Here, I’m posting photos of my female Tusken Raider helmet, as well as instructions on how I made it. This tutorial is intended to help anyone who wants to tackle the helmet from scratch; I’ll continue adding photos as this progresses. See the rest of my female Tusken Raider costume build here.
Female Tusken Raider Helmet
I started out with paper mache because I have a lot of experience in this medium. I knew that I could tackle the shape of the female Tusken Raider helmet, but if you’re not sure that paper mache is right for you, then you might want to go with the pre-made female Tusken Raider helmets.
I started with Melissa, my styrofoam mannequin head named after my sister, who lives out in Kansas. We like to set up Melissa for family events and pretend she’s there. Once again, Melissa is rearin’ and ready to help out with one of my projects.
If you don’t have a mannequin head, you can also use a balloon. Measure the circumference of your head just above your ears to see how big your helmet needs to be. Melissa is smaller than my own head, so I used wads of paper mache to create space between my layers and the head.
My paper mache mix is 1 part Mod Podge, 1 part flour, and 4 parts water.
I added wedges of modeling clay to the head to create the flat shape extending down at the ears. Note the white clay stuck to the head in the photo below.
I added strips at the top of the head and down the ear line. This gave me the helmet shape right away. I slowly worked to add paper mache strips from the ear line up over the face and forehead, adding wads of wet newspaper to build the helmet slightly away from the styrofoam head. This ensures that the helmet will be at least a couple of inches bigger than my own face, as the helmet appears in reference photos.
Use just a single layer of paper mache at this point, because too much paper is going to be too heavy, and will weight down between your supporting wads of newspaper. I recommend using phone book pages because they are very thin. Be patient at this point- you are creating a light shell to get the basic shape.