Boushh Boushh Helmet/Costume Build by alvo

alvomedia

Hunter
Hey guys! The kids have started up with school again and I'm finding myself in need of a project. I've been wanting to put together this costume for 3 or 4 months, so I guess now is as good a time as any.

I'm going to try my best to post details and how-to's to help others along with their builds. There will likely be mistakes and do-overs, but that's part of the fun of it all.

I've got my helmet kit from Sandman (Todd). It has been sitting on the shelf for about 6 months, unfinished. I've been doing Boushh helmet builds for other people and mine has just been put on the back burner. The bandolier kit and tank kit I got in a trade deal, and I've got a kit for the shoulder/chest armor.

For the soft parts I am mostly just winging it. I am not a super awesome seamstress, but I am halfway decent. I've got a pattern for the tunic that will likely need some modifications.

I don't have any parts for the boots/spats yet (like the disks). And I don't have the belt buckle either. The pants will probably be my biggest challenge.

Anyway, stay tuned. Lots of posts to come.
 

alvomedia

Hunter
So, I started on the soft parts for this build back in April. I sewed the outer tunic and started on the arm sleeves.

For the arm sleeves I started out by cutting off the sleeve of an old long sleeved shirt that I thought had the right shape. I sewed that into sort of a mock sleeve to get an idea of where the thumb hole and everything should go and how long and tight it should be. I then used that as a pattern for sewing actual sleeve. Well, the sleeve ended up being too tight and pinched at the elbow when I bent it so I put it away for a rainy day when I could re-work the pattern.

I pulled it out this week to fix it. And I'm pretty satisfied with the results. I picked apart the sleeve that was too tight and made some adjustments. I also transferred the pattern onto some brown paper so each sleeve is the same and in case I need to re-use it.

The material I used it a pretty standard, medium quality, micro-suede. I would like to use the real thing, and nice pig skin suede, but right now this will have to do. Same with the tunic.

Here are some pictures of how it all worked out.

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For the thumb holes I knew the size I needed, so I simply stitched around the traced line and then cut out the middle with an xacto knife. I couldn't just cut a hole, otherwise the fabric would likely just rip and fray. The stitching will help with that.
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Sorry, I have no idea why some of the pictures uploaded upside down. :/
 

alvomedia

Hunter
Alright, so I thought it would be a good idea to somehow attach the sleeves to the shirt I would be wearing underneath the costume. If I didn't attach the sleeves to something they would just begin to sag down my arm. I chose a light-weight, performance wear type shirt for under the costume. This being because I've heard it can get pretty sweaty in there with all the layers of not so breathable fabric. I've seen some costumes that have the sleeves and neck cowl all sewn together as one piece, but I thought it would be better to have the detachable option for washing.

So I thought just some button snaps would do the trick. I immediately regretted this and found that it was not such a good idea. The snaps just tore through the t-shirt fabric the first time I tried to undo/pull off the sleeve. But that's ok! Trial and error is part of the process. So I reinforced the t-shirt fabric with some of the same micro-suede that was used for the sleeves/tunic. It is much better now. I'm thinking that I will also reinforce the area where the spikes go on top of the hands.

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alvomedia

Hunter
Alright ya'll, it's cummerbund time. Also, I sewed up the tunic months ago and I'll get a picture or two of that up as well.

I guess to start, for the tunic I went and purchased a pattern for a man's bathrobe. This obviously needed to be altered a bit. For starters the sleeves needed to be shortened, as well as the overall length. Since I am mostly guessing when it comes to altering patterns I found it best to leave ample room and then cut back as needed. As I stated before, I'm not a great seamstress but the overall result was passable. It still needs weathering.

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Alright, the cummerbund was made out of the same micro suede material as the arm sleeves. For this I simply folded the material over once and sewed lengths of rope into it to create the look. There are probably lots of different ways to do this, but this way made sense to me and seemed like one of the simplest solutions. The only thing I wished I could do was get the needle closer to the rope to make the lines nice and tight.

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Finishing off the ends was not the prettiest job, but when you consider that a cape will be covering it then I'm not so worried. I do wish it looked nicer though. I've decided to use some heavy duty velcro to keep it together while wearing it. I think I'll add some velcro to the tunic as well, just to keep everything neat and tidy and so things don't shift around or come apart.

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I had read that the cummerbund typically has about 16-18 rows (according to the 501st). Mine has got 17. I've been looking at reference photos and other costume references and I feel like mine is TOO wide. I'd really love some feedback on that. I am not above making some adjustments. I want it to look right.

I ordered some stuff from strapworks for the bandolier, but it is stuck down in MT till I can go pick it up from my in-laws. I'd like to do that next. Also getting excited about the helmet build. It'll have lights from fettronics and hopefully voice modulation as well. It's gonna be great!





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alvomedia

Hunter
So I found a guy selling a Boushh armor kit back in May or June, but hadn't really got it out to take a good look at it until this morning.

It came in 3 pieces, and seems to be pretty straight forward vacuum formed plastic. It took me a looooong time to get it taped together right. I'm not sure this is the best kit out there, it sure didn't want to go together that easily. I had bit of a time getting things lined up and flush. As you can also see from one of the pictures, the two front sides seem to be at odds with each other and don't quite line up. But I'm pretty sure that's something a heat gun and some patience can fix once it's trimmed. Also, when trying it on when I had it taped together, it didn't seem to matter much.

Once I had it taped together I put a bit of CA glue just to tack it together. Then on the inside I used some plastic JB weld. On the outside I used some JB weld putty. I'll have to do some sanding over the shoulders once it all cures. I also have a bit of trimming to do along the inside around the neck.

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Some JB plastic weld on the inside and outside.
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alvomedia

Hunter
I was looking around at tbhg.net and found a thread for a pattern for the neck cowl piece that is kind of like a dickie. This was the one piece I didn't really know how to approach, so I was happy I came across it. I had just enough of the dark brown micro-suede fabric too.

This turned out pretty well, but it took me awhile to get there. First off, I made it too small and had to add panels over the shoulders. I also sewed in a dart under the chin so it would have a better shape. When I finished it, I felt like it didn't come up high enough. So then I added a strip of fabric to make it taller, coming up just below my ears and over my chin. I added a snap in the back to keep it closed (also some velcro), which I'm not sure I love. I'll have to see if it is hidden by the helmet/chest armor once I get that part finished. There is also a lot of extra fabric in the back that is not needed, so I think I will cut off the excess. Overall I am really happy with how it turned out.

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I also thought I'd have a go at the cape. I had purchased some burlap 6 months ago for the project, but had been rethinking my decision. I really like the look of the burlap, with the rough and heavy weave. It seems, to me, to really portray the bounty hunter feel. But I wasn't sure how it would hang, since burlap is quite stiff. The nice thing about the burlap option is that it is quite inexpensive and easy to find. I looked at some other options, like wool and canvas, but I couldn't seem to find anything that was as rough looking as the burlap. So I thought since I already had the burlap I might as well give it a go.

I first cut out a mock cape from an old sheet so I could get the size right. A lot of people will wash the burlap before sewing it, but I just dove right in. Burlap is messy and kind of a pain to work with. I stitched everything twice, once with a straight stitch and then with a zigzag. After I got it sewn up I washed it 3 times (the other thing about burlap is it stinks). After three washes and a dry it came out pretty good. It hangs nicer now and it doesn't smell.

Overall I am pleased with the cape. I'll dirty it up the finish the look. Boushh's cape is filthy. Should be fun.

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alvomedia

Hunter
Spent some time trimming and sanding the armor tonight. The JB weld has had a couple days to cure. The JB weld plastic putty sands down quite nice while maintaining an excellent bond to the plastic. It really is great stuff.

I first trimmed around the neck. There was quite a bit to trim, but my dremel tool made quick work of it. I also taped down the front edges to make a nice straight line and trimmed there too. The edges down the front just needed to be finessed a bit.

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For sanding (all by hand) I started out with an 80 grit to really remove a lot of the bulk/bumps. It took awhile, but will be worth the effort come paint time. I then jumped to a 220 grit. After the 220 I used some putty to fill some divots that I couldn't quite get, and also to smooth the seams where the JB putty meets the black plastic. After the putty filler, a bit more with 220 then jumped to 320. Then 800, then 1000. I know than may seem like overkill, but even the 320 grit really bit into the plastic and I wanted it to come out nice and smooth.

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I still need to work out the shape a bit with a heat gun. I'll do that before primer. Once I get it primed I will be able to see better where I may need more putty or sanding. Primer is great for that. ;)

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alvomedia

Hunter
Did some armor painting today. I also worked out the shape a bit as well.

First to go down after the primer was a flat brown with about 40% black. I wanted a dark base, but not black. After that I went with just some flat brown. I kept it dark around the edges to give it some depth/contour. I also added a bit of red brown.

I've looked at a lot of reference photos from the film and it seems like the armor is actually pretty dark. Darker than some of the costume builds I've seen. So I hope I've struck a good balance.

I'll finish it off with a clear matte coat.

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Sent from my iPhone
 

alvomedia

Hunter
I put a clear matte coat on the shoulder armor and I'm really happy with the results. On the inside of the armor a JB welded two snaps. These will be for strapping that will go under the tunic that will attach to another strap so I can cinch it around my waist to keep the armor from slipping back. I've seen this on other builds and think it's a great idea. All I have left to do on the shoulder armor is some padding, and a bit of velcro for the comm unit and bandolier to attach to (really to keep it from slipping off).

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I finally got my package from strapworks.com with all the things I need for the bandolier and to finish the cummerbund (velcro). But then I realized I forgot one of the straps for the bandolier, the narrow grey strap that holds the silver tubes/dowels. So I didn't get too far when I went to build it. In the meantime I went ahead and painted up the bandolier parts. I got this kit in a trade deal and don't know who the original maker is, but it is a good kit as far as I can tell.

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The bandolier pieces had some trimming and sanding before painting could happen. Also, a few pieces needed to be glued onto the two rectangular pieces, which I didn't realise till after I primed them and went to look at my reference photos. But no worries. I didn't take pictures of each step, but I'll tell you what I did.

After I primed them I laid a black base coat. On the three big cylinder pieces that's all I did (other than some dry brushing). After the black I added some german grey, just for a bit of subtle variation. After that I misted it with sky grey. I also misted the buckle with sky grey and weathered that a bit with the tip of an xacto knife. I dry brushed the pieces with flat aluminum then gave them all an umber wash, to dirty them up. After the wash had dried a bit I hit it again in couple places with sky grey, just to match the reference photos better. The six smaller cylinders got a straight flat aluminum coat of paint. I am very please with how these pieces came out.

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For the bandolier straps I didn't get very far before I realised I was missing a strap I forgot to order. I first sewed on the buckle, pretty simple task. For the strap that crosses up and over the body I attached it to the waist strap by sewing a box and an "X", which is what I looks like on the original. I also cut the strap and I very slight angle, so it isn't a hard 90 degree coming off the waist strap. It's pretty subtle, and at the time I thought "hey this will help it hang better", but in the end I'm not actually sure it was necessary.

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Lastly, with the straps I also ordered some pretty heavy duty velcro for the cummerbund. The results are good and I am happy with how it turned out. I just need to weather the cummerbund a bit and it can go in the "finished" box.

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alvomedia

Hunter
The cummerbund is complete! It just needed a bit of weathering to finish it off. For that I used some black shoe polish. It is subtle, but that is good.

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Also, I went out today and purchased some strapping (the one I forgot to order) so I could continue the bandolier build. I first measured out where the 6 cylinder pieces should be on the cross over strap. I sewed that first, since I didn't think I would have much room once the other pieces were attached. This strap was pretty easy to sew on. It ended up being that the cylinder pieces needed a half inch on the large strap to fit into the loop and to make the loop I measured 1 inch on the smaller strap. The cylinders fit nice and snug. I also sewed some velcro to the top where it goes over the shoulder. This will attach to the shoulder armor and prevent the bandolier from flopping all over the place.

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The larger pieces all got glued and screwed (1/2" screw) onto the bandolier. I don't see any other way of attaching them securely. As usual, always pilot your holes and screwing them in by hand doesn't hurt either.

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After all the pieces were put on it was just a matter of weathering and we are all set. Minus one piece, actually. I need a large-ish cup item that goes on the right side of the bandolier. That was the one thing this kit didn't come with, and I'm having a hard time finding a good match. Any leads here would be appreciated. I'm really happy with the bandolier.

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Lastly, I put some padding in the shoulder armor. For this I used 1/2" foam, specifically a camping mat (although I don't know who would EVER choose to sleep on a 1/2" camping mat). I wrapped the foam in come deerskin to finish the look and am pretty happy with how it turned out. The only problem, and it is a small-ish problem, is that with the padding in there the armor is a bit tight. Do you think I could hit it with a heat gun at this point to open it up a bit? Or do you think that would mess things up? I'll have to think about this one.

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Before weathering. Lumberjack Boushh. :)

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DeathProof

Active Hunter
You're doing and incredible job. One of the best I've seen for sure :)

I'd be weary of taking a heat gun to the armour now. I have a strange feeling the paint would want to bubble.

Love the lumberjack shot. A truly Canadian Boushh :)
 

alvomedia

Hunter
You're doing and incredible job. One of the best I've seen for sure :)

I'd be weary of taking a heat gun to the armour now. I have a strange feeling the paint would want to bubble.

Love the lumberjack shot. A truly Canadian Boushh :)

Yes, my friend, we must proudly represent our Canadian heritage! ha! Next time I'll wear a hockey jersey.

I think you're right about the heat gun and I'm going to leave it. It is not so tight that it is a bother in any way.

Also, I've been referencing your Boushh build and voice changer thread a lot. So thanks for putting in the effort to show us the way!
 

alvomedia

Hunter
I have been on a brief hiatus this week from the build. Things just got a bit busy, plus I got sidetracked with another project.

I finished the comm-unit that will be attached to the shoulder armor via velcro. I noticed in some reference photos of the original costume the comm-unit is more brown on the bottom half. I didn't have a stencil for the decal, so I just drew it on the best I could with a pencil then filled it in. I think it turned out alright. The decal could maybe be a bit brighter red.

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I'll have lots to do next week. I'm finally getting my stuff that got shipped to my in-laws in MT. Spikes for the hand/arm sleeves. Material for the spats. I found some boots for $15 on amazon. Here's hoping they aren't totally useless.

I also found some pants on ebay. They are not exactly the right shade of color, but I've seen other costumes made in a similar color and it is still passable. The original costume pants seem much lighter, but I've been having a heck of a time finding the right match. Here's a picture of what I'll be working with. I intentionally got a few sizes bigger (14) so I would have extra material to work with around the knees. I'll have to bring them in quite a bit, but for me I think this will be easier than starting from scratch since I'm not a great seamstress.

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Should have some good progress updates next week.

The to-do list includes:

Weathering the tunic and cape
Finishing the arm sleeves with metal spikes
Creating a pattern and sewing the spats
Start altering the pants

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alvomedia

Hunter
pants.... ugh the pants.... it has taken me all day to get to this point.

First things first, I got rid of the lining inside the pants. It would only get in the way, so the lining was the first to go.

Next, they got cut off at the knees. Then cut off again about mid-thigh, only to be stitched back together. On the original costume the pants seem to be pieced together in a couple different places like that. Once that was done I brought them in a bit to make them more fitted.

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I took the bottom pieces that I had cut off earlier and took one seam out so I had one large piece of leather to work with. I marked off the leather every 1 inch and gathered and sewed the leather to help make the folded/wrinkled area over the knees.

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I soaked this piece in warm water for about 10 minutes then gathered the leather together and tied it. I saw this on another build and thought I'd give it a try. I have some really serious doubts about this method, which is why I only did one piece to start. If it works out, then great. If not, then I won't have to backtrack too far. The only problem now is that I've used up all the leather from the pants. So I went on tandy leather to try and find a similar match. It isn't going to be a perfect color match, plus it is going to have to be suede because everything else is just out of my price range. Sigh. Oh well.

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