Sunday, 19 January 2014

Kíli Project - Belt and Hair

Kili's belt. This is one part of this project that I've been dreading and putting off for, like, forever. Not only does it involve having to do a shit ton of hand stitching, it's hand stitching thick leather, and I also have to make all the studs that are to be stitched on. I already had the old belt I'd be converting into this magnificently vicious little number, and removed the original belt buckle a while back, so I started where I had to; making the studs. I'd already made one as a prototype, if you will, but now, I would have to mass produce them as I needed somewhere in the vicinity of 25 of them. Nothin' to it but to do it. Equipped with my favourite biscuits, my faithful Aperture Science mug filled to the brim with coffee and milk and other useful tools, I dived in and got it done!

From there, the path of hellfire lay before me, also known as hand sewing leather. It hurts you wrists, it hurts you neck (because you inevitably end up sitting with you neck craned over whatever you're working on) and it hurts your fingers, sometimes quite a lot, because there are moments when you can't use the thimble, and that's when it strikes, the unexpected needle puncture in you index finger tip, for the umpteenth time. Ok, I'm done ranting now.

The belt buckle was the easy bit. I could just sew that through the holes already there from where the old belt buckle had been attached. The nightmare was all those bloody studs that needed to be stuck onto this leash of doom. I did this by drilling little holes (using a mini drill my fella uses for wargaming miniatures) into each inner corner of each stud, so that I'd have some way of sewing them on. Then I put some glue and stuck it onto the leather. From there, I drilled through the leather as well, so as to spare my hands a little bit. Then the actual sewing began, stitching each corner so that the thread would lie firmly in the grooves on either side of the corner. Repeat 20 something times. You could say I was very relieved and quite pleased with myself once it was done.

Since I had the fimo clay out already from making the studs, I figured I might as well make Kili's hair clip, or at least my version of it. I'd seen one version someone had made of it, and I liked the pattern they'd used, and although I had no idea if it's screen accurate or not (still don't), I decided to use it. I was very happy with how it turned out, and the fact that it's actually functional. :)

Having received the hair extensions for my fella earlier (his hair was getting rather long but it wasn't long enough, thus extensions), I cut them to the right length and had the poor chap sit down to get have them put in. (He wasn't all too pleased, but as usual, the promise of a brew made him more co-operative.) I must say that the result was perfect, in my opinion, and you could hardly tell which bit was extensions and which bit was his own hair.

This  all happened after having attached the trim onto the leather jacket, but before I stitched the gambeson sleeves on, so here are some photos of how it looked on along with the hair:

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