Halo Master Chief Costume Shoulder Pads Continued
The smaller part of the Halo Master Chief costume shoulder pad, which sits at the top of the pad should be made from the 1/4″ foam. (I didn’t have any of that. Two sheets of thinner craft foam glued together worked nicely for this and that is what I used.)
Using the small template shape on the page, follow the same steps, cut out, place the template on the foam, and trace around the shape. Then, cut out the innermost shapes and draw around them. Cut out the shapes next to those, draw around and continue until all the shapes are drawn.
Next, follow the lines using the heated knife blade. (The small metal ruler was used as a guide where possible.)
On the backside of the foam, draw two curved lines from the two intersecting angles at the top to the bottom of the piece, as shown in the picture.
Then, using the X-Acto knife, make two shallow cuts following the lines just drawn. This will make it easier for the piece to bend and be shaped while using the heat gun.
Use the heat knife to burn off the two edges, which will be glued to the larger section of the shoulder pad. Without touching the outer layer, use the heat knife to burn off some of the foam at an angle. This will make it easier to glue the pieces together.
Before gluing the small piece to the shoulder pad, the topside and the sides were painted. The underside was left gray.
You can see in the picture below where the small piece was attached to the shoulder pad. You can also see the lines made by the heat knife. I pulled the knife over the lines and the raised and recessed areas it created were interesting. So, I left it that way.
The silver paint was dry brushed over the edges of the shoulder pad and the edges of all the raised areas. it really ended up looking like metal! The acrylic craft paint worked great for this project.
The Back Of The Breastplate
As the other parts of this costume were being created, I mulled over how to finish the back of the breastplate. The inspiration pin on Pinterest did not have a view of the back. Getting down to the wire, I had to make a decision. Using the pattern from the front piece, I made a paper pattern with a curved bottom piece. Then, created an angled line, which would butt up to the edge of the breastplate in the back.
The pattern was cut out and traced onto another piece of the EVA foam and cut out with an X-Acto knife.
That looked pretty plain. It needed some detail. Repeating the trapezoid shape from the raised areas in the front, the shape was cut and removed.
The shape was then traced onto the back and black paint was applied to the areas around where the piece would be glued. The new piece was painted the avocado green. The black needed a bit of a second coat of paint and the green needed a second coat.
The small trapezoid shape was also painted the avocado green. After those pieces dried, the Loctite glue was used to attach the large piece to the back. It was butted up to the straight piece across the back. The lower sides were left loose to glue later.
Large books were used to hold the piece firmly, while the glue dried. You want to keep the rounded shape of the shoulders and the side pieces. While the glue was drying, I wrapped the piece around the edge of a table and set the books on top of it. Sometimes a stack of books was placed on the piece to help support the foam.
Once, I had inadvertently pulled the shoulders out and lost the shape. I tried to bend it back and I could tell it was putting too much strain on the piece. The heat gun was used to soften up the top and underside of the shoulders and they went right back where they needed to be.
After the back was securely in place, glue was applied to one of the loose sides, matched to the coordinating end of the front design, and pressed in place. This was held securely and then heavy books were set on it and the piece was allowed to dry. The process was repeated for the other end.
Once the sides were done, the trapezoid shape was glued into the recess of the back. Just like the other details on the front piece, the trapezoid shape was left slightly raised.
The line where the two pieces butted together wasn’t particularly appealing. A thin strip of foam cut to size and glued over top of it seemed to be the perfect solution. Since some of the detail was gray or silver, I left that piece gray, too. After the glue dried, silver paint was dry brushed on the entire piece.
The kids spent the night. Halloween morning, I got up at 4:30 and began putting the adhesive strips of Velcro on all the pieces. (I told you this is not a project to start two weeks before Halloween!)
The 2″ Velcro was used on the big pieces. The thinner strips of Velcro I had were used on the shoulder pads. I wish we had used the 2″ strips on those, too. Do yourself a favor and buy the big pack of the 2″ Velcro and use it lavishly.
In the afternoon, someone at school pulled one of the shoulder pads off and the adhesive on the thinner strip did not stick well enough to reattach. I think 2 of the 2″ wide strips would have kept it from being pulled off his shirt. This was an easy fix when he got home.
Looking back, I would have also used extra strips of the 2″ wide on the thigh pieces. That area gets more stress from walking and sitting than any other area.
All in all, the costume held together pretty well. I prayed all day that it would hold together and Aidan would have a good day.
Aidan reported that his character was recognized by many people and a couple of them were in disbelief that someone had made it!
Maybe this will inspire you to tackle a Master Chief costume for your special young man.
Supplies Used For This Project Included:
2 – packs of Best Step flooring found at Walmart for $13.44 each were used.
1 – 12″ x 18″ piece of gray craft foam found at Michael’s for 99¢.
Industrial Strength 2″ wide Velcro (This box was not enough to adequately do this project. 1″ wide Velcro was used for the shoulder pads and the shoes and the 2″ wide would have done a better job. In retrospect, I wish I had bought the large $18.00 package at Walmart.)
2 bottles of acrylic ‘Avocado’ craft paint
1 bottle of acrylic ‘Black’ craft paint
1 bottle of acrylic ‘Silver’ craft paint
1 bottle of Loctite Go2 Glue
We found the Master Chief helmet at a Halloween store for $39.95. A 25% off coupon found in a local ad was used, making the helmet $30.00.