Costume parties are awesome! For a Lady Gaga-themed costume party, I decided to dress as the fellow with the Gold Jaw from the "Bad Romance" music video. For this I decided to go pretty low-budget. I got most of the supplies at a local art store.
You will need:
- An exacto or utility knife.
- A cutting surface
- A sheet of sin gold cardboard.
- A ruler - tape measure is preferred, but I used a Leatherman will a ruler on the handle.
- A pencil
- Spirit Gum (for the final step)
Let's get started!
Step 1: Measure Your Jaw
Measure Twice, cut once - one of my favorite sayings and it certainly holds true here. You must first of all measure your chin's height and width to allow for a comfortable fit. The jaw will stretch around you own jaw, but for now just focus on the front of your face. My jaw went almost up to my ears, so I measured the length from ear to ear and from each ear to my chin.
Step 2: Draw Your Template!
Now that you've got your measurements, flip the material over on its non-shiny side, and using your ruler draw a box using your measurements. Then, draw a curve from the top corners of the box to its bottom middle, to create a "U" shape, which will be the front of the jaw.
Step 3: Measure the "fold"
Time for more measuring and sketching. This part involves a little creativity on your part: how much of your face do you want the cardboard to cover? For me, I figured only about a couple inches, so I measure out another inch beyond the front of my face, to my jawline. Accounting for this additional inch or so, add it on to your drawing. The line in between the "front" area and the jawline area will be where the jaw folds over. Because the jaw will fold in two directions (over your jaws, and inward to fit your face), it will be necessary for you to make a line in the middle section of the jaw where you can cut the jaw and have it fold in o0n itself (more on that in a second)Finally, for stylistic purposes, you may want to taper the ends a bit.
Step 4: Cut It Out!
Now the fun part! Using the utility knife, very carefully cut through the cardboard around the edges of your jaw until it has been completely cut!
Step 5: Fit It to Your Face!
This part is a little tricky. You have to hold the jaw to your face to determine how far inwards it will have to fold, and how much of the bottom fold you will need to cut away to get the right fit. What you can do is make a small cut on the bottom layer and then fold the two sides over one another, but you may want to cut away more than that so that the jaw doesn't get in the way of itself.
Step 6: Make Any Additional Cuts
As you can see in the picture below, I've cut the bottom portion to the point where it can fold in on itself, and I can apply adhesive to one of the "flaps" that's been created so that it won't just hang off your face. This requires a little trial and error, cutting it more and more so that the chin fits but doesn't create a gap of skin. Experiment with different measurements and angles until you reach a look that satisfies you!
Step 7: Stick It!
This will be the final step - from here there's no going back unless you're looking to do this step all over again. You need to apply the spirit gum to the jaw and to your face - it will have instructions stating how long exactly that you need to hold it to your face, but in general what I did was apply the spirit gum to the inside of the jaw, hold it to my face for 30 seconds, and then peeled it away, so that the inside of the jaw had a "tacky" feeling to it. I then let it sit for about a minute before I reapplied it to my face, with a lot of pressure from my fingers to make sure that it stayed. Finally, I tucked in the bottom "flap" and used more spirit gum to apply the other flap on top of it. I have to say that the jaw turned out a bit too pointy, but it fit for me since I'd shaved off my beard to wear this and I now had a pointy, malevolent golden beard! So, this jaw can double as an accessory for a Power Rangers villain!
Step 8: Flaunt It!
If you've applied enough spirit gum the jaw should stick for hours despite copious jaw movement. Be careful eating, however, and be sure to carry your spirit gum for re-application if your jaw starts to become loose during the night!
Have fun, and beware of vengeful Gagas!