Introduction: Childrens Sonic the Hedgehog Mascot Costume

After trying to talk myself and my son into doing something simpler and not so heavy... I failed. My youngest wanted to be Sonic the Hedgehog. And when looking online to get idea's he wanted nothing to do with anything that didn't look proportional. I have created the standard, and it is what i am a slave to now with my boys.

Taking that into account I decided that I will make every effort in keeping the head light. And not knowing how to officially make a mascot costume head I fell back to a favorite material of mine. The glorious blue camping pad from Walmart.

While the head is not light to a 7 year old, the costume is much easier on him than my last several costumes.

*Disclaimer:

I promise you that I never force them to wear the things we build together, and we take breaks all the time. They are completely enjoying themselves all along the way.

Step 1: Sonic's Head: Inside Helmet

Tools:

  • Sharpie
  • Utility Knife
  • Scissors

Supplies:

  • Styrofoam head (JoAnn)
  • Tin foil
  • Duct Tape
  • Blue camping pad (Walmart)
  • Contact Cement (Lowes)

I knew I was going to need an inside helmet that would attach to my sons head. I started from a styrofoam head that I picked up from JoAnn. It was about the same size as my sons, and thought that would be good. With the blue foam I use and it's thickness, I should have made it a bit bigger.

Covered the head with aluminum foil and then duct tape. Then drew a template onto half the head (actually I drew it on both since I was making another costume from other son). Cut the template off the styrofoam head and cut perpendicular slits so that all the pieces lay flat.

I traced these directly onto the blue foam, however, I should have made it bigger, I would have made an enlarged paper template first. I then flipped the templates, so I would have a whole head. Also take into account the natural roll of the blue foam. If you let it work for you it will make putting things together much easier.

I then cut and used contact cement to glue everything together. Contact cement is the best product I have found for this material. It gives you some working time and really sticks things together. However make sure you have a mask and are working in a well ventilated area.

Step 2: Sonic's Head: Basic Outside Shape

Tools:

  • Sharpie
  • Scissors

Supplies:

  • Big ballon
  • Plastic grocery bags
  • Duct tape
  • Blue camping pad (Walmart)
  • Contact cement

The first thing I started with was a very large ballon. And covering it in plastic grocery bags and duct tape, I treated like a paper mache project. I drew a template onto half of the head (only need half as you will see in a bit). Since the ballon is not perfectly round pick the best angle that will give you the head shape you are going for.

I then carefully cut off the duct tape, which was extremely nerve racking, as my boys wanted to keep the ballon. Once the template pieces were cut, I made perpendicular cuts from the edges to allow the templates to flatten.

I followed the same steps as before, I traced the templates onto the blue camping pad and cut them out. I then flipped the templates and traced/cut those out as well (this is where the full head came from). I joined all the places where the perpendicular cuts had been made. I then joined all the pieces back together as they were on the ballon.

I trimmed up the bottom of the head and added shoulder rests/pads on the bottom, so they could help carry the load.

Step 3: Sonic's Head: Join Helmet and Head

Tools:

  • Utility knife
  • Fabric tape measure

Supplies:

  • Foam floor tiles (online store)
  • Contact cement (Lowes)
  • Old bike helmet (for straps)

I had my son put on the helmet, then put the big head over that. Using a cloth tape measure I took some rough numbers and made braces to fit between the large head and the helmet. I six contact braces from the straighter and stiffer foam flooring tiles.

This worked nicely and held the helmet in place securely.

I ended up adding some holes into the helmet to allow the heat to escape better and the fan to do it's job better as well.

Also using contact cement I glued on a chin strap just in case to hold the helmet on a little more securely.

Step 4: Sonic's Head: Spikes and Ears

Tools:

  • Utility knife
  • Scissors

Supplies:

  • Blue camping pad (Walmart)
  • Contact cement (Lowes)
  • Cardboard
  • Duct tape

The ears were easy and I just free-handed the basic shapes I needed from the blue foam.

The spikes on the other hand were much more involved. Again, wanting to keep things light thought that having mostly hollow spikes would make the most sense.

I carefully made templates in brown paper for the spikes. I would use 4 to 5 individual pieces for each spike. I made the mistake of putting a bevel onto the blue foam when glueing, which gave hard edges. I then took the same templates and did not bevel the edges to give a nice round spike.

To attach the spikes to the base head, I cut into the base head to allow the leading edge of the spike to transition nicely.

This is what took the most time. Getting the templates right, gluing everything together over 6 spikes. The left and right spikes were mirrors of each other (flipped templates), so there were 4 templates total.

Step 5: Sonic's Head: Fan

Tools:

  • Utility Knife
  • Wire Strippers
  • Soldering Iron
  • Wiring stand
  • Shrink tube torch

Supplies:

  • Case fan (Radio Shack)
  • 9V connector (Radio Shack)
  • Toggle switch (Radio Shack)
  • Solder
  • Shrink tubing
  • 9V battery
  • Blue camping pad (Walmart)
  • Contact cement (Lowes)
  • Plastic screen (JoAnn)

In the past my boys have sweated to the oldies inside their costumes, this year I wanted to add a fan inside. Since this was a big head I got a computer case fan along with a switch and connector for a 9v battery.

I mounted the fan at the top of the head as an exhaust fan to vent hot air out and thus pull in cool air via the eyes and neck area. Since this left and exposed blade inside the helmet, I covered it with some of the screen that I used on the eyes.

I made a mount out of the blue foam for the battery. I placed both the battery and switch right around the top brace which is positioned by the forehead. It allows fairly easy access and helps offset some of the spike weight that is hanging off the back of the head.

I glued everything in place with contact cement.

Step 6: Sonic's Head: Muzzle

Tools:

  • Scissors
  • Sharpie
  • Electric carving knife

Supplies:

  • Brown paper
  • 3" thick foam (JoAnn)
  • Off-white fleece
  • Contact cement

I could have probably figured out how to use the blue foam for the mouth and cheeks, but since it wasn't that thick I wouldn't be saving much hollow space. It also would have been fairly complicated. So using more traditional foam was a good answer. It also added a bit more weight to offset the spike weight hanging in the back.

I used a 3" of foam, but really should have used a 2" piece. I made a paper template on the head first, then traced that onto the foam. I then cut that with an electric carving knife. The carving knife is great for large bulky cuts, but not good for fine grain cutting.

For most of the shaping I used nice sharp scissors. Experiment with getting a nice smooth transition with the scissors, it really is a sculpting art form.

I covered the mouth with the off white fleece fabric by using the contact cement to glue it into place, leaving the top fabric unglued. Then using the contact cement again, I glued the foam onto the head. Just before doing this, I cut the head so they eyes were not attached to the mouth area. That way I could wrap the unglued fabric around the head and into the inside.

Step 7: Sonic's Head: Covering

Tools:

  • Scissors
  • Sewing machine
  • Needle
  • Pins
  • Blue Sharpie

Supplies:

  • Blue fleece (JoAnn)
  • Off-white fleece (JoAnn)
  • Blue thread (JoAnn)
  • White thread
  • Blue screen (JoAnn)
  • Contact cement (Lowes)

My mother-in-law is a great seamstress and helped me make the covering. The best part about the head was that the foam base was pretty smooth, and the fleece we were using hid most all of the imperfections. So we put the fabric right over the foam, no need for batting.

Overall, we made two halves then hand stitched them together. The front have and the back half. Although looking back we probably could have gotten away with one whole piece. Anyways, using the templates from the spikes we cut fabric templates for each of the spikes.

We sewed all the spikes together then fit them onto the head one at a time, then figured out where we could sew the spikes to each other, and also which areas needed fabric between the spikes. After that was done we created templates for the front of the head and put those together.

We then hand stitched it all together. The eyes, neck, and fan had to be cut and glued to the head. Again did this with contact cement, which really seems to work with fleece.

For the fan, I added the blue screen behind the fabric and glued it into place. It's color was a little too light, so I used a blue sharpie to get it closer to the fabric color.

Step 8: Sonic's Head: Eyes, Nose and Mouth

Tools:

  • Scissors
  • Green & black sharpies (eyes)
  • Needle (nose)
  • Pins

Supplies:

  • Eyes
    • Brown paper
    • White screen mesh (JoAnn)
    • Contact cement (Lowes)
  • Nose
    • Foam (JoAnn)
    • Black fleece (JoAnn)
    • Black thread (JoAnn)
  • Mouth
    • Brown paper
    • Black fleece
    • Tacky glue

For the eyes I picked up some white plastic netting at JoAnn. I made a template from paper first, then traced a large version onto the netting. Using contact cement I glued it into place. I then used a green and black Sharpie to color in the eyes, making sure to leave highlights.

The nose was just a small piece of foam left over from the mouth/cheek area that I shaped with scissors and covered in black fleece. I then hand stitched the nose onto the off-white fleece.

For the smile, I made a template first to get size and look. Then cut out black felt from the template. Then tacky glued it into place.

Step 9: Sonic's Body

Tools:

  • Fabric tape measure
  • Sewing machine
  • Needle

Supplies:

  • Blue fleece (JoAnn)
  • Off-white fleece (JoAnn)
  • Zipper (JoAnn)
  • Blue thread (JoAnn)
  • White thread (JoAnn)
  • Polyfill (JoAnn)

Again my mother-in-law did most of the work. I will try to summarize best I can.

Make a onesie properly sized, with a zipper in the back. You should be able to find patterns for that fairly easily.

On that base we attached a small tail, and two spikes at the back of the shoulders. These spikes are much smaller and simpler than the head spikes. We filled all three with polyfill and then hand stitched them to the onesie.

We also added a big oval on the front that was Sonic's chest and tummy area.

Step 10: Sonic's Shoes

Tools:

  • Sharpie
  • Utility knife
  • Sewing machine
  • Needle
  • Pins
  • Scissors

Supplies:

  • Gray foam floor tile (online)
  • 4" foam (JoAnn)
  • Red satin fabric (JoAnn)
  • White fleece (JoAnn)
  • White thread (JoAnn)
  • Red thread (JoAnn)
  • Buckle (JoAnn)
  • Gold paint (Lowes)
  • E6000 glue (Lowes)
  • Old shoes

Putting into practice some things I learned after my past costumes, I decided the shoes needed to do three things:

  1. Have a bottom surface that would take the beating of walking around without wearing down too much.
  2. Be attached to a real shoe so it was comfortable and would not move around
  3. Not be too big where it was really difficult to move around.

With these criteria in mind I set about making shoes that would match up with the proportions and look of Sonic.

We have many shoes laying around that are worn out, but still fit (boys). Next I had grey foam rubber floor tiles laying around from another project. I drew a shoe bottom onto the tile. I then traced the shoe inside the first tracing toward the back of the shoe. Then cut it out with a new blade on a utility knife.

I then used the bottom foam to trace the design onto a 4" piece of foam. Then cut the foam with an electric carving knife. I drew the different profiles on each side then carved with scissors. I also cut out the inside so that there would be space to put the shoe in.

We created a template for the red satan fabric and cut it all out. Only had one seam at the back of the shoe. Then added a white fleece cuff at the top of the shoe that folded over to give it the thickness of Sonics.

The contact cement let me down when trying to glue the fabric onto the foam. Instead I found E6000, which worked very very well. I pinned it all down on the underside of the foam (before attaching the bottom grey foam), then glued.

While waiting for the glue to dry we created the shoe straps. The straps are made out of white fleece that we made into a basic ribbon like shape. I had found buckles that matched perfectly, but had to be painted the gold like color. I removed the prong from the buckle as well. I slide the buckle onto the strap and pinned it into place on the shoe. Noting that the only thing that will be holding the strap in place will be glueing it to the grey foam bottom piece. I did put a couple of stitches around the middle pin on the buckle to hold it in place.

I then glued the grey foam to the bottom of the shoe with E6000 again. To do this, I compressed the shoe so that the fabric would stick to the edge of the grey foam.

After that using E6000 again I glue the shoe into place.

Step 11: Sonic's Gloves

Tools:

  • Sewing machine
  • Scissors
  • Needle

Supplies:

  • White fleece (JoAnn)
  • White thread (JoAnn)

I found a glove image on google, then blew it up and printed off as a template for my glove. I added extra long wrist section so it could be rolled up/folded over like the ankle on the shoe. Then sewed it together, and was pretty happy with how it came out.

It is narrow by the base knuckle, but that isn't really noticeable and looks great when my son is wearing them.

I ended up hand stitching the roll over so that it would stay that way no matter what.

Step 12: Sonic's Candy Bucket

Tools:

  • Coping saw
  • Palm sander
  • Utility knife

Supplies:

  • 10" corrugated pipe 1' length (Local store)
  • Black plastic sheet (Local store)
  • White pencil
  • Sandpaper
  • Plastic cement (Lowes)
  • Gold spray paint (Lowes)

My oldest son had a great idea for his younger brothers candy bucket. It should look like a stack of rings. This being a late addition, I thought of using large black corrugated drainage pipe. I went to a local place and they gave me a small piece for free! It was a 10" pipe about 1' long. I probably could have gone from a little smaller diameter, but that is hindsight now.

I cut one ring off the pipe, and cut that in half. This I made into the handle.

I had a sheet of plastic laying around from a previous costume that I used to make the bottom of the bucket. Where I glued this sheet to the bottom of the pipe, I cut the pipe right up to the edge of the a ring. This way I maximized surface area for the glue to adhere to. I then traced the pipe onto the plastic sheet then used a coping saw to cut out the bottom.

After sanding everything smooth and cleaning, I glued all the pieces together with all purpose cement. Then painted it gold.

Comments

author
blakeevan made it!(author)2015-10-25

Thank you so much for this instructable. I adapted it to make this Octonauts costume for my 4 year old. She's over the moon about it and I'm thrilled to have added some new skills to my halloween tool belt. Thank you!

IMG_9621-2.jpg
author
craineum made it!(author)2015-10-26

That is just fantastic! Great job, and I am so glad this instructable helped :) This is the kind of stuff that makes me love posting on this site!

author
gwfong made it!(author)2014-11-16

nice idea with the fan. very nice costume

author
ThisIsMyNameOK made it!(author)2014-11-15

Nice work. I like that you thought about safety and comfort, making it as light as possible and adding the fan. I can't wear masks at all, never could. They always make me feel like I'm suffocating. So seeing something like this usually makes me cringe.

author
Namisuke made it!(author)2014-11-07

This is super rad! What a lucky kid!

author
BayRatt made it!(author)2014-11-01

Lucky boys to have such fabulous homemade costumes!

author
NathanSellers made it!(author)2014-10-30

Great work. I did a Sonic costume for my son last year (and did an instructible). You have some great ideas of how to make it. it looks like you did your own pepakura.

author
craineum made it!(author)2014-10-31

Just saw yours. Awesome job. I tried to convince my son to have a smaller head like that, but he was having none of it :)

author
peppypickle made it!(author)2014-10-30

WOW! One of the best costumes I've seen! Great work!

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