Daedric Armor – How It’s Made

Daedric Armor Cosplay
Photo By The Seamstress Life
Hello and welcome to my guide on how I made my daedric armor costume! This project was born as I obsessively played Skyrim for weeks, and thought about how I’d like to expand my cosplay skills. I decided that I really liked the look and the challenge of the daedric armor, and off I went!

 

Character: Dragonborn / Daedric armor

From:Skyrim

Finished in: Spring 2014

Cost: Approx. $800

Time: Approx 250-300h

Daedric Armor WIP
A pile of pieces in progress

Was it worth it? Totally.

This was my first time working with worbla, and I definitely made some mistakes, so I’m posting this so YOU can learn from my mistakes too! I learned a lot about armor making through this costume and my work definitely changed from the first piece to the last. When I began, I armed myself with some online tutorials and did some small samples, and off I went!

Helmet

Daedric Armor WIP - Helmet
The base helmet
Daedric Armor WIP - Helmet
Base helmet + details
Daedric Armor WIP - helmet
First attempt at priming with spray paint
Daedric Armor WIP - helmet
Painted black and puff paint
Daedric Armor WIP - helmet
Final paint job

The first thing I decided to start with was the helmet, because it looked the coolest.
It was initially shaped over a volleyball, and the rest of the horns and details were built up from there with foam and worbla. Once the basic shapes were there, I added additional details in the form of rivets and additional panels of foam and worbla. The horns were made by making a cone out of worbla and then shaping it. No additional materials were used in the shaping of the horns to make them look as natural and imperfect as possible. Once the base was done, I mistakenly jumped right into painting. My first attempt was using a spray primer and paint in one. This paint ended up wrinkling up horribly and needed to be sanded off. My second attempt, I followed Kamui Cosplay’s advice and used wood glue.

I was unaware that the wood glue used in germany is vastly different from the wood glue in Canada, and rapidly the wood glue chipped off in giant flakes. Where I could, I removed the wood glue, and reprimed again with brush on gesso. The gesso seemed to stick, so I sanded it smooth and painted over it with a matte black coat of acrylic paint. On top of that, I used fabric puff paint to make the raised texture lines on the helmet. Finally, I used a mix of black and silver paints to achieve the various tones of silver. I used highlights and shading to accentuate the various sections to make them clearly visible on photos.

 

Shoulders

Daedric Armor WIP - shoulders
The basic shape
Daedric Armor WIP - shoulders
Building up
Daedric Armor WIP - shoulders
Adding spikes
Daedric Armor WIP - shoulders
Adding details

The shoulders began as flat pieces of foam that were curved and covered in worbla. I layered craft foam to create the various thicknesses to create ridges where panels meet. Once the base was done, I began to build up larger sections with craft foam, then covered those with worbla as well. I followed the same process with the spikes as I did the horns on the helmet – making a cone and shaping it by hand with no additional support.
I then continued to add additional details such as rivets and panels with melted scraps and craft foam.

Torso

Daedric Armor WIP - Torso
The base of the boob plate
Daedric Armor WIP - Torso
Plates for the core back area
Daedric Armor WIP - Torso
Core back area plates shaped
Daedric Armor WIP - Torso
Front core plates

The torso is like a puzzle piece. Every piece moves separately and had to be made and shaped separately. The top piece in this picture was made out of foam and covered in worbla, the boob cups underneath were made over a styrofoam ball and are two layers of worbla, and the base the boob cups are attached to is foam covered in worbla. The rest of the abdominal pieces were all made of foam first, and later covered in worbla. As I covered each piece in worbla, I shaped the soft worbla around my own body. When finished, all of the pieces fit together nicely. The torso pieces were separated into a front and back half with a velcro closure on the sides.This was for ease of wear as well as ease of storage.

Daedric Armor WIP - Torso
Abdominal plates in the process of painting

Daedric Armor WIP - Torso
My three shades of silver

Each piece was primed with gesso, lightly sanded, painted black with acrylic paint, painted with puff paint to create raised lines, and then with my mix of black and silver paints for color. The backs were later painted solid black. Here you can see the three shades of silver I used to paint the armor.

Daedric Armor WIP - Torso
The front half of the abdominal plates

Daedric Armor WIP - Torso
Front and back halves

Daedric Armor WIP - Torso
Trying the pieces together

Daedric Armor WIP - Torso
Test fit

The pieces were then assembled using elastics attached to the back. This made it so that they could each move independently and I had a lot of freedom of movement while wearing the suit.The front and back halves were separate, and attached at the sides with velcro and elastic. This made it so the suit was easy to put on and take off. I then tested to make sure that all the pieces were fitting together before I continued with the paint job. Some additional details were added to the chest piece at this point as well. Once I had it all painted and attached together, I tried it on myself to make sure that the fit was still correct with all the straps inside in place.

Boots

Daedric Armor WIP - Boots
The basic shape
Daedric Armor WIP - Boots
Adding more pieces
Daedric Armor WIP - Boots
A look at the back

Next, I started on the boots. The base was made out of layers of foam floor tiles. The back was separate and attached with velcro. All the raised details were also made of foam and covered with worbla. I added more pieces to complete the look. In total the boots had: One large main piece, the back plate, an ankle ring, a lace cover, and the base shoes that had the toe piece glued on.

Daedric Armor WIP - Boots
Black acrylic and puff paint
Daedric Armor WIP - Boots
The final paint job
Daedric Armor WIP - Boots
Uh-oh.
The boots were then primed with gesso, painted black, given the puff paint treatment, and finally painted with my black and silver mix paints. I had some “fun” trying to get the paint to stay on the shoes. From me walking around, the paint all chipped off and revealed the bright gold worbla underneath. This was solved by using thin coats of spray paint instead of my usual acrylic, as the coats were then too thin to chip off, and covering the lace covers with a clear plastic so the rubbing from the anklet didn’t wear away the paint.

Thigh Plates

Daedric Armor WIP - Thighs
Testing the LEDs
Daedric Armor WIP - Thighs
After gesso, testing LEDs
Daedric Armor WIP - Thighs
Final paint job
Daedric Armor WIP - Thighs
Harness system

I started playing around with lights at this point. I learned A LOT about how LEDs work on this build. Fun, but frustrating. I then moved to the thigh plates. They were made out of foam and covered with worbla, and here you see them primed with gesso. Once they were primed, I decided to test out the LEDs inside. The thigh plates were then painted using the same process – gesso primer, black base, puff paint, then my silver and black mix to give it the nice metal shine. The thigh plates tended to pull down a lot as I walked, so they were held up with a harness to stop them from slipping downward. When I needed to sit down, I just rotated the plates to the front side of my thighs.

Everything Else

Daedric Armor WIP - Lights
Testing the EL lights
Daedric Armor WIP - Arms
A hidden symbol? What could it mean!?

At this point, I had to start moving faster, so my pictures became more sparse. I will attempt to explain what they are as best I can. I finally got my EL lights in and tested them out. These were installed in the chest and abdominal areas. FOR THE HORRDDEEE!!! Ahem, I may have hidden a little easter egg in my armor. This picture is the forearm plate.

Daedric Armor WIP - Gloves
Glove plate
Daedric Armor WIP - Gloves
My claws
Daedric Armor WIP - Thighs
So spikehh

The glove armor had a very simple plate on the back of it. Here’s one in progress – I skipped the black base before puff paint because I was making this one very quickly. My glove was stolen on the first day I wore this costume, and I had to make a new glove ASAP after the con that day. I used vinyl for the claws on my gloves for ease of wear. The vinyl is nice because I can still grab onto objects normally – the claws just bend out of the way.

Daedric Armor WIP - Loincloth
The loincloth

Daedric Armor WIP - loincloth
Bias tape is the best.

Daedric Armor WIP - Loincloth
****.

Daedric Armor WIP - Shirt
My undershirt

My loincloth was made of many pieces of fabric layered and sewn together at the edge. I used nail polish to stop the fraying and used acrylic paint to accentuate the edges of each layer. The edge was finished with bias tape. The fabric I chose had some problems, as I stitched too close to the edge in places and it frayed. This was fixed by going around the whole thing with nail polish to stop the fraying, and then sewing over the nail polish. I then reinforced it from the back side with fabric glue. My undershirt was made a bit later. The upper part is a knit sports fabric that I painted to show the details under the armor plates. The abdominal area is entirely made of mesh to try and stay cool while wearing the armor.

All in all, this build was an amazing learning experience for me. I got to try out lots of new techniques, made tons of mistakes, and learned from every single one! I do not think I will use worbla again, as this costume was damaged during a photo shoot in direct sunlight. The heat managed to soften and warp my helmet and dagger. On a 25C day, in Canada! As a beginner material, this stuff is great – easy to use, easy to fix if you mess up. But it’s heat sensitivity can be an issue. I am still very happy with this project and still wear it around to this day.

Here, have some more photos of the finished product! More photos can be found on my facebook page, Dorothy Thicket Cosplay or at the gallery page for this costume.

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