How to Make a Kookaburra Costume

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Dress up as this iconic Australian bird next Halloween.
Dress up as this iconic Australian bird next Halloween. (Image: kookaburra image by Simona Orifici from Fotolia.com)

Kookaburras, the largest bird of the kingfisher family, hail only from Australia and have a distinctive, laughing call that carries through the forest. Their brown beaks are long and powerful to help them hunt, and their bodies are white in contrast to their dark brown back, wings and mask. If you are thinking of dressing up as a kookaburra for Halloween or a costume party, you can make your own outfit with just a few items from the craft store and a couple hours of preparation time.

Things You'll Need

  • Photo of a kookaburra
  • Brown shawl or poncho
  • Scissors
  • White and brown or black faux feathers
  • Glue gun and glue
  • Paper party hat
  • Brown paint
  • White shirt
  • White shorts or pants
  • Dark shoes
  • Black face paint

Cut out the part of the poncho that would cover your chest so you are left with “wings” and your back covered. If using a shawl, drape it over your back and over your arms. Cut a small hole at the base of your fingers so you can slip a finger through to hold the shawl on.

Poke the shafts of the brown or black faux feathers through the poncho where it will cover your back. You do not need to cover the whole back, just put in enough to give the impression of a bird. The shafts are strong enough to poke easily through most fabrics, but you can cut tiny holes if necessary. Poke the white feathers through the poncho in a line on the wings; use a photo of a kookaburra to refer to so you know approximately where to put the patches of white.

Turn the poncho inside out with the feathers still poking through the fabric. Lay it on a flat surface and use the hot glue gun to hold the shaft of each feather onto the poncho. This is the underside of the wings, so neatness is not an issue, but it will look best if you glue the shafts so the feathers point downward. Allow to dry.

Paint the party hat brown or black for the beak.

Wear a white shirt under the poncho and put on white shorts or pants. If wearing shorts, put on gray leggings underneath to look more like bird legs. Put on dark-colored shoes. Paint a black mask with face paint around each of your eyes; extend the mask back toward your ears.

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