Noiz Ryhme Rabbit / Bunny Head Cosplay Tutorial

It is done!*throws confetti* *Party streamers fly everywhere*
I've been working on making a Noiz cosplay on and off for about a month now with the hopes of wearing it to Japan Expo in Paris this July. I always knew I'd do a Noiz cosplay at some point but I figured it'd be fun to do something a little different and also to challenge myself with something new. I've never made anything like this before so I really had no idea how it would turn out.

To help myself along I took LOADS of photos of the process so I thought I'd stick them all up here in case anyones just as clueless as I am at these types of things!

To start with I did some research into mascot heads, including watching 'How it's made' on mascots! There are loads of tutorials online on how to make these things (and also much better than this!) I looked at several posts on what other people had used and how they had made the shape of the head but to be honest this will vary greatly on what character you're actually making.
Armed with limited materials I attempted to make a mock up from paper first and practiced making the shape I wanted but this didn't really work as paper and upholstery foam aren't anything alike aha.

I'd like to say I measured everything out and planned it all along but I threw caution to the wind and started cutting the foam. I started with the large front piece that goes to the snout and worked on attaching that to a base circle that I'd made. I made this circle really wide, this would be the bottom of the head and I wanted it to be wide enough to let air in at the back. Many mascot heads cover the entire head but I at this point I wasn't sure if I was attaching a fan or not so I wanted enough airing room so I could breathe better.

I then simply worked on making supports for the top piece and also added an inner ring that fits around my head to give it a better fit when its on. I used UHU glue and some wilkos own contact glue to stick the whole thing together. Once I'd glued it I pinned each bit to hold it in place which I found worked really well (remember to remove the pins later though!)

Next I worked on shaping the head so it looks like the rabbit, this probably the longest part of the process but also the most fun! I started with the cheeks cutting the base shape I wanted then adding rings of foam smaller than the first on top and then excess foam on the edges. I cut into in using scissors to sculpt it into the right shape. I did the same with the nose piece.

I tried it on myself and other people many times to make sure it was looking ok. Next I added the ears, I cut the shape I wanted from foam and pinned them on to check the position of them. Once I was happy with that I marked where I wanted them to go and removed them, I'll attach them properly later after I've finished with the sculpting and covering the head in wadding.

 I marked out the eye holes next and cut those out with a large craft knife. Then I went back and filled in any gaps left in the frame (for example above where the eye holes are and round the back) Then I covered the whole head in a layer of wadding to smooth it out and give it a better shape.

I then went back to the ears, I cut one ear in half and glued a long piece of wire down the middle. I then poked the wire through one of the markings on the head and up through the other one so that the wire runs underneath and that both ears are attached by the same piece of wire (you can see this better in the final images on the inside of the head). I then cut the other ear in half and glued it to the wire left sticking out at the top.
Once they were secure I covered the ears in wadding too. I made the top bit a bit thicker so it has a more rounded shape. Now its finally ready to cover in fabric!

 I chose to cover it in fleece, in the end I used 'Cuddle fleece'. I didn't particularly want to use this but I was pretty limited by my fabric store. This was one of only two fabrics in the whole shop that were similar in colour (the other is a thin cotton I'm using for his clothes) so I pretty much had to go with it. Its thick and kinda heavy so not ideal for a head, that said it gives it a really nice finish and its of course super soft :)

If you're super pro you could work out and measure the exact amount you need and then make a pattern, since I measured nothing on this head I just went ahead and started gluing the fur on, using the same pinning method as before. I worked in sections and once glued I reinforced the join by sewing it all together too. Since I used cuddle fleece the stitch isn't visible which saved me a lot of time trying to sew it really neatly.

 For the eyes I cut some plastic mesh out of some cheap sieves and covered them in chiffon. It works pretty well but as the eyes are quite far apart it's still going to be a pain in the ass seeing anything. Oh well.

I covered the nose in some plain fleece and added a fleecey tongue too. The nose is a pleathery like material, stuffed with some wadding. The last part was sewing some darker green into it's ears. Technically its just a shadow (it also appears around the face) but I thought it might look a little plain without it so I went ahead and sewed it in.

And thats pretty much everything! I've yet to actually wear it of course so no photos of the full Cosplay yet but my lab coat is on its way so hopefully I can add some soon. I may yet still add a fan to this so I don't die of heatstroke but it depends how much time I have with completing the rest of my Noiz cosplay.

Here's some pictures of it completed, I've tried to explain the process the best I can but if you have any questions drop me a comment and I'd be happy to answer them! :)

UPDATE - Since I've actually worn this cosplay now I figured I'd write up about how well its held up. I got the damn thing to Paris (somehow) the ears flattened and bend down so it would fit in my case. When I got it out at Paris it was fine, the ears bent back up but I noticed that they flopped down a lot easier as the wire had obviously had a lot of pressure on it. This also became apparent later when cosplaying - sometimes the ears simply wouldn't behave or sit how I wanted them to though this is also probably due in part to the slanted angle I made the head to sit at. My biggest peeve was not being able to see how they were positioned for photos as theres no easy way of me checking in a mirror or anything. I think if I were to wear it again I would reinforce it with stronger wire and suggest not bending it completely flat if possible. 
The other thing I noticed is that some of the foam had come unstuck and had to be re-glued, I don't know if this was due to heat or simply because it was being transported and lugged about all day. Either way it was an easy fix as the fabric held it all together so there was no major disaster.
The last thing is the wear-ability.. Uh well, it pretty much can't be worn to walk in unless you have a kind friend to lead you absoultely everywhere. I ended up carrying it and more often than not, not even bothering to put it on for photos (this was also due to it being waaaaay too hot to button up the lab coat) its also really hard to hear people when its on, so posing for photos can be kind of awkward if you can't hear them say they're done!
Other than that though it sereved its purpose well I think! I managed to get some cosplay photos of it so I've posted them up on another post if you fancy a look :)

EDIT- If you've used this tutorial to make your own rabbit head please leave a comment, I'd love to see
it! and please do not repost these images without permission first! :)