In addition to your general Fiber arts and sewing, I do a little bit of leatherworking on occassion.
This time, I needed to work on a specific Steampunk costume -- Steampunk Mulan -- based off an artist renditioning thereof.
DH helped me drape out a pattern for the leather bits, and I tested out how the scales would look in muslin and how much of binding I would ned.
Then I took an old leather half hide that DH had for a long time, cleaned it, conditioned it, then let it dry (as it was curling on the ends) The old hide has some distinctive markings, so it'll look a bit more 'weathered'.
I cut out the base pattern for the legguards and started with the scales.
The scales were a bit annoying. I am using a strap end punch to template out each of the scales. However, it does take a bit of hammering with the mallet to really punch out the leather. I took to punching out as much as I could, then using an exacto knife to cut through the rest. I only managed to get half-way through one legguard of scales, before I had to break off from all the mallet pounding.
After I get all of it cut out, the middle of the scales will get 'ridged' so that they won't curl up in the middle.
I can't wait to see how it turns out.