How to make sci-fi / steampunk goggles from trash.

Picture of How to make sci-fi / steampunk goggles from trash.
There are already several costume goggles projects on Instructables, but it seems that most of them require a bit more spendy than is nessessary and a bit more skill than Joe Schmo has time to cultivate. I'm going to show you how to make a sturdy set of cool looking space-pilot goggles for (mostly) free out of stuff you normally throw away, and the only skills required are cut and paste.

You will need the following parts:

Several cardboard toilet paper cores
Aluminum foil
Clear plastic packaging
A washable marker or highlighter
Mod Podge
A medium sized paintbrush
Some sort of paint
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Step 1: Cut out the base components.

Start by cutting your toilet paper cores into 2 inch segments (see first image). You will need at least 6 of these segments.

Coat the outside of the cardboard segments in Mod Podge and wrap a layer of aluminum foil around them. (see second image.)

While these are drying, go root through the trashcan until you find a discarded plastic package. I used the flat part of a package that contained headphones. From this you will cut lenses using one of your toilet paper cores as a cutting guide (see third image). Make sure to cut inside your guide lines so the lens wont be bigger than the eyepiece (see fourth image.)

Now take one of the remaining cardboard tubes and cut it in half length-wise and round off one end of each half (see fifth image.)

To make the bridge of the goggles, cut yet another cardboard segment in half length-wise. Using a cardboard segment as a guide, mark a half circle on one of these and cut everything inside that half circle into tabs (see sixth and seventh images.) Make sure to cut out room for the bridge of your nose (see eighth image.) (NOTE: I had to use a cardboard segment that was a bit longer than 2 inches as I have a wide face.)

To make rims for your goggles, you can use polymer clay, PVC, milk cap rings or any circular object that will fit over the end of your eyepieces. I used black polymer clay. I made a donut shape out of clay and used a cardboard tube and a cookie cutter to fashion 2 rings (see ninth image). I then baked the rings according to the instructions on the package to make them hard and durable.

That's all you need to make them. On to assembly...
Ok I've just made half but it already looks splendid. Yay amazing ✌️?
I love this idea, they r super expensive online and this is just way more fun and much easier. I hope to see more steampunk DIY's from u.
csullivan73 years ago
I love this! Great job!
lbogart3 years ago
This is fantastic! I've been searching through all the instructables and compiled a list of all the different ways to make steampunk goggles that were remotely affordable.. yours is the best because (a) $0 (assuming one already owns Mod Podge) and (b) looks better than most of the ones where components were bought anyway.

I ran into someone at this year's Steampunk Festival in Waltham this year who also used carboard rolls to assemble her glasses, but she also did something with soda can pop tops as hooks to connect the leather headband strap.
pennyf244 years ago
Nice! I have been trying to find a tutorial like this one :D Most tutorials tell you to buy a certain kind of pair of glasses in the hardware stores but apparently none of the hardware stores in my city carry them...I don't like buying online much.... and am trying to keep the cost down. Plus I really want my own unique goggles! I';ve wanted a pair of goggles since I've seen them pop up everywhere online lately and well Dr. Horrible somehow made me have a love of goggles :D
Not too bad. Keep up the good work
dglorioso (author)  HardCoreHacker5 years ago
Best idea ever! I was looking for some steampunk goggles that weren't made with leather or metal and that i wouldn't have to pay for. Thanks for posting!
The_Batman4 years ago
What's a mod podge?
I guessing it's a type of glue, so is it possibe to substitute it with something like PVC glue?
Mod Podge is a brand of craft glue. You could substitute other types of glue, but I would make sure that it dries clear and doesn't expand. You'll also want some working time so avoid super-glue or any other instant bond glue.

Thanks, I'll keep that in mind.
lacs984 years ago
great job! this instructable is pretty easy to follow (i had trouble on the first step) and makes great cool goggles form almost 0$ cost!
DaPope4 years ago
Really nice final product for almost $0 investment!
Coraline5 years ago
 My favorite steampunk goggle tutorial yet; mostly because it's so simple and easy to do but awesome.  I can't wait to try this out! ^_^
I love it! I'm a cheap (and broke) sob and I'm always digging through the trash after my mom cleans out our junk drawers!!! What a great use of the 3Rs!!
Rainspuddle5 years ago
Well aren't you thrifty.
This was pretty good for spending a whopping total of zero dollars.
I like that you consider these a back to school item :D
dglorioso (author)  Weissensteinburg5 years ago
Hey, when I was in school it was all fake diamond studded gloves and hot pink leg warmers, I have no idea what the kids are into these days ;)
Oh, how I wish I wasn't the only one in my school into steampunk.
k_man935 years ago
LOVE the idea. It takes the part of me that likes steampunk, and combines it with the person that knows they should be more environmentaly friendly but isn't, in such a great way! kudos
dglorioso (author)  k_man935 years ago
Thx! I figure if I can make something useful (or at least shelf-worthy) out of the waste i make, at least that's less crap going in the landfills.
the end product looks pretty good. im not a big fan of the cardboard though. you shouldve taken the cord from those input things and used it as a strap.
dglorioso (author)  TimTheScarecrow5 years ago
Yeah, cardboard may be a little janktastic, but its free. Cardboard works well for a weekend costume party, or maybe a sci-fi convention, but they wouldn't last for daily use. The problem with using the cord is that it doesn't stretch.
true. you could put a buckle or something on it to tighten it. thats what i have on my goggles.
dglorioso (author)  TimTheScarecrow5 years ago
Not a bad idea.