Cosplay Project – Legend of Zelda’s young Link
This post has taken me ages to write and get out. Gathering photos and writing about the build was not as easy and I thought it would be. I may even add to it in the future. If you have any questions please feel free to ask them in the comments section.
This costume build was for my son, Michael, age 12. It took me about 6 months. Much planning, looking at images and sourcing materials went into this project. I made it for his first ever ComicCon experience, the VAcomicon in Richmond Virginia this past August. He became instantly transformed into an outgoing, engaging, conversational young man while at this convention dressed as one of his favorite video game characters. It was so much fun and I can’t wait to make our next costume together.
Looking back on this project I am surprised I was able to pull it off. I know how to sew, so making the green tunic and hat were not a concern for me. It was the props that had me worried. I am not one to do things half way. Although I do try to do things within a reasonable budget. I also want the costume to look authentic, realistic, as well as be comfortable for the wearer. This has been my focus for costumes I have made for my kids all their lives. But that is another blog post.
I did a lot of research on how to make the Kokiri Sword, Hero Shield and scabbard for young Link as seen in The Legend Of Zelda Majora’s Mask.
I had no clue how to make the Sword, shield and scabbard. I researched online and watched YouTube videos and settled upon the method taught by YouTuber Happy Atom. His tutorial on making the props out of wood inspired me and I set my sights on my first experience with woodworking. It was not easy, it was a labor of love, but I did it. This geeky mom did it! The props are something my son can keep forever, as a memory, long after he outgrows the costume.
Hero’s Shield – I did not get a lot of photos of the Hero’s Shield build. I wish I had. It was the hardest part of the project. I routered out the inside of the shield. I then made wood shapes for all the decorative elements and glued them to the shield. After a primer base coat of silver metallic spray paint, all the other elements were hand painted. I then put several clear coats to protect it. The back has a piece of an old belt and a cabinet pull from the hardware store for the handle. The methods for attaching these can vary. I wanted to have as little damage to the front when drilling screws into the back.
Kokiri Sword – Wood glue, belt sander and lots of patience and time. I made the sword before I did the shield. The bolts in the crossguard are actually old bold screws I found in my husband workshop. The were coppery looking and aged and perfect. I drilled holes into the wood the same diameter as the bolts and glued the bolts into the wood. Wood glue was my best friend in the project. There was a lot of gluing, clamping and then waiting till the next day to do the next step. I had to keep working on it a little each day in order to complete it in time for the convention. After sanding and shaping the sword, I had to create the blue jewel looking pommel. The base is made from blocks of wood glued together. I ended up using a UV patching putty to create the smooth hard surface. It looks so cool painted with a sparkling blue spray paint used for cars. The grip is finished off with a strip of scrap white leather I purchased online. I used contact cement to keep the leather affixed. After my son played with the sword a few time the leather got a used look about it and is adding to the character of the prop.
Scabbard and the rest – I had the green fabric sitting around for years. It is a polyester I think, with a crinkle to it. I sewed a basic tunic and found a collar pattern online. The hat is made slightly stiff with light weight interfacing. I also stuffed a couple grocery bags into it to give it video game body. I attached a hair comb to the inside of the hat to make sure it stays secure to the wig while on his head. The flaps were added to the thrift store boots with contact cement. Only work with this in a well-ventilated area with a mask on. It is strong stuff! The gold areas at the top and bottom of the scabbard are scrap fabric. I attached them with contact cement. After they were dry I painted them gold. His ears were purchased with the wig as a set. It took some getting used to to find the right amount of spirit gum to make them stay on his ears. Having the wig and the ears on were itchy at first, but he sucked it up and transformed into Zelda’s young link.
Next we make some masks! Oh Joy!
Below are some photos of the build process. Click on each to see full size.
Link plays the Ocarina at a ComicCon in Tanglewood mall in Roanoke Virginia