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Xena Armour......starting blocks Answered

Well i'm pretty ambitious in wanting to cosplay a charcter from from favourite tv show Xena : Warrior Princess, no matter how camp and cheesy it is :-P

Most of the sewing and basic pieces such as armbands wristbands and the corseted dress are easy enough to do....the difficulty will be in replicating the 'metal armour' especially the breastplate Xena wears...and possibly the  Chakram (that round frizbee like throwing thing :P )

So i've been looking around at different methods trying to get an all round idea of the best way to go about it, keeping in mind i'd want to keep this costume forever if possible (with a $2000 price of a Xena costume from Todd's costumes not being ideal) ...i want authenticity, with the armour being a strong and sturdy as possible with a DIY. Saying that the various instructables for Halo seem to be the way to go:

Having seen three awesome tutorials that i could definitely see myself end up using:


Going the Halo armour route honestly seem the easiest. As while i would love to get as close to authentic metal battle armour as possible....there is time, money, and skills to consider.

Also through looking here:


I've seen that it might be quite possible to create a two piece mould to cast the items. This would involve making a paper mache cast of my chest...creating the shape of the breast plate onto that....removing the breast plate...probably shaped out of nice sturdy lay (or not).

From there.....a  mould could be cast from the breastplate....probably by something simply enough to mould around the front and the back of the breastplate....pressed to take on it's form and shape. One side would have to be done and dried/cured...the the other ensure the shaped of the breast plate is imprinted correctly and that non of the resin will seep through the mould...

Now. I would love ideas for methods, materials, best way to paint to cast as i am a total noob just throwing around ideas at this stage.

Some questions:

Would it be possibly to use some as a finish so that the breastplate and other items actually feel like they are made of metal (never mind that there filled with resin)?

How hard and how brittle would the resin be? Is it just like plastic? Will it break easily?

If there is say a bit of side spillage when casting the resin, would it be possible to fix, say cut it off?

What about the possibility of using Precious Metal Clay? Wouls it be hard/brittle/expensive/breakable?

Is there such a think as bendable resin? (say for the armbands and wristbands)

Would it be possible to 'coat' (as you might paint) resin onto the clay breastplate and remove it to create a replica? (without the need for a two part mould in this case)


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9 years ago

I use Alumilite casting resin and that stuff is pretty tough/durable. Smooth On also makes good casting resins. Both companies make a powder that can be brushed into the silicone mold before casting so you can get a casting that looks like metal.

Regarding flashing/spillage during casting- yes it's easy to remove or grind off using a Dremel tool or file/sandpaper. Make sure to wear a dust mask!

There are lots of flexible resins available- Smooth On has a good selection. Painting/coating clay with resin would be a no go- it would create a big mess that would be difficult to work with. If you go that route it would be better to carve a foam pattern, seal it, fiberglass it and then remove the foam by melting it.

One other thing you could check into is using Depron foam or craft foam sheet. Depron can be sanded too.


9 years ago

I am creating an awesome Xena Costume this Halloween. Full instructions will be up. But a sneak peak: the armour will be made by casting latex.


9 years ago

I do not know your level of expertise or skill in taking on such a project but here are a few ideas:

1, Look up how to make a cheap mannequin body dress form, Duct tape and spray foam for stuffing. It will be easier to fit and shape the components.

2. Papier mache can be made quite durable. I use full strength white glue instead of watering it down for some critical parts. It can be molded or shaped to the level of detail needed here. You can embed plastic or metal bands for strength. Airdry or baked polymer clays can be glued on for details.

3. The casting, resin and fiberglass process can get quite expensive for material costs. You do need to get set up for vacuum forming.

4. Faux metal painting is easily done with metallic paints and drybrushing techniques. Take a look at the "stargate gong" or gmjhowe's model guns.

I think you can recreate the costume without great expense.

Good luck.