Our daughter Ana was born with Rett Syndrome and is in a wheelchair. When we started planning our costumes we wanted to make something for her wheelchair that would make her feel like everybody else trick or treating. I wanted people to notice her for her costume and not her wheelchair and disability. When I showed her the Wreck it Ralph Princess Vanellope Von Schweetz Sugar Racer as a possibility her eyes lit up and she gave me the big beautiful smile which for her is a great big “yes!” I did research on materials we could use to make the costume and watched a lot of instructional videos on paper mache; Joni on ultimatepapermache.com was a big help!
We started with a cardboard frame and cardboard circles for the wheels. We then layered the cardboard with paper mache strips and used great stuff spray foam and homemade paper clay to build up the race car shape. After smoothing the surface with a hack saw blade, we did a layer of masking tape & paper strips over it for added stability.
To waterproof the car we used the recipe for monster mud (outdoor latex paint and drywall joint compound) and coated the whole car inside and out. For the wheels we used cardboard circles, empty monster energy drink cans, tape & paper mache strips with a coating of monster mud.
For accessories we used drain hose tubing for the gummy worm tires, plastic wine glasses with food coloring, glue & glitter for the gumdrop lights, an empty cup o’ noodles foam container for the marshmallow light, foam curlers & wood stars for the sprinkles, pipe insulating foam and Teflon tape for the exhaust pipes, and acrylic caulk for the icing drizzles. We used spray paint, glitter, and craft paint for the colors.
It took 9 solid evenings after work to complete and when we put it on her chair and she started giggling and smiling looking all around her it was all worth it! Everyone was talking to her, they didn’t notice the wheelchair; kids wanted to be her and it was her night! They would tell her how awesome her costume was and she couldn’t stop smiling and giggling! We all dressed to match and little brother had a great time helping to make his sister’s car (the paper clay and painting was his favorite part).
For her princess Vanellope hair we used black Halloween hair spray and candy accessories “glued” in with corn syrup for easy removal. Little brother was Fix It Felix; for his patches I used Foam sheets and T- shirt puff paint with adhesive velcro. We spray painted his toy hammer gold and got his shirt from Goodwill, shoes and hat from Target, and gloves from Amazon.
Dad was Wreck It Ralph; we got his shirts from Goodwill, overalls from a local tractor supply store, and his “caveman” wig and wrestler fists from Amazon (I had to give him a “wigcut” and spike with some gel to make it work). I (mom) was Taffyta Muttenfudge; I got my dress, hat, dish gloves, wig & stockings from Amazon and my shoes & jacket from Walmart.
For the strawberry glittery accessories on the hat I used foam sheets, hot glue & glitter. I wanted to be able to wear the hat after Halloween so I used masking tape against the fabric to avoid permanently altering the hat. We had a great night and wouldn’t change a thing!