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The Hobbit - Bifur by mistergrinn The Hobbit - Bifur by mistergrinn
I just got home from seeing The Hobbit for our 10pm opening night (which sadly featured no other costumes but my own) and I'm still very much on a Middle-Earth high. Oh my Gandalf, it is a-fuckin'-mazing! Seriously, it's one of my top favourite films ever. And as of writing this, I'm going to see it again tomorrow in 48FPS 3D AVX! Once is not enough. Nor is twice or thrice or... oh who am I kidding, I'll see it a half dozen times before the year is through!

With that said, I feel like some of you might be interested in what I wore for the premiere. The axe in my head prevents me from saying this but:

"Bifur, at your service."

Being a huge Tolkien fan and even bigger Ringer, I felt it absolutely necessary to wear something special for The Hobbit's premiere. If you know me well enough, you'll know that I do tend to favour dressing up as a baddie but what I saw of the baddies consisted mainly of orc and goblin grotesqueries that were completely out of my league. On the side of good, I lack the quaintness of a hobbit, the ethereal aura and beauty of an elf and am nowhere near the stature and wisdom of a wizard, so I ultimately chose to be a dwarf. But which one?

Could I emulate the child-like nature of Ori? The badassery of Dwalin? The wisdom of Balin? Perhaps the smoulder of Thorin Oakenshield... or girth of Bombur? It was not an easy choice and my decision to dress up was set just weeks before opening night. Then it hit me. Like an axe to the head. I shall become the salt-n-pepper braided, spear-wielding, grunting, inarticulate yet magnificently tough cousin of Bofur & Bombur: Bifur.

So my costume journey began.

Just a week and a half before premiere night, I bought different fabrics and materials for making what I thought would be a simple and basic costume. A nice tunic with a belt and some gloves maybe. Haha, nope. I started sewing the tunic and as my eyes zipped back and forth from reference photo to reference photo, I wanted to add more and more details. Soon I found myself adding a fur trim to the shoulders and base, diagonal designs to the front and even non-functional button latches.

Then came the cloak. "Oh," I thought to myself "I'll just drape some fabric over me and safety pin it together. I guess that didn't suffice because I sewed a proper button in place and added a capelet thing because that's what I saw in the reference pic. I have to stop looking at these photos! The details are killing me!

The spear! Oh man, the spear! It's so distinct, yeah? Besides the head-axe and beard, his preferred weapon is very much a big part of his signature as a dwarf design... and so I crafted one as best I could out of cardboard, paper mache and paint. I did the same for the axe which I cleverly affixed to my head using garment elastic.

In between, I worked on gauntlets, some fake boot covers, a false belt and of course, the beard, which was originally a cheap long and black one that I modified with some trimming, white hairspray, and pieces of paper as braid ties.

After several days listening to the online streaming Hobbit soundtrack at my crafting desk, sewing and cutting painting and gluing and sewing some more and cursing because I sometimes get a needle in my finger, it was finished! And how I love it!

Before wearing it for opening night, I fixed my (normally straight and heavy) hair up by teasing the living fuck out of it and hairspraying it until it was the scraggly 'do you see on Bifur himself. I also added a touch of white hairspray near the axe-side for increased accuracy.

Despite being 5'10" and not as stout as Bifur is in the film, I feel proudly dwarfish and mighty when I rock the spear and the beard.

So you know... Bifur has a couple of pretty fun moments in the film. Beyond that, the entire film is enjoyable from beginning to end. If you're a Ringer, I couldn't recommend seeing it more!

I am convinced that I am the first ever recorded Bifur cosplayer in the world. I'm curious about why there aren't more Bifur fans. He *IS* pretty goddamn awesome.

This is easily in the running with my Nazgul look as my favourite costume ever. There's no doubt that I'll be Bifur again in the future. Maybe you'll see this dwarf at a con some time next year (and definitely at the next Hobbit movie's premiere!). I'm really pleased with how it turned out and I hope you think kindly of it too! As usual, all comments are welcomed and appreciated! Thanks everyone!
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:iconambitioushobbyartist:
AmbitiousHobbyArtist Featured By Owner Sep 21, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
Wow that looks amazing!
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:iconaozame32:
Aozame32 Featured By Owner Feb 16, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
This is the best Bifur cosplay I've ever seen. O_O
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:icongibbtall:
Gibbtall Featured By Owner Jan 19, 2014
Think I spotted you at the Desolation of Smaug premier, I'm still working on my Erebor Guard, it's slow going but still going.
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:iconmistergrinn:
mistergrinn Featured By Owner Jan 20, 2014
YOU! You magnificent bastard! Glad to see you here!

Your Erebor Guard is brilliant so far! You'll see the rest of my gushing on your deviation. *laughs*
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:icondepis:
Depis Featured By Owner Nov 22, 2013  Hobbyist Artist
that costume is so awesome! 
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:iconmistergrinn:
mistergrinn Featured By Owner Jan 20, 2014
Thanks! My efforts paid off!
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:iconaishafee:
aishafee Featured By Owner Oct 20, 2013  Student Artist
I really love this so much I am working on my own Bifur cosplay and seeing this is amazing and jiasjdois really well done! I am sorry to ask you but where did you get that wig? I am looking for one myself but I don't have any luck :(
again, great costume !!! ^_^
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:iconmistergrinn:
mistergrinn Featured By Owner Jan 20, 2014
Sorry that this reply is so bloody late. I hope it is still relevant.

Are you asking about the wig on top of my head? It's actually not a wig. That is my real hair. If you still want a wig, here are cavemen styled wigs out there that resemble Bifur's mess of a 'do, but you'll have to add extensions for his braid. Lucky for me, I just braided/made a mess of my own hair. *laughs*

Again, I apologise for the delay in responding. If you have any other questions, feel free to ask!

Thanks again for the kind words!
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:iconaishafee:
aishafee Featured By Owner Jan 21, 2014  Student Artist
heey its okay! I think your bifur cosplay is the best I've seen, you did a great job! and thank you for the tip ^^ I was thinking of ventilating the wig but god thats alot of work so I'll just try to find a caveman beard

again thank you <3
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:iconaishafee:
aishafee Featured By Owner Oct 20, 2013  Student Artist
amazing!!!
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:iconyasuinu:
Yasuinu Featured By Owner Oct 11, 2013
Great costume is all I can say!
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:iconmistergrinn:
mistergrinn Featured By Owner Jan 20, 2014
Thank you so much!
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:icondimensiondiver:
DimensionDiver Featured By Owner Jul 22, 2013
WAAAAAAAAH! O___O I love all the details you incorporated here! Man, I especially love that beard! (hope that didn't sound wierd) :D
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:iconmistergrinn:
mistergrinn Featured By Owner Jan 20, 2014
Sorry about the late response!

Thanks for the compliments! I did what I could with the time given to me to do justice to Bifur's character design so I really appreciate it when people notice the details! It's not weird at all to love the beard because as someone who can't grow one like that, I absolutely love it myself!
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:icondimensiondiver:
DimensionDiver Featured By Owner Feb 19, 2014
You're welcome. :D Keep doing what you're doing!
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:iconhjarrand:
Hjarrand Featured By Owner Jul 14, 2013  Student General Artist
<3 awsome looking cosplay :) featured :D [link]
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:iconmistergrinn:
mistergrinn Featured By Owner Jan 20, 2014
This reply is so late but thank you so much for the feature! I'm glad my costume is worthy enough to be shared!
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:iconofinkandquill:
ofinkandquill Featured By Owner May 30, 2013  Student Digital Artist
Amazing! :heart:
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:iconmistergrinn:
mistergrinn Featured By Owner Jan 20, 2014
Thanks!
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:iconsamhawkeye:
samhawkeye Featured By Owner Apr 5, 2013
This is fantastic! You look amazing and of course instantly recognisable!
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:iconmistergrinn:
mistergrinn Featured By Owner Jan 20, 2014
Hey you! Thanks for much for the kind words! Always means a lot to me coming from one of my favourite cosplayers ever!
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:iconillustrateyourdeath:
IllustrateYourDeath Featured By Owner Feb 19, 2013
Oh wow. This looks great and done in such a short time frame!!
As I too am working on a dwarf costume I have to ask how you made the claps/beads for your hair?
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:iconmistergrinn:
mistergrinn Featured By Owner Jan 20, 2014
Oh, I'm must seem like a jerk for responding so late. This reply will probably not be relevant anymore but here goes anyway:

My bead/clasps are actually just little pieces of cut out paper and silver sharpie marker. I rolled them up and secured them in place to the braids with those small hair elastics. There are a number of crafters out there who make clasps out of sturdier and more solid materials that look a lot more accurate, but in the rush of making my costume, I didn't have the patience. *laughs*

Thanks again!
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:iconsecretoflurkmore:
secretoflurkmore Featured By Owner Feb 10, 2013  Hobbyist Writer
That beard makes me, the owner of a decent enough real beard, jealous:P And the custom is superb!
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:iconmistergrinn:
mistergrinn Featured By Owner Jan 20, 2014
A response nearly a year later? My apologies, friend... Better late than never, right? Right?!

Thanks for the compliments! My genes prevent me from growing anything close to a real beard. If I stop shaving for months, my facial hair does show up but even then, I look more like a pirate than a dwarf. Creating this beard was sort of like fulfilling a fantasy. Haha.
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:iconuwontlikme:
uwontlikme Featured By Owner Feb 2, 2013  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
That's amazing. I love you
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:iconmistergrinn:
mistergrinn Featured By Owner Feb 3, 2013
Hahaha I appreciate it, man. With Bifur being the oddball of Thorin's Company, he only gets love from a limited few. Thanks again for the comment
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:iconriversong15:
RiverSong15 Featured By Owner Feb 1, 2013
Bifur is one of my favourite dwarves and you look awesome! :D
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:iconmistergrinn:
mistergrinn Featured By Owner Feb 3, 2013
He's awesome, isn't he? A majority of fans seem to take a bigger liking to the others like the pretty boys, Fili & Kili, or the adorable old friend/badass tattoed warrior combo of Balin & Dwalin. I became a fan of Bifur the moment I saw that he had an axe in his head. Gotta love the oddballs! Unpredictability is such a fun trait!
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:iconriversong15:
RiverSong15 Featured By Owner Feb 4, 2013
Admitedly, being a shallow female, I do fancy some of the pretty boys *LOL* (Thorin and Fili) but really I spent the entire movie , all four times, watching the background for moments of Bifur ;)

The bit where Bofur and Bombur are helping him put his pants back on after the Troll fight is so cute ;)
He really was the most awesome IMO :D

Do you mind if I pick your brain for a bit? I want to try this one myself, hopefully in time for Armageddon when I (might *fingers crossed*) get to meet William Kircher?
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:iconmistergrinn:
mistergrinn Featured By Owner Feb 19, 2013
The chemistry between Bifur and his cousins is a charming one. Like the rest of the company, they don't mind his bizarre actions and personality and treat it as completely normal, yet they still share a close bond as evidenced with the pants scene after the troll fight or when the ever-hungry Bombur offered some of his food to Bifur as he sat in Bilbo's hall way, staring into space.

No worries about recognising attractiveness when it is present. I'll admit to swooning whenever Eowyn was on screen during the Lord of the Rings trilogy. *laughs*

My apologies for the late response. I'm rather awful when it comes to checking in to my dA account. I'd love to expand on my Bifur details with you. My brain is ready to pick! Expect a pm very, very soon with additional costume information and if you have any more questions, just fire away!

Wait.. You might get to meet William Kircher? BIFUR HIMSELF!?! I'll try to get on sending you that pm as soon as I can!
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:iconriversong15:
RiverSong15 Featured By Owner Mar 4, 2013
The pants scene and the hallway scene are two of my favourites :)
I can't wait to buy the 3D movie (our local theatre was 2D only)

*yay* I look forward to your message :D

I wasn't able to get to Dunedin or Christchurch to meet him this month but I will definitely be at Wellington in June *fingers crossed* that William is there! They can't confirm because the cast are doing reshoots and may not be available *eep* I really want to meet William, he's such a wonderful actor!

I can't wait to talk Bifur cosplay with you :D
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:iconuesugitatsuha:
UesugiTatsuha Featured By Owner Jan 31, 2013
really cool!!!! *_* i like it!!!!

no i Love it!
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:iconmistergrinn:
mistergrinn Featured By Owner Feb 3, 2013
Thank you kindly!
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:iconuesugitatsuha:
UesugiTatsuha Featured By Owner Feb 3, 2013
=D you´r welcome
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:iconsarahwaterraven:
SarahWaterRaven Featured By Owner Jan 29, 2013  Hobbyist Artist
OH! Awesome! I wrote my One Ring on a chain around my neck and brought my plushie Bilbo! He even has hair on his feet *snicker*

Are you going to comicon?
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:iconmistergrinn:
mistergrinn Featured By Owner Feb 3, 2013
Aw, I've seen those plushies! They're pretty cute.

I'm not sure if I can go or not as I'm not certain that I'll have that weekend free. If I am able to go, I'll let you know! It'll be fun to say hi!

Thanks for the comment!
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:iconsarahwaterraven:
SarahWaterRaven Featured By Owner Feb 27, 2013  Hobbyist Artist
Anytime! You headed to any other conventions? I'm going as a panelist to Ad-Astra :)
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:iconkriegswaffle:
Kriegswaffle Featured By Owner Jan 27, 2013
Aaaaahhhh I really like your Bifur costume! <3 I've been thinking of cosplaying one of the dwarves too, and I've thought about Bifur. Thing is, I've never made a costume before, and I don't have a sewing machine. ;A; I really want to cosplay Bifur though, so I might have to try something... any advice? D:
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:iconmistergrinn:
mistergrinn Featured By Owner Feb 3, 2013
Thank you kindly!

Since I very much still consider myself a novice when it comes to costume-crafting and since everyone takes their own individual approach to how they work, my advice might not be the best.

If I do recommend anything, it would be to try to get a hold of a sewing machine if possible. Working with a lot of fabric takes a helluva lot of time to sew by hand and if you're like me, sewing my hand means more time to feel anxious and impatient about how the rest of the costume with turn out. Unless you have a tonne of patience and time, then hand-sewing might not be the way to go.

Second recommendation: Try to be as resourceful as possible. There are a lot of clever ways to replicate something without spending a wallet full of cash. My spear is entirely made of cardboard, newspaper, glue, tape and paint. If you think using a recycled or cheap material could work, then it doesn't hurt to give it a shot! Gathering knowledge and inspiration from the internet helps a lot too. There's so much to learn about and try.

Reference photos are a must. Try to have one on you when you visit costume shops, fabric stores and thrift stores for materials. Have fun making your costume and if you ever feel frustrated, take a break. Don't worry if it isn't a perfect replica. It's not a costumed audition for the film, it's simply a tribute to the character, yeah?

Whether you choose to go for a Bifur costume or another from Thorin's Company, I'm pretty sure that your work will turn out awesome. Now think like a dwarf and begin!
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:iconkriegswaffle:
Kriegswaffle Featured By Owner Feb 3, 2013
Oh for a while there I thought I wasn't going to get a reply! ;-;

But that's all right! This is all very useful, thank you very much for the advice! I'll keep those in mind and hopefully I'll get around to getting it together little by little. : D
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:iconsenpailau:
senpailau Featured By Owner Jan 26, 2013
KUDOS!
I mean, this is AMAZING. You have my deepest admiration and respect. Awesome, really!
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:iconmistergrinn:
mistergrinn Featured By Owner Feb 3, 2013
I really appreciate the compliment!

My deepest admiration and respect goes out to Richard Taylor and the amazing people at WETA Workshop down in kiwi land! Their artistic passion and dedication to their work (and all the amazing things created from it) is what inspired me to do my absolute best with this costume. It feels like a sort of fan-made tribute in addition to being a film replica outfit. There's much to improve on but I'm quite pleased with how it turned out.

Thanks again!
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:iconharlanerin:
HarlanErin Featured By Owner Jan 26, 2013
This is amazing! I have no idea how you managed to do all that in so short a time. I am more than impressed. It looks just like Bifur! Very well done.
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:iconmistergrinn:
mistergrinn Featured By Owner Feb 3, 2013
I'm kind clueless myself as to how a novice costume-crafter like me could even do this with a whole month, let alone less than two weeks! But really, it was all drive... fueled by a passion for the book and film, a love for making things with my hands, a respect for all those at WETA Workshop, annnnnd several gallons of tea a night. Haha!

Thanks for the kind words!
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:iconenjacosplay:
EnjaCosplay Featured By Owner Jan 23, 2013
Great work for such a slight amount of time!
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:iconmistergrinn:
mistergrinn Featured By Owner Feb 3, 2013
It was an absolute rush trying to get it done for the premiere but the last-minute panic gets me into a really great working mood. I have a lot to improve on but I've definitely learned a lot from this costume. I appreciate the kind words!
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:iconrainowls:
RainOwls Featured By Owner Jan 21, 2013
WOW!
The detail, the weapon, THE BEARD!
You look Fantastic!!
Reply
:iconmistergrinn:
mistergrinn Featured By Owner Feb 3, 2013
Thank you kindly for the exciting comment!

As someone who can't properly grow one, I'm quite proud of that beard! Thanks again!
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:iconheyriel:
Heyriel Featured By Owner Jan 13, 2013  Student Digital Artist
Oh my, this is amazing! :love:
You made all this in little more than a week? How much did the materials cost? oo
The Hobbit inspired me to try my hand at some costume-crafting as well but I'm nowhere near skilled enough to pull off a full character like that (especially not Thorin with his fur coat which I'd kill for btw) so I think I'm gonna stick to a basic tunic and cloak for now *sigh*
But honestly; The costume you made is made of pur win, I wish I had your skill :la:
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