Halloween just wouldn't be complete without a few skeletons laying around. The problem is, there simply isn't a perfect solution commercially available. The Big Lots skelies (known by home haunters as Bluckies) are cheap, but they look like a bulbous mess. Then there's the defective medical teaching skeletons, but those will cost you an arm and a leg. So, I set out to make a cheap skeleton that was way more realistic than blucky, and settled on paper mache. My method is a little time consuming, but the results are well worth it.
Step 1: Materials
This is what you need to begin-- about 50 or so sheets of newspaper.
You'll also need some duct tape, scotch tape, paper mache glue (I use a flour and water mixture. It's cheap and strong, but won't be weatherproof until you seal it), and paint (I used a can of light brown spray paint for the base, and some dark brown acrylic for details).
Step 2: Making Bones
Roll up 2-3 layers of newspaper corner to corner for a bone. The tighter the better. Use a piece of scotch tape to secure them. You'll need about 22 rolls for a full skeleton.
Fold the arm tubes and leg tubes in half. Then, using your own limbs as reference, fold over the extra paper on the thin side and tape it down.