I’ve honestly had Kamui Cosplay’s Book of Cosplay Armor Making for some time now and never took a look at it as I’ve never really made anything needing extensive armor. However, after going through my files and recently finding it again, I decided to get off my butt and actually take a look at it.
The book itself covers the absolute basics to thermoplastics and using them for cosplay armor. The title is slightly deceiving in that aspect, but it’s actually a decent read. There’s some obvious editing issues, but with the various translations done, it’s understandable mistakes.
The introduction is quick and very up front and honest about everything involved in armor-crafting, including cost and time. It doesn’t exaggerate, but gets straight to the point.
The breakdown on thermoplastics is also an easy read, with the primary focus being on Worbla. Kamui Cosplay does compare Worbla to Wonderflex and explains the pros and cons of each and how to best use each for what you’d need by explaining durability, flexibility, and other comparisons. She also lists different places to buy various thermoplastics from and gives a decent idea of cost and how much is needed for projects.
There’s also a listing of tools needed for working with thermoplastics. Each item is broken down to its basic uses and she also goes over the dangers of working with the various tools, which is kinda important! 😀
Kamui Cosplay then goes over the various ways to pattern your armor and lists her ways of doing it, even giving very clear instructions on her process. She links to previous tutorials throughout the book that she’s done on YouTube to allow you to actually see how she builds what she’s writing about. Happily, she doesn’t overdo it with the linking either!
From there, she gets into actually working with Worbla and using foam to create the “sandwiching” seen in most patterning of armor. She explains the process and how to best use the materials to avoid waste. She also explains how to remove bubbling from Worbla, which is caused by too much heat, which is exceptionally helpful with expected blunders.
Kamui Cosplay also goes over the importance of labeling your pieces and keeping everything in order as it can save headaches later on. She also goes into making matching pieces together and avoiding long breaks, which I can attest to as a cosplayer in general being a good idea for projects.
The book then goes into detail working and shows a lot of decent images and explanations, including discussion of keeping Worbla scraps for the smaller pieces later on. Pages 22 to 33 are all images of examples of her work with explanations on how things were made and it does feel a little excessive with personal images, but not enough to make me not want to continue the book.
Kamui Cosplay then gets into armor attachment and her method of doing it involving Wonderflex, D rings, and Worbla. It’s sound and easy to do with good images and explanations, along with how she figured out why her method was a good one. On top of all of that, she also makes it clear on the importance of testing the attachments before attending a convention.
Finally, she covers transportation of armor. She explains on how sometimes it’s best to plan your build on how you also plan to transport it, which makes complete sense with all the pieces, size, and everything else that honestly goes into armor making.
Overall, the book is an easy read and just covers the basics on armor-making with thermoplastics. As long as you go in expecting nothing else, as those are in other books Kamui Cosplay has published, then you’re set. I think it’s a good starting point for beginners, just so the basics can be taught and allow you to decide what all you’d want to do on your own project from there. If you want to read this book or others by Kamui Cosplay, you can check them out here.