Paper Plate Novelty Masks

Paper Plate Novelty Masks

Concept and plate designs are the origination of Ronald J. Dayton. All rights are reserved. May 1994 Copyright.


Ronald J. Dayton


At some point-in-time in the not too distant past, magician Tony Baronio was inspired by a creative, un-named author who had developed a series of hats (hats, crowns and numbers ) cut from a single folded paper plate. The hat designs Tony created in turn, inspired me to take a closer look at this novel concept. The new collection of masks you have just begun reading about is the end result of ‘my experimentation.

Each design is clearly illustrated. Basically, you are simply cutting along the dark, solid lines drawn on the interior area of the folded plate, and removing the shaded portion. In some instances, dotted lines, indicating mountain and valley folds have been suggested to offer greater dimension to the finished mask.

The masks are made for the size of a child’s head, If you are using white paper plates, the child may color or paint their own individual mask, consideration should also be given to the use of paper plates which are manufactured in full solid colors.

If you can fold a paper plate in half, If you can make a light pencil outline of the design you wish to make,,,and if you can safely operate a pair of scissors, then this is a unique presentational offering you can do!

Ronald J. Dayton
Begin with your paper plate folded in half. forming a semi-circle with the folded edge represented by the straight edge to the right, Fig. la. The dark interior solid lines within the plate indicate where your cuts are to be made.

In figure 1, the shaded portions are the areas of the plate which will be removed. The dotted lines indicate various folds allowing the mask or sections to hinge forward, or back and up through the rim of the plate as needed for certain designs. Others will allow you to add dimension to the finished mask.

Figure two shows the plate opened out flat after all the cuts have been made. Figure three illustrates how the head band is formed by swinging the band back and up, perpendicular to the mask itself.

The vast majority of the designs offered here will be made in the manner explained by these four simple illustrations. The only exceptions are the RABBIT and the INDIAN BRAIDS & FEATHER. In the instance of the rabbit, the ears are creased along their dotted lines and hinged back and up through the head band so once the mask and band are positioned on the head, the ears stick up above the head. The braids of the indian disguise hang down in front of the face at each side, but the feather is swung up through the band at the back….and stands above the head at the back of same.

The plates are folded in half, eating surface to eating surface. The pencil drawing for the mask design is made on the right rear half of the plate. Experiment with various mountain and valley folds of the masks to add depth to ears, noses, cheeks etc.

Experiment too with totally new designs, and see what you can come up with. It’s a challenge, and can also be a lot of fun.

These paper plate masks are of course, good new material for the kid’s show or birthday performer… but it is also a source of entertainment for many a rainy day project. Parents, teachers, magicians and just plain everyday people can have a lot of enjoyment from this simple pleasure. It’s novel, it’s interesting, and it costs only pennies for materials. Sounds like a good deal to me!

Basic Mask Construction
fig#1 (showing text figures #1a, 1 and 2)

Construction of Headband
fig#2 (showing text figure #3)




















Co-directors Notes: These illustrations are not to scale, but will give you a good idea of how to construct the masks. This is not only a fun activity but a profitable one as well. There is an entertainer that I know of who makes approx: $300.00 per hour doing just this sort of thing at private parties… Why does she make so much?… She’s the only one doing it! …

Think about it….

Author: Bobby J. Gallo


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