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Tutorial: Making Armour From Foam by Hidennka Tutorial: Making Armour From Foam by Hidennka
I've finally gotten around to doing it! Since cosplaying as Fem!Hawke to Supanova in 2010, I've had quite a few people asking me how I made my armour and for tips on recreating something similar. Now I want you guys to know, I'm still a very amateur cosplayer and I still have a lot to learn. Even now I'm finding new and better ways to perfect this process so please feel free to branch out and try new things!

This is simply my current method that I've used for my armour based cosplays to date - Hawke, Lightning & making Asuna's chestplate. The tutorial focuses mostly on Lightning's chest piece, as I made sure to take photos specifically for this tutorial but have included some of Hawke's armor for further examples. For these pieces I've used craft foam, as I've found it is a cost effective method for cosplayers on a budget (in comparison to materials such as worbla), but please keep in mind that foam can be fragile!

If you have any questions, please feel to ask away! :)
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:iconyunyun06:
yunyun06 Featured By Owner Aug 7, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
this is so helpful, thank you!!
i was wondering, though, how did you get the bottom half of the chest plate to look curved?
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:iconxxunovianxx:
xXunovianXx Featured By Owner Aug 7, 2014  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Hello! This is a very nice tutorial.
Question: I'm making a foam prop of my own, and reading about your modpodge section, are you talking about this modpodge with the purple label? If so, I guess I would have to go to a crafting store to buy one of those, right?
And what would you say would be the difference between using modpodge instead of saying, wood/PVA glue solution or a really popular PlastiDip to finish EVA foam projects? I'm having trouble deciding what exactly I might want to buy for my first foam prop. 
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:iconjrhall22:
jrhall22 Featured By Owner Mar 26, 2014  Hobbyist Artist
Question - I didn't have a dress form, so I wrapped myself with plastic wrap, taped over it and drew the shapes on the tape.  When I cut myself out and cut the pieces, I noticed my my breast pieces wouldn't lie flat -- of course.  How did you cut them to get them to lie flat so that you could transfer the pattern onto your craft foam.  I saw your picture where the pieces are already laid out, but they all look nice and flat. 
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:iconrayxofxsunshine:
rayxofxsunshine Featured By Owner Aug 7, 2014  Hobbyist Photographer
This is likely REALLY late, but I hope it helps all the same (or maybe someone else who sees this)

The trick is using darts like you would in making clothing. By cutting into the curves, you can spread the pattern flat. When you cut it out of foam, you'll glue the edges of the dart together - this will create a naturally round shape. Use a heat gun (or steam from hot water, maybe?) to gently curve the foam - this will help it look nice and smooth. :3
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:iconjrhall22:
jrhall22 Featured By Owner Aug 7, 2014  Hobbyist Artist
It's better late than never.  Thanks  ;)
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:iconazureran:
Azureran Featured By Owner Nov 23, 2013  Hobbyist
Super useful tutorial, looking forward to trying it out these holidays :)
Would you think that this would would work well for weapons too? (Provided the foam was layered up and had a rigid core)
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:iconnotyour-prey:
notyour-prey Featured By Owner Oct 11, 2013  Hobbyist Artisan Crafter
how much foam do you think you would need for torso armour, gauntlets and calf armour?

thanks! :)
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:iconhidennka:
Hidennka Featured By Owner Oct 12, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Hmm let's see, when I did Lightning that was torso (back and front), shoulders, gauntlets, waist and legs. I used... 2 camping mats and about 20 pieces of A3 thin foam. I don't know if that's helpful at all? It really depends on your body size and shape :)
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:iconjimbleislove:
JimbleIsLove Featured By Owner Sep 14, 2013  Student General Artist
Thank you for this~
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:iconhidennka:
Hidennka Featured By Owner Oct 12, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
You're very welcome :)
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