mini luke and tauntaun

Intrepid papa and maker Paco Allen spent three months crafting this awesome Hoth Luke costume, complete with homemade Tauntaun, for his four-year-old daughter. All the parts were either entirely made from scratch or customized.

We asked him to share some details of his build. Here’s what he offered:

Luke Costume:
They don’t sell many costumes from The Empire Strikes Back, which is weird since it’s so popular. So none of the main heroes have off-the-shelf costumes. This was all hand-made or customized from off-the-shelf stuff.
•Simple gray pants
•Tan vest (that I dyed to be a bit darker)
•Light tan military style hat
•Kids’ ski goggles (painted white)
•For the belt I used an old leather belt I had and then added the pockets and holster. The pockets are styrofoam cut into squares and then covered in faux leather. The holster is made out of cereal box cardboard covering in the same material. The belt buckle is some random piece of plastic that I cut into that shape and painted silver.
•The rank and insignia badges on the vest are all made from pieces of plastic that I fashioned and painted.
•The boots are a pair of old kids’ boots that I covered in felt and sewed elastic straps to.
•The macrobinoculars are made from a plastic backpacking flask with random plastic bits glued on.
•Blaster is a plastic Han Solo blaster that I repainted. They don’t sell Luke blasters and I didn’t think to customize a cheap airsoft gun like all the cosplayers do until I had this one complete.
•Lightsaber is storebought. And Darth Vader’s not Luke’s. I know, messed that one up.

mini luke

Tauntaun:
This is what really got my daughter into this costume. She really wanted a tauntaun and they have these terrible inflatable ones you can buy that will surely pop the first time you trip in it. I told her I’d try to make one and this is what I came up with.
•The main structure of the body, neck and tail are made from cardboard tubes that you use to pour concrete pillars.
•The head is made from newspaper and tape to get the basic shape. Then I cut up a rubber sheep mask and glued it on in pieces to make the snout shorter, the face wider and the eye lids look more like a tauntaun. They eyes are cheap plastic eyes I bought online. Then I airbrushed the colors on.
•The whole thing is covered in shaggy faux wolf fur. It’s way thicker than I imagined and ended up making him bulkier than I expected.
•The saddle is made from the same faux leather that I made the Luke belt from.
•The faux legs are just pants stuffed with cotton. The boots are made from cardboard and covered in felt.
•The legs are jointed at the hip so the swivel when the “rider” walks.

tauntaun e1383266827458 Mini Hoth Luke and Tauntaun

And of course Paco fashioned a Hoth Han costume for himself:
hoth han

Here are a selection of Paco’s process shots. Check out his Flickr set for more.

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Goli Mohammadi

I’m a word nerd who loves to geek out on how emerging technology affects the lexicon. When not fawning over perfect word choices, I can be found on the nearest mountain, looking for untouched powder fields and ideal alpine lakes.

I was an editor for the first 40 volumes of MAKE. The maker movement provides me with endless inspiration, and I love shining light on the incredible makers in our community. Covering art is my passion — after all, art is the first thing most of us ever made.

Contact me at snowgoli (at) gmail (dot) com.


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