Sunday, October 28, 2012

How to Make Space Shuttle and Astronaut Costumes

My grandma used to make Halloween costumes for me and all my cousins when I was little. I’m talking homemade, beautifully sewn, clever costumes that most of us probably still own. When she and my grandpa were out here this spring we took them to the Air and Space Museum where she bought Cal and Clark little astronaut flight suits. They were in heaven.

I thought it would be special to use those costumes that Grandma Bev bought for the boys this year. I used some balloons to make paper mache helmets and wrapped their rain boots in gauze. They also used the cereal box astronaut backpacks from their birthday party to complete the ensemble. Aunt Bean then went all out and made herself into a space shuttle! That’s right. So I responded in a less dramatic and simpler costume as space. She and I decorated a wagon as a moon rover for when we took them trick or treating yesterday at a super cool event that Reston Town Center does. It was safe, it was fun, and it didn't involve big kids in scary costumes competing for candy.

Here’s what we did for the costumes.
The boys ripped newspaper into strips for paper mache helmets.
We stirred water into a pile of flour until it was a good, gloppy consistency.

I wrapped the gloppy strips around the balloons and tried to
fight them out of the goop.

They hardened for a few days, and then we popped the balloons.
I cut them to fit their heads and painted them with white latex interior paint.

I poked holes for faces with a Dremmel tool and then stuck scissors
in to cut them out. (You could use anything sharp to start the holes.)

The edges were kind of jagged so I put athletic tape around them.
I wrapped rain boots in gauze and packing tape. This picture was
taken after their travels...the boots looked better before.
Printed two NASA symbols and a flag from the internet for the sides and back.
Hot glued them on.

Ready for blastoff!

Our first costumed experience was Gammy's office party. 

Aunt Bean used styrofoam cups with streamers taped inside for the
bottoms of the rocket boosters on her space shuttle.
Styrofoam cones for the tops of the rolled-up posterboard rockets.

The fuel tank is also rolled up posterboard, with a balloon on top.
The body of the shuttle is posterboard outlined in electrical tape.

She also printed out symbols and put sticky velcro to attach it to her white shirt.


I glued yellow construction paper on a black shirt in the shape of the
Big Dipper, Little Dipper, and Orion to complete the scene.

The satellite on the wagon is folded posterboard covered in foil with pipe cleaners.
The solar panel (on the far side) is folded foam board.
I put squares of foil on the wheels and on the side.

Ready to find some candy!

The crew

We had to pose by the constellation sculpture.

Trick or treating in a wine shop? I think yes!

Met up with twin friends Christian and Luke, aka. Dinosaur and Shark

Jackpot vendor of the day: Red Velvet Cupcakery with warm chocolate cupcakes.
Best. Idea. Ever.


  1. thank you for the idea of making the helmets out of papier mache, they look amazing.

  2. Thank you, Rosk! It was fun and it seems I've helped a lot of people out. This blog entry gets the most hits of all of mine.

  3. Thank you (and Aunt Bean!) for the space shuttle costume idea! My son is going to be in a vocabulary parade at school and of all the words he could think of, he wants to be a space shuttle. The first google search I did brought be to your blog and I am thoroughly impressed :)

    1. Awesome! I'm just seeing this quote...a few years later. :) I hope it was a success.


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