Alien (1979) Costume

Introduction: Alien (1979) Costume

About: Alien fan, German Longsword fencer and 1930s menswear enthusiast

Hi, I’m 14 and I’m a big Alien fan. I wanted to make a costume based on the original creature from the first film. I have always liked making costumes, but this one would be pretty difficult. I tried not to spend any money on the materials, using only what I had at my house. Here we go!

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Step 1: Tools and Materials

Glue gun
X-acto knife

4-5 rolls of packing tape
3-4 milk jugs (depends on size of your head)
Medium sized cardboard box
Lots of garbage bags
Electrical tape
Black clay
Metallic nail polish
Rubber gloves
Black t shirt
Long toy fabric snake
Insulation foam tubing
5-10 Vacuum tubes
Black spray paint

Step 2: Head

First I wanted to make the head, so I took a cardboard box I found and made a makeshift helmet with an opening in the front that I could look through. I then began to build off that. I took three 4 litre milk jugs and cut the bottoms off them and stuck them inside each other. A bit of tape, and I had the basic shape of the head!

I ran into a problem: how would I get the dome to be shiny? That’s when I discovered garbage bags. Before you get up and close the tab, hear me out; I don’t have access to foam or vacuform, so I had to find a cheap way to make the carapace. I taped garbage bags to the head and put some vacuum tubes on the sides to give it the biomechanical appearance. If I were to do it again I would make it without a dome, with a skull on the top instead, just like the original. After the garbage bags were tightly secured with packing tape, a made the teeth with carboard triangles painted metallic silver. I made the lips with black clay. I spray painted the exposed carboard and voila! A VERY cheap Alien head!

Step 3: Legs

I did the legs first because they seemed the most challenging after the head. How was I going to get them on and off? It was around this time that I figured I wanted a slimy and form fitting appearance, instead of a highly detailed fabric costume. I made the legs and waist together out of a lot of garbage bags and tape. I just wrapped the garbage bags around my legs and waist and taped them together. If I did this again, I would probably use a second skin bodysuit from Amazon covered in latex. I used black running shoes for the feet. Of course, the drawback of this method is that I have to cut off the costume every time i take it off, and tape it on every time I don it.

Step 4: Torso and Arms

Now the torso was very easy to do. I took a black tshirt, cut it down the middle, taped a few foam tubes to the chest and taped it to the legs. Together it looked like a second skin. A very shiny and crinkly second skin. The arms were garbage bags taped to my arms with vacuum tubes attached. I made back pipes and shoulders with insulation tubes and vacuum tubes glued on. The hands are very simple: black latex gloves with taped on claws.

Step 5: Tail

The tail is an old fabric snake that I put garbage bags over and taped it to the seat (tailor speak for butt) of the legs. To make it rigid I put two wire coat hangers into it. I then put a few cut up strips of insulation foam and glued them to the top for the vertebrae.

Step 6: Finishing Touches

For the finishing touches I made I neck with Velcro at the back to ensure I could take it on and off easily. I also tried to add a rigid toothed tongue, but I couldn’t get the mechanism to work.

Step 7: Finished/future Plans

All finished! As of the time of the writing of this Instructable, I’m working on another, much better Alien costume. I will be putting up an Instructable on that as well.
Thanks for reading,

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    2 Discussions


    2 years ago

    Hey, nice work! This is a tough character to recreate, but I think you're on the right track. Looking forward to seeing your next version :)


    Reply 2 years ago

    Thanks! As of now, Alien mark II is being constructed. The head is 70% done and the morph suit is on its way. I believe it will be a big improvement on the old one. Thanks for reading!