Retro Crafts: Pasta Skeleton

skeletonWe spend Monday afternoons in the Children’s section of a small local library, while my oldest has tutoring.  I love paging through the old craft books–the ones that existed before Pinterest–to find fun, frugal crafts.

The moment I saw this Pasta Skeleton in a book, I knew we had to make it.  The end result is fantastic, spooky and because of Lily’s idea to paint it all with glow in the dark paint, it glows all night long.

While we figured out how to construct our skeleton, the girls got a quick lesson in a anatomy–bonus education points! I plan on packing our Skeleton (named Sally) away in our Halloween decoration bin. I love saving the best holiday pictures and crafts each year. Each year these handcrafted memories become part of our annual holiday decor.

We made our skeleton life size; but you could make any size you like. The whole project took about an hour. I let the glue dry overnight and then hung on the wall using Command Poster Strips.

The supplies are simple:


  • Black construction paper or poster board in any size you want (We made alife-size skeleton, so we used multiple sheets of 11 x 14; but you could go small or big or whatever)
  • Pasta–Various kinds (we used lasagna, bowties, mini wheels, rigatoni, ditalini, tiny little stars and linguini. But you can use whatever you have)
  • School Glue
  • Glow in the dark paint (you can find in the paint aisle at any craft store)
  • Other paint colors, if you want to add flair
  • Picture of an anatomically correct Skeleton

imageTo make the big life sized skeleton:

1. Work in sections; first begin with the head and work your way down and out. Use whatever pasta speaks to you. Long pastas like spaghetti and lasagna were great for arms and legs. Smaller tubular pastas like ziti work great for creating skulls and details at knees and elbows.

2. Refer to my pasta skeleton images and also to a photo of an anatomically correct skeleton.

3. After gluing all your pasta on the paper, lightly paint with glow-in-the-dark paint. Add any fun color details you like (we painted Sally’s bow pink; and added pink on her magic pasta wand).

4. Let dry for a few hours and hang!

Happy Halloween!