Making of #2: Sun for Prince Philip Costume on Once Upon A Time

Posted by:Azrael on Oct - 5 - 2012 - Filed under: Custom Work,Making Of Series,Work for film -
Prince Phillip Julian Morris in Costume

Prince Phillip, played by Julian Morris, in ABC’s Once Upon A Time

A phone call came in earlier in the year, about making leather components for costumes. I went to meet with the costuming department. Arriving at the studio in Vancouver, BC I realized this was not for a theatre production, but for ABC’s Once Upon A Time. I met with Eduardo Castro, the lead designer for Once Upon A Time Costumes, and his wonderful team. I walked away with a piece of armor and a project to complete – in five days! The piece was for a new character, Prince Phillip, who was to be played by Julian Morris. After stopping to pick up the leather for the project I rushed home and began sketching. The concept was simple – a sun. They gave me a few varied images for inspiration and told me to run with it. I love the freedom to create!

Here is a little photo journey into the process of making this piece:

Costume Design Option

1. A few designs were sketched out until I found one that worked with the contours of the armor. They wanted something romantic and powerful for Prince Phillip. The design was then cut out and stuck to the armor and photos sent off for approval.


Sun Tracing

2. Once the design was approved the leather was prepared for tooling and the design traced on.


Lines Cut into Leather

3. The outlines of the design are then carefully cut into the leather with a special knife. The Swivel Knife has a pivot to allow curved and continuous cuts. Any mistakes cannot be undone, so it’s really important to get it right – especially with such a tight deadline, I wouldn’t have enough time to start again! In this image some of the beveling has been started too.


Sun Partially Tooled Leather

4. The outlines of the design are beveled using small tools and a maul (hammer) to bring the design into relief. Other tools, including modeling/sculpting spoons are used to add definition, texture and detail. This takes a long time, and lots & lots of hammering!


Knife cut detail into Leather

5. Knife cuts are made to add final details.


Sun Costume Piece Tooled Leather

6. The piece is then cut out with the swivel knife and scalpels. Finally, finished!


Leather Tooled Sun Close Up

6a. The finished piece!


Prince Phillip Costume Sun

7. The piece is adhered to the armor and couriered off to be painted and prepared for filming two days later… Meanwhile, I step straight back into the studio to repeat the entire process. A duplicate is required so there is an identical back up/costume for the stunt double.

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