How It Was Made: Falcon
March 31, 2016
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In this thread, I’ll be covering the construction of the soft components of the MCU Falcon. A note on this thread: this will combine two builds of the same costume. So, there will be some images that contain segments on the ver 1.0 costume that were not covered. I’m only covering the final version. So, if continuity seems strange, it’s because the thread was started before the ver 2.0 build and the new parts were edited in.

I began with creating the mock ups for the main top sections: shirt and vest. As usual, I used muslin to create a basic sloper pattern to the client’s measurements. From this muslin base, I drew out the sections of the shirt that would be stretch and the areas that would be made out of the Cordura and other ‘ballistic’ materials.

I then used the same pattern to draw out the vest and how it will match up to the shirt. I created these mock ups – just very basic shapes at this point – in Cordura and jumbo spandex for the initial fitting.

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I used half of the original pattern to sketch out the vest details. Using reference pictures, I sketched out all the vest parts onto a mock up in sharpie.

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Once the details were sketched out onto the mock up, it was removed from the form, cut apart and traced onto paper to create a usable template for cutting the piece.

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The mock up pieces were sent off to the client for fitting as well as an additional copy of the template so that it could be compared to the templates for the hardware for scale.

Once the fittings were done with the mock ups and I had notes back on alterations, I was able to use those notes to create a modified template for the vest.

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There are several main materials going into this project:

  • Grey 500D Cordura
  • Grey textured 100D Cordura (the two greys have slightly different textures and add depth)
  • Red 500D Cordura
  • Grey equestrian stretch
  • Headliner
  • 2mm EVA foam (craft foam that comes in a roll)

I began by creating the layered ‘armor’ pieces for the vest from bottom to top.┬áThe central ab section was created with three main pieces that were all detailed and layered on top of each other. Once they were all assembled, the base for the upper abs was attached.

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The detail for the upper ab section was created with 2 layers of 2mm EVA foam and covered in Cordura. The first layer of EVA make the main shape and the curves on the sides were cut and spray mounted on top.

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This entire piece was then covered with Cordura. The Cordura was spray mounted down and the details at the curves were stitched down using a zipper foot to retail the bevel. Then, the allowance was folded under and hot glued down on the back side of the foam.

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Once complete, it was glued to the rest of the ab section and the curved piece that separates the upper and lower ab sections was made and attached in the same manner.

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The chest section was next. This one began as a single piece, backed with headliner foam and edged at the top with bias tape. I then added the red sections that would serve as placeholders for the cast pieces that would be added later.

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Using the template I’d created earlier, I began finalizing and laying out the detail pieces.

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I worked from the center out. All of the detail pieces were created in a similar manner to the ab section above – 2mm EVA was covered in foam – and, using a combination of stitching and hot glue, the pieces were created one by one and layered onto the main chest piece.

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Next, I started on the shirt. A number of the costumes that I make consist of an undershirt that contains some shoulder and collar details and the sleeves, a vest that comprises most of the main torso details and pants. This one is no different.

I began the shirt with the sleeves, which are quite detailed, considering they are short. A template was made for the details based on the fitting mock up and a pattern was traced out onto paper. The base sleeve was cut from a twill lining and the color-blocks and detail edges were stitched down. The sleeves were then finished with a binding at the edge.

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The yoke has an open, detailed “henley” style neckline. There is also a contrast segment in the center back created by combining the two different grey Cordura fabrics.

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The shirt was finished with the stretch fabric and the sleeves attached.

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Here are all of the pieces together at this point.

I received the raw 3-d printed pieces from the client and tested them for fit and scale.

All of these pieces (with the exception of the shoulders) will be finalized, painted, finished and attached by the client. The final shoulder pieces were chromed and sent to me to cover and add to the main shoulder pads.

I began the shoulder pads by drafting out a template on the completed shirt and vest. Once I had the paper pattern complete, the pieces were cut from red cordura. Each section of each pad was lined in headliner foam and the edges were bound in red bias tape.

The pieces attach to the top of the shirt shoulders with heavy duty snaps and heavy elastic stretches across the chest and back to keep them in place under the vest. The ‘tubing’ was created by spray painting shoelaces silver and gluing them down. The shoulder bells will attach via heavy duty snaps and will be removable for storage, transportation and cleaning.

With the main pads complete, I needed to create the lining for the shoulder bells. I cut some paper into a wide cone, put it inside the bell and traced the edge to make the template. I then added the overlap and allowance and cut the pieces from red cordura.

These were lined with headliner foam and the edges finished to fit neatly inside the 3-d printed pieces.

Meanwhile, the final shoulder bells were delivered with the chrome finish completed. These were covered with the grey cordura accents and red piping. The snaps were attached to the inner pad and the pad was cemented to the inside of the finished bell.

Next up, the pants! Stay tuned…