Sunday, September 16, 2012

Spooky Theater and Ghost Puppet Instructions

Here's the way I made my Spooky Theater. The simple, basic design is easily adapted to your own interpretation with choice of color scheme, lettering style, stage curtain and purchased or home made decorative accents.

Materials Required:

Cardboard boxes (approximate sizes)
If you don't have a close size, you can build one with smaller boxes and duct tape. Boxes are covered with paper so inside construction won't show.
  • 19" x 23" x 28" high for base
  • 7.5" x 4.5" x 36" long for beam (Got a 3 foot long Subway sandwich box? Use it!)
  • 5" x 10" x 12" high for spider dome
Cardboard wrapping paper tubes
  • approximate 2" diameter, 30" long (6)
  • Orange to cover base and dome. Black to cover beam. Extra, including purple, to cover 6 cardboard wrapping paper tubes. Bulletin board paper or corrugated recommended.
  • Halloween prints and black, orange and purple solid for letters, pennants, and stage floor
Foam board
  • 20" x 30" black
Decorative accents
  • Paper spider, 7" x  9" and paper web, purchased (or other decorations)
  • Purple metallic table skirt fringe, 29"  (substitute Halloween print fabric if desired)
  • Wood spools and 2" stars (2 of each) painted neon green
Utility items
  • Scissors
  • Stapler
  • Craft glue
  • Craft knife
  • Yardstick
  • Pencil
  • Masking Tape

1. Cover the base box (4 sides only) with orange paper. Staple to hold.

2. Cover the 2 other boxes, but "gift wrap" those on all sides.

3. Cover all 6 wrapping paper tube. Secure with glue. Cover 4 of them with orange, 2 with purple. Accent purple with black paper stripes. (See photo.)

4. Glue 2 orange tubes together, side by side, then place a purple one on top and glue it down to make a sturdy triple post for the stage. Repeat for second post.

5. Place the foam board on top of base. Center it so there is about 1" overhang at front of base and about 3" at sides. Place the posts on top of base to determine position. The front orange tubes should be about 3.25" from each side, 7" from front and 9" from back. Posts should be about 16" apart, with purple tubes facing inside. Trace each post bottom with pencil when it is in proper position.

6. Remove foam board and use craft knife to cut out opening along traced lines. Return board to base, push point of knife into cardboard box and duplicate the opening. Insert one end of each post into base, as shown.

7. Use 36 purple paper squares, 2" each, to make a checkerboard pattern and glue them down.

8. Glue the neon green painted stars on top of the spools and glue each one to center front of each post, between 10" and 11" from bottom.

The star spool will hold the curtain back on each side during performances.

9. Lay the beam over the top of posts, centering it.
Trace shape of each post on underside of beam, then cut a little smaller than pencil lines with craft knife so posts will fit snugly into openings.

10. Remove beam, measure metallic fringe curtain and cut it to match width of stage opening. Center the fringe on beam and staple it to bottom along back edge. Replace beam. Adjust posts so curtain sweeps stage floor, as shown on photo.

11. Position the orange box so it is centered on top of beam, 12" high, and glue down.

12. Complete the theater by making garlands of pennants using print, solid, and glittery paper. For top garland, cut a 4.5" wide x 3.5" long paper pattern. Fold in half to 2.25" x 3.5" and draw a diagonal line from top outside edge to bottom at fold. Open paper and use triangle pattern to cut 5 printed black shapes. Use solid purple paper to cut 5 additional shapes, each 1/2" smaller.

13. Make a garland of 6 letter pennants using the same method, but cut the initial rectangle 5.5" square for the "spooky" pattern. Make a third garland of seven 4.5" wide x 10" long pennants. (See photo for color ideas.)

14. Use purchased stencils or make a set of them on Word for letters. I used font AR Christy, 3.5" lower case for "spooky" and 4.5" upper case for "Theater."

15. Glue smaller triangles, centered, to larger ones and then top off with letters. Cut 1" paper circles from contrasting colors and glue to points of all triangles and to dome garland for eyes.

16. Use craft glue to attach the two top garlands as shown in photo. Use strips of masking tape to attach larger pennants to front edge of stage table.

17. Glue spider to front of dome. Glue paper web to each side of box.

I made the ghost puppets from dollar store kid's tube socks. Any size will work, but these are about 9" long (size 6-8.5). As with the theater, variations are easily done, especially if children are making the puppets. In that case, black buttons for eyes and ribbon scraps for bows would be much more practical. But here's exactly how I made the ones you see here.

Materials Required:

  • White kid's size tube sock (size 6-8.5)
  • Thin white yarn, 12" length
  • Small scraps of black paper
  • Pom pom, orange, 1/2"
  • Bow tie dried pasta
  • Acrylic paint, white, orange, black
  • Paintbrush, fine point
  • Craft glue
  • Scissors
  • Ruler
1. Measure about 2" from toe of sock and tie off with yarn. Tie bow and trim ends.
2. Cut 2 freehand oval shapes from black paper, each about 3/4" long.
3. Use paintbrush to dot each eye with white.
4. Paint pasta either black or orange and decorate with dots.
5. Glue everything on puppet as shown in photo.

Here's a friendly bat puppet to join the show!

Materials Required:

  • Black kid's size tube sock (size 6-8.5)
  • 3" x 6" sturdy white paper
  • 3" x 6" black felt
  • Wiggle eyes, 3/4" (2)
  • Orange and black twine, 18" length
  • Orange ribbon, 1/2" wide, 18" length
  • Polyester stuffing or crumpled tissue paper, handful
  • Craft glue
  • Scissors

1. Fill toe of sock to heel with stuffing or crumpled tissue paper.
2. Fold a 3" x 6" scrap of paper in half vertically and cut a freehand wing pattern.
3. Cut wing from black felt and glue to sock as shown in photo.
4. Glue wiggle eyes to face.
5. Cut 3/4" triangles from paper scraps and glue to face for teeth.
6. Wrap twine around top of head and tie into bow.
7. Wrap ribbon around sock once, cut off and glue down. Tie remaining ribbon into bow and glue on top as shown in photo.

These designs are intended for personal use only.
Copyright 2012 All rights reserved.
Thank you!

1 comment:

  1. Love this! Pinned to my Halloween board. Thanks for sharing @DearCreatives Theresa