Friday, October 26, 2012

Asylum Hood - progress

Another recent creation for Karen's Black Cherries project: the Asylum hood. It's a departure from the kind of design I normally do, which tends to be fetish oriented and clean-lined. This is more about getting an institutional look, like something you might find in an insane asylum of your nightmares (or dreams, I suppose...).  
The design sketch called out the most unique feature of this hood: a chin piece that comes down the neck and attaches at the sides with ball-post connectors. It's the first project where I've used these connectors, and they worked out really well. 

The shape of the pieces changed from the sketch a bit, as I tried to let the leather tell me what it wanted to do. Rather than having a gap between the neck piece and the hood for example, it made sense to tuck in behind the rear neck instead.
Normally there is a centerline in the front panel of this hood, but I knew I wanted there to be a strap holding the blindfold in place - so I made that front half of the hood all in one piece. This allowed me to put that ball-post right in the middle. 
 These pieces were all modeled using veg-tan leather and the wet-casting technique. It gives you the ability to shape and mold the leather, and when it dries it becomes rigid and keeps the shape very well.
 I was particularly happy to get the whole neck and chin contour all in one piece. It was a complex shape, but I managed to get the leather to conform pretty closely on the first try - woo-hoo!
 After doing test fits, and getting all the ball posts set and holes punched, we are ready to dye the leather.

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