Last few days I’ve been working on the Halo 4 underarmor suit pants, since I’m still waiting for foam and fabric swatches to come in.
I haven’t made many pants in the past and the ones I have had been for my historical fencing so they were baggy breaches and not form-fitting pants. So this was a little bit of an adventure and experiment but I think it turned out well.
So if we go back to our reference pictures we’ll notice that the Spartan-IV undersuit pants aren’t as much pants as they are tights. They hug the legs, much like the torso portion of the underamor does. So stretchy fabric is a must so we can get the right look and be able to move as well. Here’s couple of pictures for reference:
Now that I had my pictures at hand, I could start drafting a pattern & mock up.
Creating the Spartan tights
So leggings and tights aren’t really part of my fashion repertoire, but luckily I had a pair of UnderArmor ColdGear pants that I’ve used under my fencing breeches for early-Spring/late-Fall fencing events. They’re stretchy and fit snug and don’t have any awkwardness to it really, so it would be my model for my Spartan pants.
I started off my rolling out a large sheet of paper and tossing the pants on, smoothing it out so it laid as flat as possible. Then it was just a matter of tracing the front of the pants — one leg from the bottom of the crotch, down & around and up to the middle of the waistband. From there drew a line from the crotch to the waistline. Since the legs are symmetrical I only needed to make half a pattern. I then did the same for the back of the pants, making sure i extended the bottom of the butt area out a little so I know there’d be enough room for my backside. The result was a front and back pattern:
Hooray! After that it was simply cutting out four pieces on my test, mock-up fabric and trying them and they fit exactly as I expected.
Designing the details
So we’re not done with the pants yet. There’s a lot of detail that goes on the pants that make it look more armor like. There’s hip padding, outter leg armor, hamstring padding, upper-knee protection, etc. Plus the “triangle” bit of the torso extends down to the crotch area, too. I started with the outter leg protection. In the second reference photo above, it’s the blue area just below the hip horseshoe-shaped armor.
Designing this was “simple” but only because I had my girlfriend there to help. If I had to do it myself it would’ve been a lot, lot more challenging. Anyways, I tossed on the Spartan tights and had her draw on the leg design in a water soluble pen. once we got the design and angles we liked she went over it in a Sharpie. Here’s what that looked like.
And since we’re all thinking it:
Now that we got that out of the way…
Next part I wanted to work on was drafting the hip protection. In past Spartan armor models this was built in to the codpiece/belt armor. but the Spartan-IV armor allows for more movement and the belt is gone. All that’s left is the codpiece, the butt armor and the hip protection. Here’s what I’m talking about:
It’s a simple horseshoe shape thing that extends the length of the outer leg protection (see second reference picture). I plan on making this out of EVA foam and attaching it directly to the undersuit, most likely with snaps or velcro.
To get started on making a pattern for this I tossed on my Peter Pan Spartan tights and measured the top length of it so I know how wide my hip armor needs to be. For me it came to about 6 inches wide. From there, I just grabbed some cardstock paper, a pencil and ruler and started drafting out the basic shape. Then I added in some details like the square thingy at the top and the round “connection areas” on either side of the horseshoe ends. For some reason WordPress likes to turn some of the photos on its side. Anyways, I added in the dimensions I used. This fits me and may/may not fit other people, but it gives you a general idea of proportions and such.
Then I cut out my shape and pinned it on my pants to see how it looked worked.
Not bad. When I get the EVA foam I’ll be able to create the top and underneath areas so it has the right shape and doesn’t sit flat against the hip. But for now, this’ll do.
I also started on working on the upper-knee protection. Same idea. I grabbed a measuring tape to figure out roughly how much room I had for the piece, compared it to my reference pictures and started coming up with a simple design and pattern.
This starts just above the knee and extends to the lower quad. I don’t have a pic of it on the pants, alas; I didn’t get that far. I’ll probably make this piece out of black leather-like material.
Anyways. That’s all for now.