How to Make a Pirate Costume With Duct Tape

by Nicole Fotheringham
Avast! Create your own authentic pirate costume with the help of a trusty roll of duct tape.

Avast! Create your own authentic pirate costume with the help of a trusty roll of duct tape.

Thomas Northcut/Lifesize/Getty Images

Make your own swashbuckling pirate costume from a few household supplies and some duct tape for your next costume party. Some local craft stores supply different colored duct tape, so you can get creative with your costume. You may even use markers to color patterns of the tape. Duct tape is durable and able to withstand the rigors of pillaging. The costume takes a few hours to assemble, so give yourself plenty of time me mateys.

Items you will need

  • For the Hat:
  • Black duct tape
  • Scissors
  • Measuring tape
  • For the Sword:
  • Corrugated cardboard box
  • Marker
  • Craft knife
  • Aluminum foil
  • Black duct tape

The Hat

Step 1

Measure the circumference of your head. Cut 11 strips of duct tape the same size as the circumference measure. Lay one strip down, sticky side up. Lay a second strip over half the width of the first, sticky side down. Lay a third strip the same as the second one covering the other half of the first strip. Turn the strips over and repeat, covering the sticky sides as you go. Continue to overlap the pieces until you have a piece of duct tape fabric that is five strips high. Fold over the remaining sticky sides on both edges.

Step 2

Make cuts perpendicular to the long edge of the duct tape fabric to the create tabs. The tabs should be 1-inch wide and 3 inches long. Roll the rectangle into a cone shape. The tabs should be on the narrow side of the cone. The bottom corners of the rectangle should be touching and the top corners should be overlapping by 3 inches.

Step 3

Hold the cone together while your stick it in place with duct tape. Try the large side of the cone on your head to ensure that it fits. Adjust accordingly by making the bottom of the cone bigger or smaller to fit your head. You can increase or decrease the size of the cone by adjusting the overlap of the top corners. Increasing the overlap makes the bottom of the cone bigger while decreasing it makes the cone smaller. Trim the large, bottom edge straight.

Step 4

Fold the top tabs over and paste them down to form a round crown. Cut lengths of duct tape 24 inches long. Lay one of the duct tape strips down, sticky side up. Lay a second strip over half the width of the first, sticky side down. Lay a third strip the same as the second one covering the other half of the first strip. Turn the strips over and repeat, covering the sticky sides as you go to form a piece of duct tape fabric. Keep laying strips down until you have a piece of duct tape fabric that is 24 inches long and 24 inches wide.

Step 5

Cut out a circle that has a diameter of 22 inches from your duct tape fabric. Use the tape measure to find the diameter of your head and cut a hole in the middle of the circle with the same diameter. Tape the pirate hat crown to the brim. Tape up the sides at three places along the brim, evenly spaced.

The Sword

Step 1

Cut the cardboard box open and lay it flat on your working surface. Draw the outline of a curved blade sword with handle.

Step 2

Cut the sword out with the craft knife. Cover the blade with aluminum foil and secure with duct tape.

Step 3

Wrap black duct tape around the handle.

Tips & Warnings

  • Don a white shirt and black pants with high black boots to finish the look.
  • Add a bandanna under the hat if you wish.
  • A red scarf tied as a sash around the waist is a nice touch.

Photo Credits

  • Thomas Northcut/Lifesize/Getty Images