If anyone told me that I'd be jealous of a six-year-old's Halloween costume, I'd say they were nuts. But with Halloween 2015 having come and gone, I am forced to admit that this kid's Rocket Raccoon costume -- made by his mother, Christina Borchardt -- is better than anything I've ever done, and anything I will ever do. That feeling of utter defeat can only be quelled by a tutorial, and lucky for fans like us, Christina shared all of her work online.
A member of the Replica Prop Forum (or "RPF"), a fan community that is famous for recreating droids from [Star Wars](tag:2395282) and masks from movies like Alien, Borchardt began posting her progress as early as this past June. Here's how she did it.
I made a rough face cast by coating him in vaseline, taping plastic wrap on to protect his hair, using low endothermic plaster bandages (i tested them first) and built a thin layer ( i mention how awesome my son is? Lol) Once it dried , i removed it and closed up the nose holes and made it stronger.
I lined it with vaseline, then poured in plaster (this works fine if you dont mind losing your mould) this left me with a great base to sculpt on. I sculpted out what i wanted then covered it with latex rubber ( i cant afford silicone for one mask, i spent $11 at hobby lobby and still have half a bottle left) i did 6 layers of it. I added keys and a bridge and plastered hald my mould, lined it with vaseline then did the other half to get my mother mould. Once dry i sprayed pam spray in my mould (no mould release ) and slush casted it with resin, 5 layers.
Ive since cut out eyeholes and opened the mouth with hinges so it opens and closes.
From here, Borchardt ordered several pieces for the costume -- the eyes, tail, and fur -- before getting right back to work.
Got the eyes in. Put on temporary ears and realized they needed to be further back ... then i added lids with apoxie sculpt ... got the nose and eyelids painted and repainted the lips. I also added extra foam to get the head shape closer.
I really like how he's coming out. I also will do some padding on his legs and arms to help with making him have more raccoon like legs. His hands will have latex gloves with fur punched through after I sculpt them. Im super excited.
Still sewing, shaving and need to airbrush, but i had to make sure the hood was fitting him and had to share the pic. So cute!!!! Lots more sewing to do haha
so a week ago I was adjusting the mask when I noticed one of his eyes wasn't even, it was sitting farthur back then the other one, and of course I had to mess with it and cracked the eye. I ended up removing both eyes because I'm going to upgrade them to a pair I hope are better. Totally bummed.
Finally redid the eyes. Was initially freaking scary ... but now less nightmare inducing.
So finished the ears. and hated them, remind me too much of a stuffed animal, which isn't the look I was going for... so i sculpted some. Now I'm coating them in latex. Here they are drying. I'd normally make a mold for a smoother look, but I'm gonna punch fur in it, so it won't be too much of an issue.
Finished one ear. Hair punching was awful. So I opted for gluing like I've done with beard applications. Works great
Mask test. Chase is adorablePosted by DonandChristina Borchardt on Monday, August 4, 2014
And here is a video of it in action.
All I've done is started covering the padding with scraps of fabric. Looking more like the padded suit I want. Luckily it doesn't have to be perfect because fur is so forgiving. May start on his bounty hunting orange outfit this weekend!
the hands. Was gonna go for regular fluffy paws, but I thought thinner colored latex like I did for the ears would be best. The arms will be connected to the orange suit via snaps or stitches in case he gets to hot. So I thought removable gloves are a must
I used hot wax (don't worry, have done before many times lol) and ice to make a rough cast of his hand. Poured in plaster and voila. Hands. I will be sculpting onto these with clay like I did the mask and hopefully they will resemble rockets. I will be adding length too because kids grow like weeds. Lol.
Got the front and back pieces done with 5/8" seam allowances. Hope to get this sewed up soon. Dont know why my camera made this look so pink , haha. well, I'll probably work on the shoulder pads next till i get some clay
Arg, finally got decent clay that sticks to tiny plaster hands. Lol. Started to finally be able to sculpt. Still adding more clay, not doing detail on the top except the nails because the latex will have fur covering it, but underneath I'm adding more clay and wrinkles.. I put both so you can see what I'm adding, though one has some white sculpey before I switched to brown. Still sculpting, hope to make mould soon!!
Added the front panel where the belts go through. Had him put on the padding and mask to check the fit. Adorable
One paw done minus some airbrushing to make it more realistic. He says they feel so much better.
Alright finished one of my sons shoes. Still gotta paint the nails and airbrush the fur.
Well got some arm sleeves done. Legs are next! Lots more to do. Also finished furring last glove and shoe. New tail in the works as well!! Pack too!!
Bought the rocket raccoon nerf gun to save me some work having to make it. (All the attachments are removed for painting) Bought a $4 gun to get a circuit that was setup and changed the led lights out with white ones. Attached a magnet as well for it to stick to my sons pack (its very strong) So now it flashes and vibrates which will make my son happy as most cons dont allow anything with projectiles. Paint job is next.
Alright, Got a bit further. I was able to get the blaster painted and touched up the paint on the mask that had become blotchy from me trimming some more fur. Was checking the fitment on some things. I need to make the arms a little bit tighter and add the mesh in the armpit. Im currently working on his pack that is gonna second for holding his gun and water the details on his suit.. Figured I would show what it looks like on my 6 year old. I left a lot of things adjustable because he will be 7 by the time comic con rolls around since we had to miss it this year
Here are some more progress pictures! Got back pack made. Magnets are super strong, the gun is staying on strong but comes off with a decent tug!
Got more done for halloween, still tweaking it, more updates to come!
And finally, the result that fans across the internet can't stop sharing:
What a process! It looks like both mom and son are thrilled with the results, though Borchardt has noted that she's not quite finished with it yet. Hopefully, you'll see this little firecracker at a convention near you -- and congratulate his brilliant mom on her hard work!