Tips & Tutorial for Converting 3D Clothes (from 1 Figure to Another)

Ever wonder how to get those lovely Victoria 4 clothes to fit other figures?  Well, here are a few sure-fire tips to get those clothes to work on other figures!

Clothing ConversionHere’s how to convert clothes from one 3D figure (such as Victoria 3) to another (such as Victoria 4).  I’m going to give you the easy way and the hard way.  :-)  All of these instructions assume that you use Smith Micro’s Poser software and that you have at least an intermediate understanding of how to use the software.  These are some of my tips.  There may be a easier or better way.  PLEASE feel free to chime in with other ideas by leaving a comment. I am very happy to add/delete items in this tutorial / tip sheet to make it easier for folks to understand.

The *EASIEST* way is to convert 3D clothes …

1. Buy Crossdresser or Wardrobe Wizard licenses and get the software. (I have no affiliation with them and don’t receive any sort of kick-back.)
– Crossdresser is here (software is free; the licenses cost money):
http://www.evilinnocence.com/store/shop-by-category/crossdresser.html
http://www.evilinnocence.com/crossdresser
– Wardrobe Wizard comes with Poser 8+ but you can buy it for earlier versions as well as figure licenses here:
http://www.philc.net/WardrobeWizard.php
http://www.philc.net/store_WW_Extra_Figs.php

2. Convert the clothes from one figure to another by following the instructions for the specific software.
Help File for Wardrobe Wizard: http://www.philc.net/WW2_help.php
Instructions for Crossdresser: http://www.evilinnocence.com/xd-conversion-tutorial/

~~~LAZY BREAK:  OK, let’s say you’re pooped and need a nap.  Well, now’s the time to do it. You can just do steps 3-8 on an as needed basis.  :)  But I don’t suggest converting massive amounts of clothing without at least doing the process below once to see if there are any problems to fix (rest assured: sometimes the software does such a good job that you don’t have to change a thing…especially for sleeveless dresses!).  Believe me: You could easily fill up a few hard drives with converted clothing that you later realize is a mess (see potential problems below).~~~

3. Load your base figure & the converted outfit from the Poser libraries. Conform it.*

4. Bend the figure around to see if there are any spiky bits when you bend the arms/legs, any breakage or any poke-through.  You can do this by manually moving the arms and legs around (turn off IK first**) or by clicking on your base figure and then loading a pose for it from your pose library (e.g. a leaning, standing, fighting or dancing pose).

5. In Poser, open the Joint Editor and tweak the joints (if needed).
Here’s a good tutorial from EvilInnocence on how to do this: http://www.evilinnocence.com/xd-pose-fix-tutorial/
Another tutorial: http://www.daz3d.com/i/tutorial/tutorial?id=2278&_m=d

6. Test any morphs that you transferred by spinning each dial to “1” to see if it works properly. Fix or recreate morphs if you want.
To recreate a morph, you can either
(a) export the clothing OBJ to another program [such as Hexagon] and make your morph and reimport
(b) my preferred method: use the Poser morph brush tool to recreate it or
(c) use Poser magnets to create the morph.

– How to Use the Morph Brush Tool:
http://forum.daz3d.com/viewtopic.php?t=111642 || http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OCjb2iYCPWI&feature=player_embedded || http://my.smithmicro.com/tutorials/2092.html || http://poser.smithmicro.com/tutorials/Poser_Pro_Morphing.html
– How to use magnets:
Poser 4-5: http://www.drgeep.com/p4/m1/m1.htm || http://www.drgeep.com/p4/m2/m2.htm || http://www.drgeep.com/p4/m3/m3.htm Poser 6+: http://www.philc.net/PTB_tutorial4.php ||http://www.philc.net/PTB_tutorial5.php ||  http://www.drgeep.com/p6/magnets/magnets.htm || http://www.drgeep.com/p6/morphs/morphs.htm || http://www.daz3d.com/i/tutorial/tutorial?id=2283&_m=d

7. Look at the outfit and see if there’s anything else you need to fix.  For example, sometimes the mesh has be stretched or crumpled during the conversion process.  You might want to use the Poser morph brush tool to smooth out any problem areas.  Save your morph.  Set it to “1”.  Make sure you “memorize”*** your figure so when you save your CR2, it will load up with any of that smoothing/fixing already loaded.

8. Save the outfit to the Poser “Figures” library which will save the new CR2 with your changes but will still point to the converted OBJ that your conversion program (WW or Crossdresser) created for you.

* To conform an outfit, click on the article of clothing. Go to the Poser menu and choose “Figure”, “Conform to…” and then select your base figure from the drop-down box (e.g. Victoria 4).
** To turn off Inverse Kinematics (IK), click on your base figure (such as Victoria 4) and then go to the Poser menu and choose “Figure”, “Use Inverse Kinematics” and then make sure that the arms and legs are UNchecked.
*** To memorize, go to the Poser menu and choose “Edit”, “Memorize”, “Figure”.


The *HARD* way to convert 3D clothes …

Below is a general overview of the hard way and other options.  If you’re doing it the hard way, you almost might as well create the clothes from scratch…which is probably why we’re always seeing new clothes on the market versus conversions of old ones.  But once you do it a few times, it gets *MUCH* easier but it’s still horribly time-consuming.  That’s why for my purposes it’s worth the cost of buying WW or Crossdresser licenses to speed up the process.  Basically, if you use Crossdresser or Wardrobe Wizard, you’ll start at STEP 9 below.  That’s a lot of steps saved!

Anyway, the steps below are just a general checklist really more than a detailed tutorial.  Lots of knowledge about each step is needed.  This isn’t beginner stuff and I’m afraid that if I typed out every detail, it would be pages and pages long!

(Note: Here is a general tutorial on Poser clothing creation that may help give you some basic theory and terminology: http://poser.smithmicro.com/tutorials/cloth_create.html)

NOTE: SAVE CONSTANTLY.  SAVE BETWEEN EACH STEP. DO NOT OVERWRITE THE PREVIOUS SAVES.

1. CHANGE OBJ SHAPE.
The very first thing we have to do is to adjust the old OBJ to fit the new model.
a. Load your new base figure (whatever figure you’re converting TO).  Make sure you have “superzero-ed” your figure (all dials and scale and translation MUST be zeroed – no bending, no morphs, etc.)
b. Import the OBJ of the original clothing.  Go to the Poser menu.  Chose “File”, “Import”, “Wavefront OBJ”.  Make sure all the boxes are unchecked.  Select the exact OBJ file of the original.  Click OK.  Give it a second and Poser will load the file.
c. Use the scale and translate dials to move the clothing object so it fully covers your base figure.
d. Open the Poser morph brush tool.  Use the morph brush to make any further adjustments so there is absolutely no poke-through and the clothing looks and drapes as well as the original.  If you don’t feel comfortable using the morph brush tool, you can just as easily create magnets and use them.
– How to Use the Morph Brush Tool:
http://forum.daz3d.com/viewtopic.php?t=111642 || http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OCjb2iYCPWI&feature=player_embedded || http://my.smithmicro.com/tutorials/2092.html || http://poser.smithmicro.com/tutorials/Poser_Pro_Morphing.html
– How to use magnets:
Poser 4-5: http://www.drgeep.com/p4/m1/m1.htm || http://www.drgeep.com/p4/m2/m2.htm || http://www.drgeep.com/p4/m3/m3.htm Poser 6+: http://www.philc.net/PTB_tutorial4.php || http://www.philc.net/PTB_tutorial5.php ||  http://www.drgeep.com/p6/magnets/magnets.htm || http://www.drgeep.com/p6/morphs/morphs.htm || http://www.daz3d.com/i/tutorial/tutorial?id=2283&_m=d
How to Use the Cloth Room to Change the OBJ Shape: http://renderosity.com/mod/tutorial/index.php?tutorial_id=2154&page=1

e. When you’re done and the clothing looks right and fully covers the figure, export the OBJ of the clothing item.  You can save without grouping since you’ll be changing the grouping anyway.  If needed, you can choose to weld the clothing on export.  Save your Poser pz3 file.

2. DELETE UNWANTED OBJ PARTS. ADD NEW PARTS. (OPTIONAL)
This is an optional step. Let’s say that you really don’t like the sleeves on an outfit or that you need to create a modesty panel so a dress isn’t so low-cut or you want to make a pair of pants into shorts.  You can take your newly exported OBJ and open it in 3D modeling program such as Hexagon, Carrara, Cinema4D, 3D Studio Max, TruSpace, Wings, etc.  Add whatever bits and pieces you’d like.  Delete polygons you don’t like.  Add a bow. Add a belt, cuff or buttons.  Whatever. If you’d like, you can go ahead and do the grouping while you’re in your modeling program.  Or you can procrastinate until Step 4. :)

You can also delete polygons in Poser.  To do so, reload your exported clothing OBJ.  Open the “Grouping Tool”.  Click on the clothing object.  Choose the “-” circle from the Grouping tool so that you can de-select any polygons you don’t want.  Click the “Create Prop” button on the “Grouping Tool.”  Then close the grouping tool.  Delete the original clothing OBJ from the scene and then export the newly altered clothing prop to an OBJ like you did previously.  Keep in mind that Poser will only let you delete whole polygons, whereas other modeling tools offer you many more options for adding/deleting and subdividing.  So for basic functions, Poser is great but more complex editing should be left for other modeling programs.

It merits mentioning that PhilC has another cool tool called “Scissors” that will let you make complicated cuts (like diagonals and circles) right within Poser using Python scripting.  You can even subdivide, etc.  It’s a nice little tool and you can read more about it here:  http://www.philc.net/Scissors_page1.php

3. ADD BONE PARTS FOR SKIRT MOVEMENT (OPTIONAL).

Options:
Create primitive balls for the skirt, skirtfront, skirtback, skirtright, skirtleft (or arms)
Use something like Crossdreser to add skirt bones.
Use Poser’s figure set-up tools.
Tutorial:  http://www.philc.net/tutorial9.php || http://www.philc.net/Body_Handles_the_Video.php

4. CHANGE OBJ GROUPING. (I SUGGEST USING PHILC’S OBJ2CR2 CONVERTER FOR THIS.)
Changing grouping from the old model to the new model.  Make sure handles bones are assigned to their appropriate groups.
Options:
– Manually regroup using Hexagon, Poser or UV mapper (I personally love to use UV Mapper Pro.  I think it’s very easy to select polygons or vertices.  However, if you regroup in Poser, it’s actually pretty easy to do since you can generally see the outline of the figure and match the grouping to the figure underneath.)  If you’re going to use Poser, I’d suggest skimming through this tutorial to the “grouping” section: http://poser.smithmicro.com/tutorials/cloth_create.html
– Use PhilC’s OBJ to CR2 converter (worth every penny; it’s the easiest way to handle grouping & CR2 building; you can always tweak it within Poser or using UV Mapper Pro)
– Use some sort of conversion program like Crossdresser for the CR2 (which may retain some morphs)
Tutorials on the Group Editor: http://www.drgeep.com/p4/get/get.htm | http://www.drgeep.com/p4/gt/gt.htm

5. CHANGE MATERIAL ZONES/NAMES: Optional
(And make sure any new parts you added have been UV mapped properly)
Note: If you keep the material zones/names the same as the original outfit, you’ll be able to use the same textures on the new outfit that you did on the old outfit!
Tutorials on UV Mapping for Clothing (if you need to remap for some crazy reason :) ): http://www.morphography.uk.vu/uvmapping.html || http://www.morphography.uk.vu/modtut6.html

6. GET A CR2 FOR YOUR TARGET MODEL: e.g. M4 (I SUGGEST USING PHILC’S OBJ2CR2 CONVERTER FOR THIS.)
Options:
Create your own (see the Poser manual or check this out: http://www.morphography.uk.vu/cr2master.html)
Use one of your own personal CR2’s you’ve used before (don’t steal someone’s).
Use PhilC’s OBJ to CR2 converter.
Use a developer CR2 that may come with your target figure.
Beg a friend to use theirs.
Tutorials: http://www.daz3d.com/i/tutorial/tutorial?id=1008&_m=d

7. UPDATE THE CR2 FOR YOUR OBJ.
Change the CR2 to a low version (e.g. 4.10 for maximum backwards Poser compatibility)
Change both references to the OBJ in your CR2 to your new OBJ
Change the name of the figure to whatever your name will be: e.g. Slayer M4

8. LOAD CR2 INTO POSER WITH THE TARGET MODEL. CONFORM.
Look for immediate problems.
Tutorial for dealing with common problems: http://www.morphography.uk.vu/modtut8.html

9. MAKE SURE THE JOINTS WORK WELL.
For every single joint…bend, twist and move it up and down.  Look for poke-through or breakage.  Open the Poser Joint Parameter palette.  Click on the clothing joint. Change the InnerMatSphere and OuterMatSphere and other joint settings until it is fixed. Trial and error.
Tutorials: http://www.evilinnocence.com/xd-pose-fix-tutorial/ || http://www.philc.net/joint_parameters_1.php || http://www.philc.net/joint_parameters_2.php || http://www.drgeep.com/p5/db/db071.htm || http://www.drgeep.com/p4/je/je.htm || http://www.drgeep.com/p4/jp/jp.htm

10. CREATE MOVEMENT AND FIT MORPHS.
a. For movement morphs, you could use magnets or the morph brush tool in Poser to create them and then spawn a morph target.  Or, you can run a dynamic clothing simulation and save out the OBJ and then reload as a morph.  Or, you can create morphs in a 3D modeler like Hexagon or Zbrush.
b. For fit morphs, load your figure and your outfit.  Dial your figure to a particular morph.  Use the Poser morph brush or magnets to move the outfit so that it fits properly around the morphed figure underneath. Save morph target.  Repeat for every fit morph you need to make.  Another option is the “Morphing Clothes” utility by Dimension3D sold at Renderosity or Content Paradise which will automatically create morphs for you (some restrictions apply).  Another option is the Crossdresser Morphs utility by EvilInnocence which will add approximate morphs to your clothing based on the original figure.   Or use Wardrobe Wizard 2.
Fit Morph Tutorial:  http://www.daz3d.com/i/tutorial/tutorial?id=2308&_m=d || http://www.daz3d.com/i/tutorial/tutorial?id=2190&_m=d
Using the Cloth Room to Create Morphs:  http://www.daz3d.com/i/tutorial/tutorial?id=1776&_m=d || http://www.daz3d.com/i/tutorial/tutorial?id=2093&_m=d
How to Add Morphs Using Wardrobe Wizard 2: http://www.daz3d.com/i/tutorial/tutorial?id=2277&_m=d

If you want to make the outfit super-conforming, give this Nerd3D tutorial a try: http://www.nerd3d.com/modules.php?name=Content&pa=showpage&pid=22

11.  CREATE EMPTY CHANNELS (so other people can add morphs).
You can copy and paste these in Notepad or create them in Poser by spawning empty channels.

12. TEST IT IN A VARIETY OF POSES.

13. CREATE TEXTURES AND MAT POSES. (PZ2 AND MC6 AND DAZ MATS).

14. CREATE THUMBNAILS, PROMO RENDERS & PACKAGE IT UP WITH YOUR README AND LICENSE.

Author: andolaurina

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2 Comments

  1. Very helpful stuff! Just enough details to get my project underway, and more than enough links to get me through it. Thanks a ton for the helpful article!

    Post a Reply
    • Glad I could help & thanks for commenting! You made my day!! 😀

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