Introduction: Game of Thrones White Walker Halloween Standing Decoration
Every Halloween, my husband and I do a huge front yard display for the neighborhood. It usually has a bunch of little themes that we change or add things to every year. Last year, we got a deal on an animatronic "Winter/Ice Dragon" that's really cool, but we were stumped because it didn't fit into any of our themes. Sooo, a couple of weeks before Halloween I came up with the idea to make a White Walker from Game of Thrones to go with the dragon. I pretty much just did it off the top of my head, so I apologize if this Instructable gets confusing, but I didn't write anything down, I just kept making it.
- Any cheap, old, plastic skeleton
- Air-drying clay (I used Paper Clay)
- Paper towels
- Papier-maché glue materials (I used Elmer's Art Paste)
- Bubble wrap (or any material to add bulk to the body parts)
- Glue gun and glue
- White acrylic paint
- Blue acrylic paint
- Brown acrylic paint
- Black acrylic paint
- Tool to make lines in clay
- A few sheets of craft foam (any color, but brown would help skip a step)
- Fake acrylic nails
- Old man wig, basically long white hair
- 2 blue led lights
- Cheap acrylic fake nails
- 3 batteries(3 volt lithium)
- Electrical tape
- 2 blue or clear glass pebbles
- Natural jute twine (or any natural type craft rope)
- Craft "glitter" snowflakes
- Assorted large wood beads
- Florist wire (covered in brown rustic material)
- 1 long thin pipe or item similarly shaped, a little shorter than the skeleton
- 1 bag InstaMorph Moldable Plastic (or anything similar)
- Something sturdy to hang the White Walker on while you create him, mine was created with a large screw attached to a pipe, which was attached to a wood base
Step 1: Forming the Shape of the Trunk and Face
For the base of my White Walker, I used an old cheap plastic blow-mold skeleton. This made it easier to form the shape of the White Walker's body and face, since they are basically almost skeletons. The skeleton I used had a loop attached to his head so I used that to hang him from a post to make it easier to work on him. You do need to cut a large hole in the back of his head, large enough for you to put your hand in to attach the led lights that will be his eyes to a battery when needed. You could use this hole to mount him on something for the painting and building of the body that will make up most of this tutorial. Eventually we made a hole in the top of his head and made a wire hook that we used to hang him on a stand that we made, making it portable.
I wanted to add a little bulk to the White Walker's body since they have a tiny bit of "meat" on them. I started by dipping pieces of paper towels in the papier-mâché paste and forming them around his rib and shoulders. Since the White Walkers have a lot more height on top of their heads than the plain skeleton, I used a bunch of wadded up, dry paper towels on top of the head (I put a bit of hot glue on the skeleton to provide something to keep the paper towels in place) to create height, and then papier-mâché'd over that to hold it down. I also built up areas of the shoulders and upper arms using this technique.
Since the White Walkers' faces are very skeletal, I did not add any paper towels to create padding, I started building up the face with just the air-dry clay. I added a little extra to create more pronounced cheekbones and chin, basically following the contours of the White Walkers face (from reference photos on the internet). They have a lot of ridges, especially along the sides of the forehead, so made sure to apply these and others with the air dry clay.
Step 2: Detailing the Shoulders and Chest
The White Walkers have some pronounced collar bones and neck tendons so I rolled thin strips of paper towels dipped in the papier-mâché glue and attached them in areas to simulate those bones and tendons. I then covered the neck, shoulders, and chest with the air dry clay, smoothing the areas together to appear more seamless. I also built up the individual ribs with a small bit of the air clay since they are more pronounced on the White Walkers than the skeleton I used for the base.
Once the air dry clay was applied, I drew lines in it with a pointed tool, to represent the White Walker's muscle striations that are visible on the creatures. At this point, I let the clay air dry.
Step 3: Forming the Hands and Legs
I added more of the paper towel/papier-maché mixture to the lower arms and hands to create some bulk. I used some bubble wrap to create bulk in the thighs and then covered that in the papier-maché as well. I also added a rolled strip of paper towels to the back to represent a spine and attached it using the papier-maché glue (art paste). I smoothed over everything with the air dry clay.
The White Walkers' fingers are a lot longer than the fingers on the skeleton base I used so I inserted thick wire (about the same as is used in a metal coat hanger) into the tips of the plastic skeleton fingers, glued them in place with hot glue, then covered the fingers in the paper towels/papier-maché mixture.
Step 4: Paint the Skin
The White Walker skin is a shade of white mixed with a hint of blue, so I started with a light blue coat on all the areas of skin that will be visible. I darkened the shadowy areas (near joints and between bones, etc.) and indentations with black acrylic paint. I then painted over everything with a dry/damp brush of white paint, concentrating on raised areas, and using less in shadowy areas. Feel free to use as much white paint as you like, as for the most part the White Walkers appear white with the slight hint of blue in their skin.
Only the area on his knees will be the visible part of his legs, so I scratched lines in the clay to indicate shriveled, wrinkled, skin in that area and painted accordingly.
Step 5: Make the Faux-leather Kilt Armor
To make the faux-leather kilt I cut strips of craft foam sheets - I had grey sheets on hand, but if you purchase brown foam sheets, it may help you avoid painting the base layer. I cut a strip of the foam sheet long enough to form the belt-like waist that the other strips attach to (with hot glue). I estimated the size by wrapping it around the waist of my White Walker...I did have to bulk out the waist area with paper towels and papier-maché a little bit to make the area look proportionate in relation to his rib cage and the rest of the body. The kilt hangs from the waist to just above his knee area so I cut enough strips to go around his body with them hanging vertically from the belt piece
I cut the bottom edges of the strips that make up the kilt in random jagged patterns to make it look like it was made out of random, raggedly cut pieces of leather.
I then painted the strips and the waist-piece brown, including the edges After the first coat dried, I randomly brushed on various shades of brown (lighter and darker) to make them appear more like worn leather. Next, I glued the tops of each strip to the back of the waist-piece and made sure all of the strips were hanging somewhat evenly, but not perfect.
After the glue dried, I glued the entire foam-leather kilt around the White Walker's waist with hot glue. Once that dried and set, I glued a long piece of twine around the waistband of the kilt, tying it in a knot in front and leaving 2 long pieces of twine hanging with several random wooden beads tied to the bottom of each.
Step 6: Make the Faux-leather Vambraces (Forearm Armor) and Greaves (Lower Leg Armor)
To make the vambraces (forearm armor) and greaves (shin armor), I cut pieces of the foam that were large enough to wrap around the forearms and the calves. I detailed the cut of the vambraces slightly by cutting the front top of the vambrace in an arrow shape facing up, and then a downward arrow shape facing down for the back of the vambrace (see examples of vambraces on the internet). The front of the vambrace reaches from the top point at the elbow to the bottom which is around the wrist. The greaves I cut straight, like a cylinder, long enough to reach from just under the knee to the top of the foot. When cutting, make sure that the "seam" (where you glue the edges together) will be facing the back of the White Walker.
Once the pieces are cut, I painted the sides that would be facing outward in the same way that I painted the pieces of the kilt, distressing them to look a bit worn. Noting that the seam will be at the back of the armor pieces, determine what part of the foam piece will be the outward-facing side for each leg. Along the outer sides on each piece, I used twine to make a series of "x"s in a straight line on each, to simulate what would be stitches holding the pieces together. I made holes in the foam first and then strung the twine through, gluing the ends to the underside of the foam.
Step 7: Detailing the Hands and Making the Feet
I painted the hands (lengthened in a previous step) the base blue with black shadows and white highlights, as was done with the rest of the body. I then took some acrylic fake nails, and cut the edges into ragged spikes. I glued these jagged nails onto the tips of the fingers, and then painted over the nails with some thinned paint in colors like black, brown, and green, to make them appear rotten.
The plastic skeleton base that I used had small feet, so I added some bulk with paper towels and papier-maché'd over that to make them a little longer. I painted them blue with black shadows and white highlights like the rest of the body. I then took some regular clear fake plastic nails, cut them fairly short, glued them to the toes of the White Walker, and then used some diluted brown, black, and green paint to make them appear discolored.
Step 8: Apply the Hair
At this point I cut up pieces of a few cheap white wigs that I had purchased and glued long chunks of it onto the White Walker's head. I made note of where his hairline should be (pretty high up on his forehead) and made sure the hair looked like it started there by gluing the hair closely to the skull using clear glue. I attached more hair under the hair that I glued onto the front so that it looked like it was combed back and got longer all the way to his waist.
It's important to have a good chunk of white hair covering the back of his head as it will be covering the hole that allows you to access the led lights and connect them to a battery.
This White Walker also had a short beard and hair up the sides of his jawbone. For this area I cut short patches of white hair from the wig and glued it to to his chin and jawbone areas in clumps using hot glue.
Step 9: Prepare the Eye Area
The eyes of the White Walker will be lit up by 2 blue led bulbs so the first step is to make some small holes in the eye sockets to place the bulbs in. The area around the led bulbs will need to be painted black to simulate empty eye sockets. The led bulbs should have long enough wires to attach to a battery pack later when needed (using electrical tape).
Next take 2 similarly sized clear or blue glass pebbles (often sold as vase filler in craft stores) and make a small black dot in the middle to simulate a pupil. I tried various methods (permanent marker, black paper, etc.) and ultimately was the most satisfied with gluing a black thick paper dot in the center of the back of the glass "eyeball". Gluing it to the top of the pebble blocked the led light too much so it's important to put the pupil on the back of the glass pebble.
Glue the pebble with pupil into the eye socket so that the led light is in the middle of the pebble. Make sure the eye pebbles are about the same size as the eye socket as it's easier if you can just wedge them in there, only using glue where the top and bottom of the pebble come into contact with the bone around the eye socket.
When I wanted the blue eyes to light up, I attached the wires of the led lights using electrical tape to 3 stacked 3-volt lithium batteries. If you're electrically inclined, you can probably rig up some sort of on/off switch, but since I just needed the eyes lit up for Halloween night, I taped the batteries to the wires, and then removed them at the end of the night.
Step 10: Final Touches to Face and Exposed Skin
I went back and added more white paint to edges of the Walker's skin, to make it seem that the edges of his skin were more frozen than other areas. I put some craft glue on some more prominent edges, like his nose and cheeks, then dropped some of the "ice flake glitter" onto those areas. I also sprinkled some of the ice glitter in his beard and hair.
Step 11: Make the Ice Spear
InstaMorph is a product that is a bunch of plastic balls, which when heated (in boiling water), becomes solid and pliable. There are many different brands of this type of moldable plastic. When heated, the plastic becomes clear, but as it cools turns white again. The shape has to be created before it completely cools, but it ends up being a cool white that seems slightly translucent, which is perfect for an ice spear.
While pliable, I shaped the mound of plastic into a point, and then flattened it out with a rolling pin. While still pliable, I also made an indentation in the bottom of the blade to fit the pole I had to attach it to. You can use any kind of pole that comes up to around the shoulders of the walker. Once the blade was cooled completely, I used hot glue to permanently attach it to the pole. Next, I covered the spot where the blade meets the pole with hot glue, and wrapped it multiple times with wire wrapped in a rustic vine-type paper (this type of wire is used in floral arranging). After many layers of the wire had been glued on, I wrapped some of the twine used for the Walker's "belt" around the wire, multiple times with glue, and ended it with an "x" design on the white part of the blade.
Not shown in the photos above, I then wiped some light blue alcohol marker ink on the edges of the spear to make it look icier. I smudged it pretty well to make it appear faded.
Second Prize in the
Halloween Contest 2019
3 years ago
Wow.....really cool decoration.... brilliant idea... you guys did it ...!!!
Reply 3 years ago
3 years ago
This is terrifying, I love it.
Reply 3 years ago
Thank you so much! I appreciate it. Making it was a lot of fun!