Ok, I KNOW it's crazy to even think about it and I'm not sure I'll go through with it, but I am really really taken with the idea of cosplaying as Al. Has anyone else done Al or similar costumes with large amounts of armor? Any suggestions or tips?
1. Having the helmet set on top of my head so I look out through the neck. Al's shoulders are really bulky so I'd just have to build the shoulders and chestplate UP from my own and attach the helmet to my head and put glowing lights in it ^_^ (although this still wouldn't fix the fact that Jennie, who is going as Ed, is TOO DARN TALL!! We're making YOU kneel in our group pics this time! MWAH!!!) Plus, platform shoes, can be covered up with costume armor shoes.
For materials I've had many suggestions.
Cardboard and silver paint or tin foil. Pluses: cheap. I have infinite cardboard for free, and other materials don't cost much. I could mess up a lot and still not waste much money.. Downside: not durable and very hard to make it look quite right. Tin foil can buckle, cardboard generally has the lines, etc...
Foam with epoxy coating: a friend made armor of this before. VERY hard, can be sculpted any way. But rather expensive and time consuming...
Icka even suggested using real metal. A trip to Menards has told me that sheet metal is expensive however heating duct is far less expensive and could probably be flattened and shaped, at least for pieces like the shoulder guards, however I've no way to weild metal and this seems like it'd be a LOT or work. And I've only 2 months
With any of these I'd probably wear a grey or black clothes underneath and paint on the smaller armor pieces that I didn't want to make, and then use elastic to strap on the 3D armor pieces over the top.
All in all, it's a HUGE undertaking, but one I'm going to at least investigate further. Plus I'd get to carry around a KITTEN!!!!
A lot of this discussion might also apply to figuring out ways of making Ed's arm, althought the solution to that is likely to be different, since the scale is much smaller, and the pieces more intricate.