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Head on a Platter Costume

Time: About two hours

Effort: Fairly easy - no sewing required


  • Glue gun
  • Glue sticks
  • Crazy Glue
  • 3' x 3' piece of cardboard
  • 1' length of elastic
  • Plastic tablecloth
  • Scissors
  • Stapler
  • Dessert-size paper plates
  • Plastic silverware
  • Miniature plastic wine glasses or goblets
  • Plastic serving fork
  • Rubber butcher's knife
  • Sturdy plastic headband
  • Large aluminum serving tray

Instructions: The cardboard will be the tabletop. Cut a hole in the center of the cardboard big enough for the head to fit through. Cut elastic in two pieces and attach to the underside of the "table" in loops (with staples and/or hot glue), positioning them so the wearer can put her arms through them. This will hold the table in place. Cut the tablecloth so that it fits the "table" and drapes down to a length you like, then hot glue or staple it down to the tabletop. Cut a hole in the tablecloth to match the one in the tabletop. Cut the aluminum tray in half and then cut a half circle in the center from each piece so that the diameter of the circle of both pieces together is about an inch or two larger than the neck of the person wearing the costume. Don't glue the platter down, but place it in the center of the table to see how much room you've got on the table for place settings. Once you've figured out where you want them, glue the plates, glasses, and plastic cutlery to the table, making sure there's enough room left to fit the platter in the center. To give the effect of a butcher knife in the head, cut most of the blade off the rubber knife, almost down to the handle, at a diagonal and Crazy Glue it to the center of the headband...this works really well, I promise. Wrap a small towel around the neck and pin it so it's secure, but fits loosely and comfortably...this will eliminate any discomfort from the aluminum platter. A turtleneck might also work, but you may still need some cushioning. After the table has been put on over the head, attach the two platter pieces to the table. A couple of staples work best, since the hot glue doesn't adhere well to aluminum.

Tips: For girls with long, dark hair, it's easy to find a dark headband for the knife and to camouflage the headband a bit. A boy probably wouldn't be thrilled with the idea of wearing one, however. :) For finishing touches, apply gruesome makeup to the face, hot glue plastic ants to the place settings, put hair in a braid to wind around the platter, and garnish the platter with plastic grapes, spiders, and a few small rubber snakes. Miniature wine glasses can be found at a cake decorating supply store or party store. Two small, lightweight candleholders may also fit on the table. Hot glue the candlesticks in the holders so they don't fall out.

Variation: The tablecloth can be easily adhered to the cardboard with a spray adhesive. You can also use a large plastic-silver serving plate, on a full-sheet cake board. To camouflage the head hole, cut "lettuce leaves" of dark green felt and glue them around the hole so they touch the child's neck. Since this table is smaller, it will be more like "head on a plate," with just a fork and napkin on one side, and a bloody plastic meat cleaver on the other. A regular sized plastic cup can be filled with spider webs, a plastic tarantula, and a cocktail umbrella. A spooky place card with a haunted pseudonym like "Harry's Head" can complete the scene.

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