It seems like nearly everyone wants to be a mermaid at some point in their life. Well, at least I did. So for the fun of it, and because I can, I made a latex mermaid tail that is fully capable of swimming in.
Just a disclaimer, this is not a cheap endeavor to start. Look to spend about $500 in materials and plenty of time on this project. If you are looking for a mermaid tail that will last considerably longer, follow the same steps but with silicone.
Step 1: Part 1, the neoprene sleeve!
I don't have any photos of this step, but getting ready is always the most important part.
First thing you want to do is buy a monofin, and then create a "sleeve" of neoprene. The latex has to have something to adhere to. So break out the sewing machine and make a fabric tail for yourself. Don't mistake Neoprene for Neoprin. Different material. Neoprin will stretch out eventually and your tail will no longer fit.
You can buy neoprene at local dive shops (if there are any in your area) or you can buy it online. Your sewing machine may not want to sew this material because it is extremely thick.
If there's enough interest in a tutorial for how to make a neoprene tail I might make that someday. At this point, let's get to the harder stuff.
Step 2: Making the scales
To make the scales, I used a sharpened pipe and a hammer to punch out foam circles. I did this because I knew that I didn't have enough time to cut out clay scales and mold in the same day. If I was doing it again, I would definitely buy the oil clay and hand sculpt each scale.
But if you're looking for the quick, easy, and cheaper way, this is the way to do it.
These scales are made out of the kid foam with the peelable sticky backs.