Adding authentic-looking hooves to a costume can transform a costume from amateur to professional. Hooves are easy to make from platform shoes and require no special skills or materials to make. However, the construction process is involved and time consuming. It is best to allow at least three days for the construction of the hooves to allow enough time for each stage of the hooves to dry. When finished, you will have realistic-looking hooves that you can use for many different costumes.
Cut a piece of mesh wire large enough to fit all the way around the sides of the shoe minus the heel. Make the wire about 12 inches wide.
Staple the wire to the sides of the shoe. Cut two, 4-inch wide strips near the toe so that you can bend the mesh inward. Leave about 2 inches of uncut mesh near the base of the shoe. Make a dent in the centre of the mesh to make the cloven portion of the hoof.
Fold back the sides of the mesh at an angle to form the sides of the hooves. Hold the mesh down with pieces of epoxy putty. Fold the top of the mesh over the top of the shoe to create a cage for the real shoe. Hold the top in place with more putty.
Trim away any excess mesh that extends from the height of the folded sides of the mesh. You should now have a cage around the top of the shoe that looks similar to a hoof.
Tear newspaper into 1-inch thick strips. Dip the strips into a mixture of one part glue and two parts water and layer them over the mesh. Layer the mesh with about five layers of paper mache. You can also cover the mesh with automotive plastic filler to make a waterproof version. Allow the shoes to dry for 24 hours.
Paint the hooves your chosen colour with acrylic paints. Allow the paint to dry for two hours. When the paint is dry, spray the hooves with acrylic sealer to protect them from the elements and from chipping. Allow the sealer to dry overnight.
Glue faux fur to the tops of the hooves if desired.
Tips and warnings
- Glue faux fur to the tops of the hooves if desired.