Manning Makes Stuff - Halloween decorations, paper mache masks, costumes, party ideas, and more

Manning Makes Stuff - Halloween decorations, paper mache masks, costumes, party ideas, and more

Cheap and easy DIY knife props

Published by Manning on November 1st, 2016

These are so easy! For my séance Halloween party, I wanted a quick and easy method to make dozens of knives and have them floating in our kitchen, held aloft by murderous ghostly hands (i.e. hanging on fishing line). The knives needed to be lightweight, cheap, and relatively quick so I could make a ton of them. (I also wanted them to not actually be dangerous if one of them were to fall on someone; the lightweight part is key there.) I came up with this method that’s really fun and easy and the knives look great. I made all of these in just a couple hours (with some drying time for the paper maché and the paint). Anyway, all ya gotta do is…

Homemade knife decorations

Get a knife from the kitchen drawer. Trace the knife on poster board (or do what I did; trace it on white paper and tape it onto poster board). Cut it out.

How to make fake knives

DIY realistic knife props

Trace the knife handle on craft foam, twice. Cut those out.

Ghostly knife decorations for Halloween

Stick the poster board between the craft foam, and tape the craft foam closed.

(For really big knives, I did four layers of craft foam for the handle; two on each side.)

Floating knives in haunted house seance party

Paper maché over the craft foam, and let dry. Paint. That’s it!

Homemade knife decorations

(The one on the left, above, has the paper maché finished on the handle but it’s not painted yet. The others are ready for paper maché.)

I decided to use brown craft foam, so that I can be lazy with my paint job. It’s hard to paint the tiny edges of the craft foam where the blade goes into the handle, so I wanted a color that wouldn’t be too obvious if I didn’t perfectly paint that part. I would’ve used black craft foam, but then I wouldn’t be able to see my lines when I traced the knife! Brown or gray or any dark color works fine.

Homemade knife decorations

It’s fun to do tons of different types of knives; you can even Google image search some and print them out. The end result on the kitchen ceiling is really impressive, and the whole thing is so easy to do! You can also consider doing stuff like spelling out words in knives on the walls or ceiling, or cutting the blades short and attaching them like they’re stuck in the wall/ceiling in a pattern, or adding blood on some of them, etc. Good scary Halloween fun.

Homemade knife decorations

Here are the knives in place in the kitchen, with the lighting for the party. They were so lightweight they were easy to hang with just thin nylon string and masking tape.

Homemade knife decorations

(This is the morning after the party; whoa, that’s a lot of booze!)

4 Responses to “Cheap and easy DIY knife props”

  1. Annabeth Says:

    What is “Craft Foam,” and how do you paper mache the knifes?

  2. manning Says:

    What, I gotta do everything? Craft foam is a thin rubbery foam that you can buy in sheets at craft stores and art stores; it comes in all colors, Google it and you’ll probably recognize it. Here’s my article about my paper mache process and materials. Good luck!

  3. Amethystos Says:

    Love this. So creative and fun. Inspired by your insights for my own project making a safe cake knife to go with my giant chocolate cake from Matilda.

  4. manning Says:

    Thank you! If you’re going for something bigger, check out my article about these paper mache knives and axes and stuff!

Interested in commissioning a piece from me? Please see my page about custom paper maché pieces. Please email me; don't put your request in a comment below.

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