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Submitted on
September 9, 2012
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Cosplay Tutorial: How to make a Zelda Harp by Innamode Cosplay Tutorial: How to make a Zelda Harp by Innamode
Hey everyone!

So, I haven't been uploading WIP pics much this week... this is why!

I made my Zelda harp this week! I started planning on Monday night, had my design sketched out on Tuesday, stole cardboard from my art class (Joke, I saw the cardboard and asked my teacher if I could have some, and she said yes), had my first layer of modroc on by the end of Thursday, second by the end of Friday, first layer of paint on Saturday, and second layer and details painted today ^.^



You will need:

Pattern paper/paper big enough to sketch out the finished size of the harp.
Thick cardboard (The cardboard I got from my art class was the box the school's table tennis tables came in)
kitchen roll
warm water
a bin bag or covered work surface
wooden stick (What are they called?)
strong glue
hand drill
goggles (Optional, only if you don't want to murder your eyes with plaster dust)
jewellery wire
jewellery wire cutter
gold paint
paintbrush (one big, one small)
acrylic paint in Sienna Brown


1: Take your paper and pencil, and fold the paper over in half. on the fold, start drawing the harp design. Remember, once you actually make it it will bulk out a bit more, so don't make it huge, because the finished harp will be bigger.

2: Flip the paper over, and trace the design onto the other side. If it is hard to see the pencil, you can outline in pen. Unfold the paper, and outline the whole thing in pen.

3: Draw in strings, and the wooden stick they will be strung on. This harp is not playable, apart from a twang noise, so the amount of strings is purely preference. I drew out 8 strings, but I ended up only having 7 on my finished harp.

4: Carefully cut out each piece, and trace onto the cardboard. Don't trace the strings and wooden stick, just the body of the harp. Cut out with the scissors, being very careful because cardboard is hard to cut. You might need to use a craft knife and board for this.

5: Using rolled up kitchen roll/kitchen paper, sellotape then onto the body of the harp to pad it out and add curve. I covered both sides with one layer of rolled up kitchen roll, and then added another layer just in the middle of each side to give it curve. Make sure you use sellotape, and not masking tape. Some stuff does not stick to it, and I don't know if modroc is one of them.

6: Put down a bin bag, or put your harp on a covered work surface. I would suggest using a bin bag, because I started off making my harp inside, but then moved it outside into the sun so it could dry better. This was easy because it was on the bin bag. Just if you do take it outside, make sure to weight down the edges of the bin bag so they don't fly up and onto your harp.

7: Following the instructions on your modroc package (Mine says to dip in warm water and apply) carefully cover the entire harp with the modroc. Make sure to press into any corners, and also make sure it still has a nice curve on it.

8: Leave to dry for at least 24 hours (Or what it says on the package) before working on your harp.

9: Cut a piece of wooden stick just a tiny bit larger then the top of your harp. Science holds it in place, yay! But just to be sure, add strong glue to the joins, and leave to dry.

10: One the glue is dry, get a hand drill and some googles. Using a pencil, mark out where you want the stings to go on the body, and drill the holes. The plaster dust does make alot of mess, and is also very painful if it goes in your eyes, so WEAR GOOGLES!!! And be careful of your hands, my hand drill jumped about alot while I drilled the holes.

11: Thread jewellery wire through the holes. I made sure all of the wire came out on the same side. If you want to do it like that, make the wires come out on the side which isn't the best. The best will become your front. Wrap the wire around the wooden stick, and trim with jewellery wire cutters.

12: Cover again with modroc, making sure to cover up where the wire attached, and the wooden stick. Leave to dry for 24 hours.

13: OPTIONAL STEP: If you want a smoother surface, you can cover the harp in one layer of plain paper mache (Don't use any printed papers! Only white!) I used tissue paper on the front of my harp to make it easier to paint on.

14: Paint GOLD!! I got my gold paint from Sainsburys, and it's so pretty! It has little bits of shiny stuff in it, so when it catches the light, it shimmers. Pretty! Paint the whole thing. Then leave it to dry overnight.

15: Then paint it again. Leave to dry. If you want to paint it again, repeat this process.

16: Using a pencil, sketch out the designs onto the front of your harp. Then, using the gold paint and Sienna Brown acrylic paint, mix the two togeth untill you have a dark gold/copper colour. Paint the details with it using a small paintbrush.

17: Leave to dry, and you are DONE!! Now go show off your lovely harp to the world XD


I hope this was of help! I was looking for a good tutorial to make the harp, and I found loads, but all of them were too complicated for me to understand, or afford >.< So this was all bought or borrowed for under 15 I think, so rather cheap, and easy for the younger cosplayer (Like me!)

Please fave!
crown-rachel Sep 27, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
thank you!! i just might try this :D
Innamode Sep 28, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
You're welcome! Make sure to let me see it if you do!
crown-rachel Sep 28, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Totally! :D
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