Make your own super hero/villain helmet with built-in mask from the enclosed pattern. This is a great base for building upon, no matter what your super powers may be!
Step 1: Materials
- neoprene 1/16" (2mm) thickness**
I found neoprene at my local fabric store, but if you need to buy it online, here are two sources:
Can't find neoprene?
Try fleece! It doesn't fray, is cozy, has a nice thickness to it and is easy to find at your local fabric store!
- 1/2 yard of stretch fabric in the color of your costume
- Super 77 spray adhesive
- Hot glue or Fabri-Tac
- scrap paper to lay down
- scrap piece of fabric
- sewing machine
- matching thread
- rotary cutter
- cutting mat
- pattern weights
Step 2: Customize the Neoprene
If you do not like the original color your neoprene comes in, you can change it!
The cover fabric also will be used on the mask, so make sure to leave some for the MASK pattern piece to fit on.
Grab the 1/2 yard of your chosen stretchy fabric, cut it and the neoprene to a big enough dimension that will fit all of the pattern pieces. Remember that the SIDE and EAR pattern pieces are CUT 2.
Lay down some scrap paper so you don't get adhesive everywhere. Also, make sure to do this outside or in a well ventilated area.
Spray the wrong side of your fabric with Super 77, or other strong spray adhesive, and one side of the neoprene. When it is aggressively tacky, carefully smooth the fabric down onto the neoprene. Wait for it to dry, once it has, it is ready to cut from!
**You can get creative with this, not only can you change the color, but imagine using lace and other interesting textured materials.
Step 3: Print Out and Cut Material
Download the zip file, print and cut out the pattern provided below.
Lay out the pattern pieces so the arrows are running parallel to the selvage of your fabric and neoprene. This will ensure that the stretch of the material is going in the right direction for the best fit.
Neoprene (with cover fabric glued to it):
- cut 1 CENTER
- cut 2 SIDEs
- cut 2 EARs
- cut 1 MASK
- cut 1 MASK
Step 4: Sewing
Take the neoprene helmet pieces to the sewing machine and change your needle so it's a size 14 or higher for heavier weight fabrics.
Put it on zig-zag stitch, set to the widest stitch. Keep the stitch length somewhere in the middle.
Overlap the edges 1/4 - 3/8" and zig-zag stitch over the edge, making sure to back-stitch at the beginning and end of each seam. Keep an eye on the length of the two edges you are seaming together to make sure the top edge does not stretch out too much while you are sewing.
I found it helpful to sew the pieces together from EAR to EAR, left to right. Always keeping the new piece I was adding to my right. As an aesthetic decision, I like to overlap the edges with CENTER on top of SIDE and SIDE on top of EAR.
Step 5: Making Mask
Turn your iron to a low setting, such as polyester.
Take the cut out foam mask piece to the ironing board and with a scrap piece of paper, cover the mask and run the iron over. This warms up the foam and makes it pliable to work with. It will slightly curl around the edges, be careful not to apply too much heat.
Take the foam mask piece off, making sure it's not too hot, place it on your face and press in at the inner corners of your eyes, around the bridge of your nose and around your temples. Hold it in place as it cools.
It should cool quickly and once it does, take it off your face and inspect your work. It should be molded to the contours. To reset it and mold it again, simply iron it again.
Apply spray glue to the mask piece you cut from your cover fabric and to the foam mask, when tacky, gently lay your fabric over the mask, smoothing around the eyes and nose.
Step 6: Attaching Mask
This is where you get a little play in fit and proportion.
Place the sewn helmet on and then hold the mask up to your face and place it where you like. Mark where the top corners and the center top of the mask hit the helmet.
Take them off and grab your hot glue or Fabri-tac. Hot glue will dry instantly, the Fabri-tac will most likely need some weighting or clamping.
Put glue along the the top of your mask and a 1/2" down the the sides from the top corners. Place your mask, lining it up with your marks on the helmet. Hold or weight in place and wait to dry.
Once the mask is attached, go over the edges of the mask to secure the fabric edges down, if you don't, the fabric may peel up over time. Let dry and you're done!
You now have your very own super helmet!
What are your powers?