I don’t LARP, participate in SCA reenactments or anything of that nature. So why, you might ask, did I go to Home Depot and spend $45 of my grocery money on plumbing supplies and then go to Target and spend another $20 art supplies? Well, you see, it’s like this. Susan Sto Helit (of Discworld fame) is one of my favorite characters. I put together a costume of her for last Halloween… And then I wore it at Play on Con this year… And then, I wanted to wear it again for Halloween this year.
The scythe that I have for that costume (pictured above) is a real scythe. It isn’t sharp anymore, but it’s heavy and in ill repair. It is fine for parties in people’s houses or at a Con where they have security who can assess the situation and figure out if a particular item that you have will be safe with the numbers of people they have, etc, but in a bar or a LAN center it would be kind of dangerous and, even if it weren’t, they probably wouldn’t let me in the door with such a thing. The only two things I had planned on doing to celebrate Halloween were going to Scareoke at a bar, and going to my regular gaming group, which is held at a LAN center, in costume on Halloween. So clearly, if I was going to be Susan this year, a new scythe had to be obtained.
So, being me, of course, I didn’t plan things out of time and order a realistic looking one a few weeks ahead of time. I decided Thursday morning that I needed a new scythe and I needed it now. So off to the hardware store I went. I got some odd looks from a few people while assembling PVC pipe structures in the plumbing aisle of Home Depot, but the employees were really helpful. I got three 2′ sections of 3/4″ PVC piping, two 45 degree elbows, a 90 degree elbow and a curved trap. I also got some foil tape, some carpet padding, some gorilla tape and some plumbing glue.
Gluing the basic structure was simple and the glue held fast very quickly. The hard part came over the next couple of days. I tried making my “blade” out of carpet padding and foil tape, but it just looked like aluminum foil over carpet padding, which is clearly not appropriate for the scythe of Death’s Granddaughter. So, I got very discouraged and had no idea what I was going to do because Scareoke was Saturday and the mega-fail happened Friday afternoon. Friday night, I was talking to a friend of mine who makes weaponry out of plumbing all the time and she said that there was such a thing as bright metallic silver duct tape.
So Saturday, I was obsessed again, I had to find somewhere that had this. Luckily, the internet knows everything and it directed me to Target. I went to Target, got the tape, got some black tape as well (gorilla tape is too strong and too stubborn for a job where you have to wind tape around something repeatedly over approx 6 feet of piping) some foam board and some good strong scissors. I immediately rushed home, sat on the floor and started cutting and taping things. Much to both mine and my husbands surprise, it went together fairly easily and looked pretty good. Sure, it’s obvious that it’s made primarily of duct tape and plumbing, but it clearly evokes “Susan’s Scythe” in a much more impressive and accurate way than any cheap plastic Halloween thing I could have bought on such short notice.
I bet you’d like to see pictures… but what I’m into this week is making scythes, not photography.. sorry 😉
(pictures will follow soon, but right now, I need some sleep so I can be coherent at work tomorrow).