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Sunday, September 18, 2011

DIY Halloween Costumes-Adult Car Air Freshener

Your Halloween is going to smell great!

A few years ago my boyfriend really wanted to go as the Car Air Freshener for Halloween but they only had the munchkin version available so that left only one choice, to make him one instead. All in all it was a pretty simple costume to make but that might be because I passed the project onto his mother once I was finished making the tree part of the costume and she spray painted the text on from stencils. She did a really great job with the spray paint and I will have to confirm but I believe the white lettering you see in the images took one can of white spray paint.

I modeled the design more off of the baby car freshener costume than the traditional car freshener image, the differences being a simpler design for the shape and I also went with a white string for hanging at the top, as opposed to the green string. Since my boyfriend was going to be in the costume at work and at parties, I left the costume open more towards the hips-legs area whereas the childrens version is sewn on the sides, and more towards the feet. Here is a link to the baby car freshener costume so you can see the differences for yourself: http://www.buycostumes.com/Little-Trees-Car-Freshner-Infant-Costume/21185/ProductDetail.aspx

3.5 yards forest green colored felt
1/2 yard stabilizer
fabric glue
Forest green colored thread
1 yard white piping /clothesline-type rope *The shop I purchased the materials from had really thick piping available by the yard in their upholstery section.
Newspaper/ craft paper *this paper is going to be used to make the tree pattern so I recommend something on hand like newspaper. If you are using small pieces, you will need to tape the paper together so that it equals the same amount of green felt you purchased

Materials for the white text design on the front *If substituting the spray paint technique for another alternative (perhaps white paper, sticky label paper, white felt or vinyl could be considered substitutes) you can leave out the following materials
Letter stencils *you can find these at craft shops, art supply shops, or you can make your own.
White spray paint
Masking tape
Poster board
Exacto knife

1) Unfold the green felt and fold it in half the long way so that it is 5 ft, 16” in length (half the full length-3.5 yds) and the width is much shorter-depending on what you purchased, it will most likely be about 45”+

2) Take your pattern paper (taped newspaper, etc.), fold it in half the long way as you did with your green felt earlier, trace and cut 2 paper pieces (front and back) for the tree similar to this image:

3) Lay this pattern piece on top of the folded felt and cut the felt *make sure you test your paper pattern in relation to where your arms are and how tall you are and such, and make any changes to the tree design that you need prior to cutting your green felt pieces

4) Cut a small hole at the top through both side of the felt to serve as the hole for the white string to go through

5) Turn the felt piece so they are facing each other, and the inside fabric is facing out. Sew along the edge from where your shoulders-arms are going to be all the way up and around to the other side *test what feels comfortable once the costume is on before sewing the sides too much

6) Turn the costume inside out and tie the white rope material through the hole

7) Create your stencil by copying the text onto a piece of poster board and then using the exacto knife to cut out the text. Set the stencil where you want your white lettering and blocked design and tape the pieces down onto the felt

8) Spray paint the white design onto the green felt *Please do this responsibly, both because spray paint fumes are hazardous and because you don’t want to ruin your costume, make sure you take great care to cover all areas of the green felt except for the areas you want in white. I recommend using an old plastic dry cleaning bag.

9) Once the spray paint has fully dried, all you need to do is cut out an area for your head *test before you cut and remember, cut smaller and enlarge as needed. 

10) Once you have the face cut out, measure the hole you cut for the face and take the stabilizer and draw the same hole shape onto the stabilizer. Draw a shape around your face circle like the one in the image below (that's right..I said face circle ;), and then cut the piece of stabilizer out and ever go lightly glue the piece of stabilizer to the underneath part of the inside face-head area. That dip at the top part of the stabilizer will help hold up the top of the costume so the white string will be easily visible and not flop over. 

You are officially finished! 

In the end we ran out of spray paint or we would have added the white text/ design on the bottom. 

So, there you have the DIY Car Freshener in the adult version! He had a lot of fun wearing it and even wore it again a few years later so when that happens, it’s always a good sign in the way of costumes. I think if I were to make it again, I would probably go with white felt for the white design as opposed to the spray paint but the paint version was used when making this one, so if you have spray paint already and are feeling game, go for it! It worked for this one ;) 

All you need now is a pocket full of real pine scented car fresheners so you can play and smell the part. Happy Crafting!

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