Introduction: Super Mario Yoshi Rider Costume

This is my Super Mario riding Yoshi puppet! I prefer to call it a puppet rather than costume. With fake Mario legs on the puppet & my own legs inside the Yoshi legs, It gives the illusion that you are riding a real life Cartoon Dinosaur!  To add to the realism, Yoshi has a full opening & closing mouth and exending toungue

Inspiration for the costume mechanic was the goblin riders from the silly battle sequence in Jim Henson's Labyrinth.
It took about 4 months from start to finish, with about an extra month for Research & Development.  Final estimated cost was around $450.

Primary materials were:

  memory foam, for the skin
  PVC pipe & plastic canvas, for the skeleton
  a whole lot of hot glue & duct tape, to keep everything together
  paper mache of a dodgeball for the yoshi head
  plastic hangers, screws, bolts & red leggings to create accordian mechanism for toungue
  Spray paint for color. Latex paint wouldve been best, but the deadline had to be met
  Most importantly, since a fake one just wouldnt do:  
  the willpower to walk around for 5 months while growing a big handlebar mustache!

Showing off the puppet at Wizard World Comic-Con 2010 in Austin, Tx:

Step 1: Research & Development

Picture of Research & Development

Making alot of Sketches, taking measurements, & going to Lowes & Home Depot to write down prices & figure out a budget.  the best way to get something like this done is to spend a month drawing & thinking before you really commit to a plan. then start building, but not with the actual materials...

Step 2: Pre-Production Work

Picture of Pre-Production Work

I made the skeleton prototype out of foam noodles & duct tape. Not too much duct tape, as I needed it to come apart easily.  It made it easier to assemble & re-assemble until i got it right.  Once that was done, I proceeded to the PVC pipe skeleton

Step 3: Skeleton

Picture of Skeleton

The skeleton is made out of flexible PVC tubing for the curves, & PVC pipe to hold it together.  Once i had the dimentions right, I glued it all together with PVC cement.

Make sure to glue it OUTSIDE, & with a face mask... that stuff is gross!

Eventually, near the end of the project, parts of the Skeleton had to be cut off to make the costume lighter.

Step 4: Mesh Skin Base

Picture of Mesh Skin Base

I covered the Skeleton with plastic canvas & duct tape, to add shape & give the foam skin a solid surface to conform to. It kinda resembles a canoe, with holes on the bottom for my legs.  the PVC pipe sticking out in the front is where the head will go.

Step 5: 1st Pass Yoshi Legs

Picture of 1st Pass Yoshi Legs

Yoshi legs are made from plastic canvas & duct tape.  This 1st pass shape did not work, so its back to the drawing board...

Step 6: Mario Fake Legs

Picture of Mario Fake Legs

Mario fake legs were made from PVC pipe, flexible electrical pipe, & foam noodles for shape.  The Body frame is now cut to add better range of motion for Yoshi legs.

Step 7: 2nd Pass Yoshi Legs

Picture of 2nd Pass Yoshi Legs

Plastic canvas attached to shoes with hot glue & metal paper fasteners.  Better shape.  More adjustments to come

Step 8: 1st Pass Full Body

Picture of 1st Pass Full Body

Large velcro straps attached to skeleton, then attached to an over the shoulder harness bought at Lowes. the Mario Overalls conceal the harness.

The Fake mario legs rest well inside the overalls.  2nd pass on Yoshi legs complete, as they now resemble large boots with Yoshi hips resting on my knees.

Step 9: Yoshi Head

Picture of Yoshi Head

Styrofoam eggs & dodgeballs covered in Paper mache & Duct Tape over a for eyeballs, nose & cheeks.

Step 10: Head 1st Pass

Picture of Head 1st Pass

The Head is now covered in Matress Foam, with eyes to follow.  Also, Yoshi arms made from flexible PVC pipe & Cross shapes PVC joint, attached to skeleton with Duct Tape & PVC cement.

Step 11: Foamed Yoshi Legs

Picture of Foamed Yoshi Legs

Covered Yoshi Legs with Matress Foam with a hot glue gun. They now resemble giant chubby stubby legs when combined with the body.  Extended the foam so it goes into the body.

Step 12: Foamed Body

Picture of Foamed Body

Folded foam into pelvis area to conceal legs separation. At this point, the costume began gaining weight rapidly, so a Support Belt was added, so the weight can be distributed between my waist and shoulders, and a little less on my back.

Step 13: Final Foamed Body

Picture of Final Foamed Body

Added long strip to make the saddle (not pictured). Glued overalls to the inside of saddle

Foamed hands & arms with same technique as body & legs.  Pushed foam into the body & glued shut.  Hands & fake mario legs rest on eachother to give both stability.  Added strip on ankles & extra layer on Yoshi toes to make feet look like big shoes.

Glued eyes onto head. added layer to eyes to make eyelids. 

Step 14: Yoshi Mouth

Picture of Yoshi Mouth

Made a Y-shaped skeleton for the mouth out of PVC pipe.  Used threaded PVC male & female adapters to hinge the mouth together (see drawings in step 1).  With the Hinge, the mouth can swing open & closed.

In the middle of the Y skeleton is where the toungue will be glued...

Step 15: Final Spraypainting

Picture of Final Spraypainting

Unfortunately, I ran out of time, so i just used spraypaint AFTER I covered the foam with liquid latex. BIG MISTAKE! The paint doesnt totally stick to the latex, & when bent, the paint flakes off.

Use spraypaint, or use latex & acrylic paint, but DO NOT USE BOTH!

Step 16: Toungue

Picture of Toungue

I based the mechanism on Ultra-Hand, a Japanese toy from the 60's.  Interesting trivia about that: Ultra-hand was and manufactured by Nintendo, & created by Gunpei Yokoi, who also created the Game Boy. So its full circle for Mr. Ultra-Hand.

I made one on my own with plastic closet hangers from Lowes. I cut the Hook part off so it resembles a plastic rod, like in the drawing.  I then fastened them together with metal screws and bolts, then covered the bolts with hot glue, so it doesnt unscrew itself off.

I covered the mechanism with a red legging, & glues the tip of the legging to the tip of the mechanism.  When the mouth is pulled open, I pull down the handle on the toungue (kind of like a pair of scissors) and shoot the toungue out.

Step 17: DONE!

Picture of DONE!

There it is, my Super Mario Riding Yoshi Puppet!  It took a long time and alot of sleepless nights, but it was well worth it.


 tpmike (author)2015-11-25

Wow amazing work...

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splazem (author)2011-03-03

Amazing. Just amazing.

pivanov5 (author)splazem2014-04-05

Well done! And very-very nice!

SlippingHalo (author)2013-11-09

Awesome work!

insanebear41 (author)2013-08-19

So cool

knex dude 2000 (author)2013-02-23

Cool but mario's legs should be going down not along

memorris027 (author)2012-09-06

No way! Sweet!

caasi88 (author)2012-07-06

could you maybe make a minecraft spider jockey. name your price!!

5Meats (author)caasi882012-07-06

i just looked up what a Minecraft Spider Jockey is, & that looks really easy to make. just mix my tutorial with THIS GUYS TUTORIAL, & you'll have your costume in no time.  Trust me, you'll feel so much better telling everyone on Halloween that you made it yourself!

dimitrov_s (author)2012-05-18

very very nice!

Mr. Noack (author)2011-11-11

This is pretty freakin' sweet!! Well done sir!

takboilaw (author)2011-10-25

Your are genious, very nicely done. you entertain not only the kids but the rest of the people there.

as what mrmerino said ...this is awesome. It is really awesome!!!!!!!!!

U456 (author)2011-10-23

Cute song at the first couple seconds

kyleslab (author)2011-10-22

Cool! See mine here
Remember to vote and comment!

MVMann (author)2011-10-22

I am totally amazed by this costume. You did a really nice job! :)

cunam (author)2011-10-21

THIS IS AWESOME! I am working on my own version POOR-MANS version, using yours as a guideline! Posting pics up soon. However, I don't get how you use Mattress Foam? Or where you even buy it. The way you attached it is so seamless.


jbryant jr.1 (author)2011-09-07


cesar harada (author)2011-08-07

GENIUS !!!!!

Beanie10 (author)2011-03-22

WOW. This is absolutely amazing! Your video was simply brilliant! You got my vote!!!

5Meats (author)Beanie102011-04-04

thank you!

paloma88 (author)2011-03-22

wow mario
best online games

slithien (author)2011-03-16

There isnt enough words to describe how epic this is!!!! 5*

The Gingham Ginger (author)2011-03-10

I'll be in shock if you don't win. But I still want to win that iPad so badly.

indomitable (author)2011-03-07


undeniably awesome. i would never have been able to make something so amazing for a costume/puppet thingy.


ducktape.mac (author)2011-03-06

i have an ostrich costume like that!! i wear it around the house and around my neighborhood.

very nice though. 5 out of 5.

Bartboy (author)2011-03-03

You just either won yourself a 3ds or buckyballs. well done.

koopatroopa (author)Bartboy2011-03-05

what other entries HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA

MichelMoermans (author)Bartboy2011-03-05

?! I think that judging from the entries now he just won himself an Ipad!

Bartboy (author)MichelMoermans2011-03-05

it's barely started :P

Treasure Tabby (author)2011-03-05

Excellent stuff!
Kind of similar as to what I made a number of years ago only it was an interactive coin bank. Well you could either save real coins or you can save trinkets, curios and or chocolate gold coins. it was also made from paper mache and a few other things like a party favor for the tongue. It was hollow mostly, had a special back scale for opening the mouth, and the saddle can be opened for storage.

Here is a pic of it.

Not a very good pic but you get the idea. :)

clax1227 (author)2011-03-04

Dude you are an awesome dude to be around for halloween

stunami (author)2011-03-04

Awesome, but for the next one, you need to make it poop eggs!

5Meats (author)stunami2011-03-04

AH!!! Actually, I drew out the mechanic to make him poop out those little plastic Easter Eggs! Also, I planned to make his eyes blink. But I ran out of money, & specifically time.

bnsfwarbonnet (author)2011-03-03

omg for a second you fooled me thinking that the front legs were yours. LOL

mrmerino (author)2011-03-03


mrmerino (author)2011-03-03

dude... this is awesome!

athrian (author)2011-03-03

so cool!

Macyoshary (author)2011-03-02

:O Incredible!

This blows my Yoshi costume way out of the water!
It's people like you that inspire the rest of us. Fantastic job!

M.C. Langer (author)2011-03-02


elimasmx (author)2011-03-02


SHIFT! (author)2011-03-02

That video just made me LOL out loud! Awesome job!

fungus amungus (author)2011-03-02

That is awesome!

Biggsy (author)fungus amungus2011-03-02 far BEYOND...AWESOME, It diserves a High Five

About This Instructable




Bio: animator/ puppeteer/ luchador/
More by 5Meats:Super Mario Yoshi Rider CostumeDark Crystal Skeksis Costume
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