Introduction: Shadow Aerodactyl Costume
Aerodactyl is a pterodactyl based species from the TV series Pokemon. I modified the Aerodactyl species into my own original species called Shadow Aerodactyl. The appearance remains the same; the only difference is the darker hue of color.
My inspiration for making this costume came from CanineHybrid's Flickr picture tutorial: CLICK HERE
This is such a fun project, and the finished project is even more enjoyable! If you have any questions or concerns don't feel subjected to not asking. I love questions, and I always try my hardest to answer them as soon as possible.
Step 1: Shaping the Head and Articulated Jaw
The head was the most challenging and time consuming part of this project. I am relying on the pictures to be rather self explanatory for this step.
However, if something is unclear to you PLEASE let me know in the comment section below. I will be more than pleased to clear things up.
Step 2: Sewing the Head Patterns
The head was carefully wrapped in clear plastic wrap and duct tape, and then fabric patterns were drawn and cut out. It took 13 different fabric pieces to avoid wrinkles.
This head was entirely hand sewn and took me about 27 hours over a 7 day time period to complete all of the sewing (It shouldn't have taken that long, but I was paranoid about getting it done right).
I used plastic mesh material (purchased at Michael's for 64 cents a slab) and colored them with red acrylic paint on both sides. I painted both sides to diminish the glare.
The teeth were hand sculpted with oven-bake sculpey that I purchased from Wal-Mart. (and... I forgot how much that cost me xD)
Step 3: Making the Feet
I purchased a $15 pair of tennis shoes for the feet. Although, I'm sure thrift stores and Good Will stores have cheaper shoes for the same quality.
I traced the bottom of the shoes and then drew multiple patterns until I came across the look that appealed to the creature's anatomy the most.
The pattern was traced onto EVA foam (or outdoor mats). This can be purchased at tool stores. I purchased mine at a local store called Harbor Freights. It was about $10 for four slabs. This material is water proof and can be easily cleaned to perfection. I do not suggest attaching the shoes with hot glue (Although, I can't tell you why. I have never tried it). I attached the shoes with cement glue, and let them dry for 24 hours before continuing any work.
The toes were shaped with green upholstery foam and applied to the EVA foam with mother loads of hot glue. Then I simply created fabric patterns with clear plastic wrap and duct tape.
Step 4: Making the Tail
You will want to buy a cheap fabric for the under structure of the tail. This allows room for mistakes that might be made. The tail is relatively the easiest part of this project, so you don't want to take any chances of messing up and stressing out. Remember, this is suppose to be a fun project. :D
Fold the fabric over and make sure all the edges line up perfectly and that there aren't any wrinkles. Use a ruler to determine how long you want the tail to be and trace a large triangle on the fabric, starting at the folded edge. Once you are confident that the tail is the right size and length, cut it out and sew the edges together on the opposite side of the fold. LEAVE THE TOP OPEN!
Once the triangle shape is sewed, stuff the tail with poly-fill pillow stuffing through the base of the triangle. Glue the base down once the entire tail is stuffed. For this particular tail I permanently attached a belt to the tail because the tail is rather heavy. The other option is making belt loops that will allow you to interchange belts.
I drew out a pattern for the arrow of the tail on paper, traced it onto foam, cut it out, and then shaved it as needed. Once I glued the arrow over the tip of the tail, I added any extra padding I deemed necessary.
I wrapped the entire tail in plastic wrap and duct tape to get the final fabric patterns.
Step 5: Building the Wings
The wings are supported by 1/2" PVC pipes and thick elastic bands. The wings have little tunnels at the top that allow the PVC pipes to be taken in and out at free will. The hands are gloves that are separate from the wings, arm sleeves, and t-shirt. The arm sleeves, wings, and t-shirt are one piece.
I traced my hand on paper and determined how large I wanted the gloves to be and then traced the pattern and sewed the pieces together as what was deemed necessary. The gloves have four fingers and are modified to capture the physical anatomy traits of the creature.
I used a sleeve pattern from a jacket collection for the arm sleeves and followed the same steps I did for the gloves.
Before cutting out fabric pieces for the wings, I made a paper pattern to ensure that the wings would come out with the right shape, size, and symmetry. I simply glued each wing together at the edges with thoughtful amounts of hot glue.
The arm sleeves were attached to the wings with hot glue as well and just enough of a gap was open to slip the sleeve into the t-shirt. Hot glue can get extremely messy and make any work appear sloppy. I was VERY careful and spent hours upon hours making sure not a single dab of hot glue showed.