If you’ve already made Rey’s Belt (and/or the leather holster from Rey’s Resistance Costume) then making the bracer should be a breeze, and you may even have enough leather leftover for the main part of the bracer. If not, then this is a great opportunity to try out your leather skills!
To make this piece of Rey’s costume, I started with a movie accurate pattern created by Division 6 and Mithiril Design. As noted it is for a 5 1/2″ to 6″ wrist size, so some adjustment may be needed if your wrist is larger. You do need to print the pattern in three parts and use the alignment lines to determine where to overlap the pages. Then you can tape the three pages together before you cut out the entire pattern.
The wrist cuff is made from a 20″ long section of leather with 3 sets of slotted openings for it to fold back onto itself and wrap around the wearer’s wrist. The thin end is fed through the first long set of slots, folded back to reverse direction, then fed through the second and third sets of slots to keep it wrapped around the wrist. I used a 4/5 ounce weight leather piece I had left over from making Rey’s belt, which was originally purchased from Tandy Leather.
If you do not have a long enough section of leather for the entire piece, the bracer can also be made by gluing 2 shorter leather pieces together. The seam should be placed so it is hidden underneath of the long set of slots where the bracer folds back.
After I cut out the pattern on paper, I checked the fitment around my wrist, traced it onto the leather and cut the piece out using a utility knife and straight edge. I cut out the larger slots to check the overall length, but not the smaller ones, so I could mark the exact location for them later with the cuff assembled and wrapped around my wrist.
Since the smaller end of the cuff gets folded back and reversed, a second thinner piece of leather needs to be glued to the back of the main piece to give it a smooth finished leather surface. (Using 2 pieces of the 4/5 ounce leather will make the cuff too thick.) Tandy leather and most hobby stores sell thinner scrap leather pieces which can be used for this second piece, but I happened to have some thin leather from an old chair cushion, so I used that. I’ve found old furniture to be a great source for costume project leather.
I marked out the pattern of the wrist cuff on the second thinner leather piece, then applied contact cement to the backs of both pieces and glued them together. After both pieces were together, I used my utility knife to cut the excess off of the thinner piece, using the main piece as a guide to ensure both pieces were exactly matched. Next I laid the template on the thicker side of the leather, marked the locations of the remaining sets of slots, adjusted them as necessary and cut them out with my utility knife. To smooth out the rough edges of the cut leather, I rubbed them with a leather burnishing tool.
With the leather work on the wrist cuff complete, I dyed the leather with dark brown antique leather dye. The main piece of the cuff is a darker color, but the reverse side appears to be a lighter color with a red or orangish tone. Since my thinner leather used on the back was already a different shade, I just lightened the color by applying some alcohol to it with a rag. You can also use another color of leather dye or apply the dark brown dye lighter so the color varies from the main piece.
After the dye was applied, I applied a thin coat of water-base satin polyurethane with a rag to seal the leather. Tandy leather also offers a variety of leather finishes.
Tools and Materials:
Leather Piece (at least 20″ long if using one piece)
Thin Scrap Leather (at least 20″ long if using one piece)
Leather Burnishing Tool
Dark Brown Antique Leather Dye
Water-base Satin Polyurethane or another Leather Finish
Check back soon for the next post in The Force Awakens Rey Cosplay series. And if you follow me on Pinterest you’ll see a sneak peak of what’s coming up in future emeraldB Star Wars Cosplay tutorials. (Hint – it’s not all about Rey)