Thursday, August 9, 2012

Prince & Princess - Tube Heads - Katamari

Hey-o! So here's a look at how to make your very own Katamari tube head! ;D

First I took a 12" diameter sonotube and cut a piece that was 2ft long for each head. (I drew a guide line all the way around and cut it with a hand saw)

I bought an 8ft sonotube at Home Depot, so in theory with 1 tube I could make 4 heads. This is good news for group cosplays! XD

I compared the size of Miso's face on the tube to see how the size looked. If I remember correctly we determined it to be a tad small and made Prince, Princess and Nickel's faces a tad bigger.

Alex made the expressions for each face and sewed each on. Then she attached the yellow bias tape to the edge of the face to finish it off. Fantastic! :D

I set to work on cutting the neck holes. Using my handy workbench, I clamped the tubes down in preparation for dismemberment cutting holes.

I drew the shape I wanted cut, then drilled a hole big enough to fit my jigsaw blade in. With much caution--or at least as cautious as one can be while using power tools upside-down on a curve--I cut out the neck holes.

Then I had to decide where to glue the helmet. I marked the center on the inside and put the helmet in. Then I used an available human (preferably the one who would be wearing the costume) to determine the spacing for the placement of the helmet. I used blocks of insulation foam (hot glued in) as spacers to have the helmet sit at the right height and angle. I had some problems with this because the glue didn't really want to stick to the waxy inner surface of the tube... solution use MORE glue until it works! But in all seriousness, I should probably find a more reliable adhesive...

Other problems included the fact that Prince was to be worn by 3 different people, all with differing head sizes, neck length, etc. which made it a little tricky to fit it so that it would work for everyone.

Once that was done I cut out an eye slot using the same method I did for cutting the neck holes.

I went to Camp Connection (at Bathurst and Lawrence in Toronto) and bought 2 eggshell bed rolls. Instead of buying upholstery foam at Fabricland, this is much cheaper! It is also the perfect width for covering the 2ft wide tube.

I hot glued the foam--eggshell side in--to the tube.

Once it was glued on, I cut the holes in the foam for the eye hole and the neck hole with a pair of sharp scissors. Always do this after, just in case the holes don't line up.

Testing my fabric colour combos. I think I came pretty close to perfect! >:D

Then I created the pattern pieces for the end of the tubes using the bump pattern from the Katamari ball.The circumference measure for the base of the bump in this case is the circumference of the tube with the foam padding on it. Then you use  rectangle of fabric that spans the 2ft tube, falling a little short so that it pulls tight.

(In hindsight: It is also a good idea to add an extra inch to the end of each c-shape because you will need to tuck and hand stitch this sucker. I learned the hard way that this would indeed be helpful...)

I made these assembly line style. Always make sure to do the relief cuts before you pin it. Also, mark the 1/4 marks so everything lines up alright.

Then attach the next ring. These ones look like green eggs (and ham). :P

Next thing I recommend is to take packing tape to compress the end of the foam. It makes it 50 times easier to get the cover on. I tried it without and managed to rip the top circle on Princess's cover. D:

You leave the tube cover open at the bottom, the open seam going across the neck hole.

Mark where the eye-hole is going to need to be on the cover, and determine the placement of the face making sure it will cover the eye-slot. In the case of the Prince, a white rectangle also needed to be put down  under where the face flap would be so that the rather see-through fabric for the face wouldn't look green. (Obviously an unnecessary step for Princess.)

I took the cover off, sewed on the white rectangle and then remarked the eye-slot on Prince.

Then I stitched the tops of the face flaps on.

Using the markings I made for the eye-slot I sewed a rectangle where I wanted the edges of the hole to be. Then I carefully cut a hole in the center leaving a 1/2" seam allowance.

( In hindsight: Mark and attach the velcro squares to tack down the face now rather than later! You can easily machine stitch them on when the cover is not on. If you wait too long (or forget) you will have to hand stitch them on, which is not fun!)

Then I made a back piece for the slot, same as the front.

By making a relief cut into each corner, I was able to sew a rectangular tube into each hole. I was able to easily feed this through and tuck it into the face, gluing it in place on the inside of the tube. A very clean way to finish the eye-slot.

 Then make 2 foam core discs and stick them in each end. These with be hot glued in place later to help push the stuffing out into the ends of the tubes.

Each cover was then slipped on --more like wrestled, I made them very tight fitting so they wouldn't be loose--and stitched up. The neck hole was cut out leaving extra fabric to pull and hot glue to the inside.

Then the antenna--which had a yellow bias tape trim glue along the bottom--was stitched on. >:D Voila!

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