Introduction: DIY LED Light-up Tardis Fascinator Hat

About: Designer living in NYC for grad school. I love laser cutting, Adobe's Creative Suite, random art projects, and baking goodies for friends!

This past Halloween I finally made my very own Tardis costume, from the longest running science fiction show, Doctor Who. I've seen so many versions of this costume that I wanted to try my own and make something unique. For this Instructable I'm going to focus on how to make the LED fascinator from the top of the Tardis!

Step 1: Materials

Most of the materials I used were leftover from other projects or scavenged from my kitchen, except for the ones that have links. 

- material for the base: flexible, flat plastic or copper wire and copper sheeting
- spice jar or other housing
- Goo Gone (if necessary)
- sandpaper
- black acrylic paint
- three, bright white LEDs
- three, 150 ohm resistors 
- solid-core wire
- 2 coin batteries and battery holder
- electrical tape
- small piece of foam
- hair comb or hair band

- scissors
- hot glue gun
- hacksaw
- paint brush
- soldering station and solder

Step 2: Make the Base

For the original design, I made the base out of copper sheeting and outlined it with copper wire, but it would be much easier to use plastic for the base.

Cut an oval out of your plastic. Make small cuts on two sides (see the second image) and hot glue them together to create a slight concave shape. You may paint the top surface if you'd like. For the original, I used the leftover blue fabric from my skirt so it would match. 

Step 3: Make the Housing

I found a large, plastic spice jar, pictured, that I cut in half to make my light dome. You may use any translucent, cylindrical shaped vessel.

Use the Goo Gone to get the label off of your spice jar. Cut the jar with a hacksaw to be your preferred height. Sand the outside of the jar to make it diffuse the light a bit.

Make a roof out of plastic or copper sheeting by cutting out a circle, cutting one slit to the center, and hot gluing it to make it concave (somewhat similar to the base). Hot glue the roof to the top of the dome, and paint it black.

Add window mullions to the outside by painting four thick lines equally spaced, with two thinner lines between them, and two horizontal lines all the way around (see the final image for a better idea).

Step 4: Set Up the LEDs

Solder three LEDs in parallel with a resistor between each of the LED's short leg and the ground wire. To learn more about soldering, check out this Instructable and to learn about LEDs in parallel, check out this one. We're using solid core wire so that we can position the LEDs into a standing "tree" once we've soldered them. Make sure your wires aren't too tall for your dome!

Solder the power and ground wires to the battery pack's wires and, using electrical tape, secure the LED "tree" on top of the case so that the LEDs stand straight up. Turn on your battery pack to make sure your soldering worked. 

Step 5: Finishing Up

Cut a circle of thin foam, 1/2" thick at most, so that it fits your housing tightly. This foam will hold the housing onto the base.

Cut a space into the foam for the battery pack. Hot glue the foam to your base and the battery pack to the base.

Turn on your LEDs and put the housing on top to check out the light!

Finally, hot glue the hair comb or hair band to the base. Now wear your new fascinator everywhere!

Full Spectrum Laser Contest

Participated in the
Full Spectrum Laser Contest

123D Circuits Contest

Participated in the
123D Circuits Contest