Introduction: A Simple Steamboat Cardboard Costume
This steamboat cardboard costume came about for a school project. The assignment was to construct a costume made of recycled materials. The point of this project was for students to practice roles of engineers and designers to make a product, thus, creating the flat pack costume design concept.
The job that the class took on was developing a line of costumes made from recycled cardboard. This cardboard then had to be able to slot together for assembly and taken apart for storage purposes. The costume would be ideal for people who wanted to make an easy costume while not spending much money for children to use under minimal supervision.
I had to design and create a marine themed costume, made completely out of recycled cardboard using slotted construction with a flat pack costume design.
1. Middle school aged child must be able to wear this costume
2. Marine themed
3. Flat pack, slotted construction
1. 100% cardboard, no tape, no glue, no permanent fasteners
2. Should be able to wear as Halloween costume or play costume
Amount needed: (Tri-folds are convenient)
Side 1, left side (S1): approx. 4x3 ft.
Side 2, right side (S2): approx. 4x3 ft.
Back (S3): approx. 3x2 ft.
Side 1 (P1)
Side 2 (P2)
-Cutting mat (T1)
-Utility knife (T2)
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Step 1: Side 1 (S1), Left Side
1. Measure side 1 (S1) with ruler (T3) and outline with pencil (T4) the appropriate lengths.
Square for holder- centered in middle, ½ ft squared
Base- 2 ft high, 4 ft wide
Twin chimneys- ½ ft away from left edge, ½ ft wide each, left chimney stack ½ ft tall, smoke ½ ft tall, smoke width starts ½ ft on bottom, decreases in width as height increases. Right chimney stack right next to left, ¾ ft tall, smoke ¼ ft tall, ½ ft wide decreasing in width as height increases
Single chimney on right side- 1 ft away from right edge, 1 ft from twin chimneys, ½ ft wide, ½ ft tall, smoke ½ foot tall, ½ ft wide, decreasing in width as height increases.
Step 2: Side 1 (continued)
2. Cut outlined form of side 1 (S1) with utility knife (T2) on cutting mat (T1).
Step 3: Side 1 (continued)
3. Measure with ruler (T3), outline with pencil (T4), and cut slots of side 1 (S1) with utility knife (T2) on cutting mat (T1).
Slots- 6 total, 3 per side, 4 in. from bottom edge, 4 in. tall, ½ in. wide, 1 in. from outside edge, 2 in. apart
Step 4: Side 2 (S2), Right Side
1. Measure side 2 (S2) with ruler (T3) and outline with pencil (T4) the appropriate lengths. Copy lengths and widths of side 1 (P1) from step 1.
Step 5: Side 2 (continued)
2. Cut outlined form of side 2 (S2) with utility knife (T2) on cutting mat (T1).
Step 6: Side 2 (continued)
3. Measure and cut slots and tabs of side 2 (S2) with utility knife (T2) on cutting mat (T1).
For slots, copy side 1 (P1) on left side of cardboard. For tabs- refer to picture and repeat for each tab (3 total).
Step 7: Back (S3)
1. Measure back (S3) with ruler (T3) and outline with pencil (T4) the appropriate lengths.
Width- 2 ½ ft wide, 2 ft tall, for tabs, refer to picture with tabs in step 6 for both sides.
Step 8: Back (continued)
2. Cut outlined form of back (S3) with utility knife (T2) on cutting mat (T1).
Step 9: Assembling, (P1) and (P2)
1. Insert tabs of side 2 (P2) into slots of side 1 (P1).
Step 10: Assembling, (P1) and (P3)
2. Insert left set of tabs on back (P3) into slots of side 1 (P1).
Step 11: Assembling, (P2) and (P3)
3. Insert right set of tabs on back (P3) into slots of side 2 (P2).
Step 12: Final Product
Here's what the final costume should look like.
This product is constructed with medium/regular size measurements.
If sizes are preferred to be changed for different sized children, multiply original measurements by the following:
medium: don't change
*painting is optional, however, be sure to paint both sides equally or cardboard will warp
*plan of procedures attached