Instructables
This instructable will teach you how to make a light weight and comfortable mask of limited only by your imagination!  These can be used as wearable masks, wall hangings, or masks to put somewhere and scare the tar out of a friend, relative or enemy.

While many of us wear masks for Halloween, and believe me this is a great way to make your own unique Halloween mask, it's just pain fun to make a mask anytime of year!

If you create a mask, post it, I would LOVE to see it!

Let's get started....

Edit:

A wonderful instructbale reader pointed out to me that this technique is used by a wonderful artist named Jonni Good, I picked up this way of making masks from a workshop taught by another art teacher, I had no idea that this trickles back down to Ms. Good and her years of work!  So do check her out, I did and I was BLOWN AWAY by what she can do!
 
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Step 1: Materials Needed

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Blue Shop Towels
Plaster of Paris
White School Glue
Vinegar
Thin elastic
Hot Glue Gun
Petroleum Jelly (Vaseline)
Two large bowls
Face/Mask/Face Form (I really like the Make-a-Mask® Reusable Face Forms)
Oil Based Clay (Molding Clay) - The more oil the better
Imagination

Step 2: Gather Your Materials And Your Idea

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Pick out your mask form and your idea for a mask.

Step 3: Build The Mask

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With the oil based clay create what you want your mask to look like.  The clay is going to act as a mold so, what you create with the clay will be what you mask winds up looking like.  Fine details can be added using the mache, and not needed during the clay process.

Don't worry about the clay color, it make no difference at all what colors are being used.

(Side note: I've made several of these, I was bad about taking pictures so you will this process in the form of several different masks)
HPandLOTR7 months ago
that's really good :)
Honus9 months ago
That is a really great process for making masks- well done!
poofrabbit (author)  Honus9 months ago
Thanks so much!
zombiexgirl10 months ago
This is my new favorite way to paper mache, so thanks so much for posting this. Is there any trick to getting the left over vaseline off the inside of the mask?
poofrabbit (author)  zombiexgirl9 months ago
I also love this technique! You can use a towel to wipe off any excess that may be left. I didn't have a whole heap in mine, I did a wipe down then added a acrylic paint. I had one of my masks on Halloween no issues with paint or pealing so my assumption is that got off what it needed to. :)
poofrabbit (author)  poofrabbit9 months ago
oh oops I already answered this, lol!
poofrabbit (author)  zombiexgirl9 months ago
I have not found any left over Vaseline being an issue on the mask. I give it a generous but thin coat. I've made several of these now and a wipe with a paper towel on the inside of the mask then painting over the inside with acrylic paint appears to do the trick. It's not greasy and the paint holds. :) Thanks for the comment and if you make a mask do share!
poofrabbit (author)  zombiexgirl9 months ago
I also love this technique! You can use a towel to wipe off any excess that may be left. I didn't have a whole heap in mine, I did a wipe down then added a acrylic paint. I had one of my masks on Halloween no issues with paint or pealing so my assumption is that got off what it needed to. :)
Beglas10 months ago
That's donna be reaaly funny mask)Thanks for an idea)
poofrabbit (author)  Beglas10 months ago
not a problem!
arenfroe moore11 months ago
Awesome! Thank you! My youngest son wants to be a piranha plant from Mario Bros for Halloween and I'm hoping I can make the head using this method :) I'll defiantly let you know how it turns out.
poofrabbit (author)  arenfroe moore11 months ago
Oh yes you definitely could. That's a very round shape, you might consider going somewhere like walmart an finding a ball the size of your sons head. You could then build up on the ball with the oil based clay, cover it with Vaseline then put this type of mache over the top. You could use a bucket or trash can to hold the ball in place while you work. Then you could simply pop the ball. Just an idea. :)
arenfroe moore11 months ago
definitely
arenfroe moore11 months ago
Your masks are amazing! I can't wait to try it out for my kiddos for Halloween! How would suggest making one to cover the whole head?
poofrabbit (author)  arenfroe moore11 months ago
Thank you very much! To make one for the whole head, I would use the mask shape of your choice then create a head the basic shape of the individual wearing it. You could use wadded up paper, sacks, anything that's firm. I would then wrapped it in saran wrap or tinfoil. If you have a mannequin head that would help but those heads (even the Styrofoam heads you can get) tend to be smaller than the heads a lot of people need. Then do the same steps and build your layers over the entire head. When dry you can pull out the wadded paper. Just make sure you Vaseline the whole thing, if all else fails and you can't get the head out, cut the back of the mask to open it up remove everything inside, then use the same paper towel and mache mixture to close the splice back up on the interior of the mask. I'd love to see what you came up with!
I made a puppet head using newspaper strips and clear glue. Dried it in sun after each layer and the end product was very stiff. But now it's rainy season and it has absorbed moisture from air and become all soggy. It's even starting to lose shape.

Will your recipe be able to hold it's shape in high humidity? Looks better since you used plaster of paris.
poofrabbit (author)  Antzy Carmasaic1 year ago
Yes the plaster should keep it all in place. Also, I would suggest painting it with acrylic paints on both sides of the mask. Acrylic acts almost like a plastic coating so moisture won't sneak in on you. :)
I made a puppet head, so it's a full 3D figure with a hole where the neck joins. So could only apply generous coatings of acrylic on the outer side. But even that coating has now become sticky.

I'm considering covering it in layers of your mixture and after drying, taking out the old soggy layers in chunks out of the neck hole. That might save the puppet head maybe.
poofrabbit (author)  Antzy Carmasaic1 year ago
You could try that covering it with this mix. IF you do, I would not add the vinegar because it won't hurt anything if yours dries fast. What is in the center of the head? Is it hollow or solid?
The center is hollow. It has an animatronic mouth, so some electrical components are stuffed in there. Will try out your way this weekend and post a pic of how it turns out. Fingers crossed ;P
poofrabbit (author)  Antzy Carmasaic1 year ago
Humm, my guess is the moister is working it's way in then from the interior of the head. Likely a pain to take it all out and do the same mixture on the interior and then paint it. Do keep me posted!
Excellent instructable very well done, thanks for sharing
Many thanks I'm glad so many are enjoying it!
mini_mom1 year ago
These are great maybe you should sell these at a booth somewhere as they are very professional looking.
poofrabbit (author)  mini_mom1 year ago
Thanks a million! I am planning to help some kids make some for Halloween this year, you never know word might get out, lol!
This is so great. I've used regular paper towels in the past...I like your idea of the blue towels better. will definitely try this. Thanks for sharing.
poofrabbit (author)  TheMandalaLady1 year ago
Most welcome, these have such a soft nice texture and really soak up the mache! Because they are so thick it doesn't take a lot of layers, making this so so easy.
I love this! I have had a papier mache urge for quite some time now. I can remember using strips of newspaper to do it. For my little ones, the "Lone Ranger" style mask would be perfect for them to work with. I will definitely have to try. You are great Poof!
Oh yes this is SOOO much easier than old school newspaper strips. The mask is really very soft and has a bit of give, which is helpful and much more comfortable for little tikes. :)
kgirl55231 year ago
Cool:)
poofrabbit (author)  kgirl55231 year ago
Many thanks!