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Cool Victims of American Horror Story Illusion Costumes

I build costumes for my partner and I every year. The great thing is we are almost identical in size.  I construct one costume and learn from my mistakes making the second build easier.

I began with building the structure that would hold our “killers” . 2 wooden dowels you can find at any hardware store we fixed together in a “t” shape. Which I then attache’d to an adjustable belt (dollar store). I attached a duct tape body cast to hold the figure of the torso which I attached to the shoulders of the “t”. I bought Styrofoam heads to attach to the top of the “t”. I used pool noodles and string to construct the arms. And gardening gloves attached to the ends of the noodles using gorilla duct tape to finish off the “skeleton” of the “killers”.

Second I made the torsos for our “victim” characters. I made a duct tape body cast from shoulder to hip. I then attached that into an oversized button up dress shirt. By sewing the shoulders in place you’ll save yourself the night of constantly pulling and pushing your costume up. Adding a pillow into the duct tape body cast will help with holding form. I literally taped a pillow inside. You’ll then wanna make a horizontal slit from armpit to armpit (through shoulder blade) on the back of the shirt. Try this on and make sure the fit is comfortable and believable from the front. Depending on how gruesome you wanna go with your costume you can stop here or add some gory details. Firstly i shredded the bottom and arms of the shirt. I also added some tear marks throughout the shirt (just make sure your hiding the bodycast). I used acrylic paint from the dollar store (brown black dark green) to dirty up the shirt so it didn’t look so fresh. Secondly I used a pair of panty hose. filled them with newspaper. then twist off sections to make what will look like a sausage link. I then sloppily added red, yellow, purple acrylic paint (dollar store) as well as some highlights of black to really show some dried up part of the intestine. I then attached the intestine directly to the duct tape body cast. The night of halloween we poured fake blood all over the intestines to give them a real drippy and juicy effect. For the faces we just did a really simple bruising make up over the eyes and on some checks to show some trauma. Fake blood was our best friend for this costume. We were constantly adding more throughout the night and biting blood capsules to really sell that we had been cut in half and our killers were disposing of our bodies.

Now that you have the skeletons of your killers and the torsos of your victims you can literally use these costumes every year and change who your killers are! I chose to be twisty. I purchased a costume and full head mask online. I put a horizontal slit through the belly of the costume. with your skeleton filling the shirt of your killer costume, you can attach the belt to the top of your hips (you will want your “killer” to stand taller then you are). By slipping your body through the belly slit of your “killer” costume you now can slip on your torso on your top half (best if you have an extra set of hands). For my partners costume I used a basic zip up hoody.  Zipped uP the sweater and did the same slit across the belly. By adding fake blood on the legs and belly of your costume it will give the effect of your killer carrying the torso (optional).

This is a great costume to really freak people out. They don’t understand d where your body is. How many people are “in there” and you won’t make it a city block without someone stopping you for photos. Sorry I didn’t have progress photos once I get in my crafting mode I just gotta get er done. I came up with this just by looking at photos so hopefully the breakdown gives you an idea on how to tackle this project (on a budget)

Good luck crafters!


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