Thursday, March 15, 2012

'Duct tape: man's best friend' or 'How to make a Lego Jack Sparrow costume'

In full costume at Legoland....he won 2nd place in the Lego-themed costume contest.

My son really wanted to be Lego Jack Sparrow for Halloween last year, so we compromised with a Lego Head and hands and a pirate costume. I could not find a Lego costume to buy and all of the instructions online for creating a Lego head seemed very complicated -- models that had been carved out of foam or styrofoam.

I was wandering around Michaels one day and saw 12" wooden floral rings with pre-drilled holes and some wooden picks next to them. The light bulb went off! ( After I had created this head, someone asked if I had used a lamp shade as the frame...Nope, but that was another great idea.)  It took me a couple of weeks, but the end result turned out quite well.

Basic Lego head matericals:
2 pieces of yellow poster board
2 wooden 12” floral rings
8 wooden floral picks (cut to 10”)
Yellow duct tape
10” Styrofoam circle
Black netting or tulle (scraps)
Wood glue
Black marker
2 skeins black boucle yarn (I used Bernat soft boucle yarn)
Black pipe cleaners
Maroon material for scarf
Misc. beads and string to braid into hair

1. Trace the wooden and styrofoam rings onto one piece of the yellow poster board and cut them out.
2. Cut one 10" strip the length of the second piece of poster board.
3. Use wood glue to adhere the wood picks to the holes in one of the wooden rings. Repeat to add the second ring to the top.
Wooden frame

4. Draw the Lego face in the center of the 10" strip and cut the centers out of these shapes to provide the holes the wearer can see out of. (PDF of the Jack Sparrow template I created, enlarge to the size you need.) Outline cut out shapes with black Sharpie.
Lego face copied to poster board.

5. Tape black netting to the inside of the face with yellow duct tape. This will give the illusion of the Lego face from the outside, but allow the wearer to still see out.
Netting on the back side of the poster board.

6. Glue or duct tape the 12" poster board circle to the top of the wooden frame.
7. Glue or duct tape the 10" poster board circle to the top of the 10" styrofoam circle. Add yellow duct tape around the circumference of the 10" styrofoam, center and glue on the top of the 12" yellow poster board.
Frame with added Lego top

8. Duct tape 10" poster board strip to the wooden frame with yellow duct tape.

A standard Lego head would be done at this point. However, for Jack Sparrow:
9. Created several pom-pom style bundles of yarn of the length needed for the hair. Twist/link them together with the black pipe cleaners. If desired, glue 'wig' to Lego head. (I did not actually glue the hair to the Lego head, but used the headband to hold it in place.)
10. Fold or sew the maroon fabric into a triangle and tie onto head. Braid yarn and use beads other decorations to decorate as desired.

 Almost done.......

I did not put as much effort into creating the Lego hands, but they worked ok with the long-sleeved pirate costume.

Lego hand materials:
2 empty oatmeal containers
Yellow duct tape
Old pair of child’s yellow socks
Styrofoam spacers

1. Cut the two oatmeal containers into 4" rings
2. Cut each ring vertically so that the cardboard can be stretched into a 'C' shape.
3.  Cut a hand hole in the center of 2 of the Cs and attach an old yellow sock or another flexible material through the hole (this will be the cover of the wrist and lower arm.)
3. Glue styrofoam scrap spacers (1-2" high) near one end of the Cs that were uncut and add the cardboard C with the sleeve to the top. Add a second spacer nearer to the hand hole, but remember to leave room for the fingers. Repeat for the other side, trimming the C's as needed to reach the Lego hand shape.
4. Carefully cover the hand frame with yellow duct tape.

I bought a pirate costume pattern and material from local fabric store (I took the Lego Jack Sparrow figure to the fabric store to match fabrics).
The final product!

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