Courage. It takes courage to be a hero; it even takes courage to be said hero when it’s in the form of a dragon. Like many Game of Thrones fans out there I admire many of the characters on the show but specifically this last season I felt a deep connection with Drogon Targaryen. Sure, he’s a mythical creature, ferocious, terrifyingly unpredictable but he is a very loyal and unique dragon. He is my hero on the show. My husband and brother are also huge Game of Thrones fans, so they chose to portray Tyrion Lannister and Jon Snow. Perfect! I thought to myself, they will help me identify Drogon as said Dragon from the show. In theory, Drogon is the darkest of Daenery’s dragons, he is the leader and has a naturally independent spirit. All these things are what I wanted to communicate within my costume. My idea was to honor a mythical hero.
Being a dragon is no joke. It was hard to combine all the elements and make sure they stayed put as I travelled the dark night in my costume as strangers stared in horror. I even got a faraway wave from Khal Drogo which was very cool! I am extremely appreciative of Tyrion Lannister (My Husband) & Jon Snow (My brother) who stood by me in character all night and united the Game of Thrones element to the unfamiliar viewer. I must note that i did try and talk myself out of Drogon several times and settle for Daenerys, but there is no better goal set when the probability of your costume is 100% unique and original. You know its pieces were created from the depth of your imagination to encompass a unique character. So you know in your heart that one day you’ll show your kids that – Mama was a Dragon, Drogon Targaryen to be exact, and hoping one day they’ll have the courage to be a hero too, even if it’s just for Halloween.
The most important parts to master were his face, chest and wings.
The latex mask which was purchased pre-molded as base latex was painted, airbrushed and metal spike studs were added to show his spikes, holes were cut on both sides of mask so that I could see and breathe (a little important). His horns were Styrofoam cylinders covered with tissue paper and then glued securely, also then airbrushed with acrylic paint. A nail varnish which had an opal tone was then added to give him a scaly tone.
His wings were probably the hardest part, as I needed to measure out plastic rods to insert perfectly to each side and sew under a breathable spandex fabric. I sketched a few drawings, and his each side had two rods that pointed out towards each finger. Picture long hand gloves with a rod on each point of a finger. This allowed it to be like fan, open close, whenever you elevated your arms and opened your hand as if to give a “high five” dragon style. I then spray painted them with a black hammered finish spray paint and inserted two claws within the thumb area. Bending the plastic ever so slightly was key to enable the movement of his large wings.
The chest piece was comprised of 300-400 hand painted plastic spoons. I used 4 to 5 different nail varnishes, including dark royal blues, burgundies, blacks and 4 different types of nail varnish glitters. The spoons were cut and glue gunned piece by piece to embody his large chest and its glorious large scales. It was then glued to a belt that fit the frame of my body to give me the mobility. I used regular plastic spoon untensils and created a pattern that embodied drogons body.
His tail was almost 6 feet in length. Two spikes were sewn and it was light at a pillow. (Would make for an amazing sofa pillow). It was then sewn to an elastic belt that allowed it to swing side to side much like Drogons. I purchased the scale type fabric and then cut out the outlies before sewing it together.
Drogon’s ridged back was made of plexi glass hand painted and spray painted with black and red paint. I chose a thin plexi glass that was easy to cut with an exacto knife and I drew the outline with a sharpie before cutting and painting. Make sure to sketch on two pieces of plexi glass, so you glue the two together when finished. This was then attached to the back of the mask with a small clip and hung lightly as his ridged back.
Finally, his fire was the finishing touch. The fire he blazed to save the Mother of Dragons against her murderous traitors! His fire was made of yellow envelope paper cut in shapes of flamed and one orange LED light wrapped around a clear plexiglass cylinder. I must note what an oxymoron it was to have burnt myself on several occasions with the hot glue gun whilst making his glorious flame. The struggle is real my friends, at least to people like me who use Halloween as a creative outlet!