Introduction: The Facinating Squid
So everyone agrees squids are totally awesome, right? But not everyone thinks so; and short of having a giant well-trained land squid to follow you around showing those haters how cool squids really are there’s not much you can do, right? Wrong! Introducing the Fascinating Squid - it’s the perfect head gear for a day at the races, parties, other social events and lazing around the house in pajamas.
- A headband base
- Blue packing tape (or a shiny/reflective blue fabric)
- Black netting
- Black and blue felt (if you don’t have blue felt lying around just use black)
- Sacrificial necklace like mine (or more Copper/Aluminium roll or heavier wire)
- Silver seed beads
- A crystal bead
- 2 flat beads
- 26 Gage craft wire (in the jewelry making section of craft stores)
- Copper/Aluminium roll (see picture)
- A small sheet of plastic or heavy card (mine was scavenged from a take away container)
- A sheet of paper
- Small nail scissors
- Tacky glue (I used Selley’s Kwik Grip)
- 2 part epoxy resin (mine came with a mixing tray and mixer if yours doesn't then ensure you have them)
- Round nose pliers
- Flat nose pliers
- Cut nose pliers
- Permanent marker
- Paddle pop stick
- A small round bottle (like an essential oil)
- Sticky tape
Step 1: The Headband
Take the blue packing tape and stick it to the headband – don’t worry about bubbles as they will be hidden by the netting. Cut the netting into a strip(s) about 2 cm wide then begin wrapping it around the headband, overlapping the edges as you go. Once you get to the end hold the netting in place with one of the pegs for now.
Cut a strip of felt the width of the widest part of the headband and long enough to line the inside of it. Like me you may have to cut two strips for the length. Spread about 5-10 cm of glue at one end inside the headband, then press the felt in place and peg it down. Again spread another 5cm or so of glue inside the headband and press/peg the felt in place. Repeat until you’ve lined the underside of the headband with felt. Once the glue is (reasonably) dry remove the pegs and use a pair of small nail scissors to trim the edges of the felt to match the headband.
I originally planned to use fabric for under the netting, but didn’t have anything shiny in the right shade of blue, so if you decide to use fabric choose something that will catch the light along with your metal squid.
Step 2: Arming Up
If you are using a similar necklace to mine to sacrifice for this project first remove the end pieces of the necklace and return them to your stash. Then use the cut nose pliers (or some other type of jewelry snips) to cut off one end of the large arc leaving a solid ‘body’ and five arms. Use a pair or round nosed pliers and your hands shape the arms into spirals and curls as desired, but be sure to curl the sharp ends out of the way or file them down so they don’t scratch you.
If you don’t have a sacrificial necklace you could make the arms out of heavy wire or strips of the aluminium sheet (with the sharp edges folded in) and glue them together at one end with 2 part epoxy resin.
Also I spaced my suckers by sight, but if you want them even mark out your spacing prior to curling the arms.
Step 3: Sucky Decor
I find epoxy to be the worst smelling glue I've used (also fumes are bad for you) so ensure you’re in a well-ventilated area.
The suckers are silver seed beads glued in place with 2 part epoxy resin. As the epoxy sets so quickly it is easier to mix several very small batches. First arrange the seed beads on their side and space them out (this helps you work quicker while the glue is setting). Now, mix a tiny amount of the epoxy. I used a drop of each part per batch and needed three batches for the suckers – but I stopped for photos and flatmates. Once the epoxy is mixed pick up a seed bead with the tweezers, dip it in the glue and place it on the arm.
I had some wire with a rectangular coil in my stash and slipped than onto one of the squid arms. As I found my wire in the depths of someone’s wardrobe you could use some 26 Gage wire and coil that around one of the arms instead. Also my wire holds itself in place, but you might need to secure the ends with some epoxy.
Another of the arms is holding a shiny blue bead. Mine is just wedged into place, but gluing yours in might be needed.
Step 4: The Face
Cut a strip from the aluminium roll about 2 cm wide and about 30 cm long. Use a ruler and marker to mark it out (unlike me!). With the silver side of the metal face down place the paddle pop stick along the length of the strip and fold the edges over it (be careful not to cut yourself on the sharp edges) . Once the long sides have been folded over remove the stick and press them down. Use the paddle pop stick to gently smooth down and flatten the fold. Curl the strip around a small round lid/bottle to create a giant spring.
I used the base of my arms to determine the width of the face, but if your arms are wires joined together then you might want to use something sturdier for this step. Place 1-2 cm’s at the end of your coil flat on the base and bend it 90 degrees using the edge, being careful not to distort the curve too much. Arch the curve over the base and make another 90 degree bend as it loops under. Continue wrapping the coil around the base so you end up with an arched tunnel with a flat bottom as in the picture. Make sure the ends of your strip are on the flat bottom.
Step 5: The Head
Create a paper template for the front of your squid head as shown – A wide arch with a square on each side. Make the centre bit wider than you think as it will become thinner as you shape it. Also test that the centre bit will fit over the larger end of your silver face piece before you continue on to the metal.
Trace the template onto the silver side of the sheet metal and cut it out outside of the lines leaving some excess metal ‘hem’. Make sure you also leave some hem allowance at the bottom unlike in my picture – for some reason (3am) my first template had a hem allowance for that side only.
Trim the corners and cut some flaps as shown by the green lines in the diagram. When cutting the two lines at the top point of the head make sure the piece of metal is still attached. Fold that top piece down first then fold the flaps down the curved sides over; for the straight edges fold the metal over a ruler. Fold the two square flaps on the black marker line and finally shape the centre into a nice arch. You will now have a cool miniature pope hat.
For the flat back of the head create a paper template by tracing the shape of the front of the head then add on some curved triangles for fins. Using the template first trace then cut out a copy from a thin flat piece of plastic (or card or other sturdy material) for the base.
I covered my entire base piece with the copper sheeting; however most of it is hidden in the finished squid so only cover the top part of the base. Trace the top part of the template (to a bit below the fins or about the orange line in the picture) onto the silver side of the sheet metal and cut it out, again leaving a ‘hem’ around the template. As before clip the corners and cut flaps in the curves. Fold the metal over the plastic base piece. I used a little bit of sticky tape to keep things in place as I worked.
Step 6: Break Out the Glue
Time to break out the well-ventilated area and the 2 part epoxy resin once more! Once your epoxy is mixed put some glue on the inside of the flaps on your pope hat (where the green squares are - Pic #1) and also at the top point of the back piece on the nice side (where the green dot is - Pic #2). Slide the bottom of your back piece inside the pope hat and hold the tip of the pope hat to the glue on the tip of the back piece till the glue sets. Make sure your fins look even.
Once that’s dried it’s time to glue the silver face. The larger end of the face should slide into the copper head, make a note of where the two touch and remove the face. Mix up your epoxy, apply it to the noted spots and slide the face back into the head.
As the back of your squid head is quite ugly (and may catch painfully in your hair) it’s time for a cover up. Trace the head’s shape onto some black felt and cut it out. Use some glue to stick it to the back to the squid head (either the kwick grip or tacky craft clue). If needed use the nail scissors to trim the felt and leave to dry.
For the eyes I chose a pair of flat beads as opposed to round ones (they stick out and will make your squid look bug eyed) and glued them in place using the epoxy.
Once the eyes have dried make another batch of epoxy and smooth that on the flat inside of the silver face. Slip the base of the arms inside and press into place against the glue. As I kept bumping mine out of place I made a support for the arms from a stack of CD and left it to dry
Step 7: Join Them
Figure out where you want the squid to sit on the headband (commandeer a friend to make this easier). Put on the headband and hold the squid in place against it. Take it off holding the squid in place and mark where the pieces join. Glue this together with the tacky glue and hold it in place until it stays.
My squid is glued pretty solidly (I tried to shake them apart) to the netting on the headband, but not the blue packing tape underneath so it does rock a little. Thus I will be either gluing little strips of black felt into place to offer more surface to grip or sewing a few stitches to ensure my squid doesn't swim away. If you used a porous material like fabric instead of packing tape under your netting you won’t have this problem.
Now that you have your new fascinating friend take that little squid for a spin and show the world what they're missing out on! ... Or y'know, wear it round the house with your pajamas.
Thank's for reading my Instructible and let me know if I've confused you anywhere.
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