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This is my son Nick's "Toxic Waste" Halloween costume.  We got the idea from a can of "Toxic Waste"  candy, described as "hazardously sour."  Basically, the costume is yellow felt covering a hoop at the top and a hoop at the bottom.  It was fun to make and fun for Nick to wear.  It took a week off-and-on to make.  The hardest part was making the wire hoops from the hangers.

SIZE

My costume comfortably fits a child up to 5' and 95 lbs.
Costume Length: 27 inches
Hoop diameter: 17 inches

You can adjust your materials to fit your child.

MATERIALS

Wire coat hangers (4)
Wire cutters
Yellow felt fabric - about 2 1/2 yards
Light green felt fabric - 60" x 12"
Red non-fraying fabric - about 3/4 yard
Yellow double fold seam binding - 3 yards
Super strong fabric glue or heat-bond sewing iron-on material
Stencils you print from computer
Sewing Machine
Soldering iron (highly preferable)
Duct tape - if no soldering iron
Yardstick
 

Step 1: Toxic Waste Candy

This was the model I followed.  The candy container is 3 inches high.

Step 2: Cut Hangers and Join

Two hoops:  each hoop is made from 2 wire coat hangers. The hoops are made to fit comfortably over your child's body.
 
Cut off the curved ends and twists of the coat hangers with wire cutters. Un-bend the the hangers. Take 2 hangers and overlap the ends two inches. Twist the ends together TIGHTLY with pliers. (It's difficult.) Use a hammer to pound the ends so they are as flush as possible.

If you can, solder the overlap. If you cannot solder, then wrap duct tape tightly and smoothly around the join, using enough tape to insure a strong join. The goal is to prevent the two hangers from sagging and pulling apart later.

After the first join - determine how much wire to cut off. If your child's shoulders measure 13" across, then the diameter of your hoop should be 16" or 17".   Then, diameter of hoop x 3.14 + 2" = Length of wire.  Thus, 17" x 3.14 = approx.. 53.5" + 2" = 55.5 inches. Cut off excess wire.

Bend the wire into a round, symmetrical hoop.  Twist ends together and solder or duct tape the join, as before.

Do the same with the other two coat hangers. You now have two hoops.  Make sure they fit easily over your child.





Step 3: Bend Into Hoops

After the first join - determine how much wire to cut off. If your child's shoulders measure 13" across, then the diameter of your hoop should be 16" or 17". Then, diameter of hoop x 3.14 + 2" = Length of wire. Thus, 17" x 3.14 = approx.. 53.5" + 2" = 55.5 inches. Cut off excess wire.

Bend the wire into a round, symmetrical hoop. Twist ends together and solder or duct tape the join, as before.

Do the same with the other two coat hangers. You now have two hoops. Make sure they fit easily over your child.


Step 4: Make the "barrel" and Lettering

The "barrel" is made from yellow felt 30 inches x 56 inches. Adjust the size for your child - a larger size will allow him or her to wear it more than one year.

Red letters: I used the "Word" program on my computer. My letters are 3-1/2" high. I used a Word font size of 350 (type in "350" even if your computer only lists 75 as the largest font). Print out the letters on paper and cut them out. Then trace them carefully onto non-fraying red fabric with ink or dark pencil. Cut out the red letters, then tape them on the yellow fabric, using a yardstick for guidance. Test them on your child before gluing to be sure the letters don't end up under the arms. Use super-hold fabric glue that will work on felt. You can also use "bonding fabric" to iron them on.


Step 5: Make Green "sludge"

"Green sludge" at the top of the barrel. It is a long strip of green felt. It was hand-drawn in a wavy pattern, wide enough to go around the hoop with an added inch all around for the seams. Measure carefully - extra fabric is better than too short. Two identical pieces are made, then sewn together along the long edges and one side. Then turn it inside-out.

Sew on green "sludge." Lay the straight edge of the green "sludge" over the outside of the yellow fabric, 1- inch from the top. Sew very close to the top edge of the green sludge.


Step 6: Make Barrel "ribs" and Trim

"Barrel ribs" between the letters: yellow double-thick seam binding. You could also use strips of folded felt. Stitch them in place on the yellow fabric per the photos.

Also cut strips of the red fabric and sew them in above and below the letters.


Step 7: Make "cover" and Attach Top Hoop

Sew side seam of the barrel - Stitch with the right sides together. Be sure the circumference fits the hoops.

The top of the "barrel" has a round "cover" with a hole and back slit for the child's head. Trace the top hoop carefully and add 1-1/2 inches all around for the seam. Make your circle as symmetrical as possible. Make two identical circles. Sew them together with a small opening so you can turn it inside-out. Then trace a circle bigger than you child's neck (use a bowl), and cut the circle out . Make a slit 2 inches long on the smaller circle so it will slide over the head comfortably. You can leave the edges of the inner circle unsewn.

Sew "barrel" onto top hoop. Lay the yellow fabric over the top hoop with one inch overlap. The green sludge should be at the edge of hoop. Lift up the green sludge, and pin the yellow fabric overlap in place. Carefully sew the yellow fabric under the green sludge around the hoop so the stitching does not show. It's a little tricky.

Sew on barrel "cover." Lay the cover over the top of the barrel, slit in back. Then hand-sew the cover to the sludge invisibly with small stitches.


Step 8: Attach Bottom Hoop

Sew on the bottom hoop. Overlap the bottom of the barrel, pin in place, then sew.



Step 9: Cut Armholes

The armholes are 6-inch slits cut into the fabric - start 2 inches below the top hoop - and cut one slit on each side of barrel.

Step 10: Congratulations!

You're finished!  Your child should be pretty comfortable wearing this costume.  Be sure he or she walks carefully.  Then, take a photo and post it here!


Step 11:

P.S. The other child in the photo is Matt - his costume was a "sandwich" board called "The Dreaded Tele-marketers -- They're Baaaaccck!" I photocopied the cover of an R.L. Stine book, added word bubbles, then enlarged it all. There is another board on the back of Matt with another gruesome picture. A sandwich board costume is one you and your child could make together.

<p>&quot;I'm gonna go as a barrel of toxic waste!&quot; -Calvin</p>
I belive Calvin (Calvin and Hobbes) did something like this one Halloween
That must be where my son got the idea-- he loved Calvin &amp; Hobbes

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