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Skeleton Corpsification

Finished Skeleton Corpse
Materials Required
- 1 - Skeleton
- 1-2 quarts of Liquid Latex
- 1 pair of double queen-size (or larger) Pantyhose (non-control-top)
- Wood Stains (various shades)

Optional Materials
- Stretch Spider Webbing
- Manila Rope, Clothesline or Twine (natural fibers, not vinyl)
- Jute Netting (a.k.a Rot Cloth or Erosion Control Fabric) or Burlap
- Dried Willow Branches or Grape Vines
- 1 pair of Panty Hose Knee-Highs (or a second pair of Panty Hose)
- Latex or Acrylic (craft) paints (various colors)

Tools Required
- Safety Goggles
- Latex Gloves
- Philips Screwdriver
- Sharp pair of Scissors
- Disposable Paint Brushes
- Small Mixing Cup

Disclaimer:
The list of materials and tools required listed above as well as the measurements and some of the pricing provided in the instructions below are provided as examples. They are accurate for the item we built and may not exactly meet your needs. Please, before you go out and buy a bunch of materials and (possibly) tools, read the instructions below and determine what it is you need for your project. A few minutes of planning and preparation will save you a lot of time, frustration, and (possibly) money, too.

And, of course, please feel free to modify any of the instructions below if you know of a better way to accomplish some of the tasks we've described. If you do, please feel free to send them my way at projects@skeletonfoundry.com. We'd love to hear from you.


CAUTION:
USE THESE INSTRUCTIONS AT YOUR OWN RISK.

This project involves the use of power tools. If you are not comfortable working with power tools, I would recommend you not attempt this project. While the work is fairly non-complex, it does still pose a safety risk if done incorrectly. Please, use caution when attempting to do any kind of work with power tools.

Also, when doing any kind of work like this, please make sure to work safely and to follow all safety precautions on applicable tools materials. Use common sense precautions to protect yourself and others from injury. Always wear your safety goggles, work in a well-ventilated space.

Skeleton Foundry provides these instructions on an informational basis only. IN NO CASE WILL SKELETON FOUNDRY BE LIABLE FOR PERSONAL INJURY, DAMAGE TO PROPERY OR OTHER DAMAGES ARISING FROM YOUR USE OF THESE INSTRUCTIONS. You assume your own risk by doing so.

In this project, you will learn how to create your own customized, realistic rotting corpse using a skeleton, a pair of panty hose, liquid latex, and a few other common items. Once completed, this prop can be stored and will last for years to come. And, the cost of the materials is relatively inexpensive.

Instructions:

1. Please read all the instructions BEFORE you go out and buy anything.
 
2. There is considerable drying time involved when using liquid latex. Don't attempt this project the weekend before Halloween. Give yourself plenty of time to ensure success.
 
3. Make sure to work on this project in an area with proper ventilation.
 
4. ALLERGY ALERT: If you are allergic to latex, this is probably a project you should avoid. It requires the use of liquid latex which has some pretty strong fumes. It's also a pretty messy material and can easily get on your skin, clothes, shoes, etc.
 
5. Ready your skeleton. Buckies and economy line skeletons often come packed with the legs and/or arms detached. Attach the legs, but not the arms — not yet anyway. For the purposes of these instructions, I am using an "Easy on the Pocket Paul" economy skeleton. But, I have used Buckies, Barts, and Barneys for our yard haunt.
 
6. Find a nice sturdy place to hang your skeleton. Good ventilation is a must. Your corpse will smell and be tacky for several days (or even weeks depending on the type of latex you use) after corpsing. Make sure you have the proper time and space to complete your corpse in time for Halloween.
 
7. Skeleton corpse - pull panthhose up.Pull the pantyhose up the corpse all the way to the neck.
 
8. Tie skeleton neck.Gather the waste behind the neck, pull it taught, and tie it off. If you've got enough excess, you can tie it in a knot. If not, you can use a wire tie or a small piece of wire or string to tie it off. Once complete, trim off any excess pantyhose material.
 
9. Now, pull the legs of the pantyhose down past the feet until they are fairly taught across the legs of your skeleton.
 
10. Tie it off at the bottom of the foot.
 
11. Clip skeleton foor excess.Clip off the excess.
 
12. Now, pull the excess pantyhose we just cut from the feet over the arms. You want the fingers where the toes would normally be. Pull it tight. It's ok if the hand gets stuck in a bent position. We'll fix that in a couple steps.
 
13. Tie-off skeleton hands.Again, tie off the panty hose at the top of the arm and cut off the excess. Once that's done, you can re-attach the arms to the skeleton.
 
14. With the two small pieces of excess pantyhose remaining, cover the skull. You'll need to tie it off at the top of the skull and again at the back of the neck. (Optional) If you don't have enough left over to cover the skull, just use a pair of knee highs or another pair of panty hose.
  Pull extra over skull. Use extra on skull.
 
15. Now that you've "skinned" your skeleton, it's time to distress it.
 
16. Using a sharp pair of scissors, score the pantyhose by scraping the blade against the panty hose. Fill the skin with as many holes and wear as desired. Don't be afraid to move and stretch your nylons to get the desired look.
 
17. Be careful when cutting the eye, nose, and mouth holes. These are the primary source of "character" for your corpse. Choose your cuts wisely to achieve your desired facial expression. If your eye, nose, or mouth holes don't look right, don't be afraid to put new nylons over the head. Now is the time to make that decision before you start applying the latex.
 
18. Cut the panty hose at the tips of the fingers and toes and push them down between the fingers and toes. This should now give you enough slack to straighten out the hands and feet.
  Cut holes. Cut holes for skeleton fingers. Cut holes for skeleton toes.
 
19. It's time to start adding your layer(s) of latex skin.

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