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The making of a Wizard (or is that "wizzard"?)

 
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I've made a magical horse and a Nordic knight. This seems like a good fantasy tale or Role Playing Game (RPG), but what RPG is complete without a wizard? Today we begin to remedy this with the creation of a Rincewind "wizzard"

Wizards are made from top to bottom. First we take some nice fluffy wool and needle-felt it into a head.

The beginning of a head. I like needle felted heads, because I can sew and/or needle-felt hair onto it easily!


Head is completed! I've found it's a lot easier--and more durable--to wrap the body with yarn or embroidery floss. But none of those ever match the head perfectly. Can't have that! So I spin the fluffy roving into thin single-ply yarn.

Matching skin color makes everything nicer!


Then I take that and start wrapping the arms. One arm looks much longer than the other, but that's because it'll eventually be folded over and down to form the torso.

I wrap the yarn around and around until I get to the hand. I make sure to wrap very well here, I wrap all the way down one side of the hand

Starting wrapping the arm
Wrap to the end of the folded hand


And then I wrap back again, so the hand is double-wrapped. Then I wrap the wrist well and keep wrapping along the arm up to the neck.

Double-wrapping the hand for extra durability
wrapping the wrist and then back up the arm


Now its time to wrap the other arm. This is always a little complicated, because the arm is also the torso, but it always works out.

wrapping the other arm
Wrap the wrist, and then back up the arm


Now we wrap the torso, leaving a little loop at the bottom.

How the long arm turns into a torso
Legs are threaded through the torso loop


Into the bottom, I thread the legs. I then notice that the torso on this wizard is a bit long. For now, we fold up the torso a bit to get him to scale. Will fill out the rest of his torso to match later.

I wrap down the leg, around the foot well, and then wrap the foot together. I've found that you can't wrap all the way to the toes, because it'll pop off.

One leg wrapped


Back up the leg and down the other...and we've run out of yarn and it's dinner time!

Beginning layer of wool.


Time to stop now. I'm not sure if I should not worry about filling out the legs with skin color, if I should just wrap pants color wool along it instead. It comes down to a question of: Should I sew little pants and shirt, or just wrap the shirt with shirt-colored yarn, and the pants be wrapped with pant-colored yarn?

I'm going to be sewing a red robe, but I don't know if I should try sewing shirt &/or pants, or if that would end up being too bulky on this little guy?
 
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Avoiding bulky clothing would help to showcase the gangly scrawniness which is a central feature of Rincewind's appearance, although his oversized shoes might be able to de-emphasize the pants.
 
Nicole Alderman
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Dc Stewart wrote:Avoiding bulky clothing would help to showcase the gangly scrawniness which is a central feature of Rincewind's appearance, although his oversized shoes might be able to de-emphasize the pants.



Thank you! I was kind of thinking the same thing. If I sewed a shirt and pants, then by the time I put a robe on him, he'd look too thick. Wrapping him with embroidery floss (probably for the shirt, to be more of a linen texture), and thin wool yarn (pants) will give him a much thinner appearance, and make the robe fit better, too.

Now the question is, what color would his shirt and pants be?

For shoes, should I make them long, pointy shoes in a similar red to the robe?
 
Dc Stewart
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In most of the illustrations, his shirt and pants are either faded tan or gray. When he's not barefoot or wearing clogs, his shoes are brown or black with upturned toes.
Rincewind.jpg
[Thumbnail for Rincewind.jpg]
 
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In the movie,  he  has dirty white shirt and brown trousers.

In the books,  they mention that wizards wear dresses.
 
Nicole Alderman
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r ranson wrote:In the movie,  he  has dirty white shirt and brown trousers.

In the books,  they mention that wizards wear dresses.



I guess the question is: how would you like him depicted? Instead of making his robe like a long coat, I could make it a long tunic, more like this:



Or I could do both, kind of like this:



Though that might add bulk. But I'm game to do whatever you'd like! How do you envision Rincewind, or want him envisioned? I could also wait to add clothes until you've figured out what you're wearing for your cosplay, and then just duplicate that to have him be a mini-you!
 
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For my guy, I like the brown/dark trousers and a lighter shirt look with the red robe over top.  But do what works.  I'm going to be happy with whatever you make.  
 
Nicole Alderman
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Light shirt and brown trousers it is! I tend to second (and third, and fourth) guess myself on projects, so it's nice having a some votes for one way or another so I only hem and haw a little!
 
Nicole Alderman
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The red wool felt finally arrived! It's time to play with colors!

I like colors to be harmonious. Some browns just don't go with some reds, same with whites and off-whites. So, we lay the colors out on the felt and see what looks.

Which is the best shirt color for Rincewind? Cream, light brown, taupe, or grey?


This dark chocolate looks great, so that's easy! The problem is, Rincewind is very pale. I have a bright white, but it seems too bright and "cold" of a color to go with the warm reds and browns. The off-whites are are mostly way too close to his skin color. This cream is almost light enough for contrast. But maybe grew would be better? The only way to find out, is to try it out!

Let's start with what we do know--the pants color. Let's put his pants on, and see what shirts look like with it!

Wrapping the brown down his leg


wrapping it back down again


I always like to do at least two layers of thread/yarn, for two reasons. (1) It makes for a thicker, more durable appendage, protecting the wire inside from kinking and breaking --this is also part of the reason why I double the pipe cleaner wire. (2) I hate when the under-color shows through! If I double the yarn, it makes it less likely that there will be gaps.

The hardest part of the pants is always the butt. Wrapping around the butt and hips is hard, because the yarn/thread always likes to sit at the edge, and not fill in the middle. To combat this, I ended up weaving the yarn back and forth and up and down, kind of like how you mend a sock. This seemed to fill things in nicely and securely. No one likes having a hole in the crotch of their pants!

Weaving the butt 'fabric'


Now I'm going to just quickly wrap--but not weave or sew--the grey on. This way, I can easily unwrap it and try on a different shirt color.

The dingy grey shirt--how's it look? I also spotted this 'antique gold' silk embroidery floss sold by the same store as the felt, and thought it might be perfect for his gold embroidery!


After wrapping the grey "shirt", I realized I should probably make his hair and beard, because we don't want the grey/brown of his beard to clash with his shirt and look weird. So, my next step will be to pick hair and beard color! I'm thinking kind of a salt and chocolate hair, with grey and brown mingled together. His age in the books seems to be kind of vague, I'm 38, and my hair is a mix of grey and brown (thanks to everyone on my mom's side greying at 18), so I think a grey+brown hair can cover anything from 35 to 80, and seems like a good way to go. (My grandma has just a bit more grey than me, and she's 92, but she greyed really late, and only had a few grey hairs in her 60s...)
 
Nicole Alderman
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I looked through my wool stash and found this nice natural grey, as well as some llama wool that was given to me by another local homesteader.

I'm not sure if I want to sew on his hair/beard, or felt them, or a mix of both. When I made the Paul Wheaton figure, I spun some of the wool, wrapped it around a pipecleaner, and then steamed it over a pot of boiling water and then shocked it with cold water and let it dry. This gave me nice curly yarn for sewing curly beards with (this is also how I make curly fairy hair, too).

Picking out the hair wool and putting it next to the shirt wool, shows that they are very different greys, and the difference  makes the shirt look green. This is not a good fit! I almost wonder if red might be better than trying to go for off-white?
20230506_184055.jpg
Ooooh, those greys are very different greys! Not a good look!
Ooooh, those greys are very different greys! Not a good look!
20230506_184832.jpg
The spun 'hair'--I didn't know I could spin quite that fine! Maybe I should have added some white, though?
The spun 'hair'--I didn't know I could spin quite that fine! Maybe I should have added some white, though?
 
Nicole Alderman
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Progress picture time!

I wrapped the grey/brown yarn I'd spun around a pipecleaner and then steamed it (then dunked it in cold water, then steamed it)

Wizzard curlers--gotta set those beard curls somehow!


Then we unwind the yarn off the pipecleaner so we can attach them to his face!

unwinding all the curly beard yarn
All unwound!


Then I sewed/needle felted on the beard yarn. There was too much, so I put the extra on his head.

yarn hair applied!


It seemed like too much curls and not enough scraggly. So I needle felted on some raw wool on top of his head hair. That's better!

Now he has scraggly head hair!


Everyone always says you should make a mock up before cutting out your nice fabric. I a lot of burgundy felt that Judith sent me years ago. Perfect for mock-ups! For fun, I sloppily embroidered the hat fabric before sewing it together.

The mock-up hat. It's crazy sunny/hot outside, so details are hard to see.


The mock-up fits!


 
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Wow.  He looks so good!
 
Nicole Alderman
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Yay!!! I'm glad you like him!

I started on the mock-up of his robe, and I'm glad I did! It turned out (A) a bit too short, and (B) shaped funny!

I thought I could short-cut by just making the silhouette of a flowing robe and sewing it together. Not a good idea!  

Don't do this! Seams at the side are a bad idea! Even with a back panel, it'll still look funky!


doesn't drape right
pretty sure it shouldn't do that


Instead of making another mock-up, I realized I could just cut the side seams, trim them straight, and then add in panels.

Trimming and panel making!


This worked out a lot better! I think the final one will need a bit of ironing to lay flat, but since the final version will be wool, I'm not too worried about that. I think I can move on to the final versions now!

Much better! And there's shade on my bench for better pictures. Blessed shade! It's too hot outside!
 
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WOW!! Nicole,  his hair and beard are STUNNING!! How did you find such tiny curls as locks, for that??? I am so curious what breed of sheep that is!
 
Nicole Alderman
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Carla Burke wrote:WOW!! Nicole,  his hair and beard are STUNNING!! How did you find such tiny curls as locks, for that??? I am so curious what breed of sheep that is!



I spun it and then wrapped it around a pipecleaner and then steamed it! It's a mix of--I think?--raw romney wool and llama.

Here's the spinning

Spinning it


And then the wrapping

I started doing this with embroidery floss to get curls for my fairies, years ago. Wool sets so much better, though, so I've taken to spinning the wool finely and using that


Then I just unwrap it from the pipecleaner and it's tiny little curls!

unwrapping it (sorry for the blurry image--I took it at night when everyone else was asleep and the lighting is bad!)


 
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