Picture of Slot Construction Cardboard Starfish
exploded view.jpg
I recently designed and created a cardboard costume for a project in my school. I was tasked with designing a slot construction costume of a marine animal. I chose to create a costume of a starfish. The project evolved from designing the costume on paper to tracing pieces, cutting them out, and eventually assembling them. My design changed many times over the course of the project until I reached my final design, which this instructable is diagramming.

Design Brief: I was part of a group project where our group of five had to design five costumes of a common marine theme. I was tasked with designing and producing one of the costumes for my group.

· The costume must be wearable by a middle school sized child
· The costume must be a Halloween costume or a costume for a play or show
· The costume must be flat pack construction (flat parts and designed to be quickly and easily assembled)

· The costume must be made of cardboard only
· No adhesives or staples were used to attach parts
· The costume must be only slot construction
· The costume must be flat pack construction
· The cardboard must be easily obtained

Materials List

· (S1) Cardboard front arm sheet, size: 30” by 36”, Qty 2, can be obtained by half of a speaker box
· (S2) Cardboard back arm sheet, size: 30” by 24”, Qty 2, can be obtained by other half of speaker box
· (S3) Cardboard body sheet, size 65” by 43”, Qty 2, can be obtained by a large TV box, or a bed frame box
· (S4) Cardboard slot sheet, size 35” by 7”, Qty 1, can be obtained from any scraps or small pieces of cardboard
· (T1) Cutting mat, to prevent damage to the surface cutting is done on
· (T2) Utility Knife, to cut the cardboard pieces
· (T3) Ruler, to measure pieces and to trace straight lines
· (T4) Pencil, to mark cuts
· (T5) Marker, to mark folds

I encountered a problem with the cardboard I used for my costume. I came to the conclusion that a stiffer cardboard should be used for the body pieces and a much lighter cardboard should be used for the arms. The arms of my costume were very heavy and would tear the much lighter and flimsy body cardboard. Also a stiffer cardboard for the body would help it hold its shape and makes the body easier to wear and to work with.

Parts List:
· (P1) Front arm piece, Qty 2
· (P2) Back arm Piece, Qty 2
· (P3) Front body piece, Qty 1
· (P4) Back body piece, Qty 1
· (P5) Separate slot piece, Qty 10

Note:Although I chose to not paint my costume you might want to. From previous experience I have learned that cardboard bends and contorts when it is painted on one side so to combat this problem I suggest painting both sides. This will cause both sides to even out. Also painting must be done while the costume is disassembled.
kinetike4 years ago
More pics needed from farther away to see the big picture of the costume. Well done.
kinetike4 years ago
Nice work! I agree that the paragraphs should be split. Try number steps as you did for the plan of procedures. ;o)
mattnap7654 years ago
I think it looks good, but looks like a pain to make without looots of cardboard
kelseymh4 years ago
As Kiteman said, it would be extremely useful to have a picture of the costume being worn, both as the Intro picture and in the final step.

Also, I would suggest that you split "Step 1" into five separate steps. Since each piece requires a full paragraph of detailed description, they deserve to be broken out to individual steps, each with its own associated photos.
Kiteman4 years ago
No photo of it being worn?