What’s on Ethan’s Table This Week?

I’ve taken to calling this lovely short sword the “rose sword” as it really reminds me of the thorny stem of a rose. I don’t know yet what name it will be given by the Shadowhunter who designed it. We’ll see!

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A sneak-peek at the lighting.

All that needs doing is the handle wrap and it’s ready to go!

Next on the table is an Ouriel and … some resin casting? Ooooh a challenge….

That’s all from the Studio for now. Stay safe Hunters.

Introducing: Sariel & A New Witchlight!

Brand new pretties for you to see! At long last, the elegant beauty of Sariel joins the roster of Seraph Blade models.

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Hello there gorgeous! This design is based on the longsword that Isabelle Lightwood uses in The Mortal Instruments movie.

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As I’ve babbled on before, you all know that you can’t hide a light inside a fully transparent blade. So we did the next best thing and gave the handle a minimalist leather grip in an unobtrusive shade of white.

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The result is rather striking particularly the band of light between the grips.

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Hurrah!

Now, what’s this about a new witchlight? It is true! I have improved upon the humble paper mache model I first created.

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Looks good, easy to make … but a little on the flimsy side and the opening is really obvious.

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Well, we can fix that. And we did! Feast your eyes on this solid plastic “stone”. It’s made of layers (and layers, and layers and oh my god my hand hurts now …) of hot glue a bit of glitter, and some UV-resistant top coat to keep the whole thing from yellowing over time in the sun. Pretty neat all on its own, but in the dark, you can give it a gentle squeeze and …

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Tada! The plastic is flexible enough that turning on the press light is pretty easy. (So don’t let it get squished in your suitcase or it will run down the battery.) LEDs last a pretty long time but to change the battery, you only need to slice along the seam with a sharp knife, pop the light out, switch the battery, stuff it back in and re-seal it with a plain old hot glue gun.

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The design’s still not perfect and I want to get a working model that you don’t have to cut to open, but it’s surely a step up from the paper and balloon one. 🙂

If you’re interested in a tutorial on how to make this type of witchlight, please feel free to let me know in the comments! If there’s enough interest, I’ll put together something for ya.

That’s all from the Studio for now. Stay safe out there Shadowhunters!

What’s on Ethan’s Table This Week?

What? What is all this?

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Ethan is casting a rock. Why is Ethan casting a rock? Any guesses? 😉

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In other news, a new sword passes the reading test! As if we had any doubts that it would. Heehee!

The Wolf Sword

Sorry I’ve been quiet lately! I’ve been a bit busy. I’d like to take a moment to share with you the sword I shipped out this week. It was an absolute joy to work on and let me put my skills to the test.

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The pommel and crossguard are made from a polymer clay called Premo Sculpy.

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This clay is sculpted, baked in the oven, and affixed to the sword with a combination of contact cement and matte Modge Podge. Then, it gets sanded, carved with the Dremel tool, sanded again, and finally, painted.

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The Shadowhunter who requested this blade asked that it be made to look old, as though it had been handed down in a family line. To achieve this effect, I gave the paint on the wolf portions a tarnished look with dry-brushing.

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The leather began as a simple dark brown: a perfect base colour to build upon. I painted it with scarlet leather paint and then added some darker colours where the grip meets the pommel and crossguard. This gives the impression that dirt and grime over the years has become packed in that seam where it is difficult to clean properly.

I then took a lighter rusty colour and added some “stains” where the acidic adrenaline-saturated sweat from previous Shadowhunters’ hands would affect the dye of the leather, bleaching it little by little over the years.

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The Shadowhunter requested a frosted blade both for the shorter crafting time and the brightness of the finished product. I think her choice was spot-on for this blade.

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I loved working on this and I very much hope that the Shadowhunter who ordered it enjoys it for many years.

Two of the things I learned from the creation of this sword: using a smaller LED allows me to make a more slender handle and is just as bright as the large LEDs.

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The other thing was that the snaps I had were nice and robust with no danger of coming off the leather the way the Velcro tends to do … but they’re a little bulky. So I bought smaller snaps that will hopefully lie flatter against the grip.

Thank you very much to this Shadowhunter for the commission, for her patience, and her excellent feedback.

What’s On Ethan’s Table This Week?

Yes, I know it’s Wednesday. I’ve been busy sculpting this beauty. I’ve always loved wolves and I’m absolutely stoked by this project!  This week is devoted to the final stages of polishing and painting the polymer clay and leather. What colour will it be? You’ll have to wait and find out!

It’s not what it looks like!

Okay so … I was testing out a new brand of polymer clay for making sword handles. Sadly, it doesn’t quite work the way I’m used to so this particular version of the handle didn’t really work out the way I wanted it to.

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No, you don’t understand. It REALLY REALLY DIDN’T WORK OUT THE WAY I WANTED IT TO.

Whoops

I was not pleased.

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Oh well. I’ll just have to experiment some more. I guess I’ll just … make this into a pencil holder … or something …

All-Day Wear – Alcohol Activated Body Paint

Hi folks! A commenter asked some really interesting questions about how to manage and touch-up alcohol activated paint while you’re at a convention hall or other event. That’s certainly something I’ve experimented with a lot and I’ve found some things that do and don’t  work so well.

So, how do you keep looking like this all day long?

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Yup, those hands are painted.

It’s easier than you think with just a few tricks. Continue reading “All-Day Wear – Alcohol Activated Body Paint”

How to make a Shadowhunter Witchlight

Anybody else a fan of Cassandra Clare’s Mortal Instruments series? I love it, and cosplaying as a Shadowhunter is a lot of fun. There are a few tricky bits to the costume though, and one of these bits is the witchlight.

How the crap do you do this?

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Well fear not! I have found an easy, cost-effective way to do just that. Continue reading “How to make a Shadowhunter Witchlight”

Shadowhunter Bracers Project

And the cosplay crafts continue! From what I’ve seen in the City of Bones movie, Shadowhunters seem to wear hand protection as a rule. A pair of motorcycle gloves would do just fine but I can’t seem to find a used pair so I got creative.

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What’s this? Well, this is a pair of children’s shin-guards. I thought we were making bracers! Yes. Yes we are. Stay tuned for the transformation. I spotted these puppies in a used clothing shop in the sporting goods section. Continue reading “Shadowhunter Bracers Project”

Shadowhunter Stele Project

So I’m a fan of Cassandra Clary’s Mortal Instruments series. And my friend Scarlet and I are going to cosplay as Shadowhunters for Otakuthon and Comiccon. Woohoo! Well, one of the things necessary to a Shadowhunter’s gear is a stele. It’s a cross between a wand and a tattoo gun. Yes that’s just as awesome as it sounds.

As the description states, each Hunter’s stele is different and tends to reflect something of their personality. Instead of trying to replicate one character in particular, I decided to get creative and do my own Shadowhunter. As such, I mucked about with my crafting materials and made something unique.

I wanted it to be practical so I decided to build it around a sharpie marker so that we can touch up our Marks while at the convention.

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Continue reading “Shadowhunter Stele Project”