In this Instructable, I'll show you how to make a very cool scarecrow mask. I first got this idea a couple of years ago when I got sick of trying to find a cool costume. It occurred to me that a scarecrow could be very scary if done right and none of the masks available seemed to appeal to me. I wanted something like we see in Batman Begins but also something original that was nothing like the movie or even the character. What I came up with was fairly simple although there are a few details to observe. They may seem trivial, but I think these are the details that really make this stand out. I've gotten a lot of compliments on this mask, and I think you will too if you decide to make it. This is also very cheep to make. If you have the materials it'll be free, but even to buy everything, it only cost me about ten bucks. Unfortunately, I didn't think of taking step-by-step pictures, but I think my explanations and the pictures of the finished mask will be enough to let you reproduce the results. You might even be able to improve on it (please let me know if you do). I hope you like it and please comment and let me know what you think (also, if you like it, please vote on it). Have fun!
Step 1: Materials
You don't need much to make this mask. As I said in the intro, it can cost as little as nothing and if you have some old things laying around the house, all you need is some time. The first thing you need is burlap, the material they used to make bags out of. I hear some things are still sold in burlap but I couldn't find any at home, so I bought it at a fabric store. It cost me about a dollar for the amount I used and I think that price is pretty much universal. You will also need some rope or thick string, scissors, sewing thread, and a needle. I used standard black sewing thread I had at home and it worked well for me. The only other thing you need is a black ghost mask, the type that lets you see out of but no one can see in and it covers the entire face(I have also heard them called grim reaper masks). They should be fairly common and you might have one left over from previous Halloweens, but if you don't, they run from 3 to 7 dollars(it won't break you). After that, all you need is a little patience, so let's go make a scarecrow!
Step 2: Make a Bag
Scarecrow heads have traditionally been made using burlap bags or sacks, so to make it look authentic and make sure people know it's a scarecrow, I did the same. Cut the burlap so it goes over your head and down to the shoulders and it fits comfortably. You don't want to make it too loose or it'll cause other problems I'll discuss later, but it can't be too snug because it has to go on top of the ghost mask. After that, fold it in half and imagine making a bag. On the bottom of the bag, cut the corners so that it is kind of a U shape. Again, I'll explain the reason for this later(I promise, there is a reason). Next, just sew along the two long sides to form a bag and turn it inside out.
Step 3: The Eyes and Mouth
This is the part that makes this mask different and gives it character. It was actually this detail that gave me the idea to make it myself. It can be tricky to explain so take extra care. Put the mask on and determine where the eyes should go. Cut a horizontal slit about two inches across for each eye. DO NOT CUT OUT EYES! If you cut out the eyes, it will not produce the same effect. Now that you have a slit, you need to make it into something you can see through. Take the top part of the slit and roll it tightly, seperating it from the bottom. Sew it tight all the way across and repeat for the bottom half. I know it's difficult to understand from this discreption, but hopefully from the pictures, you get the idea. The main thing is that you don't cut out the eyes, you create them. This gives the eyes character and makes the mask unique. After you get the eyes down, the mouth is easy. You do exactly the same thing as you did for the eyes but center it over your mouth and make it a little bigger, about 4-5 inches total. But make sure you do the eyes first because everything should revolve around them.
Step 4: The Finishing Touches
Once you've done the face, all you have to do is put on your black ghost/grim reaper mask, put the scarecrow mask over, and tie the rope(I used para-cord, but it can be anything) around your neck to keep everything in place.(Caution: NOT TOO TIGHT! YOU DON'T WANT TO CHOKE YOURSELF!) You're done! Now you have an original homemade Halloween mask to go trick-or-treating with or to just scare some kids in the neighborhood(maybe some dressed up as crows, you never know). The hat I found at a local party store. It's called a beachcomber hat and it was in the luau section, I just folded down the brim to make look like a farmers straw hat and scrunched it up tp make it look worn out, but you can use another hat, in fact, you don't need a hat at all. Hope you have fun with this and don't forget to comment and let me know if you have any questions. Happy Halloween!!!!!!
Step 5: A Few Clarifications
The first time I thought of this, I considered just sewing on the black material for the eyes and mouth instead of wearing the mask under it. There are a couple of reasons why this is not a good idea. First, if you wear the whole mask the burlap won't irritate your entire head. Burlap can be very annoying on you hair and your skin, so wear the whole black mask. Another reason is that I like the burlap to be independent of the black mask. I think it gives it an extra effect and heightens the illusion that the head is hollow. You may have noticed in store-bought masks that although this is the intent of the black eyes, it does not create that illusion very well, at least not to my satisfaction. Another thing, if you were wondering about the string I used, it's just a length of tan para-cord and I tied it using a Chain Sinnet to give it some bulk and make it easier to untie without choking myself (here is a link that teaches how to tie it http://www.animatedknots.com/chainsinnet/index.php?LogoImage=LogoGrog.jpg&Website=www.animatedknots.com ), but you can use any kind of rope or string that you want. I just happened to have para-cord and so decided to use it, but tying it the way I did is tricky so please don't feel compelled to try it. Do what you like. I also talked about size and shape of the bag, well there is a reason for that. My first attempt at this resulted in a mask too big and too square and I tried fixing it by sewing it up to make it smaller. It didn't work out too well so I recommend rounding of the corners to avoid a square, and not making it too big. This will result in a nicer, cleaner, "scarecrowish", mask(my first one looked more like the boogie man from Nightmare Before Christmas). Other than that, just go have some fun! Last year a made three scarecrows and left them out front and pretend to be one of them to scare the kiddies. You are limited only by your imagination, so try something new, and let me know how it went. Happy Haunting!