How to make your own ninja costume

A ninja Halloween costume can be as complicated or as simple as you want it to be. The clothing itself should be simple – black pants and a black shirt. If you have the time and the money, buy a black martial arts uniform (a dogi), for about $20. The pants are loose and baggy, and the top crosses in the front, with the left panel tying to the right hip and visa versa.

There are different options for a mask. You can use a simple black ski mask. For more variety, and to match the appearance of the ninjas in video games like Mortal Kombat, you can buy surgical or construction masks that cover your nose and mouth. Paint them black or silver – but make sure they dry before you wear them! Inhaling paint fumes is dangerous.

Other accents on the costume include shoes, greaves, gloves, and arm guards. For shoes, choose comfortable black shoes. You could also buy traditional Japanese martial arts shoes when you buy a dogi; these shoes look and feel like slippers but the big toe is separated from the other toes, like the thumb is separated from the fingers in mittens.

This makes climbing easier since a ninja can wrap his feet around thin poles more easily. You can make greaves from shin guards – again, paint them black or silver. For arm guards, you can use shin guards that are too small. Wear black gloves that are well-fit to your hand and allow complete movement.

A belt can be made from simple rope. You can attach tools and weapons to your belt – but not too many. You still want to move quietly, like a ninja. Buy or sew small pouches and bags to carry small things like money, your house keys, and tiny weapons. Use a small pouch to carry your wallet or lose bills. Another small pouch can carry tiny metal stars like jacks – ninja would throw the multi-pointed weapons on the ground so people chasing them would cut their feet. Since this is just a costume, you can carry metal or plastic jacks – they look the same but won’t hurt anyone.

You can also make your own ninja weapons. Ninja swords were different from samurai swords – where samurai swords curved, ninja swords were completely straight. Wrap a yard stick in aluminum foil, shape a pointed tip, and wrap black duct tape around one end for a handle. If you want a hand guard, you can make one with a circle of cardboard or wood and secure it with duct tape just above the handle. The scabbard for a ninja sword didn’t have a bottom, so the ninja could use it as a snorkel.

Find an empty roll of wrapping paper and paint it black to make a scabbard to put your sword in. You can tie the scabbard and sword around your waist or just hold it. If you want to make a knife, too, you can follow the same procedure with a foot-long ruler and a paper towel roll. Also, you can make throwing stars from aluminum foil. Cut cardboard stars and fold the foil over them to make them silver. Carry a bag of them on your belt.

Find an empty roll

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