Tira's Ixion Ring Blade Tutorial
This ring blade is for Tira from Soul Calibur 4. It is her blade called Ixion and it can be purchased in the game for 8500 money.
Now this is my first time making a cosplay prop... ever. So if you don't like something about the way I did it, advice is welcome but don't get all uppity and in my face about doing things wrong. Okay? This is basically a record of exactly what I did to create my ringblade in case anyone else wanted to follow my example to create Ixion.
Step One: Two hula hoops (one medium, one large) and wrap them in electrical tape. I did this because it makes them sturdier and easier to manage.
Step Two: Connect them with electrical tape in the four sections. Just wrap it around the two pieces to make them evenly spaced in the middle, and then wrap those a few times. Then wrap the loose bits of tape that go between the two hoops to make them thinner and sturdier.
Step Three: Foam board. My boards were too small to do a whole circle so I took four pieces and arranged them lined up and traced the outside rim of the hula hoops by pressing the cap of a jumbo marker into the foam board. Sounds weird but gives you the width and then I traced the indintation of the jumbo marker and cut accordingly - not with scissors! Use a utility knife! - and then traced them onto three other pieces of foam board (one for each of the bigger pieces and one for the two smaller pieces). THEN Line up the four pieces once again and trace the inside rim of the hula hoops in the same manner. Outline and cut accordingly and then trace those pieces onto the pieces for the opposide side.
Step Four: GLUE GUN! Glue the four pieces for one side together in a circle by their edges, and then do the same for the other side to create the picture.
Step Five: Technically I did this step first because they're small... but whateves... First you have to make a stencil of the smaller blades (unless you can freehand really well twelve times - my stencil is seen in 5.2, I colored it for fun) and then you take the stencil and trace 12 outlines of the smaller blade onto that foam board. Yes it is possible to fit them all onto one piece of foam board [I'll send you a larger picture if you're wondering how I did it]. Then you cut them accordingly.
Step Six: MORE GLUE GUN! This time there is A LOT of glue for the glue gun to be used because you need to take the two foam board bases and glue gun them to opposite sides of your hula hoop frame. Sounds complicated... it was. Basically you glue gun them in position as best you can and then glue gun them more securely by going around the edges and sticking your glue gun into where the hula hoops connect to the foam board... I'll upload a video tutorial on youtube and link it here if that's too confusing. Oh and then once that is secure, you glue gun your smaller blades to the bigger base. Make sure they're spaced evenly and lined up on the opposite sides.
Step Six, angle two: This picture is here to show you that the foam board bases are wider than the hula hoop frame (on both outside rim and inside rim). So before you get to the paper mache part of Step 7... you need to crumple bits of newspaper and stuff them inside the empty gap... on the bright side you can use MORE GLUE GUN!... or you could simply make the foam board as wide or slightly smaller than the hula hoop frame to have it the same or to have a nice curve from the outer part of the hula hoop. It's up to you ^.^
Step 7: PAPER MACHE... I only did two layers of paper mache. The first made of your typical newspaper + water + flour. And the second I added carpenter's glue to the mix. Made the thing so much harder and sturdier! I highly suggest you follow the carpenter's glue bit on ANY paper mached prop you're making! (Note: No the blades aren't backwards, that's what the opposite side is meant to look like).
Step 8 and 9: DO NOT FOLLOW MY STEP EIGHT AND NINE! I'm aware I'm an idiot!
What I did... Made stencils for the smaller blades and taped them in place and then spray painted the entire thing black, then peeled the stencils off to provide this beautiful picture. And then I went to spray paint those smaller blades gold but guess what... it's so much harder to stencil the ENTIRE blade to not get gold on the black than to do what I did the first time. So I gave up on trying to make these ridiculously small stencils for that black curve and decided to wrap newspaper on the bigger bits of black and just spray paint the necessary bits gold... then to get the finished product I waited until the next morning, went to walmart, bought some more spray paint (because I'd run out), made the stencils AGAIN (and this time didn't forget to put the small lines on the bigger bits of black) and then spray painted black over the parts that weren't supposed to be gold. Again... I know I'm an idiot for doing that... no need to comment.
FOLLOW THIS BIT FOR THE PROPER STEPS 8 AND 9!
What I should have done and suggest you do... Spray paint the necessary parts gold. Make the stencils and loosely tape them in place over the gold and then spray paint the entire thing black. AND THEN you peel of the stencils.
Step 10 (not shown by picture but it gets you to the finished product):
So what you do next, to get the gold lines on the wider black bits (you can make them as wide or curver or anything as you like really)... what I did was take a foam brush and then spray paint a bit onto that, then painted the strips on with the brush. You'll need to continuously stop and spray more paint onto the brush (make sure you're not near the ringblade when you spray because access gold can get on the finished black) and paint as such. My lines go all the way around the blade on both sides and edges. I finished with a protective top coat of Clear Gloss finishing spray paint meant for being UV-resistant and preventing tarnishing. I'll probably do a few touch ups at some point but she's complete!
Glue Gun ... ($8 from Walmart)
Glue Sticks ... used 20 sticks - although I'm just a tad excessive and trigger happy with my glue gun... >.> ($1 from Dollarama for one pack of 16 and if you want stronger than craft glue you can get wood glue at Walmart for $3 - pack of 15)
Cutting Board ... ($1 from Dollarama)
Utility Knife ... (foldable one was $2 from Dollarama)
Foam Board ... Total of 7 used (Dollarama $1.25 each)
Hula Hoops ... Total of 2 (both from Dollarama, one large $1.50, one medium $1.25)
Electrical Tape ... Total of 1 roll (pack of two rolls from Dollarama for $1.25)
Sketch Book ... not a requirement (from Dollarama for $1.25) I only used it to sketch a good outline of what the smaller blades would look like and then cut that out to trace it onto the foam board. And I made all my stencils out of sketch book paper because it's thick enough that spray paint doesn't simply pass through it.
Spray Paint White ($2 from Walmart), Black ($2 from Walmart), Gold ($5 from Walmart), Clear Gloss Finish ($6 from Walmart)
Carpenter's Glue ... 1 bottle of 236mL at Dollarama for $2 (used for the outer layer of the paper mache to give it more strength and to keep from cracking)
Total cost to make my ringblade is roughly $50, but there are a lot of these items that you might happen to own already.
Total Hours: 14 hours (give or take... I didn't record properly, sorry)
I realize some of my explanations might be confusing simply because I'm bad at explaining real life things (yet for some reason I can give total detail in fiction... so weird). BUT Any questions I would be happy to answer so don't be shy! I will try to explain things even better if I'm asked to ^.^
~§~ Arra ~§~