How to Make a Thomas the Tank Engine Halloween Costume at Home

Written by miranda brumbaugh
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How to Make a Thomas the Tank Engine Halloween Costume at Home
Thomas the Train is from the popular TV show. (toy train image by pearlguy from

Bring Thomas the Tank Engine to life with a homemade Halloween costume featuring this blue train. Most young children are familiar with the television series that showcases Thomas the Tank Engine, and boys especially enjoy the model train from the TV show. Make your Thomas fan a train costume he will wear for play time for years past the trick-or-treating holiday. Find items to use in your recycling bin to make this costume at home. Use a Thomas toy train out of your child's toy box for a model as you recreate this character.

Skill level:

Things you need

  • Large cardboard box with flaps intact that is large enough to fit over the child but not too big to carry
  • Colour photo of Thomas the Train
  • 2 Poster boards
  • Pencil
  • Ruler
  • Scissors
  • Acrylic paint in colours including black, blue, red, grey and yellow
  • Paint brushes
  • Empty cylinder container, such as cardboard oatmeal or plastic coffee can
  • Styrofoam or paper plate
  • Hot glue gun with glue sticks
  • Ribbon

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  1. 1

    Draw the outline of the side image of the train on one sheet of poster board, using the photo of Thomas the Train as a guide. Cut out the image, trace the train on the other sheet of poster board and cut out the second side. Lay the images on a flat surface so one side is pointed in the opposite direction of the other, as if the train had been flattened from the front end and the sides extended to the right and left. You want to have the exterior panels facing you to paint them.

  2. 2

    Follow the guide in the photo and draw the details on each side of the train. Include a yellow number one and three wheels on both panels of the train. Paint the main portion of the train blue on the poster board cut-outs, as well as the front and back panels of the cardboard box. Paint the cylinder piece used for the stovepipe black. Paint the plate grey and add facial details including eyes, a nose and mouth in a cheerful expression.

  3. 3

    Cut the flaps from the box bottom, and cut through the centre of the flaps in the top of the box to make a place for your child to stand up in the costume. Glue the side panels to the sides of the box with the hot glue gun. Use the hot glue to attach the face plate on the front end of the box. Add hot glue to the stovepipe and attach to the top of the box on the panel closest to the end with the train's face.

  4. 4

    Place the costume over your child and determine where the shoulder straps will rest. Glue the straps to the inside of the top of the box in the front and back of your child, so the costume sits on both shoulders.

Tips and warnings

  • Dress your child like a train engineer, with a pinstripe engineer hat, overalls, long-sleeve shirt and a red bow tie.
  • Add a wooden train whistle to the back end of the train, or let your child use a miniature train whistle hanging on a necklace.

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