Bane Vest DIY: Day 1

We deviate from our regularly scheduled bra and fringe program to bring you a specialty product tutorial for the next few weeks!  Also I’m hungry and tired which translates to: totes NSFW tutorial. Sorry not sorry. Moving on now that we put the disclaimer out- this is something I searched high and low for because- honestly- I was NOT interested in making this. I try to avoid making one off pieces for events that are super fun- but not usually repeatable.  But sometimes- it cannot be helped.  I want to make an armored vest inspired after Banes vest.  And once I realized what I wanted I realized along with this research there are a few things I noticed that did NOT make me happy- AT.ALL.

1.) I needed a shorter vest for a dance performance. No- cosplay and dance costuming is NOT realistic. I  understand this. As a friend appropriately pointed out- most cosplay girls are nakkids- a lot anyway- totes norm- check there.  But I hadn’t actually seen what I needed that looked right- AND was short. And, importantly, dancing (undulations anyone?) in something that replicates a full armored flak vest just is nonsensical. Really -let’s be honest it’s a wee bit stupid and pointless so no. I vote no.  Strike one and two for replicas- even scandalous cosplay ones. (Although there are some good ones out there- they weren’t what I wanted)

2.) this is NOT a regular kevlar vest- I’ve been around a lot of kevlar and military gear- this isn’t “normal” or something you can just order off a site- of course it isn’t- why wouldn’t it be? Strike 3 for me!

But- if we are being honest-DIY is how we roll and I am going to try my hand. Downside-budget issues in July and found myself scrabbling to order the appropriate fabric and supplies at the right time. But WHO IS REALLY SURPRISED. REALLY. WHO.

Meanwhile, a few things I buried myself going down some crazy rabbit holes trying to figure out how to do this as well as possible without sacrificing quality OR intent of the vest.  So: a few things to inspire:


So- as you can see- the costume is a little more technical and complicated than just “Kevlar vest and tactical pants”   Lots of little details and custom clothes. Those pants are NOT normal. Why is there a zipper on the inside right- THERE- I have, as we say…… questions. Please don’t answer- not necessary. But whatever- I’m not buying 80-200 bones$ on not very tactical pants I likely won’t use again. but I’m not unwilling to modify some I can use for work later. And then there’s the glove- which is obviously a thing- but I’ll get to that later- one fucking thing at a time dammit.

So first things first- materials and make a plan!

So- we start with the vest and honestly I’m SUPER lazy- so- I started with the back- because well- lazy- and it was easy.  So what I used was-

  • paper
  • pen
  • ruler
  • pellon/interfacing
  • Foam- which I should have gotten the 1/4″ but I got the half- because in my world- bigger is obviously better.
  • And heavy codrura rip stop fabric off amazon- I got OD Green and Khaki
  • nylon webbing (the straps he has are double grommet- I’m not doing that- but I make that choice for time and sanity- maybe later
  • military H harness for spare parts
  • Bonus cat- not required for costume but recommended for sewingphoto collage maker_uyosp72082813368..png

Step one: take your paper and roll that shit out.


Steps 2, 3 and 4: Start drawing some damn grid lines (bottom right), sketch out the rough shape (top right) fold in half and pinch down the center so you can cut it nice and even (left).

photo collage maker_r0j34o735844855..png

Not shown between here was step 5: compare to your back for size- or hold up to a tank top to estimate that it fits. I was home alone so I used the tank top method and had to adjust this pattern so it was a about 1.5″ longer- I also assume it will need some side panels to wrap around the rib cage also but I have opinions on that when I start getting pieces together. For now I wanted it flat out just front and back.

Step 6? Cut that shit out:


Step 7: layering

Bane’s vest has external armor plating- so my current plan- until this goes side ways and I have to fucking re-examine my life- is to create a foam “armor” piece that mimics his back armor. So I retraced the vest shape (top)- and then drafted in some grid lines that gave the same shape and feel (bottom left) to his back panel and cut that shit out. I layered on top of the pattern for the back and surveyed my handy work (bottom right).

*nods with satisfaction*   tha’tll do

photo collage maker_llnyxq2011534145..png

Step 8? 9- 10- whatever- next-lay it out- trace it out- cut it out:


Step next: use your handy binder clips to make sure the vest is symmetrical.


Step next next- foam armor:

Lay your pattern piece on the foam- trace it out with something like a fat sharpie- and then go with god cutting it out.


I fear my foam is a wee bit thick- the likelihood that I use the batting I have is much higher- but I want to give it a shot before I over commit- this is already cut out- so I’ll see when the fabric arrives if I can make do- if not- I have a pattern- I’ll trace that shit out and use something else.

And because I’m busy AF and I have to finish music and food and all sorts of other things- I’m knocking off here- this blog is is already behind and I’m tired- so I’ll work on the front panel and pieces and hopefully Amazon sends me my fabric quickly!  I’ll bang out the front panel by Thursday and hope for the best from the good ole’ USPS.

And that’s about it. Hope you enjoyed and stand by for more Bane fun!

Till next time fearless costumers!


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