My daughter really wanted to be Ahsoka Tano from Star wars, the clone wars, for Halloween. To get some idea's I looked around the Instructables website and found an Instructable here on how to make a Togruta headpiece . That author came up with a really good idea. Taking that idea, I modified it to make it easier to mold and closer to what the character actually looks like.
Step 1: The Headpiece
What you'll need:
- Foam head (needed to build the headpiece on. I found them at a thrift store for around a dollar)
- Some stiff wire
- Heavy tape (Duct or Gaff tape will do)
- A bald cap (found at any costume shop or dept. store that sells costumes)
- Crayola Model Magic (You should only need a 2 lb box, but I ended up buying an extra 8 oz bag as well.)
- 4 or 6 Toilet paper roll, depending on how big you make the headpiece.
- Badger model paint, 16-82 LN Blue
- White gloss spray paint
- Silver paint
- A silver beaded necklace
- Pliers that can also cut wire
- A palm sander with fine sandpaper (You could use a sanding block, but this is way faster)
Step 2: Building the Headpiece Wire Frame
The first thing I did was to measure around my daughters head to make sure it was the same size as the foam head. If the foam head is too small you could wrap it in masking tape to build it up to the correct size.
Place the bald cap on the foam head. It'll make sure the Model Magic doesnt stick to the foam. You'll be pulling it out later.
Useing the wire and pliers I made a wire skeleton of the headpiece. Cut your pieces of wire a little longer than you think you need so that you can bend the ends to connect with the other wire. The extra also helps because too long is better than too short, you can always cut off the extra.
I used the heavy tape to hold it all together. It took me a few tries to get it exactly how I wanted it, and the advantage of the wire was I could keep bending it untill I was happy with it. I made two loops of wire and added them inside the wire frame for added stregth and to hold the shape.
I on purposely made one side slightly longer than the other just like the character.
Once you are done making the frame, and before continuing, put the wire skeleton on the head of the intended wearer to make sure it looks and sits right. Make sure the back sticks out away from the head so that the user will be able to tilt their head back.
Step 3: Molding the Headpiece
Once the wire frame was built how I liked it i inserted the toilet rolls into the frame to take up space. If I hadn't done this I would have needed double the amout of Model Magic for this project.
I then used more of the heavy tape to hold the rolls in place.
Next, start applying the Model Magic. Model Magic is good to use because it is a light weight material when dried and it is very soft and easy to use. Do not add it too thick or you will be waisting it, and do not go too thin as you will be sanding it after it dries. You will know as you apply it what is the correct amount. Do not use all your Model Magic as you will want a little for later repairs. It will not look pretty once its done because it will be all lumpy.
Now would be a good time to try it on again. It will still be very soft it this point, so be carefull handling it. The up side is it will still be easy to make corrections.
Allow 24 hours for it to dry. As it drys it will crack, do not worry, this is normal.
After it dries you will have to sand it smooth, I used a palm sander to speed things up.
Now patch up the cracks with the leftover Model Magic. Again it will be all lumpy, but that is ok.
There are six triangles that need to be added. They are like 'shark teeth' from Ahsoka's home planet. Added to her head dress after she killed the animal. To make these just roll out some Model Magic flat and use and knife to cut them out. Stick them on, three to a side, from the center 'tooth' that has already been molded with the wire.
Again let dry.
Once dry for the second time, sand again to make the whole head piece smooth.
Step 4: Painting the Head Piece
Start by painting the whole thing white. I used Trimclad white gloss rust paint, in a spray can, that I had lying around. It also acted as a sealer for the headpiece
Once dry, I used a pencil and drew out where the stipes would go. To find a good pattern I googled "Ahsoka Tano" and looked at all the pictures of her 'hair' at different angles.
I used Badger model paint, 16-82 LN Blue, for the stripes. Originally I airbrushed the head, but was not happy with the fuzzy edges. I ended up using a fine brush to make all the edges sharp. So you could just use a brush for the blue if you like.
Once the blue is finished to your likeing, you can use some silver paint on the 'teeth'.
To make the jewelry on the head I found some silver beads at a halloween store for a couple of dollars. I cut them to the length I wanted them at and then useing a hot glue gun attached them to the headpiece. One side of the beads will be longer as it will be the bottom of the 'Y' that connects to the front of the head.
Step 5: The Costume
What you'll need:
-Plain white long sleeve shirt
-3 or 4 Tea bags
-A brown skirt, short or long. Long is better
-Long brown gloves. I used Buccaner gloves from a Halloween store.
-Needle and brown or black thread
-Brown or tan boots
The character runs around in the show in a tube top and a short skirt....
Now my daughter is 12 years old, and it will be a cold day in ................ Before I let her go out dressed like that, costume or not.
I went to a thrift store and found a plain white longsleve shirt and an ankle length brown skirt for about $12. I couldnt find a short brown skirt that was what I was looking for, but the full length skirt had the advantage of extra material.
To make the shirt skin colour, I filled the kitchen sink with very warm water and threw in three or four tea bags (Red Rose works great). I then put the shirt in and agitated it around with my hands to get it to soak up the tea. Let it soak for a while. Wring it out and then let it dry. It should now be a nice dark tan skin colour.
Because the skirt I found was ankle length, I took it to a seamstress to have it hemmed to the correct length. With all the extra material left over, she made the tube top for the costume. It has elastic straps top and bottom in it and connects together with velcro.
The character also wears guantlets with no fingers.
Back to the costume shop I found a pair of Buccaner gloves for $3. I sewed the flared end of the gloves shut just by folding them over and sewing. No cutting required. You want the glove to be tight against the arm all the way to the end. To remove the fingers I drew a line at an angle, from just below the knuckle of the index finger to about an inch below the knuckle of the pinky. Cut this line using some sharp scissors. Dull scissors will just wreck the gloves. I then folded the fabric over slightly and sewed them so that there would be no fraying of the fabric.
The character has white legs. I used white leggings that you can find anywhere. I found some at a dept. store.
To finish, a pair of boots that match the skirt would be best. My daught had a pair of tan boots so we just went with them.
Step 6: The Belt
What you'll need:
-Large belt buckle
-Thin red foam sheet
-Hot glue gun
-A thick Sharpie, black
-Hand grinder or large file
Again at the thift store I found cheap brown belt that looked right. It didnt matter what the buckle itself was as it would be thrown away.
For the buckle I found a cheap 'PIMP" buckle at the halloween store for $3. The reason I chose this buckle was that it was large enough for what I wanted to do. The key to any buckle is its size. You want it to be as big or slightly bigger than the belt you choose.
I took my hand grinder to it (a large file would work too, but it would be alot of work) and took everything off of it. when I was done it would be a flat buckle. Next I flipped it over and drew two lines on the back so I knew where to cut the buckle. Both lines started in the top corners and went down at a slight angle toward the middle so that I would have a trapezoid shape. I used a hack saw to cut the buckle. This one was made out of cheap pot metal and cut easily. I pained the belt buckle a copper colour.
To remove the belt from the old buckle I used a thread ripper to cut all the stiching on the belt so I could pull it off. I then attached it to the new buckle by sliding it through the loop on the buckle and then used a hot glue gun to stick it too itself. Once set it was as strong as the original stiching.
The character wears a a tie on her belt. I made it out of Fun Foam that I got from a craft store for a couple dollars. You want the tie to hang just below the skirt when done. In my case I cut it to be 10 inches long from the bottom of the buckle. I had the tie hang about 2 1/2 inches below the skirt and at the widest point I made it 5 inches wide.
Don't forget to add the hight of the buckle to your measurements. you will use the extra material to secure the tie under the buckle. I used the hot glue gun again to stick it to the back [see picture below]. I had to cut a part of the tie to go around the buckle loop on the back of the buckle.
To make the pattern on the tie I used a black Sharpie felt pen. I used the pictures of the character off the internet again to free hand copy the pattern.
Note: you may have to enlargen the belt holes depening on the buckle pin size. I just used a sharp knife. I stuck it in the holes and kept spinning it around untill it ground enouph away to be the correct size.
Step 7: The Makeup
What you'll need:
-Tan / coppery makeup
-White makeup (Halloween makeup will do)
-Dark red or brown lipstick
-Eye maskera if you want to add that little extra to the face
-Makeup application sponge
I had to go to a costume shop to find the right shade of tan / copper I was looking for (at a reasonable price). You could go to a dept. store but you'll be spending $50 or more to get it exactly to what you want. This makeup cast around $12.
Start with a hair net. It makes getting the bald cap on alot easier. Because my daughters hair is thick it took quite a few hair pins to get it all stuck down. I little bit of hairspray was also used to get the fine hair to stay down.
I ended up pulling the baldcap out of the headpiece. I tried to put the baldcap and headpiece on at the same time and it was a miserable failure. Also, if you try to apply the tan makeup with the headpiece on you end up getting it all over the place and will end up haveing to try and clean the headpiece while on the persons head.
Put the baldcap on and use the spirit gum to stick it down. Then apply the tan / coppery makeup to the entire face, neck, back of the hands and the baldcap. Once done you can put the headpiece on.
With the headpiece on you can finish applying the rest of the makeup. I used the pictures of the character I found online as the pattern to work off of.
Step 8: Extra Props
I made a few extra props to go along with the costume.
I'm not going to go into great detail on how I made a lightsaber handle. I made it with parts lying around the house. This prop is essentially anything you want it to be. There are lots of good instructables on this website that go into detail on how to build one you like.
I used the shaft of a broken scooter. I cut it with a Dremel tool to make the open sides. I originally was taking off the blue with the palm sander, but I reliezed I coldnt get all the parts to be silver so I spray painted it white instead.
I inserted another thin pipe inside, painted black, to give the lightsaber some depth.
I bought 2 cabnit door handles and screwed them on the side. I painted a screw red and then added it to the end (this also helped keep the two pipes together).
I used more parts off the scooter to fill the end as the threads already matched and saved me tons of time trying to find something else that might look good.
I capped the end with a plastic cap that came from some packaging for something else.
I Used this instructable as a guide to make the two small cylinders that hang on the belt. The guide is very straight forward and they are very easy to make. I spray painted them white when I was done.
I also made a pouch to hang off the belt. I used a small piece of plywood and then covered it with some brown felt I had that was sticky on one side. I made a loop for the belt just by sticking two pieces of felt together and attaching it to the back of the block. Mine doesn't look the best on its own but once on the belt it looks great.
Step 9: Halloween's Over. Now What?
What you'll need:
-White spray paint
-Tan, white, green, black and dark brown model paint
-Wide paint brush
-Fine paint brush
-A base for the bust to sit on
-(Optional) covering for the base
My daughter really likes this Star Wars character and loved the costume. I went and purchase another foam head (the fist one got wrecked making the head piece) and painted it.
Before I started painting it I sealed the whole head with white spray paint. You need to be carefull and not put on too heavy of a coat as the paint will eat the styrofoam if you do. Doing two lighter coats is better. I also used my airbrush to paint the brown colour just to speed things up. Hand painting will work too.
Next I painted on the white eyes and makeup. If you make a mistake (or a few in my case) you can just go over it again with the brown and start again. It'll take a steady hand and a few tries but the end result is worth it.
Then I painted the lips a darker brown and outlined the lips and eyes in black.
The head is just sitting on a plastic container that was the right size. My wife finished it off by adding the green wrap that came off an Easter egg craft.
The bust now sits in my daughters room and she is thrilled to show it off to her friends when they come over.