What is it about hands that is so creepy?
These amazing body parts are the tools that help us do basic tasks – such as eat, create things, communicate, express ourselves and defend ourselves.
The caress of a hand can make us feel loved, safe and put us in ecstasy. That same hand has the power to hurt or even kill us.
We can tell a lot about ourselves and other people from hands. When our own hands become sweaty it can indicate we are nervous. If they shake it can suggest we are scared. When we see someone with balled up hands, it could mean they are angry.
A hand wave or handshake shows friendliness. A pointed finger can mean aggression.
We hold hands with those we care about. We can use our hands to push people away.
Used in the context of a scary movie, a simple hand has the power to send shivers down our backs.
So what makes them so scary?
Just thinking about the severed hand that keeps moving across the floor, or the hand breaking its way through the earth or transforming into a werewolf-like monster has the power to make me search for the cover of the nearest blanket.
Even the most ordinary and human looking hands have the power to scare, according to a study conducted at the University of Manchester in England.
The study researched the creepy factor of hands to understand issues that prosthetic designers and wearers face.
It found that people tend to get creeped out by robots or prosthetic devices that look almost, but not quite, human – particularly hands.
That makes hands the perfect craft project for Halloween decorations and I have three of the hands-down creepiest crafts you’ve ever seen to share.
HANDS DOWN CREEPIEST CRAFTS YOU’VE EVER SEEN – THE MASKING TAPE HAND
I’ve also seen this made with clear packing tape but it doesn’t look as scary. The masking tape makes the hand shape look more like the bandaged hand of a mummy. It still allows light to show through – adding to the eeriness and making it one of the hands-down creepiest crafts you’ve seen.
- A hand
- Disposable glove
- Masking tape
- A pencil
- Tea light candle or glow stick
- Place the glove on the hand. This will make it easier to get the masking tape off the hand.
- Insert a pencil between the glove and hand. This ensures you don’t wrap the hand too tightly and gives you room to insert scissors to cut an opening when the hand wrapping is finished.
- Start wrapping the hand in masking tape, from the wrist towards the fingers as you would if you were bandaging it.
- Continue all the way up and around each finger.
- When the hand and glove are completely covered in masking tape, remove the pencil and carefully insert the scissors and cut a line from the wrist, towards the fingers.
- Wriggle your hand out of the glove and masking tape cover.
- Repair the cut and any other patches if necessary with more masking tape.
- Add to the creepy look by placing the hand on the ground with a tea light candle or glow stick inside.
This one is educational but also a bit creepy.
Did you know there are 27 bones, 29 joints and at least 123 named ligaments in the human hand?
You can make the fingers move in this creepy hand.
- Wool or string, cut into 5 x 30 cm pieces
- 1 x palm-sized piece of cardboard
- 5 x straws NOTE: I am not suggesting you go out and buy plastic straws, but if, like many crafters, you have some you are trying to keep away from landfill, then this is a great project to use them on. If you don’t have a supply of plastic straws, try making this with paper straws instead.
- Sticky tape
- Cut the cardboard into a palm shape.
- Next, cut the straws into various heights to represent fingers and a thumb.
- Cut three notches in each straw where the knuckles would be. You can do this by making a diagonal cut halfway through the straw and then cutting back in the other direction to form a ‘v’ shape.
- Thread string through each straw and secure at the top of each straw with sticky tape.
- Fan out the bottom of the straws on the cardboard to look like when your fingers are splayed.
- Tape each bottom section of straw, before the first ‘knuckle’ notch, securely to the cardboard.
- Grab all the string pieces together and gently tug. It should make the straw fingers bend.
- If the straw fingers are not bending neatly, manually bend each one at each notch and then give the string pull method another go.
THE MUMMY HAND
I love working with plaster bandage. It dries fast and offers endless possibilities. It’s a great activity for young kids because it promotes fine motor skills. If you don’t wet it too much, it retains the bandage look, making it the perfect medium for mummy hands. If you use lots of water you can smooth it out nicely to make more human-like hands that can then be painted – skin coloured with red at the wrist to look like a severed hand. That really makes it one of the hands-down creepiest crafts you’ll see.
You need to make a form to wrap the plaster bandage around and foil is easy to mould into any shape.
- Plaster bandage
- Paint (optional)
- Be sure to protect your work surface as plaster bandage can get really messy. Have a towel ready to dry your hands as needed.
- Form a hand from the foil by rolling small pieces of foil into finger shapes at different lengths.
- Create the palm by rolling more foil into a loose ball.
- Add the fingers to the ball. You can scrunch the foil to keep it in place or use sticky tape if that’s easier. Don’t get too caught up on a perfect shape as it will be covered by the bandage anyway.
- Fill a small container with water.
- Cut strips of the bandage ready to use. You may need to cut the bandage lengthways as well if your roll is too wide.
- Dip the strips in the water and gently rub off the excess water before wrapping the foil hand. NOTE: The strips should only touch the water briefly or they become too wet to work with.
- Keep adding strips until all the foil is covered.
- If you want it to look like a mummy hand, don’t use too much water and allow the edges of the strips to be visible. Add some lose bandage hanging off if desired.
- If you want a smoother hand to paint, add a little more water to the hand and smooth out the edges.
- Allow it to dry.
- Painting is optional.
While we’re on the subject of hands, you may enjoy the fun handwriting art project to turn your name into a monster.
For more fun Halloween crafts for little ones, check out my Halloween Pinterest board.
Happy crafting and have a gleeful week, Tamuria