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WooWoo! Cardboard Box to Train Costume!

 I promised you, and here it I made the Train Costume... for only $10! 

The hardest part of making the train was deciding how I wanted it to look.  Once I had a design idea, the rest of it was pretty easy.  

If you want to make one for your own little guy, here's how you do it:

Main Train:  (This part is hard to explain, if you get lost in my words, just look at the picture.)  Choose a box that will fit the size of your child.  Make sure it's wide enough for their hips, and short enough that they can walk in it. (That's important.)  To make the cab, fold one of the end flaps of the box down to form the front of the train.  Stand the other end flap up to form the back of the cab.  Cut the side flaps vertically where the end flaps end.   On the front, tape the short side sections to the front flap, on the back stand them up and tape them to the back flap.  The left over sections of the side flaps are taped down, inside of the box.  I used packing tape and duct tape to tape everything in place.  Cut a piece of cardboard from another box to fit the opening on the back side and tape it.  Spray paint the box.
Decorative Design (on the side):    Open an empty cereal box to where it lies flat, draw your design, cut it out, and spray paint it.  Hot glue it onto the side when your paint is completely dry.

Light:  This is an inexpensive battery operated push light.  Place the light where you want it, trace around it, and then cut a hole slightly smaller than your light.  This will help it to have a snug fit and stay in place better.  I  used packing tape on the inside of the train to hold it in place.
Smoke Stack:  This is a cardboard oatmeal container.  Cut the top part of the container off to the height you want and then spray paint it.  My boys used the smokestack to hold their candy!  Pretty fun!  I used long brads and tape to hold the smoke stack on.

Front Bumper:  Once again this is a cereal box. :)  Cut around the box to make it a triangle, spray paint it, and then hot glue it on.  You'll want to add packing tape underneath and to both of the sides to keep it securely in place. 
Windows:  The windows are squares of yellow paper glued on.  Pretty simple.

Top of Cab:  This piece is poster board, cut slightly bigger than the box, spray painted black, and taped on.   (A cereal box would work fine too.)
Wheels:  This is my favorite part!  They are records from the thrift store and cost me .50 each.  Just for fun I  chose records with kids music on them.  Attach them with brads through the center of the record, through the cardboard, and then tape the brad on the inside to help hold it in place.  The gray piece connecting them is a piece of poster board covered with duct tape.  Punch holes in it to insert the brads through.
The Straps:  The straps are nylon webbing.  I actually used the strap from an old diaper bag.  You could also use old backpack straps.  (TIP:  Before you throw old diaper bags and backpacks away, cut off the straps and clips, they may come in handy for future projects!)  Measure the straps to a comfortable length and then hook them on using long brads.  You may want to use a couple in each strap to make sure they are secure.  I inserted the strap through the layers of cardboard to hide the ends.  The straps are criss-crossed in the front to help them stay up on the shoulders.

Engineer Cap:  You can find information about how I made an Eddy Cap for the Engineer cap here.

This train does take some time to make, but it's totally worth it!  Both of my boys have worn it and loved it.  You can imagine the excitement when they turn on the light, get their train whistle ready, and walk out through the door to collect candy.  I have so many happy memories watching them 'chugging' around in this costume.  Which of your kids costumes was your favorite and brings good memories? 

(If you decide to make this train, leave me a comment with a link, I'd love to check it out!)

This post is linked to these fabulous link parties:

The CSI Project
Take-a-Look Tuesday at Sugar Bee Craft Edition
Just Something I Whipped Up at T.G.C
Made by You Monday at Skip to My Lou
Make it Yours Day at My Backyard Eden
Get your Craft on!  With Todays Creative Blog
Anything Related at All Thingz Related
Letting the Creative Tuesday Juices Flow at These Creative Juices
Topsy Turvy Tuesdays at I'm Topsy Turvy
Eat, Drink & Be Scary at Somewhat Simple
I made the World Cuter Today with Making the world cuter Mondays
Thrilling Thursday at Paisley Passions
Whatever goes Wednesday at Someday Crafts
Look What I made at Creations by Kara
Power of Paint Party Wednesdays at Domestically Speaking
Hooking up with HOH at House of Hepworths
Transformation Thursdays at The Shabby Chic Cottage
Mad in Crafts-Mad Skills Party
Mad in Crafts-Halloween Costume Party
What are Little Boys Made of at Seven Thirty Three
Show off your Stuff Party at Fireflies and Jellybeans
Weekend Wrap-up Party at Tator Tots and Jello
 Halloween Costume Party at Corner House
Sew Many Mamas Homemade Halloween Costume Party
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Leslie said...

I LOVE LOVE this!!! I am kicking myself for already buying my little guy's Halloween costume. We are having a big train birthday party for him this weekend.

You are so talented! What a GREAT train!

Homemade Heather said...

WOW! Awesome job. I LOVE it! Thanks for sharing!

Krista @ While He Was Napping said...

This is so fun! I wish my little guy was a little bit older so I could do this! Guess I'll have to file it away for a future Halloween. Thanks for the awesome idea.

Thanks for the sweet comment on my cupcakes and hurricane vases!


Boy, Oh Boy, Oh Boy! said...

I just don't have the time to make the little ones' costumes this year and it's killing me. This is fabulous. My oldest was a conductor last year and I just love the addition of the train. He would have just about died to have a train to wear!

MJ said...

So cute! Visiting from the CSI project :)

Amie {Kitty Cats and Airplanes} said...

What a great way to use up cardboard boxes of all kinds! After moving across the country I have a ton of those! Great project.

Unknown said...

Aw, so darn cute. :-) Gotta love cardboard. It is a crafting staple in this house.

Lori@Paisley Passions said...

LOVE IT!!! I think that the record wheels are my favorite :) Thanks for linking up to Thrilling Thursday @ Paisley Passions. Hope to see next week :)

~Lori S.

Unknown said...

Wow this is great! I would love it if you would link it to my Halloween Costume Party.

Stephanie Lynn @Under the Table and Dreaming said...

This is so cute! What a clever idea - I bet your little guy was thrilled! Hope you are enjoying your weekend! ~ Stephanie Lynn

Ashlee Marie said...

VERY fun! It's a really cute costume. Now if only I could get the kids to go with a train. Thanks for linking up to Topsy Turvy Tuesday's!

Katie said...

Adorable and very creative! We'd love for you to link up to our Homemade Halloween link party!

Rachel@AllFreeHolidayCrafts said...

Ditto to what everyone else said! This is such a darling and clever idea! I'd love to link to your tutorial from my holiday craft site if that's okay with you. Here's the site:

Please let me know if that would be okay.

Rachel @ AllFreeHolidayCrafts

Janet said...

In Reply to Rachel:

Thanks for asking to link to my cardboard train costume. That would be great! I apologize for taking so long to get back with you. Your request reminded me that I wanted to edit a couple of pictures in this post.

Also, I noticed that your comment on my blog was a no reply comment and thought I'd pass on to you that if you add your e-mail address to your Blogger profile, it will allow people to reply back easily to your comments. You may already know this, but I thought I'd pass it on in case you didn't. :) I'm leaving a response to you here because the comment form on your site wouldn't allow me to leave a comment.

Thanks for the feature! ~Janet

Leslie said...

I used your tutorial to get started with my little boy's Halloween costume and it was a huge hit! Thought you'd enjoy seeing pictures. I linked to your blog from my post...gotta give credit where credit is due! Thanks for the help!

Anonymous said...

You are the BEST MOM EVER! I followed your directions more or less and in a total time of about 45 mins I transformed a diaper box into this fun train for Halloween. I used ducktape and cardboard and that's it! Absolutely LOVE IT! Thank you so much for the great idea :)

Janet said...

To Anonymous: You're welcome, I'm happy to hear that the tutorial helped! Every Halloween I think about my little boys tooting around in this box train costume. I hope you have wonderful memories as well. :)


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