What mends a broken heart? Probably not what I spent today doing, but I wanted to get this project finished. Every year my company holds a massive Halloween extravaganza that nearly everyone participates in. Last year, the IT department put up curtains and blacked out half of a wing into a dark house. They covered cubicles, filled it with black lights and brought to life the Nightmare Before Christmas. This year my department was going to host a Disney parade and I was going to be Alice. In honor of the occasion, I did something I’ve always wanted to do and bought the most authentic dress money could buy from a Japanese cosplay supplier. But I wanted to go one step beyond, and to do that I needed a flamingo. Then we had layoffs right before the big party. No longer having any stomach for the event, I am bowing out that day and staying on vacation. However, I still have the dress, and I was halfway through the flamingo. I’ve got a couple of places planned to use it instead and they’re going to be a lot more fun than being at the office holding a paper flamingo.
The flamingo understructure The flamingo understructure

I started with styrofoam attached to floral arrangement wires. I choose the kind of hard foam florists use and did some carving to make the top and lower half of the beak.

Plaster wrapped second layer Plaster wrapped second layer

With the pieces attached to each other with stakes underneath, I covered the neck in molding wire, and then wrapped the whole thing with plaster wrap.

Neck attached to the body and painted Neck attached to the body and painted

I blew up a balloon for the body and formed the wings out of molding wire. I plaster wrapped the body by itself, and then plaster wrapped the neck attachment. That took several layers to strengthen the neck enough to support the head without detaching from the body.

Added paint detailing Added paint detailing

Final touches: the paint job and some added feathers. I admit, it doesn’t look incredible in the daylight. Plaster wrap makes a rough surface that sanding didn’t really solve for. But it’s going to look spiffy in the dark.

Discussion (3) ¬

  1. Jason

    WOW; you’re dedicated.

    I’m still trying to figure out what to do for All Hallow’s Eve. I really want to dress up as Hannah Montana/Miley Cyrus, but I need a creative way of dealing with the double-wig issue.

    Maybe just have huge chunks of curly brown hair poking through the blonde tranny wig she wears. It’d just be making fun of how obvious it is that she’s the same person. And of course I’d have to spend the whole night doing the ‘come hither’ pose.

  2. Georgia Ball

    That idea is pretty fantastic. Hannah Montana outfits already look like Rocker Barbie’s idea of what a rock star would wear, essentially it’s already a costume. A costume that they sell all over Disney World down here, the defining piece is a thick belt worn at a defiant diagonal. Scott the Clown is coming down for a visit and he’s bringing his evil clown costume. I’m hitting the Disney Halloween party today, and looking into the club parties for Halloween night. Do you know where you’re going yet?

  3. Wallybob

    The flamingo looks great. You are just as creative as ever!

    ps- don’t get down, focus on what is good

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