I am periodically asked to make "interesting" trophies for special events. I usually begin by going to a thrift store and finding a bunch of inexpensive junk that I can fit within the theme of the event. Sometimes I also pick up inexpensive decorations from a party store to incorporate as well.
The first photo is of a first place trophy for a chili cookoff contest. The base was a cheap plastic bowl (from the dollar store) to which I glued a bunch of plastic bugs (bought at a party store). The metal riser above it was a candle holder found at a thrift store. Sitting on top of this is a bottle of antacid wearing a sombrero, with a cheap shiny centerpiece sticking above it (from a party store). Oh yes, sticking out from the bowl is a plastic horse's head, or two. I the middle is a large plastic spoon.
Photo 2 used a similar approach, only instead of a candle holder holding up a bottle of antacid I found a metal "thing" to use at a thrift store.
Photo 3 is a similar approach. These three trophies are stair-stepped in height, since the represented 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place winners (photo 4)
Photo 5 consists of a wood base painted black (with some glittery stuff glued to the edge), an old beat-up-beyond-repair coronet, a smiley-face flower, and some sparkly stiff sticking out of the horn's tubing. I fastened the music holder to the base, and attached a gold star with the words, "I watch too much TV," which explaining the words would be a long story.....
I made the trophy in the last photo to present to a co-worker who was retiring. Basically it consisted of a box that looked like a bus and a doll holding some signs.
Of course, most of this stuff is held together thanks to the magic of hot glue.....
I've had a lot of fun making these somewhat non-standard trophies for several events. They always bring a smile to the unlucky person who has to take one home and display it proudly!