Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Crafts 3/8/2011

Creative Ideas to Celebrate Mardi-Gras DIY masks

by Robyn Bird
    Getting ready for a ball sounds like something out of a Disney princess story, but making your own mask is a really easy job that produces impressive results.
    Masquerade dates back to the 15th century and was practiced as part of Carnival. With modern day Mardi Gras on Mar. 8, many WVU-Parkersburg students find themselves feeling festive for the season.
    All of the materials needed for this project can be purchased at a craft store for less than $10. All the items wanted, however, can vary in range. The Mask used for Masquerade is meant to be elaborate, so the materials used can vary.
 ~ Feathers
 ~ Craft glue & hot glue
 ~ Lace fabric
 ~ Base mask
    The base mask can be made from scratch or one can be purchased for less than a dollar, saving valuable time in the creation of this project. The type of fabric can also vary. Choosing lace fabric means that the mask will not stand-up as well, so the mask cannot be as big. Using stronger fabric means that the fabric might be seen through the feathers, but it will hold up better.
Other materials include:
 ~ Faux flowers
 ~ Gems, beads, and other shiny things
 ~ Glitter
 ~ Glow-in-the-dark items
 ~ Paint and/or spray paint
 ~ Tissue paper
Just about anything else pretty or cool that can be glued to the mask.
    Start with the lace fabric and decide the shape wanted for this mask. Cut the fabric so that there is enough extra to fold over it three times. Inspiration can be gathered from Google images, but a common shape is one similar to the wings of butterfly. Start with the strongest feathers, and line bottom to the top using the
craft glue and a sheet of newspaper to prevent an awful mess.
    Next, use the fluffy feathers to fill the empty space using the craft glue and folding the excess fabric over itself so as to reduce the amount of leaking glue. The extra fabric also provides extra support for the mask
to stand up.
    After the first layer of fuzzy feathers is on, allow the piece to dry and do the same to the back. Then, when the piece is dry and both sides are covered, use the best feathers in the bag, and starting from the out most edges, use the hot glue gun to attach the feathers, lining them like a bird wing. Do rows of this, layering the feathers so that the layers closest to the bottom cover part of the layers closest to the top. Once
the ‘wing’ is finished, embellishments can be added.
Petals of the faux flowers can be used instead of feathers. Gems can be added to the tips of feathers and petals. Glitter can be sprayed or sprinkled on. The mask can be made unique in so many ways, so try making them with friends and see what variations can be found.

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