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