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Home LEARNING Arts & Crafts DIY Fish Costume For Kids

The thought of how to make a  DIY fish costume from corrugated box began after Austin gave a nod, agreeing to take part in a story telling contest in the coming November. The delightful story entails a scene of 2 lonely fishes, one possesses a small head with a huge body and the other one has a large head with a tiny body. Ashamed of their outlook, they hide behind behind the dense stacked up rocks. They refused to swim out into the vast, colorful sea until one day, a large shark swims by and its tail accidentally disassembles the rocks and resulted the 2 loner fishes to meet each other. When the small head fish saw the large head fish, he envied his look and said "Your head is so large, you look great!".  Upon seeing the small head fish, the large head fish said, "Your head is so small, you look awesome!". And both burst into laughter. Then, they have just realized that in the vast ocean, there are so many kind of fishes and everyone looks different. From that moment onwards, they do not feel inferior of themselves anymore, and begin to explore the wonders of the sea with school of fishes. The moral of story: everyone is different in his/her own way and that's what made us special!
DIY Fish Costume that my mom & I made it
Fish Story in Chinese
DIY Car from boxes

At first I was thinking of getting Austin an underwater garment (not undergarment :P) but it will cost me a substantial. Hence, I stopped shopping and I began to think of how to make fish costume out of recycled materials. Using a corrugated shipping box, this idea was inspired upon seeing Auntie Jennifer's creative, super cool car from cardboard boxes!

I would not say that this DIY fish costume for kids is super easy but certainly super cool. Though it may scare you that I were to say that I spent almost 8 remarkable hours to get it up. Austin was with me at the beginning and the end, we did indeed spent great moments together (though he took a nap in-between :P) while I continued to finished up, designing and sticking the fish body with color papers.

The  truth is it was my first experiment, and I did't have any corrugated box to spare thus we were trying to be cautious in our effort of handling the one and only box. Nah, our invention :)

Things that we used to make a DIY underwater costume:

A medium size corrugated shipping box - about 1.5 ft X 1 ft X 1 ft
Color papers - I used both solid - blue & orange and reflective ones - silver & gold
Home made glue (tapioca starch +  hot water, heat up if needed until the starch turns transparent)
Nylon string or yarn - about 4 ft

How to Make a DIY Fish Costume For Kids:

1. Break the top and bottom ears, so that the box is now hollow to allow someone to stand inside it. Yes, literally :)
2. Fold the 3D box into 2D, with the depth-side folded.
Folded - original shipping box
3. Picture a fish and sketch it on the corrugated or cardboard box. Get a shape with head and tail on the depth-side area. While the fins lie on the top and bottom ears of the box.
Little designer
Cut out - DIY Fish in shape
4. Then, glue the dark blue color paper to wrap up the head, tail and fins.
Colored head, tail and fins
5. Poke 2 holes on each side, and insert nylon string through. Make sure the height will fit your kid's shoulder as this will allow him/her to put on (yep, literally!).
6. Sketch the scales to the shape you wish. I used a cardboard to sketch on color papers before cutting them out. This helps to make them look consistent.
7. Stick them from tail to head as this will ensure the nicest scales would be those near the head :)
8. Finally, cut out 2 black and white circles to make the fish eyes. And don't forget to use bright color paper to cut out the big, smiling mouth.
8. Voila!
Ready to parade - for fish story telling

Worldly cost = 8 hours (x 2 people) + 1 day Mom's working pay + Mom's backache
Spiritual reward = Infinite!

Although it took us several hours to complete this DIY fish costume, the journey was extraordinary. The experience of creating things and building history together is truly precious. I had never seen Austin getting so excited, can't wait to test the fish costume right from the beginning when it was only a box, then he injected some ideas, sketching on the box, and finally seeing the fish with reflective rainbow colors scales when it is angled. "Yes, mommy..I want to wear it for my fish story!".

A joy that last a lifetime!

Last Updated (Friday, 16 October 2015 22:29)