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donderdag 4 mei 2017

Voodoo Bottle and holder

Last weekend, we went to Elf Fantasy Fair in Haarzuilens. I put on my Voodoo priest costume again, and made one more prop to go with it. I ended up not using it, for reasons I'll explain later. It was a quite simple prop, made from an empty barbecue sauce bottle.

  • Empty sauce bottle
  • Sodium bicarbonate
  • Apoxie clay
  • Craftskin (a type of synthetic leather)
  • Red felt
  • PVA glue
  • Hot glue gun
  • Painters tape
  • PVC foam sheet, 2 mm thick
  • 8mm neodymium disc magnets
  • Acrylic paint and varnish
  • Short piece of string
  • Printing label
  • Sewing machine
The bottle holder
The bottle holder is made from Craftskin. A while ago, I bought a sample box from Minque, a cosplay supply store in the Netherlands. It contained several types of foam, a piece of Worbla (wich I still haven't used), some other thermoplastics and a piece of this synthetic leather. I'm quite pleased with it, it doesn't feel plastic-like like some other types of faux leather. I glued some red felt to the back using PVA glue for lining the inside of the holder.

The pattern for the holder was drawn directly on the bottle with a sharpie, and then two strips of Craftskin were cut out. I borrowed my wife's sewing machine for running a few decorative stitches across the edges, and then glued the strips together with a hot glue gun.

Next up, there's a strap that runs over the bottle to keep it in place, and closes with a magnetic clasp. It also forms a loop on the back, for attaching it to a belt. I made a simple pattern for this using painters tape, and then cut it out of Craftskin. Like the other straps, I put on the decorative stitches and then glued in in place. The loop on the back got reinforced with a few stitches to make sure the glue wouldn't come loose. This had to be done by hand, because the material was too thick here for the sewing machine. It doesn't exactly look nice, but it's on the back side, so it's not really a big deal.


Next up, the magnetic clasp. I still had some 8mm neodymium disc magnets lying around, I thought these would be perfect for this. I drilled a hole in 2mm thick PVC foam plate, put a magnet in it and glued another piece of foam to the back. I cut this into a circle and painted it; I made two discs like this. Sorry, I forgot to take more pictures.

After painting, I glued one disc to the front of the bottle holder, and another one to the strap. The magnets aren't as strong as I hoped they would be - next time I'll use larger magnets - but it does the job.

The bottle
The bottle I used was an empty barbecue sauce bottle. Although I had thoroughly cleaned it, it still had a very strong barbecue-smell. I wanted to put something I could actually drink in it, so I wanted to get rid of the smell. A few teaspoons of sodium bicarbonate in warm water did the trick nicely.
The most important thing I did with the bottle was modifying the cap. Using Apoxie Clay, I sculpted an organic-looking stopper around the metal cap. It didn't have to look very smooth and accurate, I was going for the wax stopper look.

After the Apoxie had cured, I painted it, wrapped a piece of string around it and secured it in place with a drop of hot glue. Next up, the entire cap got a wash or brown paint, including the string, to make it look older and dirtier. And finally, a coat of varnish.
For the label, I simply googled "Voodoo bottle label", and quickly found something perfect. I printed it on a label with a laser printer and stuck it on the bottle.

So last Saturday, we drove to Haarzuilens, and on the parking lot, while I was putting on my costume, I found out the bottle holder was useless. I should have made the belt loop a lot higher, so the bottle would hang below my belt, not right on top of it. Anyway, it was too uncomfortable to wear, and it would be hidden beneath my coat anyway, so I left it in the car. Too bad, I had even filled it with apple juice so it would look like a bottle of booze. Lessen learned for next time!

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