Tuesday, July 24, 2012

DIY Angry Birds Visors

This is part one in a two part series on putting together a quick, dirty, toddler-approved Angry Birds themed birthday party.

OK, I admit it: my entire inspiration for James' third birthday party's theme was the red bird I crocheted from a pattern found here. Isn't it cute?  Of course, Yellow Bird, three Blue Birds, and a piggy joined him in good time, and my theme was born.

Anyway, since he's (a) only three, and (b) I'm ridiculously stingy frugal by nature, I didn't want to spend a ton on licensed party-ware and favors.  So some friends and I got together and made these hats for the guests.

(Thanks to Grace and Kenza for modelling for me!) 
Here's how to make your own! 

Materials & Tools
  • Red and/or Yellow foam visors 
  • Craft foam in Red, Orange, White, and Black
  • Paper and Sharpie for making templates
  • Scissors
  • White Glue
  • Stapler (full sized, with a long arm), Optional

I bought all my materials at Michael's Crafts, and with my 20% of Everything coupon, the cost per hat came in just under $1.  Yay! 
I paid a small premium for self-stick white and black foam. In retrospect, I might not do this.  While it make the hats go together very quickly, it didn't have much staying power.  My littlest gleefully pulled hers apart pretty quickly.  And James, who actually wanted to wear his several times after the party, ended up losing eyeballs and brows. So you may want to just go with Elmer's.

1. Cut Face Pieces
I made the red and yellow bird's faces identical (except for color), and I went with a simple triangle for the beak.  Please feel free to use your artistic skills to design a more accurate curve!   
The photo above shows the approximate dimensions. 
  • For the eyes: Trace a milk bottle cap
  • For the eye-balls: trace a Sharpie cap, or use a hole punch
  • For the beak: Make and trace a template approx 1 3/4 inch wide at the base, by 1 1/4 inch tall.  
  • (Red Bird actually has a yellow beak in the game.  Again, I economized by using orange for both!) 
  • For the eyebrows: Make a rectangle template about 3 inches by 1/4 inch.  Fold it in half and cut a shallow angle to the center.  Trace onto foam and cut as a single piece, then cut in half for your eyebrows. 
  • (Red Bird has black eyebrows; Yellow Bird has red eyebrows.) 
  • For the feathers: Make a template with a straight line about 4 inches high with a bulge about 1 in wide at the widest point.  Cut two per bird (red for Red Bird and black for Yellow Bird) of the same size.  You'll attach them slightly offset.  

2. Assemble the Face 
Attach the feathers.  I recommend using a stapler for this, and stapling twice each as low down as your stapler will reach.  This way you can hide the staple behind the eyes.  
You can always use glue, but because of the size and weight I recommend clamping it.  I used some mini-clamps I found in the kitchen, and they did leave a mark which faded after 24 hours or so.  
I also used self-stick black foam for Yellow Bird's feathers because I used the same sheet as for the eyeballs and brows.  Just be sure *not to take off the backing!*  :) 

Then attach the eyes, eyeballs, beak, and finally the eyebrows at the appropriate "angry" angle!
Again, I used self-stick foam in white and black, but I would probably just go with glue if I did it again.    

And there, you're done!  If you assembly-line it, you can probably make 8 or 10 in an hour - especially if you have a friend or older child to help!  

Next time: two toddler-approved Angry Birds party games!  

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