Becky M. - Wisconsin, USA
The costume started a couple years ago, from Simplicity's #9887 pattern. Since I'm not much of a seamstress, my mother helped me put the robe together. The material is a medium-weight black cotton blend, which drapes nicely and flows great when I move.
I had purchased an invisible hood from a novelty store several years ago for Halloween; this serves as the inner hood quite well. When I draw up the robe's hood over it, I take care to line up the edges as much as possible.
I bought a pair of "opera gloves" and an old dress from a witch's costume at GoodWill last year; I start with a black turtleneck and black leggings, then put on the dress. The "Morgul blade" is a cheap plastic toy that I used a dry brush and acrylic paint on to make it look weathered. I used the sheath from another plastic sword and covered it in black material. I bought a black braided leather belt, which runs through the slots in the sheath.
Using 3mm grey craft foam I cut out the scales for the gauntlets - each finger has three scales, which overlap each other so that I can bend my fingers naturally. I glued the scales directly to the opera gloves. The vambraces are foam cut to fit from just below my elbow to just over the wrist so they overlap the back of the gauntlet. They're tied on w/black suede lacing.
For the boots, I used an old pair of black thigh-high boots. I cut the sabaton (foot covering) out first, in two pieces. The toe was curved and the point glued. Then the top piece was glued to the bottom edge. I put the boot on, adjusting the toe into the cup formed at the tip, and then tied the sabaton to the boot w/lacing, at the instep of the boot, (The knot is on the bottom of the boot, just inside the arch so it isn't stepped on.) and behind the ankle. The greaves are cut to fit from just below the knee (the top of the boot) to just over the sabatons, and tied w/lacing at the back of the leg.
All armor was handpainted in antique silver metallic acrylic paint. I do plan on making the WitchKing's helm at a future date, once I get some quality stills to work from.
The final touch is a child's vampire cape; it's tied on at the neck of the robe for the over-robe. It drapes over my shoulders and down my arms quite nicely.
When I wore this costume to my job at a bookstore on the opening day of Return of the King I had a lot of people think I was a statue, until I moved. I stood just outside our store (in a mall) holding hardcover copies of The Hobbit and The Return of the King for a couple hours.
More pictures <here>.
This page was last updated 11/21/09