Make a DIY Deer Antlers Headband

  • 01 of 06

    Getting Started

    diy deer ears headband
    Caylin Harris

    When you’re little, Halloween or any holiday seems to take forever to arrive. You count the days and start planning your costume months in advance. Unfortunately, adulthood means scrambling last minute to figure out what to wear to your BFF's Halloween or costume party and then giving up in exasperation. Oh, and then going as a baked potato because all you could find was tin foil.

    Don’t do that to yourself this year! Thankfully, a headpiece feels decidedly easier than an entire costume. And when paired with the right face paint, these DIY deer antlers make for such an adorable and easy Halloween look. Here’s how to make them on your own!


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  • 02 of 06

    Gather Your Materials

    materials for deer ears headband
    Caylin Harris

    There are a lot of ways to make these antlers. If you’re light on time, you can sub in the pipe cleaner antlers with pretty branches instead. Or you can skip the ears entirely if you have to. But, for the full effect, we suggest taking the time to do all of it. It just yields the best results. And great news—it can be worked on while you’re watching Netflix after work.

    • A plain, sturdy headband
    • Pipe cleaners
    • Decoupage glue (like Mod Podge, depending on method)
    • Brown paper bag or newspaper
    • Masking tape
    • Craft paint
    • Paintbrush
    • Felt
    • Scissors
    • Hot glue


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  • 03 of 06

    Form Your Antlers

    Brown pipe cleaner antler
    Caylin Harris

    Using your pipe cleaners, twist them together to form the shape of antlers. If you’re at a loss for what they should look like, think tree branches. Or you can always Google it. They don’t have to be symmetrical; in fact, a deer’s antlers are far from perfect. So you can twist and cut the pipe cleaners down to size as needed. If you want to thicken up the lines, double up and twist another pipe cleaner around that first initial shape. The wire within each pipe cleaner is going to make forming these shapes so much easier than you’d think.

    To attach them to the headband, twist the very bottom around the headband where you want them placed and twist the wire to secure (so it’s looping around the entire headband).

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  • 04 of 06

    Fill Antlers In

    filling antlers with newspaper strips
    Caylin Harris

    Depending on what you have on hand, you can use a brown paper bag or strips of newspaper to twist around the pipe cleaners. This helps to create some dimension and body to the antlers, as opposed to just sticking with the skinny pipe cleaner shapes.

    There’s two ways you can attach these paper strips: One is by coating the strips with Mod Podge, sticking them to the pipe cleaners, and then letting the strips dry completely. The other is crinkling and twisting the newspaper around the pipe cleaners and then smoothing and wrapping the paper with masking tape. You’ll want to taper the ends so that they’re thicker at the base and thinner at the top, the way they look on real deer.

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  • 05 of 06

    Paint Antlers

    Painting DIY antlers
    Caylin Harris

    This step is optional, but since you’ve come this far, you might as well finish it off right! Paint the paper-covered antlers to look more like the real thing. You can either paint them off-white, a light tan, or even do a combination of colors to make it look authentic. Here is another point where you might want to consult Google: Check out some antler pictures to see what colors to use.

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  • 06 of 06

    Assemble Your Ears

    Finishing touch to DIY antlers
    Caylin Harris

    It’s time to finish these beauties off! So they don’t look too sparse, you’ll want to add some ears on the outside of each antler.

    Cut a piece of the tan felt into an ear-like shape, but more exaggerated. Think cartoon deer, more than actual deer. Draw a smaller oval shape out of pink felt and cut it out. Glue it to the inside of the tan ear shapes using two dots of hot glue. Then to have the ears sort of curl, you’ll want to fold the bottom and glue so the felted ears look slightly rounded. Glue each ear to the headband until it’s secure. To hide the headband, wrap light tan (the same color as the ear felt) pipe cleaners around the headband until it’s completely covered.  

    Here’s the beauty of this costume—you’ve created a headpiece and you’re done. You can dress in all neutral clothing for the outfit and do some cool make-up techniques to complete the look. Might we suggest a pair of Bambi-esque fake lashes to really give yourself that doe-eyed effect?