiness.
Don’t discipline your kids. I’m not just talking about spanking here; I’m talking about time out, grounding, and all other forms of discipline.
Be very cautious about praising your children. You don’t want them to become proud or feel special about themselves. Slowly erode their confidence.
Show your kids through your words and actions that they are an inconvenience to your life. Dwell on the ways that your life would be different – even better – without them.
Use guilt and shame to motivate your children to do what you want them to do.
If you have more than one child, let the kids treat each other with rudeness and disrespect.
Place the responsibility of socializing your kids on either a) the school system, or b) television. Don’t consider this a personal responsibility.
Place the responsibility of their spiritual development on either a) the church, or b) let them figure this out on their own. If you’re going to wreck your kids, it’s critical that you not take responsibility here.
Just in case you missed the related posts:
last post was a little heavy, so I thought I’d write this one with a little less seriousness.
Looking for some great opportunities to wreck you job? Here’s a list of six things that will shake things up in the workplace:
Bring a machete to work, and keep it on your desk.
Get some bright pink sunglasses, and never take them off.
Always refer to yourself in third person, and insert “silly” before your name. (eg. “Can you meet about that proposal with silly Kyle today?”)
Unless you have a uniform, wear the same thing to work every day.
Remove all of the letter e’s from your emails and letters.
Always bring your pets with you to work.
Spend your lunch breaks under your desk.
Send out a daily photo of yourself to the rest of the staff. (Childhood photos should work fine.)
Pretend like you have an imaginary friend who lives in your desk drawer.
Maybe your spiritual life is going a little too well lately and you’re looking for a way to bring things down a notch or two. Just follow these steps to see your spiritual life quickly erode into a mess:
Do what you
feel like doing. Avoid difficult things. Do what comes naturally. Consume vast amounts of media. Watch and listen to whatever you want.
Harbor resentment, especially towards your family. In your free time, think about the ways they’ve let you down.
Worry about your stuff. Hoard it all.
Don’t read the Bible or pray.
Don’t trust God. Live in fear and worry. Live your life as though Jesus never lived, died, and rose again for you.
Any other steps to recommend?
While I was
dying my hair a couple of nights ago, I leaned against the bathroom sink and accidentally set off my car alarm from the keys in my pocket. Since that was at least the second time that I’ve made a fool of myself in such a way, I decided to take action to make sure that would never happen again. For those who will find this useful, here are instructions on how to quickly, easily, and non-destructively disable your car fob panic button. (I drive a 2001 Jeep Cherokee, but this should be basically the same for any kind of car.)
The first thing you'll need to do is open up the fob. A penny worked great for me.
Next, I carefully pulled on the rubber encasing the chip board.
Here's the key chain with the rubber button piece removed.
Next, I flipped the rubber button part back over and used a plastic fork to gently remove the circuit board from the rubber piece.
After that, I placed a small piece of tape over the back of the panic button. This will keep the button from making a connection to the circuit board when pressed.
Last, I reassembled the fob and tested it out. It worked great, and it only took a couple of minutes.