Category: Costumes

Aug 02

Learn How To Make A Papier-Mache Mask

How To Make A Papier-Mache Mask (courtesy of

Make a papier-mache mask for Halloween, a masquerade party, Carnival time or anytime! You will need:

An old tablecloth
A work smock
A clean, empty plastic gallon jug – labels removed
Strong scissors
Craft knife
An elastic band
White computer paper
Unbleached flour or glue
Acrylic paint

Step 1 – Cover your workspace with an old tablecloth or sheets of newspaper, and wear something to protect your clothes, like a smock.

Step 2 – With strong scissors, cut the plastic jug in half, lengthwise. Turn the jug upside down. The handle will serve as the mask’s nose. Cut holes for your eyes and mouth with a craft knife. Cut a small hole on each side of the mask, at ear level, for an elastic band.

Step 3 – Tear newspaper and white computer paper into strips, about 1 inch x 6 inches. Shredding the paper by hand works better than cutting it. You’ll need enough pieces to cover your mask with 3 layers of newspaper and 1 layer of computer paper, plus some extra paper for molding facial features.

Step 4 – Whisk 2 cups of flour and 1 cup of water into a paste, adding a bit more of either, if needed, to reach a gluey consistency. You can also use glue, thinned out with water.

Step 5 – One by one, dip a newspaper strip into the paste, shake off the access and lay it flat against the mask horizontally, taking care not to cover the holes. Overlap each strip with w new one. When you finish the first layer, let it dry completely before putting on the next one. This time, apply the strips vertically. If you’re putting away your project for the night, store the unused paste in the refrigerator. The next day, microwave it for one minute before using.

Step 6 – Apply the strips for the 3rd layer horizontally. After you’ve applied 3 layers, mold some of the newspaper strips into features, like cheekbones and eyebrows.

Step 7 – Make the last layer out of the torn computer paper, applying the strips vertically. The white paper will give you a blank canvas for creating your character. If you live in a damp climate, you can dry the mask on a lightly-oiled cookie sheet in an oven set to Warm. Check on the mask after about 30 minutes.

Step 8 – When the mask is completely dry, decorate it with paint, feathers, glitter, sequins, beads, fabric, rhinestones, or whatever will make it your own!

Did you know? At 12 to 16 feet tall and several feet wide, the Igbo ijele mask is one of the largest ceremonial masks made in Africa!


Jul 28

Learn How To Make A Transformers Costume

How To Make A Transformers Costume (courtesy of

There’s no denying it – Transforming Robots are the Coolest Thing In The Universe! Here’s how to become your very own Robot In Disguise. You will need:

Cardboard boxed of various sizes

Utility knife or sharp scissors

Spray paint and Tempera paint

Duct tape

Tires from toy trucks

Hot glue gun

Super glue


Sweatpants and a pair of gloves that match your transformer’s colors

Dark or black shoes

A friend

Optional: Two ping-pong paddles

Children under 10 should not use a utility knife or sharp scissors, and an adult should help older children.

Step 1: Find a tall, rectangular moving box that will fit over your upper body. It should be long enough to reach to your waist, and wide enough to go from armpit to armpit. Cut off the open flaps; then, cut circular holes on either side for your arms and a hole on top for your head. The armholes should fit snugly around your arms. Ask your local grocery store, bike shop, appliance store or furniture shop for boxes. They’re often willing to give them away.

Step 2: You’ll need 2 small boxes for each arm – one for the shoulder and bicep, and one for the forearm. Use just one box on a small child. Shoe or tissue boxes work well. Cut holes in the top and bottoms so your arms can fit through. Again, make sure the armholes are snug.

Step 3: For the legs, choose 2 long and narrow boxes – one for each leg. They should cover the distance from your knees to your ankles. Make holes on opposite ends that are just big enough to fit your feet through when you pull them on. The cardboard should sit firmly against your calves and ankles.

Step 4: Find a box that is just large enough to fit around your head. Remove the bottom of the box and try it on. The head piece should almost reach the torso box resting on your shoulders. Take it off and cut out holes for the eyes. Paint 2 ping-pong paddles in a solid color and glue them upside down on each side of the head box. They make great antennae!

Step 5: Spray paint the cardboard boxes in colors that correspond to your favorite Transformer. Use the Tempera paint and duct tape to add patterns and decorations, and glue the plastic wheels from a toy truck to the outside of your leg boxes.

Step 6: Put on a turtleneck, sweatpants and gloves that match your character’s colors.

Step 7: Put on the costume, starting with the leg pieces, while you can still bend down. Then, put on some dark or black shoes. Have a friend lower the torso box onto your upper body and place the arm boxes over your arms, affixing them firmly into the armholes. Finish by putting the headpiece in place. Now, all that’s left to do is Transform and Roll Out!

Did you know? In 2009, engineers completed the first test flight of the Transition Roadable Aircraft…a 2-person plane that can transform into a car in less than 30 seconds!


Oct 03

How to Make A Lady Gaga VMA Costume for Halloween

How To Make A Lady Gaga VMA Costume for Halloween (courtesy of

Level of Difficulty – Intermediate

Time of Project – 3.5 hours

We’re gonna start by making the crown. First, spray paint 2 sides of a poster board red. Let it dry, and spray one side with quick spray adhesive. Then, place a square of red lace fabric on top of it, pressing down to secure it.

Let it dry, then mark out the spiky points of the crown. Cut out the spikes, and use a hot glue gun to reinforce each one.

Glue the 2 ends of the crown together to form a cylinder that’s big enough to fit your head, while wearing a wig. Spray some more red paint to the tips of the spikes and let it dry.

Now, you need to make something to wear under the lace for warmth and modesty! Use a piece of stretch-knit, flesh colored fabric and stretch it around the intended costume wearer. Pinch and pin it down the back, and mark down both sides of the pin line with tailor’s chalk.

Unpin it from the wearer, and pin it back together again on your table. Sew down the pin line, using a zigzag stitch. Fold in hem along the top, also using a zigzag stitch.

Let the wearer try it on again, and mark chalk lines on the back and front to make mock undies.

Transfer the lines to the lace, and pin the pieces of fabric together. Sew along the chalk lines with a zigzag and cut off the excess fabric. Repeat for the back, and you have the illusion of wearing sexy lace undies!

Next, we have a long piece of lace, lay it over your model, and cut a hole big enough for their head to fit through. Pinch and pin, starting under the armpit, going down both sides of the wearer.

Use tailor’s chalk to mark out where the shoulders start, extending to the armpit, going all the way down the pin line. Remove the piece, pin it back together, and cut off the fabric outside of your chalk line.

Sew the sides of the garment together, using a zigzag stitch, starting at the armpit. Now, make sleeves by finding the middle of another piece of fabric and pinning it to the armhole, right sides together, until you reach the armpit. Sew together with a zigzag stitch.

Have your model try on the garment, and pinch and pin the sleeve part around the arm. Mark along the pin line with chalk, take it off, re-pin and sew it closed with a zigzag stitch.

Cut off all excess fabric, and make the other sleeve, using the first as a guide. When we return, we’ll show you how to complete your look.

Welcome Back! So, you’ve got the fundamentals to your Lady Gaga costume complete. Now, there’s only a couple more steps left, and you’re done!

Alright, so the next thing you want to do is cut yourself a piece of lace roughly 1 ½ ft x 1 ½ ft. Fold the fabric in half, and then, at the top of your lace, trace a small hood shape. Then, sew along your line, cut off the excess, turn it inside out, and you got yourself a hood!

Alright, next step, you need a train of lace fabric for the back. This piece needs to be about as tall as you are, and almost like a triangle, trailing off at the end.

Now, pin and attach the train to the back of the collar by gathering and sewing together from one end to the other.

Next, take your hood, and pin it to the front of your collar. Then, like the train, sew it on with a zigzag stitch from one side to the other.

Lastly, make yourself a couple of holes for your fingers to make some fingerless gloves, throw on a blonde wig, some sexy red shoes, and you’re ready for the paparazzi!