Jackal Head Cage

The Jackal Head Cage made for the February 2010 Mad Lab Contest (http://themadlab.com/) SEI (Simple Every Item): Frames


This project is to create a head cage as seen in the movie 13 Ghosts. One of the ghosts, the Jackal, wears a steel cage on his head with the bars on the front pried open. It’s a simple and effective way to enhance the “mental patient” Halloween costume, or serves as a creepy decoration.


  • 4 Photo Frames
  • 14 Gauge Utility Wire
  • Tape
  • Paint (Black and White)
  • Puff Paint
  • Papier Mache Paste
  • Newspaper


  • Glue Gun
  • Hand Drill
  • Pliers


Start by attaching the 4 photo frames together to form a cube (rectangular cube since my frames were 8.5X11). using tape and if desired nails. I tried nails at first and split a couple of frames. Tape worked well for holding the frames in place and the end product is still very durable.

On one side of the cube drill holes that will act as a holder pried open cage segments. Space them about 1 inch apart. On the long side there are two segments, on the short side there is just one in the middle. Cut lengths of utility wire to form the frame form the pried open segments. Give the wire a slight bend/curve (bend two together to keep the symmetry). Set the wires in the hole using pliers and secure with hot glue.

Cover the entire piece in two layers of papier mache. For the top, right, left and back sides use long strips of papir mache to create the cage bars. This part IS tricky since it will look really lose and floppy. Don’t worry, once dry it really tightens up nicely. If I were doing it again I would have covered everything and let it dry, then use tape to provide a base for the cage bars. Since I did the mache in one sitting the frames were too wet to use tape.

To create the rivets, just make little puff paint dots and hot glue them to the frame wherever you would like to have the rivets. I placed rivets in a set of two on each side for each strap.

For painting, first paint the entire piece black. Once dry, use white paint and a dry brush technique. Once done it has the look of stone/steel. Additional painting could be done to give the look of rust. I opted to leave it black and white since I really liked the look.


8 Responses to “Jackal Head Cage”

  1. ewww u got to brush those dirty ass teeth

  2. ewww brush those diry ass teeth

  3. Hey, how did you keep it level on your head so it didn’t slip backwards or forwards too much?

  4. I got lucky with the sizing of the picture frames and it fit just right. One idea would be to attach 2-3 curved pieces of heavy gauge wire to the top inside. If they are curved like a bowl they could fit over your head and hide in your hair. Could even be attached to hair with bobby pins. Best of luck!

  5. I love the jakal and this is an inportant part of the costume

  6. do u know where i can buy this at?.

  7. I haven’t ever seen them in a store, but are pretty quick and easy to make with just a box and some paint!

  8. I’m Selling a real cage that’s metal $150.00 k92468@msn.com

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