As our son grew into a tiny toddler, I took one glance at him and knew he was destined to become a profreshional squid kid. Here are a few pics of the creation of his Splatoon cosplay I created in 2020 including what I used for materials and the final result. I was inspired by this Splatoon cosplay by TheNinjasWife I stumbled upon which is one of my all-time favorites to this day.
Here's my inkling boy for reference!
Let me start off by saying that my son was 2.5 years old at the time of wearing this cosplay and I didn't anticipate having a problem with him wearing a wig because he wore one before at age 1 for his Child's Play costume. However, he did not want this wig on his head whatsoever. I used an altered technique mentioned in the link above by ThenNinjasWife for adding the squid backing on the wig. It didn't really show up in my photos of my son wearing it but this is how it turned out:
For the actual wig, I used my favorite color from the game which was the aqua color. I ended up finding this inexpensive wig on Amazon that I thought would work. The color was great and it was extremely cheap! I actually think the price went down a bit since I bought it last year.
I was also having a hard time styling it due to not having a wig stand so I used a paper towel stand which was a horrible idea. I also had to improvise because he did not want this wig touching his scalp at all so I used one of his hats to secure the wig pieces in. The hat I used was a simple Mickey Mouse hat with fluorescent accents that we already owned found here. I also didn't want to destroy the hat so once I styled the individual pieces, I then simply attached them with a safety pin. I also used black thread and a needle to make sure it was secure and wouldn't just fall off when he moved like a wiggly worm.
The glasses we also already owned and were purchased from Children's Place, found here. Unfortunately, they're out of stock but I'm still linking it anyway for reference. The glasses really brought everything together!
I normally attempt to sew or make my own cosplay creations but my character looks a certain way in a very distinct outfit I didn't change for almost a year so I wanted to keep it that way for the cosplay. It took me an undisclosed amount of hours searching for a size 3T aqua/teal windbreaker for a boy that didn't cost an arm and a leg. I ended up finding a toddler girls jacket that worked for $15 on a store I have never used before called Kidizen. It worked out perfectly. To not destroy the jacket so that I could potentially donate it later, I painted a piece of green foam a similar color to the jacket, added the Splatoon wording on it and secured it to the jacket by placing a piece of tape down and then using a bit of hot glue to adhere it to the tape. Once I was done with it, I just removed the tape and no damage was done to the jacket.
Fun fact: windbreakers for toddlers are expensive.
The shoes were not my best work but it was extremely difficult to find my sons size in these type of shoes with a brown sole. Everything I wanted was sold out and I wanted the brown sole. I found a good style at Old Navy online in his size and ended up painting the entire shoe but loved the camo shoes so much, I bought two so he still has an unaltered pair. I had to do a lot of clean-up work on the soles. He wore them so much most of the paint is coming off by now because I didn't seal them in anyway. I used regular acrylic paints. Again, not my best paint job.
The roller had to be right. I spent most of my time on it because if it wasn't right, there was no point to continue with the cosplay. However during quarantine, I had limited materials. I let the project sit for at least two weeks before I attempted a few things and finally got it right.
The handle and body are made with pvc pipe, cardboard, foam board, and masking tape. To make the pvc pipe curve I used a heatgun which was not the best option but the only one I had at the time. It formed an extremely ugly curve that made it look like trash that I pulled out of a dumpster. To fix the not-so-smooth curve, I added some padding and then covered it with masking tape. This left a visual bump on the curve I did not like. I went back and made the padding tighter and it seemed to fix the issue visually so it wasn't distracting. I used cardboard paper towel tubes cut up and wrapped around a pvc pipe to accurate sizing and used those to build the smaller parts of the pipe. Once everything was said and done, I wrapped everything in masking tape to conceal the fact that I had to patch up an area earlier with masking tape. It worked out great!
The roller part of the weapon is made from foam core from Walmart. I used this tutorial to essentially make a pillar in the size I wanted and then wrapped a piece of poster board around it when I was done.
Here's how it looked during the process mentioned above. Disclaimer: I know this looks like trash at this stage but it got better! Plus I was using literal trash to build it! Haha...
I forgot to add the padding until the end which I ended up going back to do later. I also never quite realized I didn't finish the end caps. O_o
Here's a breakdown of the materials I used to construct each portion.
Note: It doesn't actually roll but it's the best I could do. O_o
The tank was made to function and was made with simple materials aka basically trash but it actually came out great and I'm really proud of it. Surprisingly, (even to me) is that I used laminating sheets to form the cylindrical shape I needed in the size I needed it in. I used another cylinder to form it and hot glued it then just slid it right off. The white marker lines are actually white out tape! To make the tank sturdy, I used a cylinder shape I had cut at an angle added a slanted top to it so it looked like it was half way full and that's it!
The red arrow is just red cardstock. The black parts on the tank are foam from my son's old foam play mat that normally come in interlocking squares that you place on the ground. I just cut the shapes I needed and it worked out fine. The silver parts are foam sheets painted with silver acrylics. The cap came off of a bottle I found in the garage. I was also able to incorporate a red light that came off of one of my Halloween light sets. It's the test light they normally put on the outside of the box so you can see how it looks. I never threw 'em away because I thought to myself... "one day I'm gonna need this." That day had arrived. So I'm pleased to say that the ink tank actually has a light that is activated by pushing a button. The straps were cut off a bag and attached like a backpack.
A few pics of the light!
I loved seeing the cosplay come together even when I thought the whole project was done for half way through. I kept trying different things and made it work. I think there may be more Splatoon cosplay in my sons future now that I am completely obsessed with playing Salmon Run and our son is even more obsessed with Splatoon than before so its a win-win for me too!