Captain America Costume for the Ladies: Phase One
Yep – that’s my big surprise. I’m working on a kick-ass cosplay costume for a female version of Captain America. But not just any old costume, a World War II/Steampunk-esque version of Cap. It’s coming together bit by bit at the moment.
Here’s a REALLY TERRIBLE pencil sketch of the outfit. I am obviously not an artist, but am highly visual and in order for my brain to approve any purchases for this outfit, I needed to see it in one picture, rather than all the separate pieces. Here’s what the final costume should resemble when everything comes together:
The inspiration comes from production stills of the currently filming Captain America movie and the Bryan Hitch Ultimate Avengers comic book version:
There were at least three different pre-made versions of Captain America costumes for women and two of them were sleeveless. Since I don’t sew clothing well enough to make my own, the base of the costume is going to be pre-purchased and I’ll have to craft together all the accessories.
Anyways – a lady with a 3/4 sleeve tattoo doesn’t fit with the classic 1950s theme, so the one I ended up selecting is not as conventionally sexy. But it fits the look better. Already purchased this from buycostumes.com – this website is awesome because they allow users to post reviews and photos of themselves wearing the items. You can always judge a costume better when an average sized person is wearing it in crappy lighting and using a cellphone camera to take a picture. That’s REAL advertising.
Already know I’m going to do away with that shitty silver winged mask. Yegh.
The other item purchased from buycostumes.com at the same time was a brown aviator cap to fit under the airbrushed WWII helmet. And because the look requires the dangling straps. The goggles were previously purchased for a potential Amelia Earhart Halloween costume, and they’ll rest on top of the helmet as in the picture.
Another important costume element is the helmet – we scored authentic World War II era helmets from our friend Sam Kemper this weekend. He does tons of amazing airbrush work on all sorts of things: dragsters, vintage fridges, motorcycle helmets, etc. He’s a comic book and Americana fan, so I knew he would be intrigued by the project.
And of course he was. He just happened to be hitting up a swap meet in PDX this weekend and secured two helmets for $75 (the DH will be the man version of Cap). We picked them up on Saturday, along with instructions for prep work. We had to remove the netting and need to sand them down. The helmet is pretty sexy (but needs to be fitted better to my head).
We chatted about a plan to create shields as well. Not the circular version in the picture, but the pointed triangular one from the Bryan Hitch picture. Here’s Sam and Dan talking about next steps and lots of technical fabrication terms I’m not terribly familiar with…but will have to learn in order to make this thing happen:
The last piece of this costume phase was purchasing mock spats/gaiters. At first I was intent on locating vintage khaki colored versions similar to those worn in WWII, but then I decided to branch out and find something that looked more feminine so I found a fantastic pair through a local shop in PDX called Sock Dreams. They also operate an online store, offering free shipping nationwide. Pretty sweet. Was hoping they would have the spats in the store so I could try them on…alas, they did not. Here’s what I ended up ordering:
The belt buckle could be used as some kind of attachment for a holster device, not even sure yet if I’ll need it.
THE NEXT STEPS:
– Sand down the helmet, pass it off to Sam for air-brushing
– Obtain gloves and boots that match color and style of aviator cap
– Create shield template
– Toying with the idea of bandoliers…
I’ll post updates as the items come together.