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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Note: This is a repost of an old tutorial whose links to pictures were broken with the software update at HF.

Here is my version of the weeping angel tombstone that was combined with DaveintheGrave's peeping tombstone. It may look complicated to make but with a little Barbie murder, doable without too much pain.

For directions on how to make Dave's Peeping mechanism, please go to this thread: https://www.halloweenforum.com/threads/project-1-instructor-thread.74930/
Unfortunately, the pictures are missing but the written instructions are still there.

Alternately, you can just make a simple Weeping Angel Tombstone if you don't want to bother making a mechanism.

To see in action check out the YouTube video:

Materials needed:
3/4 sheet (4' x 8') of 1 1/2" thick pink or blue foam
2 - 28" lengths of 1/2" PVC pipe
29-1/2" x 16" piece of plywood
Peeping mechanism from Dave's tutorial
Lightweight skull
Skeleton hands
Model Magic
16 gauge wire
Drywall anchor screw
Small gauge wire
Barbie with a flowing dress
Set of feather wings (plucked mine from a Christmas tree topper angel)
Skinny feather boa
Monster mud
Foamboard adhesive or Glidden Gripper
Wood putty
Gray Drylok
Small amount of dark gray, white, brown and yellow exterior latex paint
Small amount of raw sienna acrylic paint
Can of cheap spray paint
Small amount of moss
Bottle or two of wine heh.

Jig saw
Stanley Surform Shaver
Dremel with multi-purpose cutting kit
Dremel grinder stone
Safety goggles
Safety mask
Paint brushes
Wire cutter
Hot glue gun
Flexible curve ruler

The Weeping Angel tombstone wasn’t made for a video, but this tutorial will give you a good rundown of the techniques used.

Foam Pieces: In the first picture you see a graph showing how you can lay out and cut your Styrofoam pieces. Each square on the graph represents 4 inches. Make the following cuts with your jig saw:
2 sets of 36" x 18" (stone)
2 sets of 13" x 27" (base)

Inside the base cuts you will cut an insert in the center that is 18" x 3".

Dry Fit: Dry fit everything together. If you are using the peeping mechanism, cut the base of the mechanism to fit onto the back of the tombstone. Then trace that pattern out on the top base layer and cut out. Dry fit again to see if it all snugs up together.

Barbie Mutilation: The Barbie will need to be mutilated to lay properly onto the face of the tombstone. Because she is turning towards the viewer, she needs to be cut in half at the waist and put back together. To make her flatter, one leg will have to be removed and her upper arms shortened. Horrifying, I know, but it must be done for the greater good.

Picture 1: Remove her right leg and cut her in half at the waist. Tie a pipe cleaner or small gauge wire around the stub of the now missing leg and snake through her waist.

Picture 2: Punch two small holes in her back to allow an anchor for the pipe cleaner. Thread through the holes and back down through the waist and tie off to the leg stub. Do it tightly but allow enough freedom for her to twist at the waist.

Picture 3: You will find that if you bend Barbie's arms to have her weep you run into two problems: One, the arms don't bend and Two, her arms look too long (they stick way out). So, more mutilation is needed. Cut off her arms at the elbow. Shorten her upper arms but cut them at an angle. Dry fit the arms and sand or cut away at the two seams so they look more natural when they will be joined together again. Also, cut a line through her hands at her wrists to allow them to bend more so she can cup her face into her hands better.

Picture 4: Glue the arms back together using the hot glue gun. Also glue her hands to her face. I ran into trouble here though; the glue didn't stick well to the plastic on her face. Perhaps try Super Glue for that.

Dry Fit Barbie: Dry fit the Barbie (with dress on), feather wings and feather boa onto the stone. You can see on the paper below the doll the pose and tombstone face layout you are going after. Determine how much room you have for the epitaph. Shorten the dress if necessary.

Wing Placement: Using the mock-up as a guide, mark the wing shape on the tombstone edges at the top. Use the flexible curve ruler to mimic the other side. Draw a line to cut later with the jig saw. Draw the same line on the second layer of stone but don't have it dip down in the center like on the first layer if you are using a peeper mechanism. The back must stay intact so you won't see the peeper when he is traveling around the back of the tombstone.

Epitaph: In 'Word' find the font and size you like. Then go under the format tools and select 'emboss' to just outline the font and then go under 'spacing' and make the space between the letters bigger. If the words were too big to fit on one page, still print it but tape the letters together. Place it over the tombstone and transfer the drawing by tracing over the outline with a pen. It would leave an impression on the foam. Remove the paper and make a clearer line with the pen.

Use the Dremel with the multi-purpose cutting attachment to cut out. For very small or detailed fonts, go shallower. If not, the centers of 'e', 'o' and 'a' would flake off. Notice that "Mercy" is reversed-carved. To do that, Dremel the background instead of the letters themselves.

Note: The epitaph is a copy of the real Mercy Brown epitaph. She is the last known American vampire. Muh hah ha haaaa......

Cut stone edges: Cut off the wing shapes off the layers of the tombstone that you had marked off earlier with the jig saw.

If you haven't yet, begin drinking your wine.

Sandwich Stone Together (not pictured): Before monster-mudding, you must put the PVC pipes inside the two layers of the stone and glue together. Determine where you would like the channels for your 1/2-inch PVC pipes to be and cut out using the multi-purpose cutting attachment for the Dremel. Do this on both sides. Glue sides and PVC together using foamboard adhesive and/or Glidden Gripper. Be sure the PVC pipe sticks out 3/8-inch from the bottom of the tombstone. The 3/8-inch will fit neatly into the plywood base after you cut out the holes. Weight the top while curing overnight.

Plywood Base (not pictured): Dry fit the stone with the base and plywood bottom. Mark where the two PVC pipes touch the plywood base. Cut out circles of wood in the plywood base so the rebar will be able to go through and into the PVC when you are placing the stones outside in your yard. See how the 3/8-inch extra on the PVC fits perfectly into the plywood.

Rough up and Fill Seams (not pictured): While the stone is still dry fitted to the base, use your Stanley Surform Shaper to shape the edges and rough up the stone so it looks like it's been weathered and old. Add some cracks and crevices. Fill in the seams with wood putty.

Attach Barbie and Wings: Now, let's get the Barbie onto the tombstone: Dig out an area around her hips so she lays relatively flat against the tombstone. At the top of the gouge, insert a drywall anchor with the screw already screwed into it pretty much all the way in. Why the drywall anchor? It was the best idea I came up with to add bulk to the screw so there was something to grip onto the Styrofoam when gluing on. Take the anchor assembly back out and put some foamboard adhesive in the hole and place the anchor back in. Allow to cure a few hours or overnight.

Dip the feather boa into the monster mud, lightly pull off extra mud and put into place on the tombstone. Use a toothpick to pull out details of the feathers and add directionality. Now, dip the wings in the mud and lightly shed off some of the mud too and place on the stone. Hand form some of the monster-mud underneath her wings in a feather pattern to make the wings look larger and fill the void better. Attach some small gauge wire around Barbie's waist and dip Barbie in the mud. Using the wire, attach her to the drywall anchor screw to better hold her onto the stone. Arrange her hair and dress. Let dry overnight. More wine!

Touch-up: Using your hot glue gun, secure any areas that you are not certain will handle the vertical gravity pulls. I put a little bit at the top of the boa and all-around Barbie's outline.

Assemble (not pictured): Now assemble the entire tombstone. Put foamboard adhesive or Glidden Gripper on the plywood base and stack the bottom foam base on it. Then place adhesive to the top of that and stack on the top foam base. Put adhesive on the inside sides of the base and insert the stone. Use some more adhesive to 'caulk' the edges around the stone and around the base where it meets the plywood. Weight the base down and allow to dry overnight.

Carve Base: Use the grinder attachment set at low speed on the Dremel and carve chipped stone impressions out of the foam. Be sure to wear your safety mask and glasses. It makes a super, super fine dust!

Spray Paint: Take your tombstone outside and hit it hard with spray paint. The paint eats away at the foam to give it an authentic aged and weathered look. Use more spray where there are crevices and cracks. Also use a lot of spray on any horizontal surfaces (the top of the stone and the bases). Don't be shy with the paint, I used nearly an entire can!

Note: I’ve since moved away from using spray paint and exclusively use hand-applied acetone. But, using spray paint is still a good and fast way to add damage and decay to the Styrofoam so it doesn’t look so new.

Painting (Picture 1): Coat the entire tombstone with gray Drylok paint. Be heavy with the paint on the monster-mudded items and light on the epitaph (you will probably have to scoop some out of the epitaph). Drylok has sand in it so have your last brush stroke be vertical. Do two coats on the stone/base and three coats on monster-mudded items. Finish with detail painting effects and tea-staining under the wings. It is an important effect and emphasis.

Skull (Picture 2): Make your skeleton skull scary by cutting out areas of the foam. Add fangs, extra teeth and horns by cutting out a piece of 16-gauge wire and forming some model magic around it to form a horn or a tooth. Press into the foam and let dry overnight. Paint the entire skull with yellow tones and brown highlights. The yellow tones help make the demon stand out against the gray angel and makes it scarier and more surprising.

Cut Hands (Picture 3): The hands will need to be bent into a grip position. Here, a Blucky’s hand was used but it needed the knuckles sliced on the top so it would bend.

Wire Hands & Moss (Picture 4): Insert lengths of 16-gauge wire into the palm and up into each finger. Leave two of the wires long so you can use them to push the hands into the tombstone.

Get your moss and glue gun and place some moss in places that makes sense to you on the tombstone.

A close-up of the stone.

Attach Hands: Stick your skeleton hands onto the sides of the tombstone using the wires in them you left sticking out. Put your peeper mechanism in the slot you made in the back and turn that puppy on and check it out. Then, go have some of your wine, you'll need it. You are done, baby!

In the graveyard:

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