Introduction: Cardboard Iron Man Costumes on a Budget
I made these costumes using ice cream buckets for helmets, office paper boxes as chest plates, cardboard and foam core for detailing and battery powered lights for effect and night safety. I used spray cans for the base color with opaque markers for detailing. Using a hot glue gun, you too can get creative and make your own original design. Having twins, I made a War Machine version as well.
Step 1: Decide What Color Scheme and General Look You Want
Supplies and tools needed:
- Ice cream bucket from 31 flavors (or other ice cream place) trash bin (just go to back where they throw them away or ask if they can save you one). You will need to hose off the dried, sticky ice cream and dry them.
- Copy paper box, tend to be kid size and come with lid which makes it perfect for all around chest coverage.
Tools - Spray paints, acrylic paints and brushes, opaque markers, heavy duty scissors or carpet cutter (Safety tip/remember to always cut away from your body or hands), hot glue gun, pencil, measuring tape, zip ties, stick on moving eyes.
- Any old throw away gadgets/knobs (we had an old stove and other cool gadgets thrown away in our apartment garbage bin)
- Sweat pants and sweater in color scheme (red or grey)
Step 2: Measure, Cut, Glue and Paint
Helmet - You will need to cut an area large enough for your kid to be able to see. I decided that the mouth would offer more sight space than two eye holes. This also allowed the helmet to fit higher and not constrict movement. Sorry I don't have an inside view but I added foam padding on the inside to allow the helmet to sit on my son's head like a headband and be super comfortable. I also added a pen light at the top through a hole for visibility at night. You could consider using glow in the dark paint as well. Looks cool and your child is very visible at night!
Chest - You will need to cut holes in the box for head, arms and the bottom for the torso and legs. Try this on your kid before painting with room and comfort as you goal. I used zip ties to hold the lid and allow for opening to put on once ready (consider having the lid as the back which allows the bigger box to be used to cut large arm holes. Using your color scheme (red and gold/traditional Iron Man or Silver and Black/War Machine), mask out and spray (make sure you are in an open, well ventilated area) helmet and chest. Hot glue gizmos after deciding where they will fit best and coloring them. Add chest light last (make sure you have new batteries). Buy the kind that turn on by pushing in on them. Your kid will now look like a cool version of Iron man but be comfortable and warm in his sweats and be well lit for a safe and fun Halloween or party!