Cosplay Chronicles: High Queen Margo, The Destroyer // Part III

Tuesday, December 3, 2019

And so the crown drama continues! I don't really want to stretch this into a fourth post just about painting/aging, which means you're all probably going to be stuck with more pictures than words and I'm sorry in advance if that's confusing.

First up - priming! I was worried the primer I already had on hand, being brown, would mess with the "glow" of the gems so I picked up one in white from the same brand. A couple of thin coats in the alley next to my apartment building (and a round of masking tape goo removal with a cotton bud and isopropyl alcohol) later, and we were good to go!

Here is where I'm going in with a round of  "do what I say, not what I do". Later on in this post you'll see the crown resting on parchment paper, and that was BY FAR the better plan. Trust me. Because the next step is to start painting everything gold (paint available here - thanks kind reviewer for the swatches!) and if you're like me and vaguely impatient then the parchment paper will keep you from mucking everything up. Oh, and I almost forgot an important step! The glass gems along the side were still clear post priming, but before beginning the gold I took some random green nail polish (I think Essie?) painted each one, and then applied a clear polish topper. I prefer this method because the end effect is still translucent and matched the orange stones pretty well. 

I do a lot of crafting in bed cause the light is better. And bed. Let's not make a big deal out of it.

I started with a small sponge tipped applicator, but no go, I couldn't get into all the nooks and crannies (and there are so, so many). I was finally relegated to using your typical synthetic brush, and just going at it. In the end it took 2-3 coats of gold to get it evenly coated, and I probably could have been even more meticulous if I wanted.

The last steps are kind of... ephemeral and artistic, so do what you will until you get an end result that you like. First up is aging - take a dry, natural haired brush, dip it in dark brown/black paint, stipple it directly on the crown  and immediately wipe most of it away. This creates a realistic "grime" and makes the final piece more authentic (I think Punished Props Academy has a good example of this in their Elder Scroll video).

After that I went in with some Rub 'n Buff, but I think incorrectly? I applied with a brush in small areas and then took a washcloth and buffed at the areas. But in pictures I've seen since then, of other people using it, it looks like they're applying and buffing at the same time using a microfiber towel? Shrug. I'd probably recommend more research in that department.

After the Rub 'n Buff was applied I kind of felt like it overwhelmed the aging, so I went in again with another super light layer of the dark brown paint and honestly? I kind of think the final result looks great and I'm still a little shocked about it.

I've got some tentative plans for how to make this actually wearable, the one downfall of it being mostly hot glue and slightly too big is that it doesn't want to stay on my head independently, but there you go! A kind of screen accurate take on High Queen Margo's crown [pats self on back].

Next steps include choosing an outfit and then an eye patch, since the second depends on the first. Wish me luck and I'll make sure to keep you all updated!

Don't miss out! You can find the other parts of this series below:

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