One of the biggest projects we’ve taken on is this truly epic custom Dwarf beard and wig for our client to wear to ALEP in Shaker Village, KY. We wanted the wig and beard to be large and intricate and awesome, worthy of the famous Dwarves in the Hobbit and the Lord of the Rings.
Finished wig, beard and mustache on mannequin
How did we put this enormous and epic wig and beard together? We started with a giant pile of hair – hair for the wig and beard and long swathes of hair for the big braids. The wig is made from a variety of fibers, both synthetic and human hairs, in several red and brown shades.
Once the hair was sorted and blended, the wig and beard foundation were pieced on tracing and templates of the client’s head and face. The wig and beard were built just like any other custom pieces, albeit rather thicker to ensure good, sturdy braids. Some portions are built with strips of wefted hair, to get the length and volume, and the tops and hairlines are all hand-knotted in order to look natural and realistic.
Once the wig and beard were completely constructed, it was time to start weaving in the braids and making the whole project come together.
Here’s the finished, but unstyled, wig and beard. Though very dense, the wig and beard are surprisingly lightweight. We used a blend of permanently textured hairs in order to get the right amount of wave and body.
Hannah with the finished wig and beard, before styling.
We started with the beard – it was a multi-step process of dividing, sectioning and making braids. The mustache had to get braided, too. To make sure the pieces are as comfortable and easy to wear as possible, the mustache and beard are completely separate and the beard has an elastic strap (hidden by the wig) to help hold it on.
Then the wig – it had smaller braids on the crown, and a very large center braid in the back. The center back braid took three hands! We advise starting with more hair and more time than you expect you’ll need – the big braids “eat up” the hair quickly!
Once all of the pieces were styled, we got to try it on James, who was en route to ALEP, just an hour or so down the road.
Hannah adjusting James beard, just before adding the mustache and wig.
After James had the wig, beard and mustache on, we snapped a few quick photos.
The finished pieces during the fitting.
In both size and scope, this is one of the largest projects we’ve ever taken on. It was so much fun, with so many details to add in. This is not a recreation or copy of any of the pieces seen in The Hobbit or Lord of the Rings movies but it would be at home in the fictional realms of Middle Earth.
Commissioning a Cosplay Wig
Every wig or piece of facial hair we create is built from scratch and tailored to fit the wearer. When we build cosplay wigs ‘inspired by’ a character or source, we ask the client to pick an image they feel most closely shows how they want their piece to look. Some clients want their wig or facial hair to be a very accurate representation of that image, down to individual strands of hair and shape of the hairline. Others ask us to make changes so their piece suits their preferences or image of the character.
Need a custom wig for your next convention? Learn more about our custom cosplay wigs or request a quote!