Zam Wessel

Discussion in 'Costuming and Props' started by litllejedi, Nov 4, 2002.

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  1. litllejedi Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Sep 29, 2001
    star 1
    My wife has amazingly agreed to the idea of costuming and has chosen Zam as her alter ego. Naturally she would choose one of the most difficult characters to recreate. So, I would appreciate any insights or resources that you may have to help make this a reality. This will be our first costume, but we are both creative and enthusiastic about the idea.

    Thank you for the time.

    S_S edit: just unlocking.
  2. surlygirlie Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Aug 1, 2000
    star 4
    Here is a whole forum devoted to the discussion of Zam costuming. Many folks giving each other the benefit of their experience.

    Hope it helps!

    -sg
  3. skip1 Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Mar 13, 2002
    star 3
    i made my daughter a great zam wessel costume for halloween.she wore it to both imax openings this weekend.one in nashville and the other in huntsville.
    there are pics of it on this site.the guys took alot of great pics this past weekend.be sure to see "rachels page"

    www.swsyndicate.com

    while its not 100% accurate its a really cool costume and you can see a little bit on how it looks wearing it.maybe it will help.
    good luck
  4. oggiebendoggie2001 Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Jun 12, 2002
    star 1
    Send a PM to CreatureCreator. He's a guy in our local Fan Force who's done just what you're doing.
  5. Azeem TFN Staff, Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Apr 12, 1999
    star 4
    Kim (the fan costume you see all the time) and my wife Lisa (Stubbzilla) are working on an ultimate version of the costume.
  6. VillieGee Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Oct 30, 2002
    star 3
    If I were you, I would get the AOTC Visual Dictionary, which has some great pictures of her costume from a few different angles, and I would get the Zam Wessel 12-inch action figure/doll/whatever theyre calling it. Her arms are sculpted instead of cloth-covered, but it'll give you an idea of how things attach to each other. I like the 12" figures just because they show the logistics of how the pieces fit together. Sometimes they have nice detail, but alot of times they simplify the actual full-sized costume.
  7. Stubbzilla TFN Costumes Staff

    VIP
    Member Since:
    Jan 30, 2001
    star 2
    Heyyyy now, I wouldn't say I'm actually working on it yet. I'm in the pre-work stage, just trying out a few ideas. Kim has already done the best costume out there, and she's got all the info.

    I have a few ideas on how to do the jumpsuit (right padding and stitching), but the biggest problem is getting the right color of spandex/lycra.
  8. Darth_Eagle Fanforce CR Singapore

    Chapter Rep
    Member Since:
    Jul 19, 2001
    star 4
    TDH-Zam Wesell site is the place! ;) Dustin Crops Boy, the forum administrator had gotten back from Australia with lots and lots of photos and infos on the actual costume. He also did a great simplified version of it for his daughter for this Halloween (well, simplified isn't the word to entirely discribe it as usual! :p ).

    A lots of infos had also been discussed there and everyone is getting somewhere.

    I'm also doing one but only starting full swing this Jan. And since I don't have much of the stuffs to work on certain parts, I'm depending on some people to help me make the raw forms of them. :(
  9. Obey Wann Former RMFF CR & SW Region RSA

    Member Since:
    Jan 14, 2000
    star 6
    Kim definitely has the best costume around that I've ever seen. Well done!
  10. litllejedi Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Sep 29, 2001
    star 1
    Awesome! all of the help and ideas are already paying off. Thank you guys for the help and insight.
    After reasearching if from the resources provided by you guys I think we will most likely choose a different material for the body suit. Since the real suit is a neck to toe covering of neoprene the reality of wearing that for even one hour is not likely. I have used neoprene socks in extreme winter conditions before and still wound up sweating. Although I would like to do an ultimate edition I would prefer for her to be able to wear it for as long as she wanted to at events.
    I still have alot of work/learning to do before I can start it, but your help is making it possible.

    Thanks All
  11. Darth_Eagle Fanforce CR Singapore

    Chapter Rep
    Member Since:
    Jul 19, 2001
    star 4
    Use Lycra. :)

    I'm gonna choose Cotton Lycra or Thicker Nylon Lycra with something underneath it to make it look "thicker" for my "normal" wear Jumpsuit (outside) since Singapore is always hot (our only cool season is the Monsoon Season and that means very heavy rain almost everyday! ;) ). The Neopane one is a maybe for the Cinema or indoor wearing. :D
  12. Stubbzilla TFN Costumes Staff

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    Member Since:
    Jan 30, 2001
    star 2
    Although many people seem to think the suit is neoprene, I doubt that is is. For one thing, the suit is not "head to toe" neoprene for sure, since below the knee it's less padded. What Zam's wearing in the movie does not seem to move quite right to be neoprene. Also, the way that she walks is not how someone is forced to walk while wearing a wetsuit that is not wet. (Mucho experience-o in this department...) There is a slight possibility that they could have padded part of the suit with the very thinnest layer of neoprene available, but it still just doesn't move/wrinkle quite right.

    I am guessing that the material is a spandex or lycra with interfacing sewn into it or bonded to it. It COULD be the thinnest layer of neoprene, like a thinskin, because we've heard that costumers use it sometimes, but it would be an awful costume to wear, anyway.
  13. Darth_Eagle Fanforce CR Singapore

    Chapter Rep
    Member Since:
    Jul 19, 2001
    star 4
    Over at TDH, we kinda came to the agreement that it's Lycra laminated to Neopane (or vice versa?).
    vest and jumpsuit

    And according to the observations made by DCB, it's 2 pieces (or even 3) for the bodysuit itself and it's not fully lavender neopane/lycra all the way.
    major jumpsuit revelation....

    :)
  14. litllejedi Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Sep 29, 2001
    star 1
    Wow, this one is going to be tough. Does anyone think it would be possible to contact the original designer for info? I'm certain that this has been tried but I want to check to be sure.
    I am not familiar with lycra, is it as heat conserving as neoprene/neopane?
  15. Azeem TFN Staff, Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Apr 12, 1999
    star 4
    cotton lycra is what most stormtroopers use for their black body suits.
  16. Darth_Eagle Fanforce CR Singapore

    Chapter Rep
    Member Since:
    Jul 19, 2001
    star 4
    I am not familiar with lycra

    Nylon Lycra is what being used for swimsuits/trunk, thin diving suit and bicycle tights. It is also being used by some to make "superheroes" costumes.

    Cotton ones are thicker but more sweat absorbance compared to nylon ones. :)

    Some places labelled it as Spandex too (over here Spandex is the thinner and less/over elastic relative of Lycra). ;)
  17. Stubbzilla TFN Costumes Staff

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    Member Since:
    Jan 30, 2001
    star 2
    Yep, I've read all the threads on neoprene over on tdh.

    I don't agree. I've got enough experience wearing neoprene, and it doesn't move like that, especially not when it's dry.

    It's remotely possible, but highly improbable.
  18. chibiangi Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jun 16, 2002
    star 4
    I thought it looked like a soft leather.
    mmmm

    Now that would be much more fun than neoprene !
  19. Neimhaille Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    May 12, 2002
    star 3
    Yeah, some of the promo shots do look like leather or faux leather, but when you see the photos people have supplied seeing the actual costume you can see its a laminated fabric onto som heavy base. I don't know enough about the grades of neoprene to add to the argument over whether it is or not, having only worn (or rather wreslted to get into) a wet suit a few times and had a wrist brace made of it. In both cases they were much heavier and the fabric outer was quite different to what see see on Zam.

    Hope you do head on over to the board, a *lot* of info available:)
  20. litllejedi Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Sep 29, 2001
    star 1
    Ok, so either way we are sure that it is a thick material and it is laminated. I am concerned about the idea of lamination though as far as building a costume. I have seen many laminated fabrics that do not hold up and the lamination soon begins seperating at pivot points. Is it possible to get the lycra dyed rather than laminated? It may loose authenticity but would hold up better for the long run.
  21. skip1 Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Mar 13, 2002
    star 3
    just for fun head over to starwars.com and on the right youll see a link to kids at the imax.the first pic is my daughter "jessica" in her zam costume i made her.any zam fans should check it out.it took a while and turned out great.she's with bamatrooper's daughter "emily" in her jango costume complete with jetpack.

    skip
  22. Neimhaille Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    May 12, 2002
    star 3
    I think you may be thinking of a different lamination process. It's simply that the lycra is sealed to the.. whatever underneath. Foamy stuff;)

    Dying it wouldn't do much in that regard... but yeah, aparently getting the lycra sealed to the backing is rather expensive to be done properly.

    Wouldn't it be wonderful if someone actually got to see the inside of this costume? Or at least see an inner egde so we can see just what is actually backing the outer fabric.

    Someone mentioned it looking like some foam backed stuff used for car interiors. I think I can visualise this, and one of the photos does seem to show the outer fabric to be finely ribbed like the stuff I'm visualising. But then others look smooth like nylon lycra.
  23. Darth_Eagle Fanforce CR Singapore

    Chapter Rep
    Member Since:
    Jul 19, 2001
    star 4
    I'm very keen to just use Cotton Lycra but still waiting for the correct tone of Lavander to come in to the local Spotlight store.

    Hmm, is Cotton Lycra (with UV protection or something in/on it) from Australia dyeable? I just need to get their Lavander more purple as the current one is a bit bluish. :(
  24. Neimhaille Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    May 12, 2002
    star 3
    Cotton lycra is extremely dyable, so is wet look nylon lycra for that matter.

    Anyway, I'm not sure what the UV protection would do... You can always test it first, it probably won't prevent the dye taking, but it might cause it to be blotchy.

    BTW, further discussion on the dented helmet boards has revealed the suit is actually two parts, so you might find you have a little extra fabric to play with in terms of dying than if you were going to make a full unitard. The top is very short, about 1" below the armpit and no more. The pants a bit like hipsters.
  25. Darth_Eagle Fanforce CR Singapore

    Chapter Rep
    Member Since:
    Jul 19, 2001
    star 4
    I know. ;) I'm still myself there, right? :D

    Just have to make it as a full 1-piece one cause it's unlikely me who'll be sewing it; unless I get a profession costumer to do the body suit. ( Ouch! My wallet! @_@ ).

    Okay, I'll try out to dye a bit of it with Dylon dye. Thanks!
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