Monday 10 September 2018

What's in the box II - Drukhari Surprise...

The box thing again?!

Welcome to another edition of What's in the box!
Previously on Kaiju Country I posted some images of a whimsical boxed project which I completed in a couple of evenings.  Today's offering took considerably more effort and is back in the land of Warhammer 40,000 - specifically back on the subject of those naughty Drukhari flesh-smiths in The Hex Haemonculus Coven!
It can be said that I have a penchant for 'themed' armies and paraphernalia; rather than pursuing a competitive meta munching list, I prefer to build my projects around what excites me in the hobby and go from there.
I have always loved the Haemonculus Covens and what they represent.  Twisted and sinister, these depraved flesh sculptors spend their unnaturally lengthened lives in search of the perfect form which they work towards with a horrendous amount of unnecessary surgery on less than willing patients!
To assist me in gathering my own experimental slaves, I put together a case.  Presented as a Haemonculus' personal collection of instruments, it's a theatrical, but I think it really represents my own hobby obsessions as much as those of an imaginary evil-doer!
The outside of the case - made to look as though it has been bound with the finest selection of skins...
The rear of the box - all of the strapping and strings were made with red thong to represent sinewy twine.
The binding 'human skin' is featured on the front and side facings, with black reptilian skin covering the larger three.
The box had to look like an exquisitely constructed case, incorporating grisly trophies such as flesh, bone and skins weaved into a functional object.
In this image, you can see that the fastening acts as a carry handle when passed through the hoop to the rear.

Once the fastening bone hook has been passed through the loop, it is drawn up to the lid as the box opens, acting as a stop to hold the case open.
Upon opening the case, you are presented with the decorative facial skin of a worthy adversary.

Sculpted in polymer clay then moulded and cast into latex, this stretched facial skin was then painted and attached to a felt backing board which lies across the first layer of the box.  And yes, the eyes and mouth are stitched shut with thread.  I'm nothing if not thorough...
So despite the rather grisly premise, you will have guessed that this is actually a transport case for all of my themed Drukhari gaming paraphernalia!  The second layer is black EVA foam which my Codex sits on top of (preventing it from damaging the other contents by falling in!)
The next layer is simply the dice shaking tray located in the top left of the box
Under the tray sits the bulk of my gaming items seated within another layer of thick black EVA foam
The bottom layer of EVA foam with cut-outs for all of the items.  The foam has been heat treated and coated for durability.  Beneath that is red felt for a lovely plush finish - see, a torture chest can be snuggly!
As you can see from the dice shaker, Tape measure, dice bag and dice box, the theme for the contents was carried forward from the outer aesthetic.  All of the items were either coated and painted or fashioned from skin coloured faux leather and embellished with paint.

First up is the hand made dice bag which contains some nice black and pink dice which I picked up online.
I was very pleased with the veiny patterning which I used to add some light detailing to all of the items, tying them together.  By the time I'd finished the whole set, I was pretty damn good at adding veiny patterns to just about anything! :)
The dice shaker was a pig to sew as it is double layered with a crimson coloured leatherette for the inside.  I also made it more difficult for myself by deciding that I wanted the crimson thread on the outside!  Once the sewing was complete, I embellished the item with the symbol of the Hex Coven and the aforementioned vein patterning.
Coardboard dice box repainted to match the other items, containing some limited edition Games Workshop skull dice that I've had for years.  They're some of my favourite ever dice; it's such a shame they hate me and always roll 1's!

The tape measure was made by coating a regular cheap measuring tape with paper maché and painting it to resemble dried, cracked skin.  The hold button was painted in a bone colour and heavily varnished.  It still works perfectly and is only slightly diminished by the fact that I couldn't think of a way to coat or paint the metal tape without ruining this functional equipment and making it completely useless!
A shaped cardboard box - lined with felt and painted to match the other items.  This was a perfect fit for my Drukhari cards

The dice rolling tray was also a straightforward felt lined cardstock item.  I always take a dice tray to play games as I hate it when stray dice take out miniatures...
Added just before completion is a small softwood box which I layered with black and red glazes before varnishing to make it look both blood stained and old.  Inside the box are 7 small dice holders which can be used as wound markers on larger models. A selection of skulls from various kits were used to decorate them and also give me something to use when trying to pick them up!

The final offering is a collection of small jars which I collected as I saw them, saving them for my various items which are (from left to right) smaller mottled red dice, older Games Workshop plastic skull shaped wound markers and finally a selection of plastic & glass 'blood crystals' which I use for various functions during games such as command points etc.
Well, I hope you've enjoyed looking through my more whimsical recent posts; rest assured, I'll be returning to full on mini action soon! :)



  1. Yikes! What a grisly box! Seems like you went all homunculus right there. Especially the face is crazy good.

  2. This is one of the coolest overdesigned totebags I've seen :) All of the components are a sweet touch. Years ago when I played I'd be saddened when opponents at game nights showed up with unpainted armies. I assume that feeling is magnified 10 fold when you put so much time and effort into the most mundane of components. The dice probably roll better though :)

    1. Thanks matey! I'm not a competitive player, so I really get a kick out of anything that adds additional depth to my hobby! I just can't get across how satisfying it is to have a fully painted army and a bag or box full of thematic bits and bobs. Just makes you feel so much more invested in your army! Trying to think of something cool to do for the Fisher King and my Skaven now! :)