To make Asuna's - Sword art online- rapier, I used a pine wood base for the general sword structure and hilt. The sword's basket and silver cross was made from 3mm craft foam (be sure to coat the foam with mod podge, wood glue or plasti-dip to seal it before painting). The other wrap-around designs were made using 2mm craft foam.
I used these paints: Folkart Metallic Aquamarine, Folkart Metallic Silver and a gloss varnish.
I also hot glued on some acrylic blue rhinestones to the basket. Much sanding was required to shape the wood, but it's very durable and accurate to character.
The sword measures about 40" long. I'll also be posting Kirito's sword soon!