Worbla’s Kobracast Art is one of our newest products, and quite different than the rest of our lineup in some ways! Paper thin and incredibly sticky when activated, Kobracast works much like a thermoplastic interfacing: you can use it to fuse to and manipulate fabrics, creating seamless looks and permanent details. It also can be used for hatmaking, both as an alternative to buckram in some aspects or for creating sculpted details such as feathers or ruffles that stand on their own without wire. Kobracast can be sewn through with a standard machine, reshaped with heat whenever needed, and can be washed in cold water, making it excellent for costumes where more finicky materials would give trouble.
Below you can see some ways Kobracast has been used to create costume and accessory pieces.
You can also see videos of it in action and how it has been used in the above projects below!
Carmine Warren of ShootTheLook.com recently discovered Worbla and has created some fantastic pieces with it. We had the chance to reach out to Carmine and ask about his work, and he shared his thoughts on Worbla and the process that went behind creating some of his iconic looks with us!
Carmine Warren is a creative Photographer located in Orlando Florida and focuses on blending textures, color and custom designs to create Fashion Art. Blending different genres, styles and unique concepts allows Carmine to create one of a kind looks with a Fashion Flair.
This year Carmine was determined to take his unique photography and designs to a new level and he needed something different. A product that was easy to use and capable of making changes in the middle of a shoot. Searching for a product that is both easy to use and that can be incorporated into his designs proved challenging.
One night Carmine was introduced to Worbla, his excitement went through the roof. This product seemed easy to use, capable of things never seen before and you can get started quickly! The Dark Series was born, with a passion for Worbla and several full sheets purchased from CosplaySupplies.com and watching a few videos on Worbla.com, inspiration was endless.
Carmine Warren is excited to announce Worbla as his official thermoplastic. With so many to choose from, Worbla meets the demands of his designs and the ability to hold its shape when fitting a model with a piece.
“This piece incorporates Worbla into the Headpiece, The Horns and Base is made of Worbla. By using Worbla, this allowed me to go bigger and still be cautious of the weight of the headpiece.”
Dark Inspired Medusa
“This piece incorporates Worbla into the Headpiece, The Horns and Base is made of Worbla. By using Worbla, this allowed me to go bigger and build a frame for this headpiece and support to stay on the head. I couldn’t have made this without Worbla.”
Medusa Version 2
“In this version the headpiece is made of Worbla, the neckpiece and body piece is all Worbla. I wanted to create a more dominant version of this look and used pieces from other designs to blend and make a second version of this.”
Medusa Version 3
“The 3rd version of this image is without the headpiece and it takes on a very elegant formal look. This is what amazes me with Worbla, you can mix the looks for endless possibilities. With the versatility Worbla has provided. My Dark Series has exploded. If you are not using Worbla in your designs, start today. If you are a photographer that wants to be different, get Worbla!”
“This piece incorporates Worbla into the Headpiece, The Horns and Base is made of Worbla. By using Worbla, this allowed me to go bigger and still be cautious of the weight of the headpiece. This look was inspired by the Dark Wedding look and I wanted to changes the colors up and show designers and photographers. Once you understand Worbla and how to make a base. The ideas are endless!”
“This look pushed me into a new direction. I needed to mix it up some. After I shot my first version, It was just another headpiece. It needed more and below you will see 2 versions. Version 1- A headpiece made of Worbla Version 2- Headpiece was made with Worbla. Then I created a chest piece and then tried something new. I created molds of designs and rolled up Worbla and pushed it into the mold. Once it hardened I heated it slightly and began connecting pieces and shaping them to the Model.”
“This incorporates Worbla into the headpiece. I also attached Worbla the ends of the black and silver braided Fabric and molded then into the design. These braided pieces stay in place with the help of Velcro. Worbla helped make these braids stay on and come off very easily.”
“The helmet was my first Worbla design and I have a special fondness of it. I really didn’t have an idea of where it would go. I just started making some pieces and started sticking them together. The came the Body Armor next. This was a fun today and I had an idea of what I wanted to do and it all changed. Once you get the hang of Worbla, you experiment. That’s what I did with this piece and loved the outcome. The bracelets and neck piece are also made of Worbla.”
Miodrag Guberinic is a costume designer and artisan working out of NYC. His studio, Mio Design NYC, has done work for Madonna, Katy Perry, Shiseido and others, and was a winner of 3 separate awards in 2016’s World of Wearable Art competition. His work has been featured in window displays, music videos, and magazine spreads, and we have been ecstatic to learn he loves to use Worbla in his work!
We’ve collected a gallery of some of Mio’s work you can see below. And be sure to check out his website and instagram for more amazing, awe-inspiring images!
World of Wearable Art
Khepri: By Miodrag Guberinic & Alexa Cach, Winner of the Wellington International Award: Americas and Second in the David Jones Avant Garde Section
Eden: Cruise Show
‘Helia‘ headpiece Base created with Worbla’s Mesh Art, structure made out of brass and swarowski crystals with vintage brass components.
Sweden’s Elephant Ball
Mask created as part of the fashion project and fundraiser “The Perfect World Foundation” for the “Elephant ball” in Sweden. Last image credit to josespaillat
Nicole Taylor of Nicci Knacks: Sculpture, Costume Arts & Commissions is a talented sculptor who works with polymer clay, foam, wire and Worbla, Nicci Knacks has created some absolutely stunning works that are completely unique and amazing examples of the versatility of Worbla in mixed-media projects. Take a look at some of her stunning pieces below!
She often documents her pieces with both photos of the build and videos of the process:
Her Cephalopod hat build can be seen in steps below.
Have you seen Aleeusha‘s owl? Made from TranspArt, Friendly Plastic, silicone and 30 LED’s, we can’t believe how awesome her rendition of Dori’thur is, and of course her Tyrande Whisperwind’s Master Skin is equally brilliant!
Aleeusha used Worbla and foam for the rest of her armor build, which also lights up!
If you own a Ball Joint Doll, you know that making small props and costume accessories can be tricky – clay can shrink when baked, or be brittle when handled. Worbla lets you make both props and accessories easily, without worrying about the traditional limits of other materials – and the best part is? You can easily use up scraps from smaller projects for your doll!
Here at Worbla.com we are always finding new and amazing ways Worbla has been used to create beautiful and often breathtaking art. We’ve started to see Worbla incorporated into amazing corsetry, and have created a small gallery below. If you have used Worbla in your corset, bustier or stays, please let us know!
Royal Black is a couture label based in Vienna / Austria, which has specialized in finest handcrafted corsetry, evening wear and costumes. Their work has inspired many, with an artisan mix of luxurious fabrics, perfect fit, classic couture and tailoring techniques as well as new technologies like lasercutting, engraving or 3D printing turn each garment into a unique piece of wearable art.
Glorious Empire Collection:
The Crown Princess: Lasercut Worbla on the epaulettes and hip pieces.
The Empress: Lasercut Worbla on the shoulder pieces and collar.
The Admiral/Black Admiral: Worbla used in the Epaulets.
The Concubine: Worbla was sculpted into the Shoulder pieces, which are on strong magnets and detachable.
Enchanted Garden Collection:
Holly Gold and Silver Thistle Worbla leaves and Sunflowers.
Costumes & Characters:
Atlantis: The seahorses, starfish and the anchor are made from handpainted Worbla.
Charlotte Kelleher is a Wellington, NZ based Costume Artist, Prop builder and Armour Technician serving film, theatre and other creative industries with high-quality costumes and props. Her works are distinguished by their elegance and the finesse of execution, and she is a current finalist in the 2016 World of Wearable Art competition in the Weta Workshop Costume and Film section.
Charlotte used Worbla for this fantastic headpiece and corset, photographed by Matt Barnes.
The Workshop of Natacha Belova is a Belgium based puppeteer workshop and class taught by Natache Belova, who often uses Worbla to create haunting and beautiful puppets, sculptures, and installations. Take a look below to see some of her own pieces, and that of her amazing students.
Work in Collaboration with Bruno Dante:
For Brussels National Theater:
Laboratorio “Plan B” Santiago (Workshop)
You can see several of the above puppets in action in these videos below:
Both Worbla and Wonderflex are used in this workshop video:
Many of the puppets shown below are sculpted from foam, but a few shown later are Worbla:
One of Natacha Belova’s Art Installations made from Worbla:
Worbla’s product line is inspiring more and more amazing things in theater, film and stage. Check out Worbla in some awesome spaces! If you’ve used Worbla for your own production – small or large – let us know so we can feature you!
Arkham Rising Films used Worbla for their costuming in their version of Batman vs Superman – World’s Finest
Worbla’s found it’s way onto a few series! From CW’s Arrow to SyFy’s Face-Off and Cosplay Melee – even Grant Imahara from Mythbusters is a fan!
Working with Worbla from SyFy’s Cosplay Melee.
Worbla’s finding homes in many stage shows, from Off-Broadway Shrek and The Lion King to the amazing Spectacle of Madonna’s Rebel Heart Tour.
Erza Cosplay continues to astonish us with her amazing attention to detail, fantastic craftsmanship, and wonderful tutorials and willingness to help that we love to see within the community. As a result, this is a page to highlight and showcase her phenomenal work. If you haven’t done so, you should absolutely check her out!
Erza’s most recent project has been Sagittarius, a Greco-Roman armored piece with amazing detail.
This amazing Heavy Luminescence Armor from Guild Wars 2 used Worbla’s Finest Art, TranspArt and DecoArt. Photos by Katapon Photo, Harrasaki Photographie and NBM l Productions.
Eir Stegalkin from Guild Wars 2. Photos by Greencat
Hel, the Dragon of Life and Death, an original design by Erza Cosplay.
Videos and Tutorials
Erza Cosplay has also shared numerous videos showing multiple techniques with Worbla products for Cosplay and Costumes.
Fake Cleavage Planning a costume that requires Epic Cleavage? Need a way to build a top that you don’t break laws with – and won’t fall out of? Erza Cosplay created this video showing how she made her fake breasts with Worbla, foam, and spandex for her Nakagami Armor. Photo by Romana Gruber Photography
Fine Detail in Worbla Black Art Erza Cosplay shows how she uses thin sections of Worbla’s Black Art to create the iconic Greek ‘wave’ detail on her upcoming costume.
You can also see how she uses a ‘half relief’ method to create impressive detail for her upcoming Sagittarius design.
Or if you need to make Celtic Knotwork for your designs:
Horns This is a great video showing how to make lightweight, sturdy horns for your cosplay using Worbla Black Art and Aluminum Foil.
Dragons! Erza Cosplay shared how she makes Dragon heads without armature or base in this video series.
Laura Kane Designs used Worbla to create this amazing oyster shell jacket. She built up a form using plastic wrap and duct tape and shaped the Worbla over to create this fantastically organic shape, and her paint included sand and stone textures to further emphasize the organic nature.
This fantastic costume build was shared with us by The Art of Ryan Wells. He used EVA foam and Worbla to create this Starship Troopers arachnid that can be disassembled for easy storage and transport (plus, getting through doorways). Additional images by David Ngo.
AllieCat Art and Cosplay used Worbla’s Finest Art to create this fantastic costume of Lieutenant Allison Jakes with a working smoke machine and lights and an incredible paint job. Check out how she did the paint work here! With photos from Vancouver Cosplay
The lovely Sheena Duquette shared the following writeup on how she made her Pyrrha Nikos costume from RWBY.
Having always been drawn to the strong warrior-type women for prospective cosplays, I knew Pyrrha would be a perfect candidate as an intro to armor. There’s nothing I love more than embodying my favorite characters while also learning a refining new skills along the way.
Excluding the armor, this design was pretty simple overall. After receiving concept artwork from RWBY’s creator, Monty Oum, I set about detailing and patterning my costume.
Bustier-esque pattern on top, leg armor and bracer on bottom. I ended up just folding the armor patterns in half to get a more accurate trace.
Red soles. Monty please. I ended up sanding down the soles of some old heels I used to wear in high school before slathering red acrylic paint onto them. Being neat wasn’t too much of a concern since I would be gluing my covers on over top of any paint bleed. I then sealed it with clear Plastidip.
Most of the fabric cut out to corresponding fabric. I typicially eyeball ~1″ seam allowance.
Pinning, sewing, sealing. Multi-tasking!! I also copied my boot cuff pattern to some craft foam to give it some sturdiness.
Here’s the sash and the skort. I chose to have the sash wrap close with velcro, and the tail part to tuck inside rather than actually tying and knotting the fabric. As for the skirt, I decided to make shorts underneath to accommodate for the inevitable “panty-shot” poses I’d be pulling.
I love pouches. Not my favorite thing to make, but when I’m in costume, I need somewhere to put my belongings. I took some time to sew on some details before assembling them over craft foam patterns, much like the boot cuffs.
The cuffs just slip over the boots from above. I had some riding-up issues at one point, but nothing a little velcro on the inside couldn’t fix!
Tabs, spray paint, and progress. But I will say this: don’t use vinyl. Why did I use vinyl? It’s awful to wear. Don’t do it.
Now that all the sewing is out of the way, it’s on to armor. I was cheap and managed to craft everything (including the shield!) on one Jumbo Size Worbla Sheet. Rather than the full sandwich method, I folded the thermoplastic around the edges of my foam and called it good enough. Being my first try at both armor and Worbla, I made a lot of mistakes, but I also learned a lot.
Bit of progress on the knee area. You can see the flaps I mentioned.
Getting some pieces together. Hands down the hardest part was finding the right shape to heat things over.
Fun fact: I had to punch grommets through the bracer to allow for it to be laced up. So, I heated up the part I wanted to pierce first, and then stabbed it with a screwdriver first to make a start. I then reheated it and forced my way through with a grommet puncher.
Test fitting the jewels on the crown! The chains are folded under the lips of Worbla on the inner part. I strung fishing line through the chains to secure the beads.
Always use your heat gun against a heat-safe surface. You will melt upholstery and carpet so fast. Trying to stretch my materials, I reheated scraps of Worbla together before flattening them out in a pan and cutting new shapes. Success!
This was probably the hardest thing to pattern and I can barely turn my head in it. However, it does its job, so long as I don’t actually have to snipe anything..
V2 of the bustier
Remaking of the top piece. The material I originally chose was clearly not right in any sense for how I was wearing it, so I opted for something a little more.. practical. However, like before, I simply spray painted my fabric gold for sake of ease.
Koumori Cosplay, created this amazing Diablo 3 Reaper of Souls Crusader armor! The paint and details blew us away when we saw it – take a look at the build process below. Full costume photographed by EOSKnight.
Usually I like to do a write up after every cosplay I make. However, I feel like I don’t even know where to start for the Dragonslayer Ornstein cosplay I debuted at SDCC 2014. I was contemplating cosplaying Ornstein back in May when I beat Dark Souls after 100+ hours of gameplay, but knew it would be extremely challenging. However, after my trip to Paris and seeing the amazing armor pieces at Les Invalides (here’s an example), that pretty much sealed the deal. Ornstein was one tough cosplay and it pushed me in ways I never imagined. It wasn’t necessarily that it was impossible to build, but I think it was more the sheer scale of it that made it the most difficult cosplay I have built to date. Plus with only 6 weeks to build it and between travel, weddings, and work, I still can’t believe I pulled it off.
So, where do I begin? Made mostly out of Worbla, foam, and some Wonderflex, I used a combination of online photos or Worbla armor, Kamui Cosplay’s new armor making books, as well as lots or trial and error. As always, I started with lots of card stock and began making lots of templates (good thing for big Restoration Hardware catalogs!). I wanted to get the base shapes down before adding any details and here’s what I came up with for the main pieces – shoulders, arms, thighs, shins, and shoe covers (not shown). All of the pieces are made of basic craft foam sandwiched between two pieces of Worbla.
Here’s an example of all of the pieces needed just to make the thigh armor.
For the chest piece, this was mainly 2 big pieces (the 2 most center) and then two small pieces added to the left and right side of those (versus having 4 thick layers). For the back, I went with the “bra band” style and had it wrap around my back w/a slight opening so I could put it on.
As for the hip armor (what I like to call his “skirt”), I decided against the sandwich method and instead used Wonderflex for a couple of reasons. 1) I wanted the skirt to have movement, not be super thick and bulky 2) Wonderflex by itself is thicker than Worbla. If I had used Worbla, I would have had to double up on each piece versus just using one sheet of Wonderflex. I connected each of the skirt pieces using D-rings and used many scraps of Worbla to add details and trim.
One of the hip pieces
At this point, I was just about ready to add details to everything. Keep in mind that many times with video game characters, you don’t have great reference photos except from pixelated game art, concept art, or even fan art. But one great tip I took away from Kamui Cosplay’s books was just to remember that in the end, the costume is really for yourself. It’s your interpretation, your ideas, and you have the creative freedom to make it look how you it to look. So no matter how “accurate” I wanted to be in my mind, I had to remember that this was my costume and my interpretation. With that in mind, I had to take some creative freedom when it came to designing the details or Ornstein’s armor.
Adding details to the arm guards
Some details on the thigh armor
Trying the shoulder and chest armor on for the first time!
I knew the head piece was going to be challenging so I tackled it last. I decided early on that I was going to go the more comfortable route by making a head piece that would sit on top of my head rather than covering my entire face. I just couldn’t imagine being under a full helmet all day and on top of that wearing head to toe armor! To build the infamous lion face, my plan was to sculpt the face, cover it with Worbla, and then “peel” the cooled down Worbla from the clay. Easy, right? I started out by sculpting the face out of Monster Clay, which I sculpted directly on to a styrofoam head so that the proportions would be correct.
Then I stuck everything in the freezer for a while so that it was extra cold. After 20 minutes or so, I heated the sheet of Worbla and started molding it into the clay “face”. After everything cooled, I carefully pulled off the Worbla “face”, which was pretty much now a shell for the head piece.
With the shell complete, I started building around the face and adding the spiked details. Lastly, I added a band in the back since I wanted to have a red “plume” ponytail coming out the back.
About halfway done!
FINALLY, it was time to paint! Kamui Cosplay also happened to have a book on cosplay painting so I made sure to read that over, gather all my painting supplies, and just go for it. The base of the armor was all gold chrome paint mixed with some hammered gold paint from the hardware store. After that, I used basic acrylics wit brushes to hand paint the shadows and details. Actually the most handy tool I used was my fingers as I found it much faster to blend things that way!
Primed and painted gold!
What a difference shadows make!
L: base gold paint R: with details
L: base gold paint R: with details
The jewels were bought from a craft store and painted with nail polish!
As for Ornstein’s spear, that was a mix of PVC pipes, and leftover Worbla and Wonderflex. I had to get a little clever with shapes – either by covering foam pieces with Worbla or wrapping the PVC pipe in duct tape to add thickness in some parts. For the spear, I initially thought to carve expanding foam, but in the end glued a bunch of foam boards together, carved those out (each layer or red/yellow is a layer of foam board) and covered them with Worbla. For my first time carving foam, I am surprised everything turned out ok!
Carving layers of foam board into a spear and then covering with Worbla
Once that was all done, it was just a matter of adding all the details and then painting everything.
The last bit was adding a variety of D-rings and straps to make sure everything stayed on. Most of my straps were wide elastic bands attached to sew-on velcro. And to my surprise, after an entire Saturday of wearing this shoulder to shoulder around the floor, getting scratched, and bumped into, I was pleased to find that the armor was surprisingly comfortable and that nothing fell apart! Woo hoo!
Overall, I think the best thing about wearing this cosplay was getting stopped on the floor to talk to others about the Dark Souls game. For those who have played the game, it almost feels like you instantly bond because of the level of difficulty in the game. You both understand the emotional roller coaster that the game puts you through and having people really appreciate the costume because of who the character is was really rewarding to me.
And lastly, a huge thank you to my husband who pretty much lost me for a good month or so while I was heads down working on this costume. Thanks for your patience during all those late nights, keeping me calm during my panic moments, and making sure I got fed!
My wig is from Epic Cosplay. The body suit was originally white and purchased on Amazon. I mixed black and purple RIT Dye to give it that dark purple color.
Chestpiece: It’s made out of worbla. I used a dressform to help shape the armor. The thicker looking borders at the top are made out of EVA foam and covered with worbla. I used spray paint as my base and used a mixture of acrylic and metallic paint to get the shiny details.
Pauldrons: Again, EVA foam and Worbla were used for this piece, as well as craft foam, expanding foam and floral foam. The skull was made out of expanding foam, carved and covered with paper mache and then with worbla. The eyes were shaped with my little nephew’s baby maracas (lol). The horns were carved from floral foam and then it was covered with worbla.
Boots: I used one of my regular shoes as a pattern for the boots. After it had been traced, cut and heated with Worbla, I glued a matching piece of EVA foam on the insides so that it would give it its bulkiness. The boots were made a bit sloppily but at least I was able to cover the majority of my mistakes with belt straps, little knobs, etc.
Sword: I bought two PVC pipes and glued a rough cardboard pattern as the base of my weapon. I covered it with expanding foam and carved it to the shape I wanted (thanks to Kamui Cosplay’s tutorials!). I then covered with paper mache to make it stronger and to fill in the annoying craters, followed by Worbla to make it indestructible to uh…accidentally bumping into things with it.
Tiff shared with us her build of her Pixie costume from X-Men.
Design Pixie is by far the funnest character to plan since there are many depictions of her, especially on all the variations of wings, armor and pink hair you can find depending on the artist. For my take, I really wanted her armor to be bulky and over-exaggerated, because it would give it that “cartoony” appearance which I always love.
Construction I purchased a pair of “Black Sclera” theatrical contact lenses from FX Eyes. Originally, I had made my own wings but was not happy about the quality of it so I decided to give my business to Fancy Fairy. They did an impeccable job on my wings. The wig is from Arda in Rose Pink.
I’m extremely terrible at sewing. I decided to buy a black catsuit and make my own yellow pattern. I sewed the yellow pattern on to the catsuit and then, uh, bad things happen (hint: not symmetrical).
Bracers: I used two layers of EVA foam because I wanted the bracers to look really chunky and cartoon-ish, and then I covered it with a layer of Worbla.
As expected, they ended up being very loose on my skinny little arms so I wrapped them with suran wrap very tightly for about a week. To my surprise, it actually worked and fit my arms perfectly.
For the little “knobs” on the side of the bracers, I used the bottom part of a disposable cup and cut out the top part. Filled the bottom part with resin because the cup was really weak and flimsy after cutting it, and then I used Worbla to form the shape.
Boots: This was definitely a learning experience for me because I never made boot covers before. I basically drew a pattern out of my doc marten boots and cut the pattern in half. Luckily, these boot covers were able to fit perfectly right over of my sneakers, despite the fact that the pattern was based off the doc martens. I used Wonderflex.
Legs: I used a cheap push light to make the shape of the knee “pads”. These are made out of Worbla. The rest of the armor for the legs was just eyeing everything.
Thanks again to Tiff for sharing her build with us!