Apocalypse Batman

My kids love the LEGO movies. And with LEGO Movie 2, we were introduced to Apocalypse Batman (Batman with a very Mad Max flair). I instantly knew I wanted to make it into a costume. Please note that this I am not making this costume to look like a LEGO figure. Rather, I wanted to take the costume design, and interpret it into how an actual human would wear it.

Supplies:

  • EVA foam (10mm, 5mm, 3mm)
  • Modge-podge
  • Black Plastidip
  • Black fabric (for the cape and gauntlets)
  • Faux leather
  • Velcro
  • Nylon Webbing
  • Buckles/clips
  • 1" Black Elastic
  • Silver Spray Paint
  • Acrylic paints (different shades of gray, black, brown, orange, yellow, white, red)
  • Black T-shirt
  • Black pants
  • Black or Brown boots
  • Yellow belt
  • Hot glue
  • Contact Cement glue
  • Latex quick seal

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Step 1: Breaking Down the Costume

Looking at the LEGO Batman figure, lets break things down:

  • Black Shirt
  • Black Pants
  • Boots (can be brown, like the movie, or black, like the toy)
  • Cowl/Mask
  • Cape
  • Chest Piece
  • Back Piece
  • Pauldrons (Giant tires)
  • Grey loincloth
  • Grey pouch
  • Yellow utility belt
    • Pouches
    • Buckle
  • Gaunlets
    • Leather strips
    • Metal Plate
  • Elbow Plates
  • Knee Plates
  • Belts around the torso

Step 2: The Cowl

I wrote another tutorial on making the Batman Mask/Cowl. Follow that here: Foam Batman Mask

Step 3: The Cape

What is Batman without his iconic cape? the cape is really easy in this case (especially since it is so tattered). I started with 60" wide fabric.

Fold it in half and cut out a basic Batman cape shape.

I used a bowl to get a nice neck hole. Also leave about a foot of extra fabric around the neck hole, since that appears to be part of the original LEGO design.

Once it is cut out, open it. It appears that one side is mostly intact, while the other is completely shredded. Just pull out your best Preschool paper-cutting skills and go wild making half of the cape look as ripped as Batman's pecs. Also shred up the front of the cape as well.

Step 4: Chest-piece: Template

For the chest-piece, I measured the width of my chest. I then made a square that size. Draw a circle that completely fills that square. Then trim off the bottom corners of the square, following the circle.

I then drew the additional inner circles, the first being about an inch inwards from the outer circle. the other one about half the size of the main circle. I then made a pattern for the oval slots and evenly spaced out 5 slots around the edge of the circle.

Included is a template for the Bat-logo. Use the included PDF and scale it so that the full width is just slightly more than the width of the chest-piece

Step 5: Chest-piece: Foam Work

I used 10mm foam for all the pieces. I cut out the back of the chest-piece, then the circle on top (kind of looks like a sewer man hole cover to me). Then I cut out the bat logo.

Now, using a rotary tool, I shaved down the edge of the circle to have a nice bevel. I used a rounded bit to carve in the sewer slots (I didn't bother carving out the ones I knew would be under the bat).

Using the contact cement, glue the circle on the backing, then sand down the edges until things are nice and round.

Then glue on the bat. Once those are in place, I glued down thin strips of 3mm foam to make the inner circle.

Step 6: Back-piece

The back-piece is pretty straight forward. I took the width of my back, and divided that in two. Make a square of that, but add an inch to one side. Then cut the arc for the neck.

I cut this out of 10mm foam mat. After cutting it out, I used the rotary tool to give it a nice beveled edge.

Step 7: Pauldron Base

I started off with a very basic template. Note that these things are BIG.

I then cut out two of the base triangle per pauldron from 6mm foam mat. Use a heat gun and round them out. Then glue them together. Right now, due to their size, they won't hold the most round of shapes, but that will be fixed up later.

Using 10mm foam, I cut out long inch wide strips and glued them around the edges of the pauldrons. I ended up doing two layers of this to make the edges 20mm.

NOTE: when you glue the edge strips on, you can do it in such a way that the strips will help the pauldrons hold their curve. Just hold the paulrons in the shape/curve that you like while attaching the edges.

Step 8: Pauldron Tire

The best, and most ridiculous, part of each pauldron is the tire mounted on it. Except tires can be kind of heavy. Especially if you are wearing it for an extended amount of time. So I came up with a foam pattern to keep it easier.

Cut out the pieces from the template, then glue the base parts together. I just used a basic gym mat for this. Then attach the base.

For the treads, I glued two sheets of 10mm foam together for extra thickness. I then cut them out and sanded them. There should be 7 treads per tire. Put one in the front and back, then space them out evenly between.

Step 9: Other Padding

There are pads for the knees, elbows and gauntlets. They are all pretty simple rectangular shapes. Just cut them out, then use a rotary tool to add the rivets in the corners. I also use the tool to make them look nice and battle-worn.

Step 10: Utility Belt

Start with finding a basic canvas belt (yellow, if possible).

I then made the pouches and buckle following the tutorial here: Arkham Origins Batman Utility Belt Tutorial

Though I did use the free utility belt pattern (because we all love free!) here: Batman Belt 2

NOTE: I did slightly modify the pattern to better match the look I was going for, but in general, I just followed what they had. It makes a great looking belt.

Step 11: Painting the Foam

After all of the things were made from foam, I did a quick heat seal with my heat gun. Then I took modge podge and did a rough stipple of this over the metal areas. When it dries, it gives the foam a fun texture.

Then I coated all of the foam parts with a few layers of Plastidip followed by a layer of silver spray paint.

Next I stippled different grays and silvers, and diluted browns and blacks over to give the metal a rough look and feel. Once those dry, give it a layer of clear-coat.

Then I added rust. I did this using brown, orange and yellow paint. Start by giving all of the rusted areas a light coat of brown. On top of that, roughly stipple on orange. You want it to look rough. Then a tiny bit of yellow. Less is more in this case. Practice painting rust on some cardboard before until you get the right feel for it. When finished, give everything another nice clear coat.

Here are some great videos on painting rusty armor:

Evil Ted Smith: Making Wasteland Armor

Punished Props: Paint Foam Props to Look Rusty

The pouches I just spray painted with a nice golden-rod color.

Step 12: Add the Straps to the Armor

For the knee and elbow pieces, I just cut a length of 1" black elastic to fit around by limbs. I then used velcro to attach things. NOTE: You don't want to hot glue elastic directly to the foam, since the stretching of the material can break the bond. I like to sew a piece of nylon webbing to the elastic on the part that's being glued down. It holds way better.

For the chest-piece, attach it to the back piece over the shoulders with two strips of webbing. I then added side straps that close with clips. NOTE: the back-piece goes over the cape, so you will need to cut two holes in the cape so that the side straps can go through. It will still look great.

Since the pauldrons are so big, I needed to add some basic foam support structure inside so that they could sit on my shoulders. I then used webbing to attach them to the chest-piece.

For the belt pouches, I tried adding normal nylon webbing on the back at first to loop it onto my belt, but later took that off and tried out some 3d printed belt clips. This made it easier to take them on and off. Belt Clip File

Step 13: Gauntlets

I started by measuring around the top of my forearm and close to the wrist. Measure the length between the two. You then want to create a basic cone pattern. I already have a tutorial for that here: Drafting a Cone

Once you have the cone pattern, add 1" strip to one side (to be able to velcro close) and a 5/8 in. seam allowance around it all. I then cut this pattern out of black fabric. You will need 4 of these (2 for each side).

Once I had the black out, I cut out long strips from my faux leather. I laid them out on top of one of the black pieces and tacked them down around the edges. Now lay the other side of black on top (right sides facing each other) and stitch the sides together (leaving an opening to pull everything right-side out). I then edge-stitched all the way around to hold things flat.

Sew on the velcro so that the gauntlets close.

Glue the arm plate on top.

Step 14: Odds and Ends

I would recommend just buying everything else at your local thrift store or online (if you don't already have it). You'll need:

  • Black T-Shirt - tear up the edges of the sleeves for a more Apocalyptic look
  • Black Pants
  • Black or Brown hero or combat boots
  • Black Gloves (I went for fingerless biker gloves, but really any cool looking gloves would work.)
  • Grey loin-cloth - I found a fun piece of torn up, gray fabric and used velcro strapping to hold it to my belt (You could also check your local fabric store for something like this too.)

Step 15: Go Out and Face the Apocalypse

Now you are ready to go out to face the Apocalypse in style...Batman-style (really, the best kind of style. Because he's Batman).

Now to just work on speaking like you have been smoking shards of glass since you were 12...

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