I was wondering why I didn't submit this photo since it's a good full-body shot of my whole costume, and then I looked in the background and remembered "oh...there's ppl in the glass...XD"
Well, I managed to finally edit all that out, though it's not all that convincing IMO (I wasn't able to salvage our own reflections because they were overlapped by the people on the other side of the glass). Hahaha, oh well; at least the background isn't as distracting as before.
You know, I haven't done a wall of text yet describing how I made this costume. So here we go:
(keep in mind that most of this costume was made in 2009. Though I paid a lot of attention to the craftsmanship and details of this costume, it was an older work, and this walk-through probably isn't as detailed as it would be if I typed it all while it was new and fresh in my mind).
Wig: Ebay! When I first made this cosplay, I was using a wig I had made myself, but then these fluffy "meant-for-Judai-cosplayers" wigs became available from overseas. So I saved up and got one, and I've been using it ever since. The wig came with very long bangs, which I trimmed, and I also trimmed some of the orange hair in the sides and on top.
Black Coat: Made with Black Twill and fully lined, using a modified Simplicity 4962 pattern. Grey trim is made from grey cotton, sewn like bias tape, and I hand-stitched the backside so no stitches would be showing. Has a zipper and sewn-on snaps to seal the front.
Cape: I have several cape patterns, and It's been so long that I can't remember which one I used. I'd like to say it was Simplicity 5794? Anyway, I used a red ponte knit for the outside, and it is fully lined with a red broadcloth.
Pants: From my closet
Torso armor: I started with sheets of poster board to draft a base. Lots of adding, subtracting, etc to get the right shape and fit. I then used that as a pattern to make the final one, which is made out of two layers of marine vinyl with craft foam sandwiched in the middle. It has metal snaps to fasten it, as well as velcro. The pauldrons are created in a similar fashion, though I had to cut openings for the bubbles, which are made out of plastic ornament halves that have been painted purple on the inside. They are attached to the torso piece with snaps. All the gold trim is crepe-back satin, and a half of it was sewn by machine, folded over strips of craft foam, and then sewn by hand so that no stitches would be showing. This was the most time-consuming and painful part of the costume because I was hand-sewing through really thick marine vinyl.
Waist piece and belt: Under the coat I have a skirt-like thing made out of the same marine vinyl as the torso armor. Draped fabric around myself first before making the final version. Uses snaps to fasten together. The belt is made out of vinyl, with a painted piece of plastic from a 2 liter soda bottle for the gem in the middle. Fastens with hook-and-eyes, and it is velcro-ed to the torso armor so it won't shift around.
Boot covers: Draped fabric around a pair of knee-high boots for each part of the boot design, which then was made out of vinyl and the crepe-back satin. there are two straps of vinyl that go under the boots to hold them in place, and they have zippers in the back . Crepe-back satin snaps across the zippers in the back with sew-on snaps so it doesn't look like the gold cuts off where the zippers are. Wierd spikes on the toes and knees are geometric 3D shapes made out of vinyl. I did a top-stitch around the edges so they would hold the right shape better, and then I hand-sewed them to the boot covers.
Gloves: Constructed very similarly to the boots. I had a pair of black satin gloves for the base, and I sewed them to the tubes of vinyl I made that wrap around my arms. They have zippers and the gold satin snaps over the zippers like how they do on the boots. 3D spikes made the same way as the ones on the boots.
Collar: Drafted the base shape out of poster board, and made with two layers of marine vinyl. Though instead of craft foam on the inside like my torso armor, there are triangles of cardboard that stabilize the tips of the spikes, as well as a really thick wire shape that curves into each spike to hold the collar itself up. My husband helped me cut and bend the wire because I was not strong enough to do it myself without causing injury (it was REALLY heavy duty stuff). The collar attaches to the torso armor via more metal snaps.
Spider-backpack-of-DOOM: The base is made out of cardboard and newspapers. To make the bases for the spikes, I added some aluminum foil onto the ends of a couple styrofoam cones to make them curve. I then wrapped the spikes with plastic wrap and did some "fabric-mache" (It's like paper mache, except I use scrap fabric strips coated in fabric stiffener instead of paper and glue). I did two layers on each spike and let it dry overnight. Afterwords I pulled off the fabric cones and then repeated the process until I had 6 spikes. Those spikes were taped to the cardboard base, and then I covered the whole thing in a stretchy knit fabric (fabric had to be divided into several pieces to fit properly). Crepe-back satin tubes were sewn on by hand afterwords. To attach it to the costume, it snaps to my cape in a few places.
Cape bubbles: The bubbles themselves are plastic ornament halves painted purple on the inside. crepe-back satin tubes are glued around the sides, and there is a donut-shaped piece of vinyl under the bubbles that is stitched to the satin. There are hooks-and-eyes attached to the vinyl, and they hook onto the torso armor after I snap the cape on. I used a silver cord for the attachment between the bubbles.
Helmet: made from the same materials as the rest of the armor, To get the top to curve, it is sectioned like a base-ball cap. There is wire in the very bottom edge to hold its shape. The face piece can separate and re-attach with velcro in two spots so that it can cover my face as well as sit above my face like it does in the show. Gem is made from a piece of painted plastic from a soda bottle (I creased it twice to get a more diamond-shape). Here is a better pic of the helmet:
Duel Disk of DOOM: No, it doesn't operate like a buzz-saw, but it still looks super cool, and the fins can hold individual cards. The base is made out of one of those velcro-ball-catching-disc thingies that have a strap on the back (I found it at goodwill!
) I used upholstery foam for the central shape, and cut out a section in the middle for the eye to fit in. The eye is a plastic ornament half with a few coats of orange gallery glass painted on the inside (and black acrylic for the eye details). Covered it in black marine vinyl and used crepe-back satin again for the details; some of it formed over craft foam pieces for the more crisp geometric details. Had some red vinyl scraps on-hand for the part where the deck is supposed to go, and I top-stitched with black thread for the detail. The small purple circle is a googly-eye painted on the inside. The fins are made from upholstery foam shapes covered in vinyl (I top-stitched the edges to make the shapes more crisp), and I used some scrap fabric that I had on-hand for the card slots. Here is a better picture of the duel disk to see the details:
Contact lenses: I ordered a pair of "Angelic Yellow" lenses from visiondirect.com. It's a popular style that a lot of vendors sell, including several vendors that sell lenses at anime conventions.
Yellow lenses are starting to become easier to find now (with lots of shops overseas popping up all over the internet), but this pair was one of my only options when I was shopping around a few years ago. Even though they were non-powered, they were still really expensive. And since I have really bad eyesight, I was practically blind unless I wore my glasses while wearing the lenses. I still really like these lenses though, since they are outlined with black details that make them look more like Haou's eyes.
Big tip for sewing with vinyl: use wax paper or tracing paper on the top while you sew! Otherwise, the vinyl won't want to push through the machine because it wants to get stuck on the pressure foot. If you use wax paper, then it slides through fine, and you can just tear it off afterwords. I didn't know about this tip when I first started on this costume, and it made things ridiculous difficult until I learned about it.
(end of construction notes)
I'm still very proud of this costume, even though it's been a few years since I made it. At the time, I had not seen anyone else do this varient of Judai, and it was very intimidating to make something I hadn't ever seen come to life before. It's not perfect, but I am happy with the end result.
Costume made and worn by
Hell Johan costume made and worn by
Johan wig styled by
Original photo by
From Animefest 2010 in Dallas, Texas
Yugioh GX is (c) Kazuki Takahashi