Instructables
My girlfriend and I always do couples costumes and she was set on being Chatty Cathy this year. It took me a while to come up with something that went along with that. What better than another creepy toy? My main goals with the costume were to look like a hand made puppet and to have a tipping moving cross floating above my head. The strings also needed to look like over sized twine.

A couple things before I get started... this isn't an Instructable on sewing or welding. I don't claim to be an expert or know all the best practices. I know enough pull off projects like this and that's about it. Short of emergency hand stitched repairs on clothing, this is the most adventurous sewing project I've taken on. I've done plenty of welding but mostly just fudge my way through it on the fly. 

Step 1: Materials & Tools Required

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I tried to keep this project as low budget as possible and used recycled or on-hand materials where possible. 

Materials:
(6) 9 x 12" sheets of white felt  - 3 for $1.00 at a craft store
Small scraps of muslin - free from my Mom's sewing room
Black speaker cloth - left over from other projects
50 yds of black crochet thread (about 1/16" diameter) - $1.89 at Jo-Ann's, probably only used 3-4 feet.
Heavy duty brown thread - from the kitchen junk drawer
Heavy duty white thread - borrowed from Mom's sewing room
(4) small snaps - from a mini sewing kit also in the kitchen junk drawer
(2) buttons - same as above
(2) 3" diameter Styrofoam balls - $4.99 for 6 pack at Jo-Ann's, plenty of left overs for other projects.
Plain white mask - $3.99 @ Spirit Halloween Store
Mid length black wig - $12.99 @ Spirit Halloween Store
Suit jacket - Has been part of my halloween wardrobe for years. Been used for many a costumes but originally bought on the small side for Frankenstein.
White collared shirt - $5.99 @ the Goodwill
Black dress pants - from my closet
Black dress shoes & socks - also from my closet
98' of clothes line rope - $1.00 @ some dollar store
Straps for cross support brace (optional) - borrowed from my Hollywood F1B strap on bike rack
(2) 36" x 1/8" cold finished steel round bar - $2.07 ea @ Lowes
(1) 36" x 3/16" cold finished steel round bar - $2.47 ea @ Lowes
(1) Simpson Strong-Tie RTU2 U-anchor - $0.89 @ Lowes
(1) pkg 3/16 x 1-1/4" zinc plated fender washers - $1.15 for a 4 pk @ Lowes
1/2" x 2" wood for cross - free with purchase of house (previous owners left lots of new trim boards, wood, building supplies, etc.. in garage when they moved out.)
(4) 1-5/8" drywall screws - from my drawer-o-hardware

Most people will have the majority of these tools on hand. Anything I had to buy or borrow for the project is noted below. The back support for the cross would be tough to do without a welder but there is probably a way to pull it off. Maybe with lots of duct tape? Duct tape makes every project better.

Tools Required:
Safety glasses
Scissors
Sewing needles
Upholstery repair/gigantic needle - $1.89 for a variety pack at Jo-Ann's 
Safety pins or straight pins
Sharpie or fabric pen
Styrofoam glue - $3.99 @ Jo-Ann's
Exacto knife
Multi-tool or pocket knife
Lighter or matches
Hammer or mallet
Cordless or corded drill
Drill bits
Center punch
Hand saw or power saw
Hack saw
File or sand paper
Pliers
Clamps
Metal cleaning chemical - I used White Lightning Metal Prep.
Welder (borrowed from my work)
Gas - bottle 75/25 steel mix (borrowed from girlfriends dad, work only had full size bottles)
Welding helmet
Leather gloves
Flame resistant clothing
 
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Thanks for this, I didn't plan on sleeping tonight anyway. Awesome stuff.
onebrokenneck (author)  boomowthathurt4 years ago
 Mission accomplished.
mycroftxxx4 years ago
 Also awesome is to do a "broken marionette" costume.  Leave the hands uncovered, but hit the backs of each up with a base of mortician's wax - then insert hooks into some of the bases and inject fake blood into others (just use the nozzle of the face blood packet).  Dress up the edges with a little liquid latex, cover with clown white, dribble a little more blood on the "ripped" spots, and you have a _very_ creepy and real-looking bit of makeup
onebrokenneck (author)  mycroftxxx4 years ago
 Good idea, thanks for the feed back.
finfan74 years ago
Try replacing the strings with elastic or spring load the cross.  It will produce the tautness of string for more realistic movement.  Another thing would be to learn the marionette sway.  (stand on your toes and sway slightly side to side when ever you aren't walking.
onebrokenneck (author)  finfan74 years ago
Thanks for your suggestions! I really like the look of the string that I used so I will probably stick with that. I can always tie them off shorter next time.