It’s hard to believe the month of October is half over. Thoughts of my favorite time of year, Halloween, come to mind. I suppose I’m just a big kid at heart. Dressing up was so much fun. Deciding what to be for Halloween was a major accomplishment. Sometimes the costume was store bought (e.g. Snow White, Peter Pan), while other times we made our own (e.g. Gypsy, Witch).
Purple & Gold Mardi Gras Mask
All you really need is a great mask. Craft stores sell a variety of white masks to decorate any way you please. In terms of comfort, the quarter masks are an easy solution, as opposed to latex masks, sold in Halloween stores, which can be very hot to wear.
Red Sequined Mask and White Floral Mask
Masks can be decorated with a particular theme in mind or for holiday celebrations, such as Carnival, Mardi Gras, New Year’s Eve, and the Chinese New Year. Each finished mask is a beautiful work of wearable art.
Turquoise & Gold Feathered Mask
I look at this mask and think of Aqua Man, the Marvel Comic’s super hero. It is also reminiscent of the Philadelphia Mummer’s Parade. The rich details and vibrant colors are real showstoppers.
Red, Black & Gold Long Nose Joker Mask
This mask has a devilish quality about it. Practical jokes are sure to follow.
Black & Gold Opera/Theater Masks
Musical notes and gold braided trim adorn these fanciful masks.
Antiqued Cat Mask
Perky ears and delicate patterns make this mask a favorite among cat lovers.
Blue & Gold Asian Mask
A lovely combination of two arts – mask making and fan decorating.
Assorted Feathered & Bejeweled Masks
This assortment of masks is ready to be worn in celebration or displayed as artwork and party decor.
Black & Gold and All White Feathered Masks
Feathered masks tend to be the most flamboyant.
Red & Black Harlequin Mask
The visual impact of this red, black and gold mask is enhanced with light catching glitter and thick gold trim. A few faux gemstones are the perfect finishing touch.
Ornate Venetian Masks
Masks made to celebrate the Carnival of Venice are among the most elaborately decorated with lavish brocade fabrics, ribbons, crystals, intricately hand painted designs, and touches of gold or silver leaf. This centuries old technique has influenced artists world wide, and is highly valued among collectors.
For a more practical, down-to-earth approach, below are the instructions to complete your own decorated mask.
How To Make Your Own Mask
Your project starts with a visit to the craft store. The mask you choose will be the most important decision because it determines the range of decorating possibilities.
Plain White Quarter Mask – Ready for Decorating
Most craft stores have several style options. Because this was a first attempt at decorating a mask, this simple white quarter mask was chosen.
Mask – Painted Blue and Outlined with Rhinestones
The mask was spray-painted royal blue. Fabric stores have beaded and rhinestone trims perfect for mask decorating. The rhinestones twinkle in the light, calling attention to the wearer’s face with an emphasis on the eyes. As shown, the mask is ready to wear, but let’s take it to the next level.
Black Feathers on a Foam Backer
This mask was made as a wall decoration, so the back will not be seen. (If you plan to wear your mask, simply glue the feathers directly onto the back of the mask, and line it with felt for comfort.) To make the wall art, trace the mask onto a sheet of black foam, which is used as mask liner to hold and support the feathers. The eyes and lower shape of the mask are cut out using an Exacto knife.
The Opposite Side of the Foam Backer
This photo shows the wrong side of the foam sheet used as a liner or backer board for the feathers. The bottom of the foam and eye openings line up perfectly with the blue mask, but the upper portion of the foam extends upward like a crown to support the feathers.
The Finished Black Feather Mask
Luxurious black feathers and sparkling rhinestones stand in sharp contrast to the rich royal blue on this completed mask.
Take a walk on the wild side. Dress up, stay in character, and most importantly have fun. Mask making isn’t just for kids. It’s for the child within all of us!