Mononoke Hime (1/2)

I’m going to Desucon: Fantasy, a cosplay convention in Oslo, the 5th of April. The theme will be fantasy, surprisingly. I’m going as San, from Princess Mononoke. I’m making the costume from scratch, so it’s going to be… interesting.

I looked for ages for a fitting wig, and ordered one that might work. It looked a bit brighter, and too reddish, San’s hair is more khaki/mud brown. The wig was cheep (less than 80 NOK) so I figured it wouldn’t be the end of the world if it doesn’t work. I’m doubtful I’ll get it in time for Desucon:Fantasy, which is a bit sad, but totally my fault for assuming I wouldn’t need one since I have a mask and hood. I might not need it when I’m wearing the mask, but I would like to look right without the mask too.

Lots of reference pictures proved very helpful. Sketching is important too. I noticed that San, aka Princess Mononoke, doesn’t actually have a lot of screen time in the movie named after her. I also noticed that even though she had little screen time, and kept changing her outfit, there were inconsistencies. The rings on her arm bands sometimes have a white core like her hair band, but are most of the time just black. Her tabard is sometimes just overlapping on the side, other times connected by one or two strips. Her necklace has teeth all around when she’s not wearing the cloak. With the cloak it’s typically three or four.  If I made the whole necklace, and had it under the cloak, teeth would stick out, and it wouldn’t look right.

So yeah, there’s no way to make this costume “perfect”, I have to make artistic choices.

I stated by making the dagger. The base is made of layers of old popsicle sticks and cardboard. Then I used paper mache, lots of paper clay and sanded it smooth. I glued red and black ribbon on the handle using a hot glue gun. I learned to love hot glue and paper clay! And then there’s the necklace, just paper clay.


I love the mysterious feel of the round mask, but I went with the cool half mask, just because.
I had no idea how to make a mask. Still don’t, really. I made one, hated it. Made another, pretty happy with it. Believe it or not, but these progress pictures are all of the mask that turned out good. I started with lots of paper mache, then paper clay, and sanded it. Then I hot glued on the three pieces of craft foam. Filled in the edges with glue. I painted everything, discovering that I don’t understand how neither shading nor weathering. Then covered it all with glue for gloss and protection. So glossy. Glue <3

It’s taken me forever to figure out how to make the arm bands, but I think I found an ok solution. I hope. I cut the top off of black ankle stockings. Then hand sewed on the rings. I bought the rings in a hardware store and painted them black, then covered them with glue. After sewing them on I thought the threads around the rings were too visible, and the rings would move around a bit. So I  solved both those problems by adding more glue xD

The shoes… Well I don’t know yet. I bought some old shoes to use as a base, because (obviously) I’m not going to make a shoe from scratch. I made simple shoe covers, but they just don’t look right.


The End.

Continue to Part 2/2 >>

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