Saturday, 13 October 2012

HALLOWEEN 2012: Tombstones Part I

It's that time again!  The holiest of holy days will be here in 18 or so sleeps and I've been hard at work making styrofoam tombstones for dear sweet RhondaJeremy's cemetery display.  So, having not managed to get any art or dolls done in the last couple of months, I figured I would share pics of the stones :)

PLEASE NOTE: All measurements shown are from the base, so the width/depth is actually the base size, not the styrofoam stone size.  Also, all bases are solid wood or particle board, not styrofoam.

"R I P"
6" deep x 11" tall x 21" wide

This is the very first tombstone I've ever made, and to be honest, it's a cheat: it's mainly computer packaging cut down with a styrofoam cutter.  Painted with acrylics (speckle & sponge techniques) so it's not weather proofed.  None of them are, sadly - here's hoping it doesn't rain on Halloween :/

"Renata Time"
8" deep x 12" tall x 22" wide
Another computer packaging piece; this one was more intact & had a neat little ledge right in the middle.  It has a 2-board base compared to "R I P" which only has one.  This one was sponged with black & gold on the outside while the inside was sponged with black, gold & white.
 "C. U. Later"
5" deep x 17 1/2" tall x 19" wide

This is the boyfriend's personal fave & I think it's solely based on the gruesome blood-dripping eyes in place of periods.  This stone is a bit crooked, but overall a nice effect.  The outer edge was sponge painted with black & silver, while the center was done with silver, black & white.  The skull is from a dollar store belt, which had a total of 2 small skulls & 1 large one - pretty decent detail value for $1.25.  The eyes are also from the dollar store - they're those super bouncy rubber balls with acrylic neon & black paint added.

As for the styrofoam itself?  No idea what exactly it is.  I know it came in a 4' x 8' x 2" thick sheet that had to be broken to fit in the car.  It is white with black chunks in it as compared to the pink or blue sheets everyone else seems to talk about (well, from what I've gleaned from Halloween forums, anyway...)  But the boyfriend got it for free from work!  So BONUS!! (UPDATE: See Part II for a picture of the unpainted styrofoam)

 "Ded Gawth"
8" deep x 29" tall x 16" wide

This stone is four pieces of 1 1/2" thick pieces of styrofoam, consisting of two full panels & two edge pieces.  This styrofoam came in a package from Home Depot & is much, much smoother than the stuff I used on "C.U. Later".  There is a hole carved at the bottom at the back large enough for a battery-operated mini strobe light (the kind Walmart & Spirit sell) - to cover the hole, I will be using a piece of felt cloth thumbtacked to the back.  The center is painted a neon/bright blue to really enhance the light.  It's also on this piece that I discovered acrylic paint does NOT stick to the silicone I was using.  Good thing none of those bits can be seen, as they are all on the inside!  Gotta learn to read the tube.  Additionally, the outer edges where the styrofoam sheets meet had to be filled in with hot glue as the seams were visible once the inner light was turned on.  At least THAT adhesive can be painted!  Speaking of paint, this one was sponged with grey & white over a base coat of grey.

Inspiration for "Ded Gawth"'s construction can be found here, though they went with plug-in lights (check out the rest of their site for photos of their amazing Halloween displays!):

These were really time consuming.  I would highly advise getting a good dremmel if you're planning on making your own stones because you need a really steady hand & a LOT of patience when using a styrofoam cutter - a tool one must always use whilst upwind from the project (inhaling melted styrofoam fumes probably kills brain cells or something...)  I do highly recommend the cutter, though, as it made for much greater ease in making the tombstones!

PLUG: Styrocutter Plus by FloraCraft.  Worth every penny.

Stay tuned for the final four stones!


  1. Those are awesome! Too bad your not closer to me, I would commission you to do some for my lawn!;) by the way, how do I follow your blog?? I really like it,you have some wonderful stuff on here.

    1. Heya!

      Thanks so much for the compliments!! I wasn't too sure about the headstones, being that it was my first time attempting anything like them, so I'm thrilled to get the positive feedback!! :D

      I've added a "followers" section on the right hand side so if you're still interested in following, have at 'er!! Hope to hear from you more :)