Plants Vs. Zombies Costumes





Introduction: Plants Vs. Zombies Costumes

This Halloween my son Peter went  as a Threepeater from the game Plants vs. Zombies with a costume I made with my wife Terri. His pea shooters shot little green balls and he collected candy in a plantern we made, with integrated light to see in the dark.  I accompanied him as Crazy Dave.  (for completeness, our other son Alex was Thomas the Tank engine and our daughter was a pumpkin, though not of the Plants vs. Zombies variety).

Step 1: Pea Shooter Head Components

The the pea shooter heads each consist of a 6" diameter foam ball and a cut-down plastic bucket for the cone. The bucket was a little over 5" at its top diameter and we cut it to a height of about 4". The ball was carved out with a utility knive to make a space for a foam ball shooter, and a dowel rod was inserted into the foam ball as a handle. The foam ball, ball shooter, and dowel rod were spray-painted lime green (an unpainted shooter is also shown).

The outer covering of the pea shooter heads was a lime green fleece fabric we found at a fabric store.  We had to experiment a bit to find the right shape to sew the head coverings, but hopefully these photos give a good idea. The fleece was very elastic, so the exact shape isn't that important.  We just tried to make it on the tight side, so it would stretch around the forms, giving definition to the head and holding everything together.

The dimension of one side of the head covering is roughly 8"x16". With the main part of the head being 8"x8" and the cone protrusion also being 8". We left a fair bit of fabric for the "neck" and only cut it down once all the pieces were assembled.  We didn't sew the "neck" seams all the way down because we needed to be sure we could fit the foam ball.

Step 2: Assembling the Pea Shooter Heads

Assembling the heads was an exercise in topology. Once the head covering was sewn into a single piece, we threaded it through the cone backwards and taped it with duct tape to the lower rim of the cut-off bucket. Next, we turned the whole assembly inside out, and shoved the foam ball inside along with the shooter, hand-stitching the seams around the base of the ball to keep them inside. Finally, we stuck the dowel rod in at the base of the head.

Step 3: Finishing the Pea Shooter Heads

Finishing the pea shooter heads was  simple. We bought some artificial plant leaves and stick them to the back of the heads with a pin and hand-stiched them in place.  We used some big shiny black buttons for the eyes, and wrapped a thread around the base of the cone to provide some definition.  We also ran an invisible thread through the foam balls and tied it around the pea shooter so the balls wouldn't get lost.

A note about the foam pea shooters: The foam pea shooters really didn't work all that well, because the paint stiffened the foam and it was difficult to squeeze the handle quickly enough when it was embedded in the head. Still, he was able to get off a few shots while dressed in the costume.

Step 4: Pea Shooter Mask

Sewing the pea shooter mask was basically the same as the pea shooter heads, but larger.  We used a 9" diameter bucket cut to a height of 6".  The basic head shape was 10" wide by 15" tall, with an 8" cone section. Wrapping the cloth around the bucket was done in a similar way, except instead of sewing a thread around the outside, we stitched a line of elastic on the inside to help define the cone shape.  We used slightly bigger buttons but the same leaves.  We didn't stick a pin in Peter's head.

Step 5: Flower Pot and Stem

The flower pot and stem were very easy to make. We bought a forest green hoodie for Peter to wear and a 17" diameter plastic flower pot from Home Depot.  We cut the bottom out of the flower pot and used hot glue to affix cardboard tubes as "holsters" for the pea shooters.

In order to allow him to walk with the pot, we got some plastic jewelery cord to use as suspenders.  We ran the cord through some rings we glued to the inside of the pot, though if we had more time I think it would have been a lot more stable and reliable to drill some holes on the inside top of the pot and run the cord under the lip of the rim.

Step 6: Plantern

At this point we were pretty much done with the costume, but were not sure what he would put his candy in.  We happened to have this metal hanging tea light container lying around.  A little construction paper, hot glued leaves, and a flat flashlight turned it into an instantPlantern.  Great for collecting candy and lighting the way when trick-or-treating after dark.

Step 7: Crazy Dave

Dressing up as Crazy_Dave is super easy.  White polo shirt, $5 costume beard, and a saucepan for your head (some people may also need a pillow for padding but I didn't).  The only difficult part is keeping the pan on your head.  After this photo was taken, I figured out that you can clip a binder clip on the pan opposite the handle and then thread the elastic from the beard through the binder clip and over the handle.



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    was he able to see out of the mask part? i'm going to try to do this, but wow...i'm nervous to attempt! awesome job!

    Ok I hope you are still following this. I'm trying to figure out where you got the gun things for the shooters? My 9 year old is in love with the new Garden Warfare game and we're going to try and make this costume. He really wants the shooters though and I'm not sure where to find something like this. Any ideas?

    2 replies

    I am making this costume as well and I found the foam ball shooters at a local party store or online. Good luck I am also making a chomper costume.

    I am making this costume as well and I found the foam ball shooters at a local party store or online. Good luck I am also making a chomper costume.


    Ok, one more question...what did you use to cut the bottoms off of the pot and buckets?


    1 reply

    I can't completely remember, but I think I used some kitchen shears. The hard part was getting the cut started; I probably used an awl or steak knife to stab it but be careful not to crack the plastic.


    Thank you so much for sharing!! My son LOVES this game and wants to be a plant for Halloween so this is a godsend! Just one question...we made a rocket for him a few years ago and found that he had to kind of shuffle a tiny bit because of the size of the hole in the bottom. Did that happen with your son with the pot, or was it big/wide enough that he could walk fairly normally? Thanks!

    2 replies

    You are absolutely right, the pot was a little awkward. He could do it, though, and he went trick-or-treating while wearing it. However, when we later went out for a second round he opted to leave it at home. It was worth making just for the photos, though.


    I figured out a way around it! Plastic party tub (they're shorter) and terra cotta spray paint for plastic. :)

    really son also wants to be a peashooter, and i had no idea what to do! thanks for the great info!!

    My friend is obsessed with plants vs. zombies and when she saw this she practically flipped out.... great job and this is uber creative!!!!

    I used this as guidance for my 6 yr old son's costume, but I changed the basic hood design for one I got from a pattern- I just put the 'bucket cover' portion where the face hole was. It was lined, which solved the duct tape/ elastic problem for the main hood, and shaped a curve in the top and bottom for our son's forehead and chin. I had to hand sew the bucket/chin opening closed, but it came out very well. I made some fleece 'leaves' and hand tacked them to the back of the hood, instead of using actual or silk shrubbery (I couldn't find any in small quantities).
    Halloween 2011

    This is totally awesome. My whole family loves the game and were planning to do this as a group costume for our church Trunk or Treat. We are also decorating our car with hanging suns, tombstones, etc. I have been struggling with the peashooter. Thanks so much for you ingenuity. I am so stealing it.

    This rocks out-loud! My 7 yr old wanted to be a pea shooter and I had no idea how to proceed. This is really cool!

    Thank you so much for posting this! My nephews LOVE the Plants Vs. Zombies game and want to dress as characters for this Halloween and asked their favorite Aunt (me) to help them. I was glad to find your instructions to help me get this done for them - thanks again!

    You could make a lot of money making costumes like that you should try it

    Thanks for the kind comments! Peter did indeed feel special, especially when he went on his school's halloween parade and so many of the 4th-8th graders recognized the costume. He also likes to sing "there's a zombie on your laaaaawn"