Becoming Bucky: How I Built My Arm

I really wanted to cosplay the Winter Soldier. Like really wanted to. So the week before Con Bravo, I challenged myself to build an arm.

And it went surprisingly well.

So How I Did It:

Sadly I didn’t take any pictures during the first three steps.

STEP ONE: I put on the largest sweater I owned. This way I would be able to have a little bit of breathing room allowing me to take the arm on and off. It also made the next step a little easier. Online people recommended wrapping your arm in bubble wrap. Sadly I didn’t have any lying around.

STEP TWO: It’s time to build a model of your arm! Grab a friend, roommate or random passer-by and have them wrap your arm in plastic wrap. I held me arm at a slight angle so I would be able to mark where my elbow was. After they finish wrapping your arm in the plastic wrap have them go over it in duck tape. You want it to do at least two layers of duck tape so that it’s solid enough for you to build off of. It’s going to look like you’re wearing a cast/sleeve made out of duck tape.

STEP THREE: Remove the the duck tape arm and stuff it with newspaper or old clothes to keep its shape. You can then sketch onto the arm a draft of what you want your foam sections to look like. I did this at first, but didn’t end up following it in the end.

STEP FOUR: Grab some craft foam and draw and cut out your metal plates. Use a glue gun to glue them to your arm. And here’s where I started taking pictures! Here’s what it looks like so far!

STEP FIVE: Glue all your foam pieces to the arm. I chose to to leave the elbow uncovered to give myself a little bit (not much!) of mobility. I also used foam to build up onto the shoulder to make it stand out more.

 

STEP SIX: Find something to stand your arm up on. One of the builds I looked at recommended using a paper towel holder and it worked like a charm! Then mix up some white glue with water and paint your arm with three to four coats. This does a few things. It hardens the arm, it makes sure it stays together and it will help make hold on the paint.

STEP SEVEN: Once your arm is completely dry, it’s time to spray paint! I did a layer of black and then when it dried I did a layer of silver.

STEP EIGHT: Once the entire thing was dry used  red acrylic paint to colour in the star. I then finished it off by going over the edges of the foam pieces with a black permanent marker.

THE REST OF THE COSTUME

I work a plain black dress with tights for the main part of the costume. Then I followed this tutorial to make my mask. I modified it a little bit, seeing as I didn’t have any plaster lying around. To finish it off I sent a friend to the military surplus store for gloves, a holster, goggles and a belt. I also went to the dollar store and picked up a few water guns.

All in all I was really pleased with how the cosplay turned out! I was also surprised that I was the only Winter Soldier at the Convention.

Just a lonely Winter Solider looking for Captain America

My Arm References

I found a lot of helpful How-to-builds online. My two favourite being:

Pint Sized Fet on the RPF Feed. I mainly followed her build but tweaked it.

and

Ohicosplay on tumblr.

HAPPY BUILDING! If you build link me! I’d love to see what other people can create!

Written by
Alexandra is always looking for the next book she can devour. She has a love hate relationship with teen fiction specifically when it comes to fantasy, post apocalyptic and failed shakespeare adaptations.

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