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Cosplay Tutorial: Pikachu Ears and Tail

It’s easy enough to just buy yourself a onesie and say “look at me, I’m a Pikachu”. Hey, it’s a lot of fun; I’ve done it many times! But if you want to go a step further than that, then why not consider making your own Pikachu ears and tail? Join Timlah through this incredibly easy tutorial.

Pikachu is very distinctive in design and appearance – Everyone recognises those bright red cheeks and the perky, yet floppy ears (Take from that what you will). However, when ever you roam around conventions, there are all of these people who have made intricate, detailed cosplays… And you’re there in a onesie. Take it from me: I’ve done it – And it’s fine, it’s cosy, it’s easy and fun – But it’s just not the same. You don’t get that sense of adulation that others seem to get; Even though you’ve made the effort to show your love for the electric mouse.

Well, don’t worry: Pikachu is shockingly (ba dum tsh) easy to make ears and a tail for. You can change the sizes for these as you see fit, but here’s a quick and easy tutorial for you!

2016-03-25 17.54.40

Pikachu Ears & Tail Tutorial

Realistic time scale: 6 hours

You will need:

  • A1 Foam Board
  • Yellow Acrylic Paint
  • Black Acrylic Paint
  • Brown Acrylic Paint
  • Craft Knife

The joy of Pikachu ears are just how easy they are. With the above, you will not need to do any papier mache, or any more strengthening. In fact, the joy with these pieces lies in the fact you can make all this, with all of the above materials, for less than a tenner. £2 for an A1 foam board (more than enough for both the tail and the ears), ~£5 for the paints. Hopefully you’ll have a craft knife lying around, or you can pick one up at hobbyist stores for £1-£2.

  1. Draw the shapes for your tail and your ears out onto the foamboard directly. This will be covered by the craft foam, so don’t worry too much. Foam board is foam which is wedged between two thick card stocks, making it nice and tough. For the ears, I aimed for 2 inches wide and 6 inches tall. For the tail, I measured it so it would come up to my head, you’ll need to figure this part out for yourselves. Take a tape measure and measure from your lower back to your head, or to whatever size you wish to make the tail.
    • Interesting point: Pikachu’s zig-zag tail goes in 7 directions, across, up, across, up – etc. Also, smooth off the edges, Pikachu’s tail isn’t just straight lines!
  2. Cut all of the foam board shapes with your craft knife. A good craft knife can cut very cleanly through foam board and craft foam, so practice your craft knife skills for nice, clean cuts!2016-03-23 22.13.20
  3. Now you can add paint to your ears and tail; The black paint for the tips of the ears and brown for the base of the tail.

2016-03-25 17.54.40

If you’re looking for a way to attach the tail to whatever you’ll be wearing with it, consider this method I’ve strung together:

  1. At the base of the tail, glue a magnet to it, or stick some velcro to it. This part of the tail will not be seen, so either method works. I’d recommend, if you’re using a large tail, to use a combination of magnet and velcro. You’ll need the other magnet to be sewn into whatever you want the tail to go with, along with the velcro. So if you have some yellow overalls, then just sew some velcro onto the back and sew in a magnet at the lower back… At least, that’s the method I’ve gone with for my raving Pikachu outfit [Pictures will appear over the weekend]!
  2. If you’re looking for something for the ears, why not consider getting a hairband and hot gluing them to the hairband? They’ll always stay up this way – But don’t put too much pressure on them, as that will snap them clean off.
  • Enjoy your new ears and tail!
    • It’s worth noting that you will need to be careful with these. They will be flimsy enough to be broken if you were to poke someone too hard with them – But they’re perfectly convention safe and easy to either repair or replace them.

Not all cosplay has to be hard – I hope this tutorial has shown you that. If you like the above, share it around with your friends and family. This is a simple project which has great results. For me, I made the tail and ears glow in the dark by painting them with luminous paints. As always, let me know what you think in the comments below, or over on Facebook and Twitter. Thanks for joining us!


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