Uses of foam in crafts
In a previous blog post, we briefly touched on the idea of using foam to create costumes and soft weapons. These crafts are used in a wide range of hobbies and professions, including re-enactment, live-action roleplay (LARP), and theatre.
Craft foam is popular on the cosplay scene for armour and props (everything from swords to spears). Over the last few years, anime and comic conventions have gotten a lot stricter with their prop allowances. Once upon a time, you could have gotten away with taking in a staff that used a broom handle as the base; today, everything is made from light material and craft foam.
Because craft foam is available so thin and is easy to cut and mould, it’s suitable for just about anything you could need it for. Cosplayers have been using it to make detailed armour for a while now.
LARP and re-enactment
Like cosplayers, some LARPers will use foam in their costume design. The rules for this vary from LARP to LARP, and what goes for one system of play might not be the same in another. It’s definitely different in the various LARP scenes of each country.
In the UK, our LARPers wield weapons are crafted from the finest foam around – that being standard liquid latex and Plastazote closed-cell foam. Plastazote foam is a superior closed-cell foam that does not absorb moisture and has many uses in the world. But for the world of UK LARP systems, it has been deemed the safest and most appropriate foam to make your weapons out of.
That said, Plastazote foam isn’t what many consider a “craft foam”. However, this type of foam is perfect for adding tiny details to your LARP weapons and can be cut, shaped and glued as you desire.
As for re-enactment, though closed-cell foam isn’t used as often here as it is in cosplay or LARP, it still has its place. Closed-cell foam can be used for soft combat, as practice material before making armour from other materials, or to pad out parts of a costume.
If you’re a fan of handwriting your letters or you enjoy sending mail, here’s another use of foam for you: Stamps. Because foam can be easily cut, trimmed, and even stuck together in layers, it’s entirely possible for you to create your own ink or wax stamp. Polyurethane foam is perfect for stamp making and will absorb/hold the ink or paint.
In this case, ink stamps would be easier to make, and you’ll be able to practice your foam cutting and detailing before making anything extravagant. Afterwards, you could certainly try your hand at making a more secure stamp for wax seals. There’s nothing more satisfying than creating your own tools, after all!
Contact our team at Easyfoam today to discuss your crafting foam needs.