How to Make Babies (out of Tape)

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As a middle school teacher, I try really hard to have unique, fun, and creative lessons.  I'm a big believer in having cool projects.  That way no one in the class gets bored.  That includes me.  

So if you're into making babies (out of tape) then check out this instructable.  

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Step 1: Get Supplies

First you'll need to go buy some packaging tape.  I teach big classes so I order it from northerntool.com It comes in boxes of 36 rolls and 1 box of 36 rolls is around $50.  Per roll that's pretty cheap.  If you just want to buy a few rolls, you can probably make a whole large body with 2-3 rolls of tape.  A single roll of packaging tape is around $3 give or take.  

Step 2: Wrap Sticky Side Out

Guess what? The sticky side sticks to whatever you put it on.  So start by wrapping your baby or any object with the tape sticky side out first.  Just one thorough layer will do. 

Step 3: Wrap Sticky Side Down

After you're finished wrapping it sticky side up/out, then simply twist your roll of tape over and begin wrapping it sticky side down.  While you are doing this, you can "sculpt" it by squishing the layers together.  Sometimes this will give you a smoother looking and stronger tape baby when finished.  

Step 4: Slice It Off

Once you've wrapped the baby up enough, you are ready to slice off the tape.  I suggest using a wrapping paper slicer.  These are perfect for the job and the blade is safely hidden within the slicer.  An x acto will work but you'd have to be very careful.  I always tell my students to get a nice clean slice because they'll need to tape that seem after they peel off the "shell" of tape.  A clean cut is easier to repair.  

Step 5: Re Tape the Seams

Now that you've sliced off the "shell" of tape, you are ready to repair your seams.  Pretty self explanatory.  Just take some more of the packaging tape and fix the places you sliced off.  The tape is clear so you won't notice any of the seams if you do it well.  

Step 6: Proudly Display

Now that you've made some babies (out of tape), you should proudly display them.  I think it's fun to float them from the ceiling but you can do what you like.  The artist we studied was Mark Jenkins.  Google it and check him out.  He creates some really interesting street art as well as gallery pieces. Have fun and thanks for looking.

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    17 Discussions

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    darrenhall

    3 years ago

    You are an evil genius - should have read this a little better before trying it - lets just say Child Services where not impressed, but the baby is doing fine :-).
    Cool build - can see some fun Halloweens coming up.

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    amandagrrl

    5 years ago

    After I saw Mark Jenkins' stuff, I made tape casts of my hands in different poses, but I used cling film first.

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    astrofolk

    6 years ago

    Skinning shells from babies... I love it!

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    bptakoma

    6 years ago on Introduction

    Please credit the fantastic artist Mark Jenkins http://www.xmarkjenkinsx.com/ who successfully uses a similar technique. Instead of the complicated way of starting with the tape sticky side up, wrap your object with plastic wrap, then tape, cut and retape. You can do cool stuff with hands, feet, etc...

    1 reply
    None
    Technotaoist

    6 years ago on Introduction

    I made shells like these of my daughters, I wrapped them in dry cleaning plastic, and then tape for a shell. It was part of a recycled materials art show.

    Great fun!

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    emilyvanleemput

    6 years ago on Step 3

    After you're finished wrapping it sticky side down, then simply twist your roll of tape over and begin wrapping it sticky side down
    Which one should be up??

    1 reply

    emily, sorry, had a small typo in there. I edited this morning. You are right, stick side out/up first. Then sticky side down.

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    wafflejack

    6 years ago

    First wrap should be sticky side out (up) so you can peel the baby out of the tape shell without the adhesive sticking to it, second layer should be sticky side in (down) so you can handle it without it sticking to you. Interesting Instructable, I'll definitely be using a variation in my Halloween decorations this year. Thanks!

    1 reply
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    kretzlord

    6 years ago on Introduction

    these would make for an amazing hanging light setup, throw a few LED throwies in there!

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    benny1102

    6 years ago

    Reminds me of cicada shells. Creepy.

    None
    wilgubeast

    6 years ago on Introduction

    Awesome application of plastic babies and packing tape. Well done.