My first ‘completed’ cosplay was this one of Captain Malcolm Reynolds from the short-lived TV show, Firefly, which I constructed for Armageddon 2017.

Firefly was a show I enjoyed when I first saw it and when thinking of what costume to make as a first attempt, it came to mind. When I noticed that Nathan Fillion (the actor who played Malcolm Reynolds) was going to be at Armageddon, I decided I had to have a go at this costume alongside the construction of my Breen costume (currently abandoned).

I anticipated the hardest part being the ‘browncoat’ that is such an iconic part of the costume. I have no sewing skills and it was a challenge for sure. I started the coat using a faux suede but the hand sewing got the better of me and I was unable to complete it on time. I have some relief in the knowledge that Malcolm Reynolds didn’t always wear the browncoat, so I was a ‘coatless Captain’ at the event where I got many favourable comments from people.

The following photos show some of the construction of the cosplay…

Donor boots and original donor shoes
Boots cut to add to the shoe
Test fit and I’m not that happy with it
Another pair of donor shoes
Finished boots

I was much happier with the style and comfort of the second pair of donor shoes. I was asked a couple of times where I got my boots from, so I think they were successful.


I got the pants from the local Hospice Op Shop and although they were the right colour, they were pleated and the Malcolm reynolds pants were tight fitting… hence the nickname ‘Captain Tightpants’ on the show.

Showing the pleats and loose fit
The pleat area was un-stitched and re-sown by hand resulting in no side pockets. (Note: Some online forums discussing this costume suggest that the pants had no pockets. However, top opening pockets can be seen in some photos, but I didn’t notice until after I’d sewn.) The belt loops were also removed
Completed with brown stripe and suspender buttons added

I thought it was hard to find appropriate material for these, using whatever I could find that remotely resembled what I needed. However, they must’ve turned out ok because when I met Nathan Fillion, he said “nailed the suspenders”, which was good to hear.

Some suitable material was found for the front and shoulder straps
Some elastic for the back and leather to attach to the buttons
The back and shoulder parts laid out before stitching
The completed suspenders

The donor belt was too short for me and had a texture that was wrong but the buckle was ideal. I decided to lengthen it with some soft leather and have the inside facing out. The inside belt leather was too light in colour so I darkened it with acrylic Raw Umber.

The donor belt cut for lengthening and the leather to use
The completed belt
GUN and Holster

Templates were downloaded from the internet and used to cut the parts from a foam floor mat for the gun and a thinner foam for the holster.

Gun parts cut using a box cutter and a coping saw blade
Main parts together, getting templates ready for smaller parts
The gun ready for finishing
The completed gun
Holster template
Holster cut from foam
Gun in completed holster
Unmodified parts

The shirt and the gloves were not altered in any way, but the shirt should really have the breast pocket removed.


Unfinished coat

I didn’t have a clue how to do the coat really, so I just made a pattern going by what I could see in reference images and also using my denim jacket as a size guide.

Pattern and faux suede
Front as it sits now
Back, all hand stitched

Maybe I’ll finish the coat someday…

Armageddon 2017

Here I am at the Armageddon 2017 event…