Making Of Gamera!

No, not the making of any Gamera movie, rather the making of my Gamera costume.

First up is the mask which I saw in an old-time costume shop in Morioka that sold some high class masks, as well as these cheap (cheap to make, not to buy) flimsy plastic masks sold at festivals throughout the country. It cost 600¥ (about 6 bucks.) This mask was the inspiration for the whole idea.

I had the idea but no idea where to go from there. I saw this knapsack at Loft and figured that it could be used several times and thus justified the extravagant price.

There were multiple colours but no green so I had to go with the red. For Gamera purists, part of his body does turn red in Gamera 3: Awakening of Iris when he absorbs a plasma blast from his opponent Iris.
My next purchase was a pair of pants and a shirt from BookOff for a total of 1400¥. I spray painted them with some green lacquer to give it some sort of a mottled look. (By the way, why the heck does the 100¥ Shop sell spray paint in every colour except green? I had to pay 6X that at an actual hardware store.)

Unfortunately the green crotch doesn't look like the pelvis of a turtle so much as it does appear that I peed myself after eating a lot of asparagus. As seen in this picture:
The feet were spray-painted dino-paw-slippers that I've owned for ages which have shown up in previous Halloweens (for example) and are somewhat worse for wear.
As you can see, there are some gaping holes in the soles that made it painful to walk on pavement. Next time, I either repair the holes or wear slippers inside my slippers.
The intention of this cheap spray-painted chamo-hat was to cover up my grey hair. The snag is, that you have to actually keep it atop your head. As seen in the following photo, I didn't do a very good job of hiding the grey.

The tail was a bit of a problem for I have neither the skill nor patience to make one. Fortunately last year was Year of the Dragon and I received a very cool Manda-esque dragon as a present back then. Sorry to say that your beheading had to be done to serve a higher cause. But you can live on as a hand puppet! Thanks to a co-worker for her sewing skills, she was able to salvage the head.

And lastly were the gloves. It was tough to find a pair that suited my needs and I had no idea how to do the claws. Then at a Seria (100¥ Shop clone) I saw a pair of cleaning gloves and was inspired to buy sponges. I'd poke holes in the knuckles and then shove a triangular piece of sponge through to approximate a claw or a spur. I was going to paint them ivory but liked the green enough that I didn't bother. (Besides, I was already sniffing enough paint with my shirt, pants, hat, and slippers.)
As you can see, some of the sponges had disappeared throughout the evening but the effect was there at the party.

Here is the costume in all its glory dancing away and/or mingling with guests.

Ultimately, for a 20 dollar (plus the knapsack, the price of which I shan't disclose) investment, I won 2nd place, a bottle of Champagne Sparkling Wine (I would have won first, but it's a bit cheesy to award the top prize to one of the party's hosts.)

I recruited a friend to take a video of my costume achievement and then there's a silly cameo at the end.

Sifting through some of the Halloween photos on the net, I am the only kaiju represented. Now if only we could get a better Gamera reboot than this, I'd be willing to star in it!

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