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Discussion Starter #1
My idea was simple: get some fabric, some manniquins, and some fabric stiffener. Make "ghost" robes. put them in my yard, hilarity ensues.

I picked up some satin/polyester fabric... fairly cheap and light. A robe took about 7-8 feet of fabric, 6 feet wide. I used a 16oz bottle of Alleene's, diluted just until I could get it to actually be absorbed into the fabric.

This was at night, after work. The next evening, it had become "slightly" stiff, but nowhere near enough to stand up on it's own.

At this point, I've dropped almost $300, and I'm hoping my plans aren't completely nuts.

I figure, there's a few possible problems I might have induced:
1: bad fabric
2: not enough Aleene's (but that scares me, I don't want to spend a fortune on this stuff)
3: too much water (but then, how to get it spread around the fabric? the stuff has the texture of soft gum)
4: don't start at night? (it was still damp in the morning)

Is there any hope? any advice? Or, should I pull out the lame spiders and rope webs this year, again?
 

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The only thing I can think of is get the water based poly urethane or spar urethane and paint it over what shape you have now. The water based options will allow you to thin it if need be with water, but be careful to not over thin it, no more than 10% water.
 

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My idea was simple: get some fabric, some manniquins, and some fabric stiffener. Make "ghost" robes. put them in my yard, hilarity ensues.
I think you might need to figure out a cage/frame to help support the fabric. I mean, if you think about something stiff enough to support it's own weight for 5'-6' of height ... that's a lot to ask of even milk jug plastic if it didn't form a closed vessel, you know? You could try making a ghoul frame to help hold the fabric that is stiffened. I did this for a prop about 3 years ago, image is below. It is a PVC pipe (1" diameter" that goes up to a 4 way connector. Off the 4 way connector you have two arms and a head. The head is just a curved piece of gray electrical PVC pipe. The arms are just plain PVC pipe with 90 deg joints at the shoulders and 45 deg joints at the elbows.

That PVC frame is covered in a layer of chicken wire to drape and make the shape of the hood, shoulders, and biceps. Cutting and shaping chicken wire is one of my least favorite chores but it worked. Then I sewed the burlap on with some stained cheesecloth, and finally I used some black microfiber for the face (no face). He stands by slipping the PVC over a piece of rebar, and a support wire goes from his 4 way connection to a stake in the ground behind him. He is built like a sail - rough life when it's windy.


Ghoul 2019.jpg
 
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As a person who has done a number of Mud Monsters, I believe as already mentioned something that size needs a frame to support it. I've made beach ball spider sacks using white glue and no support it'll work for a while but once it gets a little damp from the weather my sacks go flat. If not for some wood and chicken wire support my Monster Mud Monsters would lose shape. About the only thing we've made without a support and mostly holds shape is Packing Tape Ghosts.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
On further research, burlap is much stronger, but takes a huge amount of Aleene's to saturate.

Looks like my problem was the base idea, itself. :-(

Ah well, I'll put up some framing/structures, and should have a couple of ghosts ready to go.

Thanks, all!
 
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