Introduction: BATMAN: ScareCrow
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Materials Needed For the Costume, Pants, Shirt, Mask, Gloves:
- Sewing machine
- Varying size needles
- Large Leather Working Needle
- Brown Sewing Thread
- Light Brown Sewing Thread
- Orange Sewing Thread
- 2-3 Yrds. of Burlap For Mask, Gloves & Socks (AKA shoes)
- 3 Yrds No Stretch Fabric For Pants
- 3 Yrds. No Stretch Fabric For Shirt
- 1-2 Yrds. No Stretch Fabric For Hat
- 1/2-1 Gal.
PVA Glue(1 Yrd. = 3 feet) You may need more or less of fabric depending on your size & shape
You may need more PVA glue depending on how rigid you'd like the mask.
I little bit about me:I'm a big fan of Batman, more so of his rowdy group of villains; and especially the ScareCrow. In this instructable I'll show you the steps I took to recreate the "classic" ScareCrow, not the movie version or the video game version but the real one!
Prologue:The one most important thing that will set your ScareCrow apart from all the others is the mask. For my version I drew heavy inspiration from the Nightmare Before Christmas Jack Skeleton. I don't have any sculpting skills worth speaking of and I probably took the long method. You may discover a shorter short cut?!
I needed a life cast or a bust of my actual head to base his mask off of & to ensure it would fit properly. I used a company called Smooth On for my head casting project. If you do use the life casting method please use common sense safety and remember to have adequate breathing room when applying the casting!
If you're claustrophobic in any way I recommend going with a styrofoam mannequin head.
Pros it's cheaper, Cons it may or may not fit your head.
Step 1: BATMAN: ScareCrow
Once you've secured a head type, then shape & mold the mask to how you would ultimately like it to look. Like I said, I drew inspirations from other sources other than the ScareCrow, but it does help to keep him in mind.
The type of clay you most likely will find that will get the job done and produce the best results is good old fashioned school clay.
Sculpting Clay a ten lb. tub should be plenty to sculpt a 'face' for the base of the mask! The trick to working with clay is keep it moist!
Step 2: BATMAN: ScareCrow
Now that you've procured the head & a base to which you can form the mask you'll want to reach for the BIGGEST bottle of PVA glue that you can find.
For the Glue mixture to apply to the mask you'll want a 2:1 ratio. 2 parts glue to 1 part water; your mixture can vary after the initial coat. You'll want to also grab a container to pour the mixture in, then add your fabric & give it a good sloshing around to make sure it's saturated.
Once you have it wet, but not to the point that you're able to hand wring it out, place the fabric over your sculpted bust (it should be laying flat) and let it drape off the back of the bust. Be sure to pay attention around the eye sockets and the mouth, pressing firmly in place.
You can let this air dry a few hours, or speed the process up by using a blow dryer set to low.
Check to make sure the initial coat is dry by running your fingers along the mask, there shouldn't be any sticky spots! Once it is dry use a painters brush to reapply the glue/water mixture and dry again. You will want four or more plus coats to make the fabric stiff to sustain prolong usage of the mask.
After several reapplications of glue and dry time you should be able to make an educated guess as to the durability of the mask.
then proceed to the trim work of cutting out the eyes, the mouth & decorate how ever you like. I put a decent coat of airbrushing on my mask, which is something you may want to consider before proceeding to the next part.
In this example I used twine for the mouth and Lycra for the eyes (it's see through-ish) and the innards of the mouth.
Pro Selection Tip For The Eyes, You May Want To Consider:
If you're following along so far, you will notice this is only half the mask, but the back of the mask, I repeated the process then stitched the back to the front after I was done decorating. For the back I would recommend however once it's dry enough to cut a strait slit 3/4" of the way up and add wooden buttons. It'll make getting the mask on and off much easier.
Step 3: BATMAN: ScareCrow
That last part really tested my skill level. I had to do an enormous amount of research which seems silly now. But hey, who knew with Burlap and Glue you could make a mask!
For these next few parts I also had to do a lot of self educating in the sewing department. I thought about enlisting a seamstress, but wasn't willing to shell out $1,500 at the time to make my costume.
What I can tell you, for this project or any other, get reference pictures. They help! The more the better.
I will recommend measuring your body, which might sound silly measure every thing from how round your but is, to how round your head is. You'll need it for the next steps and information.
For added convenience, tips on where & how to take body measurements:
Bust:Measure all the way around your bust and back on the line of your nipples.
Chest:Measure directly under your breasts, as high up as possible.
Waist:Measure at its narrowest point width-wise, usually just above the navel.
Hips:Measure around the widest part of the hipbones.
Midway:Measure midway between the widest part of your hips and your waist.
Thighs:Measure around fullest part of upper leg while standing
Knees:Measure immediately above the knee.
Calves: Measure around fullest part.
Upper arm:Measure above your elbows – around fullest part.
Forearms:Measure below your elbows – around fullest part.
Step 4: BATMAN: ScareCrow
Pro Tip: Once you have all the measurements, break down your main reference pictures into something as simple as MS paint and trace it out. This will help to break down the project into manageable chunks and will latter aid in better visual reference points that you can have on hand.
Step 5: BATMAN: ScareCrow
Now that all the pieces are starting to come together you'll either need to be really good at making templates or ok/decent at sewing.
Pro Tip:One trick to making sewing templates is to reuse older garments, pants, shirts etc... as the base of your new project and simply alter it.
How ever there might be times that you're unwilling to part ways with older cloths, or would rather use a commercial template. For both the pants & the shirt I used Simplicity's It's Sew Easy Template then added my own alterations with twin (for the faux) whip stitches, length to the arms, elastic to the legs of the pants and airbrushing.
Pro Tip For Sewing & Fraying Seams:
Using an overcast stitch on a sewing machine sews and finishes the raw edge at the same time. One thing to keep in mind with this stitch is that the seam allowance is only about ¼", or the width of the actual stitch. You will need to account for this ¼" measurement when using the stitch for sewing and finishing in once pass!
You can also use this stitch as the second part of a two step process: first sew your seam with a standard straight stitch, then overcast along just raw edge. This photo is of a ¼" seam and overcast, which has been done in one pass.
Step 6: BATMAN: ScareCrow
The hat by far was the hardest part for me. basically it's a wizard's hat- modified! The exact size of your hat will vary based on the size of the intended wearer. In this case, the wearer will be the mask, not your actual head.
This is going to be a wide brim hat! You will want to add a length of wire on the inside to keep it from looking floppy!
You will also need to know the circumference, diameter and the radius for which you'll base the hat on. Aww come on, math can be fun!
Pro Tip:To measure the radius of a circle: Circumference divided by 2 = diameter, Diameter divided by 2 = radius
One of the better source videos I've ran across that makes the process seem a lot easier.
Step 7: BATMAN: ScareCrow
The socks, which are really Tabi Ninja socks were tricky to get right! However I've complied a list for those in need of such a 'shoe'. Just print the above photos.
I added an interfacing to the socks burlap to keep from itching my feet during wear. The flip flops were modified with rope for a more authentic look. Dr. Scholl's inserts were also add to for comfort.
Step 8: BATMAN: ScareCrow
The gloves were no trouble, being that I used a pair of gardening gloves that I purchased from the local hardware store as templates. Just remember how you deconstructed them!
Sadly for men there really isn't any commercial templates to base the gloves off of. I did a lot of research on how to make gloves from scratch. Those didn't help! The size I normally wear are large, I would recommend going one size up for your hand, that way it will take into account seam allowance. Gloves
Step 9: BATMAN: ScareCrow
This was my first attempt at costume building, my first go at DragonCon (2015) My first try at Cosplaying & my first Instructable write up.
I hope you were able to learn something from this and remember have fun costume building! Once you're done with your costume don't forget to share what you've made & take a thousand or more pictures and in good heath have fun!
If you like this documentary/Tutorial & you find it inspiring or helpful, why not give it a like or a vote in the top upper right hand corner? Also if you're needing further instructions or help with this build or any other please feel free to drop me a line.
For those looking for more pictures of the costume at DragonCon 2015 please visit my Flicker page.
Thanks for viewing this!