Introduction: How to Create an Affordable Mascot Head

You will learn how to create a mascot head on a limited budget.

Step 1: Gather Materials

Buy foam board at hardware store. For this project I used two 2x8 sheets of Owens-Corning InsulPink.

Step 2: Cut Rough Shapes

Cut the board into ovals, or circles, or whatever the shape of your mascot head. There are many ways to cut the board such as razor blade, keyhole saw, and jig saw. Any type of saw will make a mess. The easiest, cleanest and fastest way is with a hot knife. The store bought hot knives are expensive and flimsy. I made my own following the instructions at instructables (Hot-Knife-for-Plastic-Cutting!). Instead of hammering the soldering tip, I bought a three inch long brass screw and hammered/filed it flat. It worked great. As you cut the layers try to get the rough shape of the head. IMPORTANT  if the piece is too big it is easy to make it smaller, if the piece is too small it is very hard to make it bigger. When you cut the first pieces, make them bigger than you think you need them. Another tip is to number the pieces, label the top and bottom. That way it is easy to put them back together in the correct order.

Step 3: Cut Out Room for Your Head

One-by-one, cut out room for your head. When you do this the first time, make it tight on your head. You can always cut more later. If you cut too much in this step you have to discard the piece and redo it. In these pictures I cut a space much larger than my head. I did this to make room for a construction helmet (you will see in a later step). I also cut space for ventilation fans which you will want if you plan to wear it for four or more hours without taking it off.

Step 4: Assemble Core

Assemble the core by attaching the middle sections together. WARNING  most glue will melt the foam. Fortunately, plain old Elmers glue works great. I also used 3 drywall screws to hold the pieces together as the glue dries. Makes sure you allow at least 24 hours for the glue to dry. If you want you can install a construction helmet (as a very nice head support) and ventilation fans. For ventilation fans I used old PC fans connected to 9 volt batteries (sorry I dont have a picture but you can see the holes for the fans). Make sure that it fits and is comfortable before going to final assembly.

Step 5: Final Assembly

Attach the remaining pieces. Cut holes for the eyes, nose and mouth (if applicable). Use sandpaper to smooth out the shape. Glue felt or any fabric on the outside to complete the head. Thick fabric will help hide rough spots and imperfections. If possible, paint the head with a latex paint which is the same color as the fabric (especially if you are using a thin fabric). Add ears, whiskers, nose to make it an incredible mascot head.

Comments

author
Bucknutt made it! (author)2014-11-09

brutus!!! Thanks for the help

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KanishaD made it! (author)KanishaD2015-10-24

This is awesome! I am trying to construct this for my 9 year old son's costume do you have a video tutorial of how you made yours?

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KanishaD made it! (author)KanishaD2015-10-18

Hello do you have a video of this? I'm trying to make one for my son for Halloween

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edgukated made it! (author)edgukated2014-12-19

Great work. Thanks for sharing.

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cubesnail made it! (author)2014-11-03

Did it with my friends. (I'm the one in blue). Pretty proud of it, thanks so much!

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edgukated made it! (author)edgukated2014-11-03

That turned out awesome!!!
Thanks for sharing the pictures

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Eniogarcia made it! (author)Eniogarcia2015-07-11

Can you please tell me about the ventilation,
I m planning to keep it more at least four hours so please show me how it's done the fans thank you very much.

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edgukated made it! (author)edgukated2015-07-11

Hi Eniogarcia,

If you look at the pictures in Step 3 you will see that the two middle pieces have extra material removed. These form 2 holes from the head space up to the top of the head where the ears go.

I took 2 cooling fans from an old pc and put one in each hole. They were 24 volt fans so I had to use two 12 volt batteries in succession for each fan. But you can buy 12 volt fans on the internet.

I wired it so that one fan sucks air out and the other blows air in, and I gave each fan an on off switch.

All of that is crammed inside the head by carving out some extra space. (no picture shows that)

The picture attached to this comment was taken from the top of the head looking down into one of the holes. You can see the ear on the left hand side of the picture. If you look real close into the hole you will see the PC cooling fan.

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author
Mrkittywolf made it! (author)2014-12-16

Finished my happy costume using these instructions

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hajimeunagi made it! (author)hajimeunagi2015-06-02

What about any other tips/lessons you learnt from doing that costume? Can I know the measurements of the mascot head? And why did you hollow out the mouth and what material replaced it?

SORRY SO MUCH FOR BOMBARDING YOU WITH QUESTIONS..

And thank you very much in advance for your reply

author
hajimeunagi made it! (author)hajimeunagi2015-06-02

Can you please tell me how you did the ears, and how you kept it standing. Also, for the head, you cut circles and only cut out the middle parts of the circle right?

I am planning to do a happy mascot cosplay as well.

author
edgukated made it! (author)edgukated2014-12-19

That is awesome. Thanks for the pictures.

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aliao1 made it! (author)2014-06-18

how about this one? oisk mascot

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edgukated made it! (author)edgukated2014-10-15

That is awesome

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Teachersears made it! (author)2013-12-13

Thanks for the tips. I used a white Styrofoam sheet, cheaper but messier. And I jammed a batting helmet in there to make it stay on better. Go cats!

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jten29 made it! (author)2012-07-09

I noticed other people on this forum were talking about creating an owl head...this is intended to be a gift for someone..Followed your steps, and I'm pretty satisfied with the end result...(definitely buying a soldering iron if I attempt to make another, you're right... cutting with a saw creates a huge mess.) Thanks for the advice!

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edgukated made it! (author)edgukated2012-07-22

Thank you for the picture. That is awesome!

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cbundy made it! (author)2011-10-30

Thanks for the amazing tips on the mascot head. I am very pleased with my Gizmo!

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edgukated made it! (author)edgukated2011-10-30

Awesome Gizmo.
...timmy

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mamamick made it! (author)2011-10-07

Oops! Here is the Stitch costume we made with your directions

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edgukated made it! (author)edgukated2011-10-07

Awesome. Thanks for the posting. It makes we want to post more stuff on Instructables.

...timmy

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trenttitanrb211 made it! (author)2017-04-23

Will elmers glue all work

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edgukated made it! (author)edgukated2017-04-24

I used elmers glue to hold the pink layers together but I do not recommend it.
The glue takes months to dry. I recommend the special glue for foam.
I also used 3 inch long screws to hold the layers together.

I used spray glue to hold the fabric to the outside. I don't remember the brand. It worked well.

author
LisaT162 made it! (author)2017-04-04

Example :

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LisaT162 made it! (author)LisaT1622017-04-15

can someone make a mask exactly like this except a polar bear (only thing different make white ears and make white on the outside of the eyes instead of black )

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LisaT162 made it! (author)LisaT1622017-04-15

and then i will buy it

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LisaT162 made it! (author)2017-04-04

Hi I don't really understand step 2 and 3 I'm looking to make a circle head (panda) but I don't understand do you cut a bunch of circles or and them connect them , please can someone help me thanks.

author
edgukated made it! (author)edgukated2017-04-05

Hi LisaT162,
imagine that you are taking the panda head and slicing it into layers with a giant knife. And each slice is the same thickness as the pink foam board.
When I made my Hello Kitty head, my slices were vertical. But I see that somebody else posted a brutus the buckeye head and his slices were horizontal.
The middle slices would be the biggest. and the end slices would be the smallest.

If you look at the pictures in my instructable, you can see different views of the slices.

author
LisaT162 made it! (author)LisaT1622017-04-09

Ok thank you ?

author
LisaT162 made it! (author)LisaT1622017-04-04

Sorry for the bad spelling and grammar

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Lynxspring made it! (author)2017-03-27

here is how to add a fan to a construction helmet used inside a mascotte head.

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edgukated made it! (author)edgukated2017-04-05

Thanks Lynxspring. Those pictures are great.

I didn't do a very good job of explaining the fan. Your solution is far more advanced than mine.

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TonyS274 made it! (author)2016-10-31

trying to get ideas on making a pelican mascot head....or looking for a place to purchase.....any ideas?

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Skater0330 made it! (author)2016-09-28

This is really cool I really like it!

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deathofafly made it! (author)2016-03-28

Thanks for this helpful tutorial! I've got a cosplay project coming up and I'm thinking I might use this method for a Commander Peepers head. I've got some experience sculpting this type of foam but ZERO experience making or wearing a mascot head, and I was wondering if anyone had advice for visibility.

Since the character's head is just a huge eye, I was thinking I might make the pupil out of black fabric (either skip the highlight, or paint it on top with fabric paint.) Is there a particular type of fabric people use that's opaque enough for the effect but still easy to see through? And will I be able to see through it if my face is several inches away from the front of the head? (I'm hoping to make it as big and round as possible without making it too heavy to wear :D)

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edgukated made it! (author)edgukated2016-03-30

Hi Deathofafly,

I think you are on the right track. Go to a fabric store and get the thinnest, most transparent black material you can find. Do not worry that people will be able to see inside, it will be dark inside the head and nobody will be able to see through the fabric (unless they get really, really close).

My Hello Kitty head does not have any fabric covering the eye holes and nobody can see inside. You might need fabric because your eye hole is so big.

If I were you, I would create the head first and not even think about the eye hole until everything else is complete. You can easily attach the fabric with pins if you are in a hurry.

...timmy

author
T0BY made it! (author)2016-01-09

Cute!

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aravenbeauty made it! (author)2015-12-28

Thanks so much for the instructions! My daughter wanted to be Cookie Monster for Halloween and this was so much easier to do than expected. She was a huge hit!

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dj_panda made it! (author)2015-12-02

how would u make something like thses pandas

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edgukated made it! (author)edgukated2015-12-02

Hi DJ_Panda,
It is an interesting question.
If I imagine myself making the panda head in your picture, I think "that isn't so hard, you just have to plan more carefully"
But when I try to describe it, it gets hard.

I will try

Option 1 - make the head, then add the nose piece and the ears

Option 2 - design the head and the nose as one unit and add the ears later.

I would choose option 2 even though it takes a lot more planning and creative cutting of the material.

...timmy

author
JordanD22 made it! (author)2015-11-09

What type of material did you use after the mask was assembled and how did you get it on the head (like sewing, hot glue, or something else)?

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edgukated made it! (author)edgukated2015-11-10

I used white felt and elmers glue.

First I did just the front and I held the felt in place with pins. I let it dry for a few days, then I did the back. I let the back dry for a few days then I did the sides.

I did the sides last because that is where the seams were.

If I every do it again I will make a pattern out of newspaper first. Then I will transfer the patter to the felt and cut the felt.

...timmy

author
KanishaD made it! (author)2015-10-24

Hello do you have a video of this? I'm trying to make one for my son for Halloween

author
edgukated made it! (author)edgukated2015-11-10

Hi,

Sorry for the late reply. I do not have a video.

...timmy

author
KanishaD made it! (author)2015-10-18

hello this is awesome do you have a video tutorial ?? I'd like to make a Brutus buckeye head for my son!

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RouRou_1978 made it! (author)2015-05-03

I want to make disney Mc stuffins head with a fan, pleeeeeeeeeeeease help :"O

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edgukated made it! (author)edgukated2015-05-21

What sort of help do you need?

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scourgeo made it! (author)2015-04-21

I was wondering how I could possibly do one of scourge the bloodclan warrior cat

could you please help me??

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author
edgukated made it! (author)edgukated2015-04-22

Hi
Scourgeo,

Making
a Scourge the Bloodclan Warrior head should be fairly straight forward if you
follow the steps in my Instructable listing.

You
will need a little bit of artistic skill.

When
you start, do not worry about the ears, or hair, or whiskers, or fur. Those are all things that you can add after
you have the basic head built.

If
you aren’t sure where to start, I would recommend that you get a piece of
cardboard and cut out a shape that includes Scourge’s nose (which would
probably be about the same level as your nose).
Once you have a cardboard shape that you like, copy it onto the foam and
cut the foam. From there you can add
layers above and below.

If
you have any specific questions, please feel free to ask.

…timmy

author
GregoriGalanis made it! (author)2015-02-27

Hi , i m trying to create a miky mouse mascot head.Did anyone knows about? ThaNKS!

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