Guys, something amazing happened in female history this past Friday! The FIRST all-female spacewalk took place! I kinda can’t believe it took this long, but it is still an amazing achievement nonetheless. 👏 GO GIRLS! 👏 As it just so happens, my younger daughter is going as an astronaut this Halloween! We saw the costume in the store last month and both instantly thought it looked amazing. In honor of this historic event, I wanted to share how I created a DIY Light-Up Astronaut Jet Pack for her costume. She wanted it to be big, have fire coming out of the jets and light up. Never one to back down from a challenge, I got to work. Here’s what I did:
Jet Pack Materials
I wanted the jet pack to be light. My daughter is 5 and it needed to be light enough that she wouldn’t hand it to me half-way through trick-or-treating. (You know, like she’s done in years past with various costume accessories.) I found an oatmeal box which was the perfect shape for the middle portion and super light when empty. It had angled corners instead of standard right edges that I thought would make it look more, I don’t know the word for it, space-like. I also used two plastic juice containers for the jets. Below is a list of the materials I used. *affiliate links
Cardboard box – this is a link to the actual box I used: https://amzn.to/2Sa6bCy
Ribbon for straps – similar to this, mine was from Michael’s and leftover from another project: https://amzn.to/2vCoAAt
Silver Spray Paint – https://amzn.to/2qzpTxP
Glue Gun – https://amzn.to/2tgXmPb
Felt – like this, again mine was from Michael’s and leftover from another project: https://amzn.to/2OhEMO1
LED Lights – Similar to these, these have more lights on each strand. Mine were from the Dollar Store: https://amzn.to/2tYnAX9
First, I added straps made of ribbon to the box by cutting two holes on the top and bottom of the box. Then, I tied the ribbon in knots inside the box. I tied the ribbon to the top two holes first, then measured the strap length on my daughter while she held it to her back. I then used hot glue to connect the juice containers to each side, this formed the basic jet pack shape.
Painting & Design
Once the glue cooled, I chose to paint the jet pack silver. To do this I used a silver spray paint + primer similar to this one (affiliate link). I covered the straps with paper before I sprayed anything. It took me two coats to completely cover the writing on the box.
For the flames coming out of the jet pack, I cut out yellow and red pieces of felt in a flame shape. I hot-glued them into the bottle openings. I printed out a NASA logo and glued it to the front of the jet pack and made a black stripe using electrical tape under that. Here is what it looked like before I added the lights.
How I made the Jet Pack light up!
I could have stopped there, the jet pack looked great and fit my daughter well. But, she really, really wanted it to light up in some way so I thought, why not. I got two sets, one red and one yellow, of the battery-powered LED Lights from the dollar store. Yes, they only cost me a dollar! I decided to make two rows of each color lights underneath the black stripe.
First, I measured out that a light would be placed every half-inch, based on the size of my LEDs. I marked a spot for each light with a ruler. Then I used an x-acto blade to cut x shapes on each spot. Once I had an x cut into the cardboard, I used a small screwdriver to push through the x. This made a hole the perfect size for each light. The holes were just about the exact size of my lights.
I pushed the lights through each hold, securing with hot glue as I went a light at a time. Then, I secured the battery pack on the inside of the box with hot glue as well.
I left the bottom of the jet pack open for now so I can access the lights and turn them on when needed. I just tape it shut with clear tape when she wears it. She is thrilled how it turned out and I am too!
Note: It’s hard to see the lights in the picture above because I took these pics when the sun was shining brightly. You can see in my other pictures at the top of the post that the lights are surprisingly bright! And there you have it, a DIY Light-Up Astronaut Jet Pack for a little one in your life! Have fun creating!