The Claw: How to Make an Unusual Halloween Mask

comments (18) October 15th, 2014     

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Jeff_Rudell Jeffery Rudell, contributor
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Say goodbye to uncomfortable plastic masks or sweaty (and ill-smelling) latex hoods. Put a little craft into your costume this year and have a ghoulishly good time doing it.
While made as a mask, this bony creation can easily double as a pumpkin-clutching centerpiece on your holiday table.
A few simple paper shapes are all you need to build this crypt claw.
Say goodbye to uncomfortable plastic masks or sweaty (and ill-smelling) latex hoods. Put a little craft into your costume this year and have a ghoulishly good time doing it.

Say goodbye to uncomfortable plastic masks or sweaty (and ill-smelling) latex hoods. Put a little craft into your costume this year and have a ghoulishly good time doing it.

Photo: Jeff Rudell

In the spirit of full disclose (and at the risk of being thought a party pooper), I have a problem with Halloween masks. It's not that I don't like dressing up; I do. And, when I dress up, ghoulish attire is my preferred style. It's just that I find most masks uncomfortable, hot, and unaccommodating when it comes to people (like me) who wear glasses. With All Hallows Eve approaching, the requests have started coming in from friends-"Can you make me a mask for a party I'm going to"-and it's gotten me wondering if there isn't some better way to approach this matter.

As I've said, I like the dress-up part, the ghoulish part, and the theatrical elements of the holiday; I just don't want to be hot, sweaty, and trapped inside a latex lizard head. To my way of thinking, the Venetians had the right idea when they perfected the masked ball a few hundred years ago: Put your mask on a stick and carry it with you. The frightful effect is the same with the added benefit that one can easily remove the mask to smile at the host of the party, kiss a neighbor on the cheek, partake of some delicious hors d'oeuvres or, in a perfect world, munch on handfuls of candy corn. And so, today, I offer up "The Claw." It's not exactly a frilly court mask on a ribboned stick, but you can see where I got the idea.

  Download a 1/2 scale template, and trace the figures onto a sheet of white cardstock or watercolor paper.
  After cutting out the pieces, score them as indicated by the dotted lines on the template. I started with the Radius and Ulna bones of the arm.
  Once scored, crease the paper firmly to give it dimension.
  Working from the notch cut into the end of each arm bone, overlap the two edges slightly (1/4 inch or so), glue, and hold in place until dry.
  Next, score around the edge of each metacarpal piece, nip the corners (1/8 inch) and crease all edges to add dimension.
  Take each of the five metacarpal spacers and roll them around a pencil or the end of a craft knife to form small rings. Glue and hold until dry.
  Glue a spacer to the underside of each metacarpal piece.
  Now, turn your attention to the claw. Cut and score this piece as indicated in the template. Crease each scored line.
  As we did with the ends of the arm bones (above) overlap and glue each notch to create curvature to the fingers.
  Glue the arm bones in place along the shaft of the claw, and glue each metacarpal in place on the back of the hand.
  Once the glue has dried, you may wish to re-crease the pieces to refine the shape of your "claw."
  Finally, trim any areas where overlapping paper has left a small protruding edge.
  The final piece makes a wonderful centerpiece on a holiday table (here clutching a pumpkin) in addition to being a creepy holiday mask.
  Whether held up to your face or hanging out of the sleeve of your shirt, this skeletal claw is a whimsical way to have a little fun this Halloween.


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posted in: halloween costume, Halloween mask

Comments (18)

genalorainne writes: A little bit too much efforts for me, personally, but it looks totally awesome.
Posted: 1:06 pm on March 29th
christianreese writes: Looks really good, but how does it stay on your face? I think it would make a better decoration for the kitchen table than a mask.
Posted: 3:49 am on March 16th
walczak writes: This is great. I managed to already constructed
Posted: 5:55 am on December 11th
ghie writes:
Posted: 11:22 am on October 23rd
EchoLin writes: Fabulous idea, so cute.
Posted: 5:15 am on March 19th
nehmah writes: The grandson will love making this one. Nehmah
Posted: 4:49 pm on October 22nd
tscreates writes: Great way to craft for Halloween. Wish I had more time - I would certainly try this one.
Posted: 10:45 pm on October 30th
Toffy writes: I think this is an amazing idea and scary. Great execution. I would try this and make a few for my entryway table. Thanks for this great idea.
Posted: 8:42 am on October 30th
loveMaegan writes: very cool.
Posted: 1:36 am on October 23rd
daperfectmix writes: maybe it's dejavu, but i swear i saw this post before. it's still awesome!
Posted: 12:08 pm on October 20th
eiedu writes: gr8, and awesome work jeffery, vicky is right make collection of all your personal crafts and makei it live on some gallery like picasa or else

i recommend you to do the join for the professional makeup artist gallery

you will have more sale for your creativity.

check out my makeup gallery for haloween and other masks
Posted: 6:05 am on February 12th
VictoriaNorth writes: gravityworks2,

You should take some photos of your work and add them to the gallery so we can all see how they came out.
Posted: 8:52 pm on October 25th
gravityworks2 writes: I made a few of these for decorations for a kids party. Very easy to make.
Posted: 8:26 am on October 25th
Deana writes: I agree with Jen W. So scary! But, so good!
Posted: 2:44 pm on October 21st
sophiesattic writes: I showed my 16yo old son, and he thought this was cool. I am going to try it right now!
Posted: 7:32 pm on October 20th
Jen_W writes: Jeff, you are scary. Scary-good, that is.
Posted: 2:29 pm on October 20th
gravityworks2 writes: That is just too cool!
Posted: 11:53 am on October 20th
JenniferStern writes: Jeffery--You are amazing!
Posted: 11:01 am on October 20th
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