You Will Need ...
  1. Medical grade plaster strips (such as Specialist brand plaster bandages)

  2. Shallow tray or bowl of warm water

  3. Newspaper

  4. Masking tape

  5. Aluminum Foil

  6. Scissors

  7. Other fodder for shapes within the mask, such as egg cartons, etc. (optional)

  8. Elastic bands (if you're going to wear your mask)

  9. Hot glue

  10. Tempera or acrylic paint

  11. Other decorative items: glitter, stickers, feathers, etc. (optional)

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Step 1: 

Decide how big you want your mask to be. Do you want the mask to be functional (that is, to wear it on your face)? Or do you want it to be decorative, something you hang it on the wall? Make a newspaper form the size and shape you want your mask to be, and hold the form in place with masking tape.

Step 2: 

A cut-up egg carton makes for great eye holes. Using scissors, cut out two “egg cups” and tape them in place on your mold.

Step 3: 

Cut a large enough sheet of aluminum foil to wrap your entire mask. Covering the mask seals the paper, egg carton, and tape form in place and will keep it from getting wet and soggy when you add the plaster.

Step 4: 

Use aluminum foil to mold and create other features. If you are planning on wearing the mask, make sure you create the mask with a 3-D nose so after the mask is covered in plaster you leave negative space for your real nose to fit.

Step 5: 

Masking tape your additional features into place. Once the features are positioned, cover the whole thing with another layer of aluminum foil to lock all the features in place.

Step 6: 

Cut up plaster strips. We are using medical grade Specialist brand plaster bandages, which come in a 5 yard roll that is 4 inches wide. We also like plaster craft modeling strips. Cut up different sizes: long, short -- you will want different options for different areas of the mask.

Step 7: 

Dip strips one at a time into warm water, submerging the whole strip. Use your fingers to “squeegee” excess water out of the plaster strip and make it one smooth piece of plaster covered cloth.

Step 8: 

Place the strips on your mask one by one, overlapping and creating layers. You need at least three layers of plaster strips to maintain rigidity once you remove the inside form. If you are making a mask to wear, make sure you leave the eye holes uncovered. It's also good to make a mouth hole or a nose hole too.

Step 9: 

You can build up your mask with strips after you cover the whole thing. Try rolling them up to create textures. You can make small details like ridges around the eyes or moles or scars.

Step 10: 

Wait 24 hours and let totally dry.

Step 11: 

Pull out the inside form. It should pop out pretty easily. If not, pull gently, releasing the sides bit by bit. The inside may still be a bit moist. Let that dry completely once off of the mold.

Step 12: 

Now it is ready for you to paint it! Use tempera or acrylic paint.

Step 13: 

After the paint is good and dry, you can decorate your mask! Hot glue works very well for attaching anything: feathers, ribbon, sparkles. Go wild!

Step 14: 

If you want to make the mask to wear, use fat elastic for your headband. Hot glue one side of the elastic in place on the edge of the mask.

Step 15: 

Hold the mask to your face to estimate the length of elastic. If the mask is heavy, you can always add a second strip from the center back to the middle back piece of elastic, like a hockey mask.

Age: 
School-age
Tween
Teen
Adult
Senior
Craft Length: 
60 minutes or more
Difficulty: 
Attention, please! (a few rules to follow)
Prep Time: 
10 - 20 minutes
Supervision: 
1 adult per 5 children
Variations: 

Your mask can be pretty, scary, silly, or all of those! Here, we have a scary witch's mask, and a funny and weird clown mask!

Variation Photos: