I recently went to London MCM Comic-con. As my costume, I decided to go as Ripley, from the first Alien film. The costume itself wasn’t too complicated. I already had a grey boiler suit from when I was an X-Wing pilot when I went to the Starwars Secret Cinema last summer. I just had to attatch the relevent patches to the relevent places. The patches can be purchased on Ebay or Amazon for around a tenner. The complicated part was making a replica of the Nostromo flame thrower that she uses to fend of aliens! This is how I did it.
First, I took a plastic child’s sniper rifle. I laid it down on foam mat. I then drew around the gun. Around that, I drew the shape of the flamethrower I was trying to recreate. Once done I took apart the plastic gun, cut away any parts that did not fit within the new design, and reassembled it. I cut out the flamethrower shape from the foam twice (one for either side) and glued them in the correct place to each side of the plastic gun. Once this was done, I used offcuts to fill the gaps between the two foam shapes and then used some thin craft foam to seal off the edges and join the 2 sides all the way around. Finally, I added a bit of detail with some scrap wire and some foam shapes for buttons and vents. To make the back of the gun, I cut the lid and neck off of a Dr Pepper bottle, then glued it to the back. For the nozzle of the gun, I used the neck of the Dr Pepper bottle with the lid turned the other way around.
Once this initial assembly was done, I papermacheted it all. This was to make it more uniform, to smooth down all the rough edges and to make it easier to paint.
The next thing to do was spray paint it. I painted the gun and also 2 shampoo bottles. One in red, and one on grey, as gas bottles for the gun. In hindsight, I should have paper macheted the bottles too, because the paint did not stick well at all!
For the final touches, all that was required was some detailing. I used a dry brush to stipple black paint onto the gun then a sponge to mottle it a bit. I also mixed a paint close but not identical to the spray paint, and stippled that on as well to add a bit of an aged worn look to it.
I am pretty proud of my handy work! I think it turned out really well. I got quite a few compliments about it at Comic-con. I will definately not be as daunted next time I need to make a replica prop.