The other day I shared with you how I made my son's Captain America costume by recycling some t-shirt fabric scraps.
It took me awhile to do it, but that was because I didn't have a plan. If you follow my instructions, you should be able to quickly whip out a fun and original superhero costume.
No Captain America costume would be complete without a very important prop, though. So, today I'm going to show you how to make a Captain America shield.
I was going to put the shield together with how to make the boots, but since I have two methods for each of them, when I started writing it out it ended up being way too long for one post. So, next time I will show you how I made his red superhero boots.
In the end, I made 2 different shields. I know, crazy! But you'll see why…
How to make Captain America Shield #1
The first Captain America shield that I made was more his size, and was the one I sent him to school with. You can see it in the photo above.
I was looking for ideas for something to use as the base, and finally settled upon an inexpensive round, flat, white platter with a bit of a rim to it. I bought it at the Spanish equivalent of a dollar store (where nothing is a dollar, though), and it cost me about 2 Euros.
Instead of using the top of the platter for show, though, we'll be using the bottom and will put the handle on top.
To make a handle, I used a drawer pull and marked where I wanted it to go. I drilled small holes through the marked places on the shield, and pushed the screws through the bottom and up to the drawer pull on top. Easy as that!
To decorate the shield, I measured out the size of the platter, and cut the concentric circles out of contact paper to use as my stencils. The easiest way I've found to do these sorts of things is to find a clipart version of the shield and then resize it to fit your shield in a program like photoshop. You can then print it out and use the printout as a pattern for cutting out your contact paper!
To keep the rim clean, I taped it off with some special masking tape for curves. That stuff is the best for these sorts of projects!
I also cut out a star for the center, but taped off my cut marks so that the spray paint wouldn't get through. (You could just cut it out later, I guess, to save yourself the hassle of covering the cuts).
Here you can see the parts that I covered before painting on the first coat of red, plastic-friendly spray paint. Don't throw away the “scraps” of contact paper from between the circles used here, though. You'll need at least the smaller one in a moment…
Spray the red paint over the prepared shield and let it dry.
Next, cover the small uncovered circle area (in white above) with the contact paper scrap that corresponded to it. You want to cover the red stripe that you just painted before painting the blue circle in the middle. To finish preparing the shield for the blue paint, pull off the tape that was placed over the star and remove the circle of contact paper that surrounds the star (where the blue needs to go).
The newly uncovered area will now be painted with blue paint.
I decided to paint the small area by hand with an enamel paint because I already had it in the right color. To paint it evenly, I lightly dabbed it on all over the open space, making sure not to push paint under the edges of the tape and contact paper. If you prefer to use spray paint again, you will have to carefully cover the rest of the shield to keep the paint from hitting either the white areas or the newly painted red ones.
Once you have finished painting on the blue paint and it has dried, you can take off all of the contact paper and masking tape.
Shield one is finished!
So, why did I make two shields?
I had already finished the first shield, when I came across something that was too perfect to pass up! I was in another “chino,” the Spanish equivalent of a dollar store where nothing is a dollar 🙂 , and I saw a lightweight aluminum oil spatter cover that had the perfect markings for Captain America's shield.
I just couldn't resist making yet another super shield!
I was hoping to be able to link to a perfect aluminum pan cover like mine, but this is the closest thing I could find, and the spacing isn't really ideal for the circles, but you could use two circles for each color of the shield.
This other aluminum pan cover could be easily used with the method above (for the first shield), though, and it has the added perk of already having a handle in place!
Anyway, if you find something similar to mine, here's the easiest way to do it…
How to make Captain America shield #2
To begin the process, I sanded the entire surface of the cover. The pan cover was bright and shiny, something I didn't want for a well used shield! Plus, the matte finish gives off the impression of metallic white stripes rather than shiny silver ones. (I didn't want to paint white stripes because I loved letting the metallic finish of the aluminum show though!)
Once again my masking tape for curves came to the rescue!
I taped off the areas that I wanted to stay silver (white) or blue, leaving the areas that I wanted spray painted red. I even masked off the edge to give the shield a silver border.
Following the same methodology as above, I first painted the red areas, and when they were dry, I masked off the smallest red circle in the middle. This shield would look super cool with a metallic red spray paint if you can find it. I just used what I had form before.
I cut another star out of contact paper. (I used a clip art star online and resized it to fit my shield in photoshop. I used the printout as a pattern for my contact paper.) I then carefully placed the star in the center and painted around it, by hand (like before), in blue.
Once the blue paint had dried, I took off all of the masking tape and the contact paper star, and ended up with this…
I added the handle in the same way as before, by drilling holes through the shield, and adding a drawer pull handle to the back of the shield. I, of course, removed the little black handle that it came with from the center of the lid which left a hole. You can try covering it up if you like. I just left it along.
For both shields, you can touch up any areas where paint has seeped underneath the contact paper or tape by rubbing a cue tip with paint thinner lighly over the areas until they're gone. Even with as careful as I was, I had a few areas that did need a little cleaning up.
Well, there you have it!
I hope you can find the perfect plate, platter, or lid for making an easy Captain America shield for your favorite superhero!