customs

Minifigures photo
Minifigures

Boldly go where Lego minifigures have not gone before


Set phasers to fun!
Jun 10
// Soul Tsukino
The crew over at Minifigures.com have announced their newest offering of famous faces in mini figure form with four of the crew members of the Starship Enterprise. Star Trek's main players Kirk, Spock, Scotty, and Sulu are no...

Tomopop Original: Creating my own 'Create a Cobra'

May 15 // Soul Tsukino
The figure that I've seen go for the highest prices consistently is one that really doesn't have a name. It was only available, by mail order, for one year in 1993, near the end of the original run of G.I. Joe. It was the "Create a Cobra" figure. (image via) This figure was the Cobra answer to the Steel Brigade figure. You filled out a small form where you gave your character a name, a primary specialty, a secondary specialty, and a few other bits of info about their personality. After a few weeks you got the figure along with a sheet of paper that was a bio with all the info you had filled out for an official dossier. Since the figure was a mail-in available for only a short time, its not a figure that readily comes available on the second hand market like eBay. And boy howdy does its price reflect that. I also think this is the most stupid-looking figure I have ever seen. It's a Crimson Guard Immortal head put onto a TARGAT body, slathered in bubblegum pink, baby blue, and black. This figure seriously looks like it would be a cake topper for a baby shower in 1984. And he is supposed to be THE BAD GUY. In looking at this monstrosity, I literally said to myself that if I tracked down the parts for this, I could make my own figure for a fraction of the price and it would look better than the real thing. So I did. I tracked down a cheap TARGAT figure. I picked the better looking 1989 version. There was a repaint done in 1992, but its color scheme wouldn't look any better for this project than the pink and blue mess that inspired me to write this. For the head I went with the original 1991 Crimson Guard Immortal figure since the later Blue and Silver version is both harder to find and doesn't really match with the body. So let's get this started! First, here is what you'll need. The figure, the head, a small Phillips head screwdriver (Usually found in small screwdriver sets), and a new rubber O-ring. The TARGAT figure itself is not in premium condition, the O-ring is old and stretched out, the knee joints are loose, and the paint on the helmet is worn. Honestly though, it won't matter. If I wanted to I could have bought replacement legs with tighter joints, but I'm fine with it as-is since the TARGAT head doesn't matter and we are replacing the O-ring anyway. First we take the screw driver to the "backscrew," or the small screw that holds the front and back of the chest together. The screw here is rusty, but still in good enough shape not to require a drill to remove.   Once the screw is out, pull apart the chest and break down your figure to its parts. Yup, that's what a Joe figure looks like when it's taken apart. Pull out the old O-ring from its hook and toss it. Take your new O-ring and place it in the small metal hook holding the legs together. Slide the O-ring with the legs attached through the bottom of the waist piece. You probably need to use the screw driver to help feed it through and get it together (This can be a real moment of cussing rage sometimes).   Next, hook the O-ring around the cylinder on the back piece of the figure and pull back a little so that it holds together by itself. Since I am using an O-ring that is slightly smaller than the factory ones, the figure at this point will fly apart easier if not set right. Now comes the "fun" part! Take the chest piece and connect it too the back piece, but not all the way in. Ya need to leave space to get in the arms and head. Remember what I said about the figure wanting to fly apart? This is the point where that can really show itself. Wedge your way into the arm holes with each arm. It takes a little hand dexterity and a few silent prayers to get both arms set without having the whole thing come apart. Once both arms are in place, you can push the chest and back piece together a little more to keep things in place, but again, not completely closed. AND I'LL FORM THE HE- oh wait, wrong 80's show. The heads of G.I. Joe figures from the '80s an '90s are always tricky since some head pieces do not fit with certain body pieces. In this case, since the "Create a Cobra" figure used recycled molds, it's not a problem. The head fits and doesn't wobble around on the body. Now we are ready to finish this bad boy out. Close the front and back chest pieces together and place the screw back in its place. Use the screw driver to make sure the backscrew is actually in the hole that connects the pieces together. Tighten it up (Righty tighty). And we are done! Now, the red paint on his helmet isn't a perfect match to the ones on his gloves and boots, and if you want to get hardcore customizer on it, you can certainly get some paint from the hobby store and go wild. Me, I take 'em as is. Give your new agent of evil a weapon and there ya go! BUT WAIT! Part of the deal with the Create a Cobra figure was having his own bio with name, specialties, and all that cool stuff. But, once again, I found something that is cooler than the goofy sheet of paper that came with the old figures. I just went to Joecustoms.com Filecard Creator. It's quick, easy, and makes more official looking file cards you can download than that grey piece of paper Hasbro would slap together and send you.  The best part of this is, your Create a Cobra doesn't actually have to be a Cobra! Evil sunovagun isn't he? And the cost for this simple little project? $14.23, and you can probably do even better with that since I paid a little more for the headpiece than what individual parts tend to go for in most cases. Sure beats paying 400 bucks for something that looks like it should have been packed with a set of baseball cards.
G.I.Joe photo
Customizing on a budget
Many of you know about those items that are just a smidge outside our regular budgets. Those special items that are cherished by collectors and the people offering to sell said items know how much they are worth. For me, as a...

Bowser Koopa photo
Bowser Koopa

Customizer gives Bowser a sweet airship


Better than that flying clown face
Apr 13
// Soul Tsukino
Creative toy customizer Kodykoala unveiled his newest creation: a one of a kind Bowser Koopa airship. Starting with a Playmobil pirate ship, he went to town removing the sails and adding mast propellers and Koopa cannons...

Flying Speeder Bike photo
Flying Speeder Bike

Star Wars fan takes speeder bike to new heights


Use the force.. of lift
Mar 15
// Soul Tsukino
A Star Wars fan named Adam Woodsworth has taken the Speeder Bike sequence from Return of the Jedi and brought it to life! Combining a Power of the Force Speeder bike from Hasbro and some quadcopter technology, Adam created a...
Ume Toys Geekachu photo
Ume Toys Geekachu

Ume Toys' Geekwok does a bit of cosplaying


Geekachu variant looks like a certain game character; not confirmed for production yet
Mar 10
// Brian Szabelski
Rich Page of Ume Toys has recently painted up one of his Geekwok resin figures in a bit of a cosplay favor. Calling it the Geekachu, the little yellow fellow has a sculpted tail and blushy red cheeks meant to evoke a certain ...
Funko Pop! photo
Funko Pop!

Custom creator Vongeek puts some POP into Wreck-it Ralph


Schweetzness!
Feb 27
// Soul Tsukino
Toy customizer and artist Vongeek debuted her latest creations with her custom Funko Pop! renditions of Vanellope & Ralph from Disney's Wreck-it Ralph. Each of these little cuties is hand crafted to the last detail a...
Minifigures.com offerings photo
Minifigures.com offerings

Minifigures.com scares up its newest offering in The Pumpkin King


All hail the king
Feb 19
// Soul Tsukino
Minifigures.com -- a site specializing in custom Lego minifigures of celebrities, TV show characters, and entertainers -- has dug up its latest figure offering in The Pumpkin King/Jack Skellington from The Nightmare...
Felt Mistress Momo photo
Felt Mistress Momo

Felt Mistress assembles Avatar's Momo for upcoming show


Will be part of Gallery Nucleus' March 7 show
Feb 17
// Brian Szabelski
Gallery Nucleus is playing host to an impressive looking Avatar: The Last Airbender tribute show next month, and Felt Mistress has just revealed her piece for the event. She's made a plush -- of course -- of Momo and the...
Deadpool photo
Crazy like a fox?
PackRatStudios has unleashed a killer new "Movie Concept" Marvel Legends Deadpool. The figure appears to be a fairly by-the-numbers redeco of a Marvel Legends / Infinite Series "Mandroid wave" Stealth Suit Captain America wit...

Fuller's Big Cat Series photo
Fuller's Big Cat Series

Under the Radar: Fuller's Big Cat Series


These ones don't want affection
Jan 31
// Brian Szabelski
Fuller has a new series of custom creations in his shop: The Grrrr... Big Cats Series of figures. Fuller has taken his Grrr character and made it into a 6-inch resin-cast creation, and four of them have been decorated like va...

Tomopop Review: Minifigures.com Freddie Mercury

Jan 29 // Soul Tsukino
Figure Name: Freddie MercuryFigure Maker: Minifigures.comMSRP: £14.95 (US$22.68)Buy it at: Minifigures.com Have I mentioned just how much of a fan of Queen I am? It is like a gift from the Gods (or my bosses). Already just getting it out of the shipping box I'm pleased with how professional this is done. The blister package is nice and secure, the card looks amazing and has a bio of Freddie on the back. And they even included a "Care Guide" for taking care of your minifigure. Looks like I'm going to need more pizza! Opening up the package, I looked over the figure and just as the company claims, it is a full 360 design of the costume he wore for the 1986 live concert at Wembley Stadium (look it up, it's a powerful show). The joints are nice and tight and the parts are firmly set in place. However I was in for another pleasant surprise when breaking him down I found hidden under his hair that he had a second "singing" face! Bonus points to Minifigures for that. He comes with a mic (of course!) so you can pose him belting out notes to your hearts delight. Wait. This isn't right. There we go! BTW: You don't want to mess with the security he hired. As you can see, I love this little figure. It is very well made, the art design of both the figure, the card, and the guide that came with it are great! If you are big into LEGO, I recommend giving Minifigures a look and pick up some famous faces for your collection. You will not be disappointed. [A huge thank you to Minifigures for providing us with this review sample!]
LEGO photo
DAAAAAH Di Dah Dah!
A few weeks ago I was able to do a story on Minifigures, an England-based website where you could buy celebrity LEGO figures. I was happy to see that Queen frontman Freddie Mercury was one of the figures you could buy. I beca...

MaloApril customs photo
MaloApril customs

MaloApril shows off a pretty zombie and a rocker chick


Pink-eye never looked so pretty
Jan 27
// Kristina Pino
MaloApril recently finished up two custom Dunnys as a commission and, as always, I find myself super jealous of anyone owning her pieces. The first is a zombie with fantastic eyes (I love the lashes) and decked out with a sku...
life-like 3D figure scans photo
life-like 3D figure scans

Universal Studios Japan can turn you into an Evangelion figure


Full body 3D scan makes for a surprisingly realistic figure
Jan 25
// Jeremy Emerje Crocker
3D scanners aren't anything new, Gentle Giant used them over a decade ago to make Jakks Pacific's WWF/WWE Real Scan figures. But with time comes innovation and now anyone can have a figure made of themselves if they know wher...
vinyl photo
vinyl

Custom Munny maker takes the women of Batman to adorable levels


The streets of Gotham just got cute!
Jan 24
// Soul Tsukino
Illustrator and vinyl customizer Shaun Nakasome has added to his work of custom crafted Munnys and Mighty Muggs figures with his new works for Batgirl, Poison Ivy, and Harley Quinn. These adorable little cherubs are 4" t...
Avengers photo
The damage to Starscream was less severe than sticking him in the Bayformers movies
Pack Rat Studios has crafted a custom "Hulkbuster Ultron" and, if you like it, you can bid on it via ebay right now (or rather bid within the next 4 days). The custom appears to be kit-bashed from a Transformers "Hunt for the...

Star Wars photo
Star Wars

Landspeeder made of 3000 bricks, sold at nearest cantina


At least they got a fair price.
Jan 18
// Oansun
Not every Lego MOC I see is great enough to be almost ready for stores, but Aaron Fiskum's X34 Landspeeder could get there. It's a very impressive build; all the sides and angles look smooth. You even get a blown engine piece...
Ume Toys photo
Ume Toys

This Earl's lemon styles are off the charts


He is within his rights.
Jan 17
// Rachael Chambers
The Earl of Lemongrab is one intense dude. This custom Cranston Fellows Jnr piece shows off his fervor with some detailed sculpting. Sitting on an intimidating looking throne and ready to judge, he holds his glow in the dark ...
Muppets in LEGO photo
Muppets in LEGO

German LEGO builder makes Swedish Chef from American Muppet Show


Muppet Show goes Lego
Jan 14
// Soul Tsukino
German LEGO Customizer Andreas Weissenburg has started the new year off right with his custom LEGO created scenes from Jim Henson's Muppet Show from the '70s. He has skillfully put together the iconic Swedish Chef, complete w...
Pillow photo
Pillow

8-bit Space Invaders can come to YOUR home


Net yourself a crab!
Jan 14
// Soul Tsukino
ThinkGeek can make your old school gamer dreams come true with an officially licensed Space Invaders Crab plush pillow. Selling for US$29.99, this 17.75" x 13" x 4" pillow memorializes the monumental Tomohiro Nishikado video ...

Tomopop About Town: Custom plushies at Kollision Con 2015

Jan 09 // Tianxiao Ma
The header is a shot of Love You Sew's booth with showrunner Muggy. She started as a cosplay enthusiast who created little plush toys as accessories for her costumes (and for friends). Eventually she decided to make a business out of it, focusing on plushes that can go with popular cosplay characters. I don't know why more people haven't thought of that! What drew my eye was the fact that Muggy was dressed as Ragyo from Kill la Kill. I might have made some awkward noises when I saw the plush Ryuko and Satsuki sitting on her table. These catbug plushies from Bravest Warriors were my second favorite. The other offerings were also cartoon-based: Hambo and Gunter from Adventure Time, and Bill Cipher from Gravity Falls. Next up is DragonFly's DreamShop, who had a set of plush dragons both large and small. As you can see above, the big ones were pretty darn big - very huggable as well. The black one features ornate eyes and a nice contrasting cloth on the underside. On this one you can see how they actually have a few points of articulation. There were all sorts of other toys and trinkets at the booth, but the plush dragons really stood out. There are more photos of both booths in the gallery, so check those out. And maybe click those links to their Facebook pages while you're at it!
Tomopop About Town photo
Sure to bolster your cosplay
Anime conventions are great, aren't they? You go to see the cosplay (the good and the bad), maybe visit that same "Understanding Evangelion" panel that's at every con, and blow lots and lots of money at the vendor hall. Well,...

LEGO photo
LEGO

Lego Nutella art piece is too sweet


Just don't chew on the pieces
Jan 09
// Lynnette Cantos
Admit it: when you have a Nutella jar accessible in your kitchen pantry, you eat it all through one sitting with the same spoon. Or is that just me? Guilty pleasure aside, Lego artist Brucewaynelego created this recent a...
Gashapon photo
Gashapon

University art students create Hiragana gashapon


Gotta write them all!
Jan 08
// Soul Tsukino
A small group of art students at Musashino Art University decided to come together for a final project for a typography class. What came out of this collective were gashapon capsules (and dispensers!) on the first character i...
LEGO photo
LEGO

New website lets you make customized and famous Lego minifigs


Minifigures.com has your hook up
Jan 02
// Soul Tsukino
A new website has launched dedicated to custom LEGO Minifigures called, well, Minifigures. Minifigures prides itself on the fact they don’t use stickers or vinyl decals and all of their designs stay true to the LEGO Min...
designer photo
designer

Mucklebones will eat your soul


Or at least damage it a little
Dec 29
// Rachael Chambers
Alright, so maybe there won't be any soul stealing, but this little guy is so creepy cute it doesn't really matter. Customized from a Pocket Slideshow 'Sproot' toy (originally designed by Chris Ryniak), this sofubi has been c...
Bjornik x Ketner collab photo
Bjornik x Ketner collab

Otto Bjornik, Jeremiah Ketner collab on two custom figures


7-inch Munny, Trikky bear the hallmarks of both artists' styles
Dec 18
// Brian Szabelski
I'm a fan of Otto Bjornik and Jeremiah Ketner's work, so when news of a collaboration between the two emerged, I was immediately interested. Otto and Jeremiah have painted up a 7-inch Munny and 7-inch Trikky in a mish-mash of...
custom vinyl photo
custom vinyl

Fuller working on a mean little Groot custom


Tiny, but fierce
Dec 11
// Kristina Pino
Fuller showed off a work-in-progress image of a Mighty Mugg custom he's working on, destined to become Groot. So far, he's got some sculpting done for the head, and opted for a fierce expression for the little guy. I generall...
Snow Dumpling photo
Snow Dumpling

Chill out with the Snow Dumpling


New custom from Shawnimals coming to myplasticheart Friday
Dec 10
// Brian Szabelski
Shawnimals and myplasticheart, in conjunction with Squibbles Ink, have a new holiday custom ready for you: the Snow Dumpling! Yes, Shawnimals' Dumpling is now in a festive flavor (though you still shouldn't eat it), decked ou...
Gunpla photo
Gunpla

Don't be fooled, this is an amazing custom Gundum kit


Yeah, I still can't always adjust my eyes to see it as 3D
Dec 05
// Jeremy Emerje Crocker
One of the most exciting things about this hobby is seeing others thinking outside the box. Sure, anyone can slap paint on a model kit, and some do an amazing job at it, but then you get pieces like this that are just too epi...
Un-American Activity photo
Un-American Activity

Un-American Activity spotted Friday at Toy Art Gallery


New show featuring work from Doktor A, Jon Paul Kaiser and Seymour
Nov 12
// Brian Szabelski
Attention citizens of Los Angeles: we are receiving reports of Un-American Activity that will be going down this Friday at Toy Art Gallery (7571 Melrose Ave.). Three artists from across the Atlantic -- Jon Paul Kaiser, Doktor...
DCon '14: Jeremiah Ketner photo
DCon '14: Jeremiah Ketner

DesignerCon 2014: Jeremiah Ketner


Nov 10
// Brian Szabelski
Jeremiah Ketner's latest works were on display at DesignerCon 2014. His style has the same, vibrant-toned fantasy feel we've come to expect, but he's got a few new customs alongside his new illustrations. In particular, I'm d...
Tolleson, Crooks, Catlin photo
A fantastic mix of designer toys from three amazing artists
The corner booth at DesignerCon that housed Scott Tolleson, Lana Crooks, and Carson Catlin had a eye-catching combination of plushes and figures, both original and customized. It also had several tantalizing con-exclusives av...

DesignerCon 2014: jellykoe

Nov 10 // Natalie Kipper
DCon: jellykoe photo
Another citizen of Tox City takes the spotlight
I'm not going to lie; I have a soft spot for jellykoe's Tox City line. The series of plushes were a big success on Kickstarter and I adored their New York Comic Con exclusive addition as well. Kelly and J. Spencer Shull broug...

Martin Hsu photo
Martin Hsu

DesignerCon 2014: Martin Hsu


Dragon Boy Strikes Back and Dragon Dog Blacky too!
Nov 10
// Rio McCarthy
Martin Hsu's Dragon Boy is one of my favorite characters in the designer toy world. I love all of the different forms he's been seen on, and I love Martin's art as a whole. A few other artists have shown love to Dragon Boy at...
JPK Wreck-It Ralph photo
JPK Wreck-It Ralph

Jon Paul Kaiser's latest custom piece wrecks it


Wreck-It Ralph Muttpop
Nov 07
// Brian Szabelski
Jon Paul Kaiser is on the road to this wekeend's DesignerCon, but he's apparently finished up one more custom before the show: a Muttpop Tequilla refashioned to look like Wreck-It Ralph. It actually is a great choice of platf...
Designer Con photo
Designer Con

Designer Con 2014: Tasha Zimich has a beautiful customized Camilla d'Errico figure


No Ordinary Love statue in a custom colorway
Nov 05
// Tianxiao Ma
If you're headed to Designer Con this weekend, maybe stop by Canadian-based artist Tasha Zimich's booth (#911). Among other things she'll be showing off a one-of-a-kind customized statue based on Camilla d'Errico's No Ordinar...
Groot chainsaw carving photo
Groot chainsaw carving

I am Groot and you can too by watching this video


They say she carved it from a larger piece of wood
Oct 09
// Tianxiao Ma
This isn't so much a collectible as it is a unique art piece, but why should that stop anyone from lusting after it? What you're looking at is a wood carving of Groot from Guardians of the Galaxy, made by artist Griffon Ramse...
Dunny Monsters photo
Dunny Monsters

Get your scare on with Mikie Graham's Dunny Monster Series


Halloween-themed custom Dunnys available in October
Oct 06
// Brian Szabelski
Time for a little spookiness in your life? Well, Mikie Graham has put together the Dunny Monster series, a set of 30 different custom Dunnys with a Halloween theme to them. He's created 15 characters in total that he'll be re...

Fuller's Warrior King rises

Sep 26 // Brian Szabelski
Fuller's Warrior King photo
Impressive custom Paw is a thing of beauty
We haven't heard much from Fuller for a while, as he's been buried in a lot of work. But what's he been up to? Apparently part of that time has been working on this impressive custom Paw, the Warrior King. Made for a client w...

Vinyl Thoughts 5 photo
Vinyl Thoughts 5

A peek at the customs of Vinyl Thoughts 5


Show opens in Dallas on Thursday evening
Sep 23
// Brian Szabelski
Just a quick reminder: the Vinyl Thoughts 5: MADL Makers show is this Thursday in Dallas, Texas, and Shelby over at Vinyl Thoughts has sent us photos of three of the customs in the show. The custom 5-inch MADLs are:  &l...
Attack on Titan photo
Attack on Titan

Stare in awe at this Attack on Titan custom diorama by Team Revolver


The buildings are just as impressive as the figures
Sep 15
// Jeremy Emerje Crocker
Japanese competitive modeling group Team Revolver is making waves with their latest completed diorama based on Attack on Titan. The the full scratch built piece includes multiple 1/35 scale figures taking on a pair of hu...

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