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  1. The Sith Lord Detachment (SLD) is the official Film-Canon Sith Lord and Dark Side of the Force user costuming unit of the 501st Legion; specifically, the costumes of Darth Vader, Darth Sidious (Emperor Palpatine), Darth Maul, Darth Tyranus (Count Dooku), and Kylo Ren. The Detachment is comprised of some of the best and brightest costumers in the 501st Legion that are here to share their love of their favorite Dark Side characters while offering aid to those wishing to join the ranks of the 501st Legion as Sith Lords or Dark Side users from the STAR WARS films. The Detachments' Mission Statement and goal in the 501st Legion: "To serve the needs of both 501st members and persons new to Star Wars costuming who hope to join the 501st Legion. A detachment is chartered around a specific costume or family of costumes that share commonality." If you are looking for information and knowledge regarding any other Sith Lords or Dark Side users under the Legends (formerly Expanded Universe) brand or that are animated/comic/video game canon (i.e. Revan, Nihilus, Talon, etc.) please visit our sister Detachment, The Flagship Eclipse. Please keep in mind that this Detachment is merely a resource whose membership is worldwide and based on like-costume types. Official membership to this Detachment is granted by having your film-canon Sith Lord or Dark Side costume approved by your local Garrison or Outpost; essentially, you do not join the Legion by joining the Detachment, you join the Detachment by joining the Legion via your local Garrison or Outpost. For more information on unit types and the operations of the 501st Legion, please check out the Legion Charter. For more specific information regarding the Sith Lord Detachment and other common questions, please see return to the Welcome Section.
  2. After registering an account on the forum (you can register here.), we recommend that you review the pinned topic, "New to the SLD? Basic Info/Access can be found here" in the Introduce yourself here section, then start your own topic and tell us about yourself!
  3. You can register here. Registration is automatic via email validation (not by Administrator approval). Once you sign up, you should receive an email. Follow the steps in the email to complete registration. If you have any problems or do not receive a validation email please feel free to contact us at staff@501stsithlords.com. Please note: Some email domains do not "get along with" the forum software, and emails from our system are never received. If that happens, please contact us via email; we will be happy to validate your account for you! Also note: If you already have an account, you CANNOT use your email to log into the forum. You MUST use your original login username; there is no need to re-register. If you are having problems with your password, use the password recovery feature. If all else fails, please contact us at the above email.
  4. The Welcome forum serves as a general information and FAQ section for the Sith Lord Detachment. As such, it is visible to the public (non-registered users with no log-in required). This is also why certain links in this section may not work if you have not registered or are not logged into the forum. In order to view all the information the Detachment has to offer, especially the information concerning the costumes, we invite you to register as soon as possible. "We would be honored if you would join us!"
  5. The Detachment's Officers (also known as staff, admin, or moderators) are listed by forum name in the header section of the Welcome forum. Once registered, please click a user name to view each member's profile if you wish to contact them via Personal Message (PM). You can also reach the staff by emailing staff@501stsithlords.com. As outlined by the Legion Charter and the Survival guides, the following describes each Officer's role within the Sith Lord Detachment. Detachment Leader (DL): The DL is elected by the Detachment membership. The DL is the chief administrator of the Detachment and is responsible for the operations of the Detachment and managing research and information about costume creation and construction. The DL also appoints any necessary Detachment officers and staff. DLs are supervised and represented on the Council by the LMO. A DL has the following responsibilities: Verify membership status in the Legion with the approved costume, and grant the appropriate access for active Legion members in good standing to detachments areas. Monitor and moderate the Detachment forums, appointing additional moderators as needed. Ensure that the Detachment Web site is properly maintained and the content therein is accurate and up to date. Participate on the Legion forums and advise other DLs and GMLs as needed. Maintain contact with the LMO and report any issue or controversy related to costuming. Executive Officer (XO): The role of the Executive Officer within the Detachment is varied and dependant on the Detachment Leader. General duties which may be required of a Detachment Executive officer may include by are not limited to: Directing Detachment merchandising runs in the absence of another appointed member by the DL. Acting on behalf of the Detachment Leader. Various other duties as assigned. Detachment WebMaster (DWM): The role of the Web Master within the Detachment is creating, maintaining, and designing all aspects of the Detachment's web presence including but not limited to Web Site creation and maintenance/Forums/Signature bars and banners/hooks and plug-in installations for the Detachment Forums. Graphic Design. Detachment Merchandise and Branding Officer (DMBO): The role of the Merch Officer within the Detachment is organizing and directing Detachment Merchandise procurement and creation. Detachment Public Relations Officer (DPRO): The role of the PR Officer is to assist the DL in promoting the Detachment to the public and also may be called upon by the Legion PRO to assist in the public promotion of the Legion. Detachment Captain of the Guard (DCotG): The role of the Captain of the Guard is to act on behalf of the Detachment Leadership to moderate the forums and settle disputes within the Detachment. Other officers or moderators are appointed as needed.
  6. The term CRL is an acronym for "Costume Reference Library." The costume reference library is the library of standards or requirements for each costume in the 501st Legion. The standards are written by the Detachment, approved by the Detachment Leader, then sent to the LMO (Legion Membership Officer) for final approval (in some cases to the Legion Command/Council for ratification). Images are collected directly from Detachment members whose costumes exemplify the CRL requirements and are posted with the standards to demonstrate what the costume should look like. (Note: we do this because we are not authorized to use LucasFilm (LFL) images in the CRL) Every completed CRL will appear on the main web site of the 501st legion: Organized by Detachment Affiliation Organized by Costume Type and Name The Sith Lord Detachment covers the Film-Canon Sith Lords and Dark Side users; currently, there are 16 costumes covered under the SLD that can be approved. Here is the link to our section of the CRL. List of costumes covered by the SLD: Darth Vader (Armored): ROTS / ANH / ESB / ROTJ Darth Vader (Pre-Armor): ROTS Darth Maul: TPM / Black Sun Darth Tyranus: AOTC / ROTS / TCW(sleepwear) Darth Sidious/Emperor Palpatine: Pre-scarring(TPM/AOTC) / Black Sith Robes(ROTS/ESB/ROTJ) / Brown Battle Robes(ROTS) / Red Senate Robes(ROTS) Kylo Ren: TFA / Starkiller Base TPM=The Phantom Menace AOTC=Attack of the Clones ROTS=Revenge of the Sith ANH=A New Hope ESB=The Empire Strikes Back ROTJ=Return of the Jedi TFA=The Force Awakens) Advanced Standards: Occasionally some Detachments will create their own advanced standards which are a little bit higher than the Legion as a whole. These standards are NOT required for membership; however, they do give the members, who WANT to upgrade their costumes, a specific set of guidelines to help them achieve their goals. Often times these people are called "elite costumers;" this is a misnomer. It is simply that they wanted to upgrade their costumes to a level that they are comfortable with. The 501st Legion Command has stated that it does not want the term elite used for costumers who use the expanded Reference Libraries. However, the terms "artisan class" or Master Class and other terms have been approved. The Sith Lord Detachment does have two sets of advanced standards (Dark Lord and Emperor Status) which can be found once joining our community (as stated in the CRL).
  7. No. The Sith Lord Detachment (SLD) is merely a costuming resource: a forum to house collective costuming knowledge gathered from great minds who love the film-canon Sith Lords or Dark Side users for the expressed purpose of aiding others in their costuming endeavors by passing on that knowledge. Members are allowed to engage in private transactions with each other in order to obtain various costume parts, and offerings from members can be found in the General Store section of the forum; however, the SLD itself is not an online store from which you can purchase costumes or costume components. See also: Where can I get a completed costume and/or components?
  8. Unfortunately, there is no "one stop shop" for any of these costumes. So here are some general tips when researching: -Many of the officially licensed complete costumes (especially prior to 2015) are not even approved into the Legion because they are not meant to be very accurate: they are meant to be an elaborate Halloween type costume for the average fan and not for a member of LFL's preferred Imperial Costuming Club; moreover, more recent officially licensed costumes (ex. like those from ANOVOS) may also still require alterations before the costume can be approved - when in doubt, register and read up on the licensed costume or inquire about it PRIOR to purchasing! -You should be wary of sites that advertise costumes in standard sizes (non-tailored) - these costumes require many of the components to be fitted and built for you to some degree, something you cannot get from a generically sized costume. -Just because someone advertises something as "501st approved" does make it so. Something can only be "501st approved" if your local Membership Liaison says it is approved after assessing that it is up to the current standards and fits correctly on YOU. -Make sure to compare it to the CRL or other recent costumers components. -When in doubt about something, post a question on here and ask for input. You will find a lot of information about where to obtain various components for the costumes once you start reading the forum, especially the Work-in-Progress (WIP) sections of the forum for each costume.
  9. Your Sith Lord or Dark Side costume with not be evaluated for 501st membership by this Detachment or its Staff. This community is just a means to get your costume ready for approval. Costume approval is done at your local level by your Garrison or Outpost Membership Liaison (or other designated officer). Once your costume is ready to be approved, you will need to fill out the online Membership Application. Your local Membership Liaison will be notified, and will contact you for pictures of your costume. You can also reach out to them proactively to provide pictures (if you have not already joined your local unit's forum and started participating with them - this is generally encouraged while you are building your costume). For more information regarding your local unit and how to find it, see: How do I find my local unit (Garrison/Outpost)? For more information regarding the approval process, see: Submitting your costume to your local unit for 501st Membership
  10. Please remember that any Detachment in the 501st Legion acts purely as a resource for its assigned costumes and is not actually part of the official command structure as our outreach and membership is worldwide. In order to join the Legion, you must join your local unit (Garrison or Outpost) since these units are based on geography; as such this unit is comprised of the members of the Legion you will likely be costuming with on a regular basis. Want to know how to find your local unit and who to get in contact with? Locate your Unit. You are strongly encouraged to also sign up on your unit's forums to introduce yourself and get to know them while you are building your costume. This way you can become familiar with how they organize events as well as get a feel for what it is like to costume at a 501st event - you do not want your first time suiting up to be the very first event you have ever attended, much less without knowing any of your other Garrison/Outpost mates beforehand. It makes your approval and membership to the unit a lot easier and more enjoyable. For more information regarding the approval process, see: Submitting your costume to your local unit for 501st Membership See also: Who approves my costume for 501st membership?
  11. The Legion has put together this page on the main site to detail what is required of you in order to have your costume approved: Approval Guideline The key things to remember when taking photos for your Membership Liaison to review that could speed up the assessment time of your costume: include at least the 5 basic full length photos (front, back, each side, and helmet/makeup off) if you know the details are going to be harder to see in the full length photos, take close up photos of the details make sure your photos are high resolution (so the details can be seen) and that you are in a well lit environment --- dark pictures do not do anyone any good take your time when suiting up and make sure everything is placed correctly and in the right order - do not rush with the photos or you may find yourself suiting up again to retake pictures it is best to try to have someone help you take pictures and suit up to ensure all of the above For more information regarding your local unit and how to find it, see: How do I find my local unit (Garrison/Outpost)? See also: Who approves my costume for 501st membership?
  12. First, you have to keep in mind that all officers throughout the 501st Legion are volunteers who do this in their spare time after doing all their daily stuff in real life. While approval is not expected to take longer than 2 weeks, it can sometimes happen the same day you submit; there are many factors that come into play: The size of your local unit. The number of new recruits in your local unit. The number of Membership Liaisons in your local unit. How familiar your Membership Liaison is with the costume you have submitted, and how busy he/she is with everything else in their life and the unit. How easy your photographs show the details of the costume. If your Membership Liaison decides to confer with fellow Membership Liaisons for additional insight/feedback. To name a few factors anyway... We know it can be frustrating to have to wait even more after your build took so long to complete, but you still have to be patient with them and you will be approved before you know it!
  13. If you just received your Legion ID (in our case: SL-ID or DS-ID) in your letter of approval, CONGRATULATIONS!!!! :salute: Please ensure that your profile field on this forum is completely filled out (Garrison, Legion ID, approved costume, link to your 501st profile) and request Detachment member access in this thread: Detachment Member Access. You can also request an add to the Detachment Roster in your 501st profile on the main 501st forums: www.501st.com/forum. To do this, first make sure that you have registered on the main 501st forums. Once you have logged on, look at the menu to the left side of the screen: select "Membership DB" and then select "YOUR PROFILE DATA" and then look for the edit buttons in your profile. Add yourself to the membership roster of the Sith Lord Detachment****; the Detachment Leader will then approve it later. This will be done automatically for you by the Detachment Leader after you request Detachment member access on this forum if you have not done so. If you have a Legends (formerly Expanded Universe) or an animated/comic/video game Canon Sith Lord or Dark Side costume, you are still granted additional access on this forum. You can request access here: Flagship Eclipse Member Access; however, please be aware that you are officially a Detachment Member of The Flagship Eclipse. ****You must be a member on this forum and remain active (log in at least once per year) in order to remain on the official Detachment Roster in the 501st Legion Database which allows you to vote in elections, and remain in the Detachment Member group on this forum.
  14. Approval of a costume into the 501st Legion is essentially broken up into two aspects: the accuracy of each individual costume component & how well each component (i.e. the costume as a whole) fits on the individual. The following are the two main reasons regarding why buying a 501st approved costume does not necessarily mean it will be approved as-is for you: 1) the costume standards may have changed since the costume was first approved on the original owner 2) depending on the costume, if you are not the exact height, weight, and build of the original owner, the costume will not fit you in the same manner There is nothing wrong with buying a previously approved costume - yes, sometimes they can be approved as-is with no modifications, but this should not be expected nor be considered the norm. A majority of the time at least a few things always need to be fixed, modified, adjusted, or replaced either due to costume standards or general fit of the costume on its new owner. This is just something that we wish to make you understand and consider when buying such a costume, and not be caught by surprise when you submit it for approval.
  15. The Detachment, as an official unit of the 501st Legion is powerless to help you if you order something from a vendor either inside or outside the Legion/Garrison or Detachment. ___________________________________________________________________________ The Legion Charter says: The Legion does not endorse or manage the creation or sale of props, costumes, costume parts, or materials by anyone for sale to others. The Legion will not intervene in private sales or transactions of non-Legion merchandise or products. Legion rules do not extend to any disputes related to these matters. ___________________________________________________________________________ Although most vendors are reliable there are a few who are not, and have a bad reputation for poor customer service, non delivery of items or in some cases recasting another person's work. It is HIGHLY RECOMMENDED that you do your homework. Ask other members if they have had a consistently good experience with a particular vendor ESPECIALLY if the person selling is located on E-Bay or other sites. Remember, it's your job to make sure that the vendor is honest and has integrity and is selling something what you would be proud to own. The 501st Leadership is powerless to help you if you fall prey to an unscrupulous vendor. Also remember that even some LucasFilm licensed costumes aren't necessarily approveable for membership. The reason is that they were created for the general public and may not fall in line with the high standards of the 501st Legion. The best thing you can do is research a costume extensively from the ground up (on a forum such as this one) before ordering various parts and components.
  16. Canon Canon as it relates to the STAR WARS Universe as a whole is used to define which set of stories are considered true and part of the official continuity (official history/documentation of in-universe events). The canon universe consists of the STAR WARS live-action films, The Clone Wars and Rebels TV series, and any other stories (novels, shorts, comics, games, etc.) that were produced AFTER Disney acquired LucasFilms in 2012. Anything prior to then release in any of those media are now considered non-canon/unofficial and are collectively under the Legends brand - previously the Legends was known as the Expanded Universe which was actually canon as LucasFilms had different tiers/levels of canon; therefore, it was simply not on the same level of continuity as the live-action films or TV series, but still regarded as "official." Again, this is no longer the case, but merely a bit of the history. Canon can also have an additional meaning with respect to costuming and the 501st Legion: keeping true to the original costume/character as it was presented and portrayed in the media it was originally released (regardless of whether the media is considered canon or not). Essentially, adding your own personal touch and customizations to a Legion approved costume/character would make it non-canon. ___________________________________________ Screen accuracy The Legion's definition: the term "Screen Accurate" is tossed about very loosely these days. There are two sides of the field on this topic. One side will tell you that Screen Accurate can only be from Screen used items, or Lineage. The other will tell you it is in the details and craftsmanship, or build. For the 501st your costume must look professional which requires a good build, fit, and function. Remember, the real costumes were built for a movie, not really to stand the test of time. To mimic every detail may be within your realm, but it may not wear well or be ideal for costuming several hours at a time or numerous times throughout a year. Remember, the 501st is a costume organization that has its standards set at a reachable level. To take your costume to the next level is purely choice. The Costume Reference Library (CRL) is built around the basis that anyone with the desire and the dedication can make and wear a Sith Lord or Dark Side costume of his or her choice. The terms Screen accuracy vs Prop accuracy as they relate specifically to the Sith Lord Detachment: You will find that on many other forums the terms screen accurate and prop accurate are one in the same and used interchangeably. This is NOT the case on this forum; We make a distinction between the two. We define a costume or costume component as being screen accurate if it replicates the look the viewer sees on the big screen down to the minute detail. We define a costume or costume component as being prop accurate if it shares lineage to the original prop used on set during filming, or if it is made from the exact same material as the original prop, or was sewn/manufactured in the same manner as the original prop, or if it is the same real world part that the costuming department found in order to make the original prop (hence the term "found part"), etc. The Sith Lord Detachment as a whole is focused more on screen accuracy than it is prop accuracy. We try to bring what we see on the screen and how we see it on screen to life - in real life, we are not on a movie set where one can yell "Cut! Take 2!", there are no camera angles or movie magic tricks to make something look different than how it actually is, there is no movie lighting to hide this or highlight that, etc. That means that we are not really striving to have all of the parts on our costumes exactly like the original movie prop, but when people see our costumes in person, they look exactly how the original prop APPEARED to look under movie setting conditions. Here are four examples to better illustrate the differences and why we focus more on screen accuracy: 1) Colors and set lighting: the gunmetal grey paint on Vader's mask was very light when viewed on set, but due to set lighting, it appeared much darker in the final film. Therefore, painting helmets with a much darker gunmetal grey (than was used on the original) in order to replicate the look the original had in the final film, by our definitions, is screen accurate, but not prop accurate. 2) Lineage: If you found extraordinary reference photos for the Emperor's cane, and you sculpted a cane from scratch such that when you were finished, the cane matched the reference photos and de facto the original cane in every aspect, it would be screen accurate but would not have any lineage to the original prop. Conversely, if you were to cast a cane from the mold they used to create the original cane or a mold made from by casting the original cane, it would have lineage to the original cane and would be prop accurate (and in all likelihood screen accurate as well). 3) Materials used: If you found some type of cotton or synthetic blend material for the Pre-Armor Vader hooded robe and by the time you finished constructing it, it matched the original wool prop in every detail (color, texture, sheen, weight, etc.) it would not be prop accurate, but it most certainly would be screen accurate. This is a very important aspect for our costuming purposes - the actual material does not matter; we do not care what is actually is, as long as it looks exactly like it should given the material the part was originally constructed with/in. 4) Found parts: If you felt that the Frank Thomas Titan Touring Boot 101's were out of your price range for Darth Maul footwear, and you took some reference photos down to a cobbler and he/she matched every detail of the Titan (regardless if he/she constructed it with leather or not - see #3), you would have a screen accurate Darth Maul boot, but it, of course, would not be prop accurate. Screen accuracy is what this community is oriented towards and strives for in its costuming endeavors. This is the methodology that went into constructing the baseline standards within the Sith Lord Detachment CRL. This is not meant to come off as looking down on other communities or people who have different definitions of the two, or those who are oriented towards a different standard of accuracy; nor is it meant that our definition is correct and all others are wrong. It is simply our viewpoint and how we crafted our approach to costuming in this community; thus, knowing that could save you some confusion during your time spent researching on our forum.
  17. Have a question about the Sith Lord Detachment or in general that has not been covered? Check out the Detachment Discussion section to see if your question has already been asked, or if not, start a new topic and ask! Have a question relating more to the actual forum that has not been covered? Check out the Forum Help section and ask away!
  18. “But they were all of them deceived. For another CRL was made. In the land of Northern Alabama, in the fires of the SLD, the Detachment Leader LDR forged in secret a master CRL to control all others. And into this CRL, he poured his knowledge, his attention to detail, and his will to dominate all costume approvals. One CRL to rule them all.”

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