I have been doing a community halloween event for last couple of years. And thus, been on a shoe string budget, but there are some really cheap and effective ways of making decorations Snot Rag’s and Aluminium Foil are Cheap and Effective.
I absolutly LOVE snot rag mache, I found it on a US site and haven’t looked back since. I have used it to make skulls, 1/2 skeletons, zombie heads and the list goes on.
WHY I love it…. well first of all its CHEAP, and big hint the cheeper the tissues the better it works. Secondly it can handle the out doors, yes I had a sketleton hand in the garden (as a test/ no I am not a total weirdo) for three months and it didn’t disolve, mind you the snales did have a go. And thirdly it will hold shape quite well with out lots and lots of layers. Usually I’m slack and maybe two or three layers is me done, and you can do it in one sitting no need to wait for each layer to dry.
What you need: Tissues (aka snot rags), PVA glue mix (1 part glue to 2 parts water), Paint brush, Aluminum Foil & object you want to make (you can free form later but I would start out with an object till you get the mechanics of it)
HOW… easy I started with copying objects like a skull, doll face. Cover it with aluminium foil to get the shape and protect it from the glue. Make sure you press it down so you get all the details. Then get out the tissues (aka snot rag) as I said use cheep ones. Lay it out on the table (can put down a sheet of aluminum foil for easy clean up) Paint half the tissue in the glue mix and fold over the other half, and just brush it down onto itself. It should be damp to wetish not sopping wet. Then apply it to the object with the foil and repeat till its covered. Tip when ripping tissues you’ll find they will only rip nicely one way. I find I only need two to three layers for it to hold shape, but you can go to town if you want and have time. Then wait till its almost dry cut it just enough to slip out the object. Fiddle with it till you get the shape back after removing the object and then reapply a layer to rejoin it. Let dry completly. And your done.
As I said I have used this for lots of things. Once you have the hang of it, your only limited by your imagination. I made skeletons with out an object. Simply make your bones aluminium foil and wire (I ran a wire through the aluminium foil with litte hooks on the end so I could join all the bones together) and then cover with the snot rag mache.
Good luck and have fun.