What was it like making your own costumes back in the day, before DVDs and screencaps and detailed instructions? One fan strove to make his own C-3PO costume soon after Star Wars came out, and faced major challenges.

Over at the RPF forum, "WarPig" writes:

The prop/costume maker at that time had minimal resources for reference: "fan publications" (Famous Monsters type periodicals), official movie programs (yes! you could buy souvenir programs at the movies!) and if you were lucky, a major magazine such as Life would do a pictorial story. If you were *really* lucky, one of the fan periodicals would do a special magazine release. It so happened that Star Wars got a dedicated magazine. IIRC, it was 64 pages of grainy photos (some even in color!) and short articles. It had perhaps a dozen pictures of 3PO, of which maybe four had enough "detail" to be useful.


Another side note: for the benefit of the members who were not born yet in '77 (about 80%), the 15% that were between the ages of two and five, and the 3% that weren't into SW until later in life: there was no such thing as sharing digital information. Molding, casting, machining and fiberglassing were attainable only by the rich, and vcr's had yet to make their way into homes. Movies were *not* released for sale a few months after release; a movie stayed in theatres until ticket sales went down, then it slowly faded away in the second and third-run theatres. Once the movie went away, that was it.


His whole saga of trying to create an accurate 3PO costume in 1977 is worth reading. [The RPF via Adam Savage on Twitter]