Puff the Magic Dragon




Introduction: Puff the Magic Dragon

About: I am a student at Berry College. Most of these projects are created at Hackberry Lab for Creative Technology classes.

Hi-di-o fellow instructables users!

The other week I made a dragon mask that used dry ice to spit smoke for class, and (per the usual) I had for hours to do it! Now some of you may say "It took you four whole hours to make that?" Let me be the first to tell you this isn't as easy as it seems, and honestly if I hadn't had a lovely partner (*see girl Modeling dragon mask) then I doubt this would have went so well.

This head is made of a healthy mixture of materials including:

Wire mesh

an old bed sheet

Newspaper Comics (RIP my collection)

Oven Bake Clay




Wire coat hangers

Masking tape


Tools used included

heat gun (or the hairdryer on steroids) optional

hot glue gun


wire cutters

a clean and a dirty pair of hands ( this can be one pair of hands, but will take much longer)

Step 1: Metal Head

Because both my partner and I had our hands full during this process we didn't actually take any pictures of how to do it, however here is a link to Dan the Monster Man's youtube channel which shows you how to do it.

We found our mesh at hobby lobby, but it's sold at any craft store. Some tips while doing this is be very careful. This stuff is pokey and can cut you, so try folding any sharp edges outward before putting it on your head. Also it needs to be comfortable enough that you can wear it without pinching but at the same time tight enough not to fall off.

Step 2: Cloth Mache

For this step, you need to cut a piece of an old bed sheet. Make sure it is larger than the head when draped over; you can cut away what you don't want. Soak this cloth in Elmer's glue (I bought the almost eight ounce bottle and poured it in a bowl) After making sure it is evenly wet drape

Step 3: Paper Mache Time

On top of your cloth mache, you can add large strips of paper mache until it's about an eighth of an inch thick. Allow this to dry and tape on balls of newspaper to add face structure.

After this you can make the jaws and main horns by shaping wire. To do the horns make a triangle and fill the negative space with newspaper taped onto it. For the jaws make an open ended square and feel free to add a little character. Likewise fill in the negative space. Cover these shapes in paper mache.

Next try and pull out the wires and excess paper. (If you continue to watch part 2-6 of the gourmet paper mache videos you can actually see these things happen.) With the top jaw you want a cavity that can hold dry ice.

Once dry tape jaws and horns on with masking tape. Also cut out where you want your eye holes. Hopefully you have positioned it where they will be right above the nose.

Step 4: Cloth Mache the Sequel

This step is really important, because it is what is going to be seen.like the fist time you will cut your peice and dip it in glue, but this time make sure that it is extra extra large. This is because after you drape it on you will make folds that give it texture.

Step 5: Painting and Ice

Now that it's dry you can paint it however you want!!! To add the ice we cut a mini waterbottle in half, and glued it inside the top of the mouth. This allowed "smoke" to pour out when we placed dry ice inside.

Step 6: The Problems and a Few Suggestions

Tip: for any thing that doesn't work/doesn't stick right feel free to use the hot glue gun.

Things I would have improved are the dry ice effect. If I had had time I would have added red lights to the mouth to illuminate the lights, I would have had a tube from the mouth to the ice so that she could blow on it, and I would have cut out nose holes so it was easikr to breath.
I'm probably going to make another one of these in my own time and add these things.

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Papercraft Contest 2017

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    3 Discussions

    Mad Props
    Mad Props

    3 years ago

    Awesome. I noticed you use both paper mach and cloth. Why do you use one method rather than the other?


    Reply 3 years ago

    Cloth mache can give textures that paper just can't. I also think it's more time effective because you put on whole sheets at once. Theoretically you could use plaster to make similar textures, I just didn't have any.

    Mad Props
    Mad Props

    Reply 3 years ago

    Thanks. I'll have to try cloth on my next project.