Always wanted to transform into a Banana-loving-evil-scheming-yellow-mass-of-cuteness? I know I do. So this is the documentation of how to make your very own full sized minion costume!
Step 1: Gather Your Materials
So to make this costume you will need 3 major things:
- A wooden structure/frame (I used bamboo as it was light weight and easily available)
- A cloth cover with minion features
- An Arduino/micro controller which will power and drive the neo pixels!
Step 2: Preparing the Wooden Frame
The frame is completely made out of Bamboo.
First, find and cut the bamboos in half to prepare the frame. Using these halves make a cylinder while adding bamboos around the vertical pieces in the shape of rings. (add as many as you need to keep the structure stable)
Once done, add bamboos to make a hemisphere on the top of the cylinder by adding curved bamboo pieces to the top edge of the cylinder (the last ring).
Use nails to hold the pieces together.
The dimensions of the frame depend greatly on the wearer. If you make the radius too big, the frame will be difficult to carry around. So make sure that it is wide enough to get the person to comfortably carry it around but not so wide that it gets wobbly while you walk.
To wear the costume add straps of cloth/rope tied at every alternate section. This again depends on the strength of the person wearing the costume. We added alot of straps (a total of 6) However 2 straps going across the shoulders (in the shape of an X) work well too.
Step 3: Making the Cloth/Covering - the Body
To make the minion's dress and skin, you need to first cut out a piece of yellow cloth with the dimensions as follows:
- The length should be = circumference of your wooden frame (for me this was 94 inches)
- The breath should be = height of the cylindrical part (this was 44 inches)
A good way to figure out the circumference would be to roll out the sheet and then wrap it around the frame until you reach the end touching the cloth. Mark this part and after adding 1-2 inches cut it out. (see the photo)
Once you have this piece of rectangular cloth, plan out your minion's dungaree (use denim to make it look authentic) and cut the holes you need for the mouth and your arms.
Mark all of these parts and cut them out. Then stitch Velcro/zipper onto the 2 ends so that you can easily attach the cloth to the frame. Attach Velcro to the TOP edge of your yellow cloth to attach the head on to the body.
Step 4: Making the Head
To make the head, measure out the hemispherical part of the frame. Note the height of the hemisphere from the edge of the cylinder and cut out another piece of rectangular cloth with the dimensions: circumference of the cylinder as length and the height of the hemisphere as the breath.
Next we must cut the rectangle into multiple triangles so that when we stitch them end to end we end up with a circular structure. (To visualize this, think of an umbrella. The individual triangles are stitched at the steel frame to give a circular whole hemisphere. Similarly plan out your triangles based on the hemispherical frame.)
The head also consists of a 3D printed one eyed goggle, the .stl file for which I have attached below. You can choose to make this using cardboard as well, since I had access to a 3D printer I decided to just print it out of PLA.
(If you're using the file, note that its designed to print in a 6*6*6 inches print volume hence it is composed of 2 interlocking halves. You can modify this to suit your printer's print volume!)
We also need to make straps of the goggles using black strips of cloth stitched around the head starting from the ends of the goggles. (leave space for the goggles to come in)
Make a slit in the space you have left for the goggles so that you can see through the eye of the minion once we attach the goggles.
Print and cut out your favorite minion's eye (use a very thin sheet) and paste it on the head along with a transparent sheet in the cavity of the googles and our minion shall have a head!
Step 5: Making It GLOW!
A minion without dramatic lights is no minion at all. In this step we shall be adding our Neopixels to the eye of the minion to give it a nice glowing effect.
First you need to solder wires to the Neopixel strips so that you have an appropriate connector to connect them to your Arduino board (Tah had female sockets so I soldered male jumpers pins)
Once that is done you can upload your Neopixel code to your Arduino board. This (the attached file) is a tweaked version of the example code available for the Adafruit Neopixels. You are free to customize your own light up pattern for your minion!