This Homemade DIY Jack Skellington Halloween Costume was really a lot of fun and my first attempt at creating a paper mache mask. I started because my company has really encouraged employee participation in our annual costume contest and I am proud to say that this year I won with this costume!
I began searching online for a costume that was cool, fun, scary and one which would come from items I already have around my house. The main wardrobe was a tuxedo and I happened to have an old one with tails from a person who lost her husband and gave me some of his clothes including the tuxedo I used.
Next I began on the mask, which required the most amount of work and time. I researched online and learned how using a balloon with paper mache could create a nice head shaped mask. After about 5-6 layers of newspaper cut into small strips (discovered larger strips won't lay flat as well), I dipped them into my flour & water mix. Once it had dried completely for two days, I began to spray paint the entire mask white. I bought a small bottle of Testers black paint and used it for the eyes and nose and mouth portions. I cut out the eyes and glued strips of a black mesh I already had when I once repaired my concrete steps. It came on a roll and two small 5 inch strips glued in place and then taped with black electrical tape worked good and gave me good vision.
I do wish I had more air flow within the mask. I was pretty hot when inside but when I used it outside, it was much easier to stay in the mask. The tie was made by cutting the shape from a black cardboard and using a small amount of white paint to create the long branch type lines on the front. For the front I bought a small beanie-baby stuffed animal and cut off its head! I painted its ears black and nose black and used a small amount of white paint on the eyes. Next I glued the head to the cardboard tie and placed it under a table leg so that the weight would press it down and hold it still while it dried.
My last step for the tie was using a bowtie and electrical taped the back of the cardboard to the tie. It worked perfectly and allowed me to clip it around a white turtleneck shirt that I wore. Purchased a cheap pair of white gloves and together it created a really decent copy of Jack Skellington. My co-workers loved it and I received many nice compliments along with winning our 2010 contest!