Introduction: Grover the Satyr From Percy Jackson
My son just LOVES Rick Riordan and one of his favorite characters is Grover Underwood - Percy Jackson's protector and best friend. When we first meet him, he is in human form and uses crutches to get around. As Percy's reality unfolds before him, Grover reveals that he is a satyr - half man, half goat and sheds the pants and crutches to show off his goaty self.
This instructable will walk you through creating a satyr - you can adjust to make yourself a Mr Tumnus if you are Narnia fan!
Step 1: Planning
Grover is described in the books as being tall with hairy brown goat legs. When passing as a human he wears a slouchy hat to cover his grown horns. Grover is a resident at Camp Half-Blood which is a demigod training camp. He plays the reed pipes and is quite a sensitive fellow - albeit funny!
Creating a Grover look has four distinct elements:
- Camp half blood t shirt - bright orange with the camp logo and a pegasus on it
- Slouch hat for covering horns
- Hairy goat legs
- Reed pipes
Time to get busy!
Step 2: Camp Half Blood T Shirt
What you need:
- An orange t shirt
- Craft knife
- Glue stick
- Fabric Paint
- Screen printing supplies (not necessary)
Find and print off 'Camp Half Blood' and a pegasus silhouette. I found plenty of free pegasus images online, and a great free greek font generator for my 'Camp Half-Blood' The pegasus I went for is less detailed than some as I didn't want too many fiddly details when making my print.
Glue the page to a piece of stiffer paper for resilience, then use a craft knife to cut the words and the silhouette out to create a stencil (or two). Wait for the glue to dry or it will catch in the knife and pull off (see my pictures!)
If you have a screen for printing then glue the stencil to the screen (I used a glue stick - it washes off easily). Mask the rest of the screen off so that you do not end up with extra paint on the your t-shirt.
Slip a piece of card up inside the tshirt to prevent paint from leaking through to the back, then lay the screen on the shirt in the position you want.
Squeeze a line of paint above the stencil then use your squeegee to slide the paint over the stencil. Make a couple of passes over the picture to make sure you get paint everywhere. Lift the screen carefully off the t-shirt.
Wash the screen in warm water. The glue will wash off easily.
If you do not have screen printing supplies then check out my 'ible on easy single use stencils.
Step 3: Slouch Hat
After failing to find a suitable hat within my timeframes I decided I should look at making one! Luckily I found a nice easy 'ible on this wonderful site to help me out! The original is here -
and my adjusted version explained below...
What you need:
- old t-shirt
- sewing machine
Find an old tshirt in a suitble colour and cut across the body just under the arms. Cut down one of the side seams to make a long rectangle.
The bottom seam of the t shirt makes a good finished seam for the bottom of the hat. Take that seam and measure around the head of the person who will be wearing the hat. Cut to fit. I found I had enough material to make two hats from one t-shirt.
Fold the fabric three or four times (your choice really) vertically. With the finished seam at the bottom, mark out and cut a dome at the top.
Turn the fabric inside out, match the sides together and sew up the long side seam of the hat, finishing at the top of the first dome.
Remove from the sewing machine and match half of the next dome along to the remaining half of the first dome. Sew and repeat until all the domes are sewn in. I removed from the sewing machine after each seam and started the new seam at the bottom, so I was always sewing up to the top of the dome and the top of the hat. This is a little hard to explain so check the pictures!
Trim off all your excess cotton, and turn the hat back in the right way to wear.
Grover's hat is described as being 'rasta' so I laid the hat flat on the table and painted stripes in the rasta colours (red yellow and green) around the hat.
Step 4: Hairy Goat Legs
Grover is half goat (the bottom half thankfully!) so I needed to make a pair of pants to create the hind legs of a goat on my son. I did an 'ible a few months ago for couch pants - pants made from plush blankets for cozying up on the couch. At this time I made a pair of 'couch shorts' and they reminded us of Mr Tumnus's legs, so I figured this was a great place to start!
I am reusing a lot of the techniques that I used for the couch pants here, so I'm going to use that Instructable as reference rather than repeat everything here. For the complete details on how to make the pants from scratch see here:
What you need:
- Fabric - I bought a plush throws for about $12.
- Matching thread
- Elastic Ribbing for cuffs - I cut some off an old pair of tracksuit pants I had.
- Loose fitting shorts for the pattern
- Paper for a pattern - newspaper works, so does wrapping paper!
- Sewing machine
The first step is to make a pattern. The ible above outlines how this is done, but making goat legs is a bit different to making shorts. They are shaped differently and sit closer to the leg than shorts do. The fabric I am using is not stretchy, so I did not want to make pants that were too tight. To make this work, I copied a pattern off a pair of loose shorts - making sure I extended the length to mid calf. The plan is to make the shorts loose, then shape them to the legs they will be on.
Fold the blanket in half and lay the two pieces of the pattern on top. Pin the pattern on to stop it moving, and cut. Remember your seam allowance if you have not allowed for it in your pattern. I aligned the bottom of the leg with the finished seam on the blanket, in the hope that I could use that instead of sewing on an additional cuff. This didn't work - the cuff needs to be stretchy - and I ended up cutting it off!
Once the cutting is done, it is time to start sewing (and vacuming - the fluff that comes off those blankets when you cut them is astounding!!). Turn the two front pieces inside out, then pin and sew the short straight seam down the middle. Repeat for the two back pieces.
Lay the front section on top of the back section (still inside out) and pin down the long outside leg seam. Sew.
Measure and cut the cuff that will go around the bottom of the legs. The bottom of the legs needs to sit just above the largest part of your calf, so make sure the ribbing will stretch to go over it. Now you need to start shaping the legs - just a bit! You will find that your ribbing is way too short to sew onto the bottom of the legs. Fold the ribbing in half and pin it to the outside leg seam. Stretch it as far as possible across the leg, and mark the farthest point you can stretch it to. Trim the remainder off, cutting a straight line up to the crotch (this will be a triangle - see the photos) . Pin the outside of the ribbing to the outside of the leg and sew.
Pin the inside leg seam and sew. I do this in two parts, both starting at the bottom of the cuff (so I can get it perfectly aligned) and ending at the crotch.
Turn the pants in the right way (vacumn) and try them on your Grover-to-be. At this stage the legs will be far too poochy to pass as goat legs, but it is a good time to check that everything is going ok. Check that the waistband is going to sit where you want it, and trim if necessary.
Pin your waistband (mine was more ribbing with a ring of elastic inside it that I cut off that pair of tracksuit pants.) to the four seams then stretch and pin where necessary. Sew.
Turn the pants inside-out and put them back on your Grover-to-be. Using your pins shape the legs from the inside and outside seams so that they are more form fitting. You want them to be closer fitting around the calf than the thigh, so allow for a little room above the knee. Sew down your pinned lines, try them on again and then trim - you don't want to sew them so tight you can't get them on!
Trim off all loose cotton, vacumn the loose fluff off the seams and wear!
Step 5: Reed Pipe
Grover carries a reed pipe/pan pipes. This is a pretty simple prop to make!
What you need:
- Hot Glue gun
Cut a nice straight piece of bamboo into at least five pieces, all different lengths and with no join/section pieces in them.
Arrange the sections from longest to shortest, and level at the top, then hot glue each piece to its neighbour. Run an extra bead of glue down each seam to help hold the pan pipes together.
Glue a piece of ribbon around the pipes for decoration and added support.
Step 6: Making It Work :)
Once you have completed all the pieces, there is nothing more to do that create your pièce de résistance and wearing your costume with pride.
Pull on your Camp Half-blood t shirt and your goat legs, making sure to pull the cuffs up above your calves. Pop on your slouchy hat and grab your reed pipes! Now you need just one more thing to complete the look.
Take an off-cut from the pants and cut it into a goatee beard shaped triangle. Shake the extra fluff off and stick it just below your lower lip. I used a gluestick, but you can use liquid latex if you have it.
Practise your bleating and goaty run, then step forth as Grover Underwood - Protector of Percy Jackson!
Runner Up in the
Book Character Costume Challenge