Friday, August 20, 2010

Black Widow Diary: Part 2

Time to make some bullet bracelets, folks.

One of the most interesting projects for the Black Widow costume has been her iconic accessory; since Black Widow's introduction in the comics, she has worn bracelets made from very long, high-caliber bullets. I knew they had to be included in my repro, but it took a little figuring out. I tried to find empty bullet casings or blanks, but was unsatisfied with what I found: either overpriced or just not the right shape ot size. Enter the crafter.

What you will need:

-5 wooden dowels
-sculpy clay
-hack saw
-hot glue gun
-silver and black spray paint
-clear stretch filament thread
-tape measure


1. I started with the dowels. These are 1/2" dowels, and they seemed about right in width. I looked at the pics of Scarlett and figured that the shafts of the bullets should be around 3 1/2" long; if you want to, you can look up how long the bullets actually are, but I was going on appearance. Using a pencil and tape measure, I marked each dowel in 3 1/2" intervals.

2. Next, I took my trusty hacksaw and went to work. A lot of the time the dowel would break or split before I was finished sawing through it; given that they are 1/2" diameter balsa wood, this was unsurprising. It's no big deal, though; once I sawed through the pieces, I used sandpaper to smooth both ends, and that took care of any jagged pieces. The wood is so thin that even scissors might work on any pieces that might be sticking up. Once I had 42 pieces of wood, cut and sanded, I was ready to make the bullet heads.

3. I used the rounded, bullet-shaped end of a gel-ink pen as my positive mold. It was the perfect size and shape! Using a small block of sculpy clay, I pushed the end of the pen into it to make my negative, and baked the mold for around a half-an-hour at 275-degrees; follow the directions on your clay for this! Then, I made lots of bullet heads. Forming the clay into skinny logs I pushed them into the molds and then cut them off to the correct length. When I had 42 bullet heads, they went back into the oven at 275 and baked for about 15 minutes.

4. Once the bullet heads were cooled, I hot-glued them to each of the dowels. What I ended up with was a sharp reminder of just how phallic bullets really are;)

5. In a sturdy shoe box, I spray painted the bullets, first in silver, which gave them a very bright, flat silver look, then dusted them in black to give them a more gun-metal appearance.

6. Finally, using the filament thread, I tied the bullets together at the top and bottom, knotting each one into place and leaving long trailing ends so they can be tied onto my wrists on Saturday. Thanks for the help with this, Tegan!

A few notes: Measure your wrists and then calculate how many bullets you'll need to make to encircle them. My wrists are pretty skinny, so I only needed 42 bullets, but you might need more or less. If you want more of a chrome look, there are chrome sprays out there that could work, but I didn't have the time to search for them. Chicago has a law against selling spray paint in the city limits, and I just didn't feel like hunting through the suburbs to find what I needed.

I'll post pics after Saturday of the finished costume! Can't wait for Comic-con!

1 comment:

MalteseLizzieMcGee said...

Thanks for sharing your method of making these bracelets
I can't believe that it's illegal to sell spray paint in CHicago!