So far, I can tell you that 2016 is the year of, “Broke? Tony, you think you’ve been broke before? HA HA HA! Let me show you what broke really looks like!” This means that there really isn’t a “Costume Initiative 2016”, as it would be practically impossible for me to put together the funds for a full costume this year. However, this doesn’t mean I’m completely giving up on costuming in 2016! I’m still slowly scrimping and saving pennies, buying bits and pieces here and there, as well as focusing on looking decent in the costume.
First things first, let’s look at what I’m scrimping up for. You’re all familiar with the Resistance X-Wing Pilot outfits from Star Wars: The Force Awakens, right? The update of those classic orange suits worn by Skywalker, Antilles, and Porkins is a hot item with Star Wars costumers right now, and I’m fully on board with this, as it’s still fairly easy to find the parts they used in the films. Well, it’s easier than it is to find parts from almost 40 years ago! So far, I’ve gone so far as to get the piece of hose that’s attached to the chest box, and that’s pretty much it. Other than that, I’m watching many of the group projects with great interest, hoping to pick up a piece here, or a buckle there, as money allows.
Another thing I am hoping to do is acquire a sewing machine sometime over the course of 2016, so I can start practicing working on my own “soft parts”, or the cloth pieces for a costume. The jumpsuits, the tunics, the trousers, as well as just expanding my collection of Hawaiian-style shirts! By Grabthar’s Hammer, have you seen the pop culture fabric collections that are out there? Seriously, head over to Jo Ann Fabric sometime and check them out!
In fact, 2016 will more than likely be the year of “practice”. I have a ton of things I can work on that have piled up over the last few years. I have resin “garage” kits of Star Trek props sitting unfinished in the Geek Cave office that I can complete, getting me back in the practice of sanding, filling, and finishing. My buddy Devon gave me a 3D Printed Pip Boy from Fallout 3 last year, along with some pieces that didn’t print properly. This will allow me to learn how to properly work with, and finish, a piece that’s been 3D printed, which is important, since that’s how a lot of parts for the Resistance Pilot I spoke of above are done. In addition, you remember a few years ago, when I got those really cool old Star Trek model kits? Those will give me even more practice, as I fill in seam lines, clean the flash off, and work on painting them so they are display-worthy in the Geek Cave. I know I’m going to be starting with the Maquis Ship, because that is not anywhere close to what I think is a good ship design. This means, if I botch it up, I won’t be as upset as I would be if I botched up, say, the Enterprise B, or the Reliant.
It has occurred to me that, despite having worked on props and costumes as both a hobby and a job for over 20 years, I’ve never taken the time to actually practice the craft. Everything I’ve learned has just come from doing it, and it is evident in some of my lack of finesse in finishing a piece, or some of the sloppy techniques I use while working on a piece. While other people may not notice it, I am very self-aware of how it looks, knowing that if I just took the time to learn, I could do better.
So, seeing how I’m using 2016 to make other aspects of my life better, through education and exercise, I figure it is also a good opportunity to make myself better at my hobbies and interests. So, the initiative I’ll be taking in 2016 is to get better at making things, while occasionally buying pieces to work on, that will eventually go into one of the costumes on my bucket list.
So, my question to all of you is, as I do this, would you like it documented? Let me know in the comments!
Have a great weekend, friends!