Bioshock Infinite - Booker Dewitt Holster




This was my first ever cosplay project, and I'd never worked with leather before, so it was pretty much a steep learning curve all the way.

The finished item feels more like a real holster than a cosplay prop, so I am happy with the end result.

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Step 1: First Step... Find All the References!

This was probably the hardest part for me. So many pictures on the internet, and so many different holsters!

I really didn't like the holster shown on the gamebox cover. For me, strange style and very light tan colour.

I wanted one that looked more "aged", in keeping with the time period and the abuse it would have gone through in the hands of the hero.

I grabbed images from the game trailer, and also the concept art.

As we can see, it's a cross-backpiece arrangement, with a closed flap gun pouch, and a twin ammo pouch, in a medium dark leather with stitching.

Step 2: Next... Source the Materials

eBay is your friend...!

Raw materials required:

Pieces of 1.5mm (approx) offcut leather (4qty of 30x30cm)
Lengths of 1" wide 3mm thick leather strips (100" approx depending on your body size)
Thin PP sheeting (I used those A4 ringbinder document folders)
Leather hole punches (Either a set or just a 4-hole and a 2-hole would be enough)
Leather end shape cutter (1" size)
Antique Brass effect popper fasteners kit (c/w fixing punches)
Antique Brass effect rivet fasteners kit (c/w fixing punches)
Leather stitching cotton
Antique Brass effect belt buckle (4)
Contact adhesive (general type, suitable for leather and plastics)

Step 3: Starting the Work... Ammo Pouches

So where are the patterns, you ask?

Well, there aren't any really. You can see the shapes you need from the photos, and you are better to scale it according to your own body size, so it looks right. Also the gun pouch depends on your own chosen weapon, I made this for the Mauser C96, but it is simple to adapt for any handgun you prefer.

I would say the trickiest items to make were the ammo pouches, because you need to hold it all in place while the glue sets properly. I used a combination of rubber bands wrapped around it all.

Cut out the shape of the ammo box, then draw around the shape onto the reverse wide of the leather. Apply contact glue to one side of the plastic, and also the leather, leave it to go almost dry, then press the sticky faces together for contact adhesion. Leave to "set" as long as possible (a few hours)

When set, cut off excess material, and gently fold into shape, not rushing. Ease the leather slowly, work it gently. The beauty of this thin leather is that it will crack and age really nice, the more you work it. Don't be afraid, but treat with respect.

Step 4: The Back Cross-piece

Again, no real pattern for it, this part doesn't need to be big, maybe 10x10cm

The important bit here is make sure the popper fasteners are very secure. Everything is held by this part.

Same procedure as the ammo pouches... cut plastic to shape, draw on reverse side of leather, apply glue to the faces, etc.

But when you have done one side, you need to repeat the process for the other side.

Then use the hole punches to add the popper fasteners, and also punch the stitch holes, and sew the stitching.

Step 5: Main Straps and Buckles

Again, you will need to determine the lengths accoring to your own body size.

Cut to length, add buckles, punch stitching holes and stitch, punch popper fastener holes and add poppers to attach to the back crosspiece.

Step 6: Shoulder Pads

Simple too look at, but can be tricky.

Same method as before, cut plastic, add leather to both sides, stitch, etc.

Step 7: Gun Pouch

This can be tricky, mainly because you will create one piece and fold it over onto itself and then stitch it together.

Usual method, cut plastic, glue leather, punch holes, stitch, etc.

Step 8: Bringing It All Together

Pretty straightforward, feed straps through shoulderpads, add straps to ammo pouch, etc.

Step 9: The Finished Item...

This holster should last for years...!

A final tip, make sure the stitching ends are tied off properly and secured with small amount of glue from a hot-glue gun or some other similar method, so that it stays in place.

And be sure to make the poppers secure, especially for the backpiece, if you want to carry a replica gun

To finish with, here is my Mauser C96, which I painted and "aged" using steel wool, so that it looks old and used.

Thanks for reading my very first "Instructable", I will remember to take more photos for the next one!



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    17 Discussions


    4 years ago on Introduction

    This project is absolutely beautiful. As an aspiring prop and costume designer, I love leather craft, but don't have a lot of experience with it. Thank you for providing such an amazing design to start with!

    1 reply

    3 years ago

    here is something I'd love to see. Nagant M1895, holster by you. Its a Revolver. With a huge history, much like the C1896.


    4 years ago

    Very cool. I believe the gun is a m712, the c96 doesn't have a removable magazine

    2 replies

    You are indeed correct, I am no firearms expert by any means, but I
    believe this is the "M712 Schnellfeuer" version, because it has the
    "fire rate" selector near the handle?

    However they are all
    variations of the original C96, which I feel is one of the most
    attractive firearms ever made, along with the "Luger P08 (Parabellum)"


    Reply 3 years ago

    HI. You are right, the M712, was a select fire. BUT, it was not a true Mauser to start with. The fully auto ones, were made, illegally in Spain, in the 1930's. Using the Mauser Shape. Really, really popular with the "Black Shirts." and "Enforcers of Mussolini's Government. The C96 was used, the world over too. Winston Churchill used one. The Early KGB "Checka" Used "RED 9's" They were remade into 9mm Luger.. some were mods, some were early factory reworks. The Original Mauser round, was 7.63. Not 9mm. Frankly, it was the most powerful round for a hand gun made, from 1896 to 1935! Also, in the later soviet times, the Soviets, used the 7.63X25 for many, of their small arms. But the ammo is not interchangeable with a Mauser... the soviet stuff is much more powerful. So, The Mauser, the story goes like this. After the first war, Mauser, lost its rights to make weapons in Germany, following the tready of Versailles. Mauser, was deemed too long, and a rifle. That now, was not allowed under the new laws. Fine, said Germany... we have ways. As they did, they let other countries made their weapons, and Germany bought them... the tready never said they couldn't do that. LOOP HOLE! Now.. it gets weird. Mauser, tooled up in Spain, under the name, Astra Arms Company. So, it was still Mauser,... new name. LOOP HOLE. So, When Hitler gave the world the finger, Mauser came home, and started making both. The M712, and the C96. Also, another Loop Hole, they were limited in the production of cartridge sizes for weapons. They let Germany make crazy numbers of Hand gun ammo, but rife rounds were limited. So, welcome the Machine Pistol... The Mp40, is actually a Machine Pistol, because it uses a 9mm Pistol Round. AS IS THE C96... LOOP HOLE Again! The American Tommy Gun, is also a Machine Pistol, it uses a .45 ACP Round. Who's to say, of Mauser had been messing around with this, pre ww1,or if they were inspired by the Tommy gun, in the 20's. Mauser, just started to rework c96's into M712. Also, in the late teens in China, during the Boxer Rebellion, they used various crude homemade mod'd c96s, into .45cal. They called it a "Box Canon." Because of its detachable mag. Then, the mods started to become more, and more polished. China, actually, in small amounts uses .45 "box canons" to this day! As does N. Korea, not in large amounts, but they turn up. Hope you found my gun rant... informational lol.


    3 years ago

    HI! NICE WORK! You may/ may not know. The gun is a C96 (1896) Mauser "Broom-handle" I am going to use this, for my real C96, as my carry holster... just for show at the range. Very cool work.


    3 years ago on Introduction

    AWESOME!!!! The only step i couldn't find was adding the ammo pouches to the leather/plastic back, did I over look it???

    1 reply

    Reply 3 years ago on Introduction


    I probably missed out a few steps tbh, first time doing one of these guides, but that step is easy, just attach the pouches to the back using the "contact adhesive", ie- just glue them on. ;-)


    4 years ago on Introduction

    I hate to be the one to tell you this but,with the materials used and the most excellent craftsmanship this is indeed a "real" holster. I have always wanted to learn to work with leather and I can only hope that when I do my first project turns out as well as yours has.As far as your first "ible",it could use more info on the stitching and riveting process,other than that I think you did a great job.Congrats !!

    1 reply

    Reply 4 years ago on Introduction

    Thanks so much!

    I could edit to add that information about the stitching and rivetting? I still have some materials left over so if it is possible...


    4 years ago on Introduction

    P.S. Good job on the "broom-handle" Mauser, I thought they were pics of a real one at first.Looks good.