How and why I made my Homemade Princess Leia Lego Costume!
I'm a 34 year old female. I'm a creative Artist/ Sci-Fi geek/ Star Wars Fan who wanted a funny original homemade costume!
What can you make out of cardboard, tape, fabric, Velcro, paint and a LOT OF TIME? JUST about the coolest costume EVER!
Heres how I did it!
For the HEAD...
I needed something that I could use as an armature that resembled a Lego Person's head. I found that an empty propane tank was perfect! First I covered it with plastic wrap. Then I watered down some Elmer's Glue. I dipped my newspaper in the glue-water and began covering the tank, smoothing the paper flat. After one or two coats I let it dry over night then repeated this application two more times. Once dry I used a utility knife, I cut one long opening from top to bottom, then removed the paper mache. Then I used more strips of paper mache to seal the cut section back together.
Later I spray painted the face a flesh tone color. After attaching the head rest on the inside I was able to cut holes that lined up with my eyes. I attached two layer of window screen with hot glue on the inside. I then hand painted the eye brows and lips! (NOTE: Lego people do not have noses!)
For the Hair: I used "Great Stuff" foam (available at a Home Improvement store) to start the basic shape of the hair. I let it dry over night. I re-applied where needed to build up the hair to the desired height (drying overnight each time). I sprayed the foam onto wax paper to create the hair buns, carved and attached with hot glue. I carved the foam with a utility knife and a Dremel sanding bit. I filled in any gaps or holes with hot glue. The foam requires NO priming, so I taped off the face and spray painted it brown.
For the Hands: I bought two 3" PVC fittings (available at a Home Improvement store) and cut an opening in each one. Then I drilled a pilot hole at the back. I attached the 10 inch long wooded dowels with a wood screw. Then I primed and spray painted the hands with the same flesh tone color. I attached a white Velcro to the back of one hand.
For the Gun: I used found household items that would make up the shapes that I needed to match the Lego gun! When I could not find the right parts for the front of the gun, I cut cardboard circles and glued them together. I then filled in the hollow gaps in the cardboard with joint compound. Let dry, tape off, spray paint red & black, let dry, attached black Velcro to back of gun handle. Now the gun is removable!
The Body & Legs: Were a challenge to shape! Lego people are very short! Their body proportions do not match a person. Luckily I have access to a computer program where I was able to trace an image of a Lego figure and stretch it making it taller to fit me perfectly. This required a lot of measuring and planning. Then I had the correct length, width and height of each part of the body and legs! I started cutting up cardboard and used packing tape to attach it together. I also reinforced the corners with additional cardboard.
The Legs: Were then covered in white cotton fabric and attached with Velcro. The circles where then painted on using acrylic craft paint. I attached straps at the top of the legs that attach to my belt so that the legs lift up when I walk.
The Body: Was then covered in white cotton fabric and attached with Velcro. I hand painted the front of the body's fabric with acrylic craft paint using a photo as a guide. All the cloth is removable and washable! I bought a cheap white long-sleeve men's T-shirt that was longer than my arms. (You'll need enough to cover your hands and hold the wooden dowels in.)
NOTE: My main goal with this costume was to get everyone who saw it to laugh and wonder who the heck is in there?! So none of me is actually visible when I have it all on! Which means? I can't speak, or I'd give it away!
Adding sound: I recycled an old birthday card that already had the STAR WARS theme song on it! At Radio Shack I bought a button and soldered it in place. I also bought a Digital Voice Recorder that will record and play 20 seconds of sound. I found free wave files of Princess Leia from the movies and made them into one 18 second long sound file. I recorded the sound and then attached both voice players with their speakers and batteries inside the body of the costume. All of these parts are attached with Velcro, so they are removable and easy to repair!
This Homemade Princess Leia Lego Costume took me 2 months to complete! I managed to keep it secret from ALL my friends. I threw a huge Halloween Party where I greeted each guest at the front door, in FULL costume, playing the STAR WARS theme and pointing my Lego gun at them. As you can imagine, everyone DID laugh and smile a LOT! Mission accomplished!
Now my costume decorates one corner of my art room and inspires me to challenge myself everyday! May the Force Be With You!
Good Luck making yours!
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