My daughter has always wanted to cosplay as Empire Strikes Back Leia and I have always loved the tauntaun, I recently saw Clint Case (another father who makes outfits for his kid) build a tauntaun and that inspired me to build our Leia themed tauntaun. He comes with a baby wampa riding along and a porg stow away

The main shape of the tauntaun is held together by a wire frame that is welded together. The hide began a s a plain white fur fabric. To get the pattern for thIs fur I used a method I saw Kamui Cosplay use when she builds her body armor. I duct taped the wire frame and with a sharpie divided it into sections that I knew I could sew. I later hand painted with a fan shaped brush the entire hide. I have to stress that hand painting it gave it that natural look. The head and paws where sculpted using paper mache and since the front was top heavy, I had to counter balance the tail by hot gluing a water bottle to it and adding water until it was balanced. I painted the head busing a reference photo from the film. The saddle is made from leather and the sheep lining I used is from a jacket I bought at goodwill. The stirrups are eva foam. Her feet are also EVA foam and I glued her shoes to a footprint of a tauntaun and covered them in fur and added some EVA foam claws. My daughter made the teeth all on her own out of polymer clay. 

We couldn’t have asked for a better response at the Con. Attendees at them expect to see different outfits and I think we gave them what they wanted. Every where she went people smiled, laughed and pointed to others to checkout the tauntaun. People of all ages asked to take their photo with her. Once she stopped to take a photo with one person a line would always form for more photos. 

Well this is the first outfit like this we have ever done. The tauntaun has a wide reach and his tail curves inward and up so it is a bit awkward to to maneuver around in. Especially when you are a kid and see something exciting you turn quickly and forget to make sure no one is around. So people were getting hooked all day by her tail and one person was even goosed but when they see what got em they couldn’t help but smile. 

I don’t think I would have ever gotten into cosplay had it not been for my daughter. We always do stuff together and this was just was just something else we could do. It really is a family effort when we attend a con, I focus on the outfit and making it easy to remove when she needs a break. Most of her cosplay involves a suit, she has been Rocket twice, Darth Vader and even Gorn, so we monitor how much time she stays in them. My wife takes care of the logistics side of our con trips by keep us hydrated fixing hair and any other thing to keep the trip enjoyable. I think it has brought us together as a family and working as a team always yields great benefits.

Cosplaying is a great way to spend time with your kids, it teaches them teamwork, math, problem solving and how to interact with others. I would rather do this than be a pageant parent. 


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