Build Plans: How to Make a Superhero Costume




About: Indy Mogul is the network dedicated to DIY filmmakers and film lovers alike. Our first show, Backyard FX, is a creative and funny 'how-to' guide for making film effects on the cheap. New episode every Monday...

How to build a superhero costume

Hey everyone, it's IndyMogul and welcome to the technical blog for Episode #18 (SuperHero). This week we were challenged by the guys over at The Stack. The deal is if I make an "animal themed superhero", Justin has to wear the costume for their entire show. Well BFX stepped up to the plate. Send in your superhero videos and remember you can submit your project ideas here!here!

Shopping List

1. Two yards of cloth fleece.
(I used brown because my costume was squirrel themed, but you could get any color you want.)

2. A matching pair of thermal underwear.
(Tops and bottoms, the smaller the better. We want these to be like tights.)

3. One yard of cloth (a different color).
(This is used for the accent pieces on your suit. Like the underwear and chest pieces etc. I bought some furry stuff.)

4. Goggles (optional).
(For part of my mask. Not necessary, but usually a cool addition.)

5. Scrap pieces of foam.
(Also used to make the mask.)

6. Thin foam sheets.
(It's like construction paper, but made a thin piece of colored foam. Used to make the chest emblem.)

7. Needle and thread.
(Also used to make the mask.)

8. Spray adhesive.
(For foam and fabric.)

9. Accessories.
(Belts, magic whips, kinetically charged playing cards...whatever your superhero needs to be "Super".)

Step 1: The Bottom

The bottom

As I said before, you're going to need some tights. If you can find the real thing, more power to you, but if not you can use thermal underwear. I was lucky they sold brown ones, but if you need a different color you can always buy white ones and dye them with some "Rit Dye". I ran out of time and just wore brown sneaker, but another classic super look is black boots. You could pick up a nice pair at the good will. The next step is to highlight your tights with the "underwear piece". Using a different colored material you'll want to make some basic "briefs". All I did was cut the material into a diaper shape and pin it to my tights.

Step 2: The Top

The top

Start with a long sleeve thermal shirt that matches your thermal bottoms. Attach chest emblem or accent material to chest. Use spray adhesive to attach foam and material together.

Step 3: The Cape

The cape

My particular costume has a cape built into the shirt, but you could always opt for a seperate cape. All I did was cut a large piece of fleece in a rough cape shape then glue it all along the back of the arms and shoulders of my superhero shirt.

Step 4: The Mask

The mask

First I sketched the basic shape of my mask on a 1/2" thick piece of scrap foam, then cut it out.

Next I added a cheap pair of goggles I got at an army surplus store. Start by gluing around the goggles with hot glue, then attach the fabric to the foam template with spray glue.

Trim the excess material and glue along the edges.

Step 5: The Gloves

The gloves

Trace your hand on top of some material of your choice. Make sure and trace about 2-3 inches outside of your hand. Now repeat 3 more times, and cut out each piece. When your done you should have 4 pieces of material roughly in the shape of your hand. I went with a 3 fingered glove, but you could do it however you want. Lay two layers on top of each other and sow along the edge. If your using a fur material like me, make sure the furry side is facing in. This way when your done sowing, and you turn your gloves inside out to hide the stitching, your gloves will be furry.

Step 6: Conclusion


There area all kinds of superhero's and types of costumes. This is just one example of how someone can replicate that classic superhero look for less the $50.



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    11 Discussions

    bung bungb

    2 years ago

    i luv it with some sweet halloweening


    11 years ago on Introduction