This Giant DIY Spider Gives Us the Creepy Crawlies — Here's How to Re-Create It

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Spooky, scary skeletons aren't the only bit of Halloween decor sending shivers down our spines this year thanks to this giant DIY spider. TikTok creators have been posting creeptastic DIY ideas for months now, but Australia-based artist Sophie Brown's (@nesti_home) massive black widow spider is an undeniable showstopper when it comes to outdoor Halloween decorations.

A test of bravery for even the most daring trick-or-treater, the 13.5-foot spider — affectionately named Mavis by Brown's followers — came alive after she followed a tutorial posted by crafting experts Wicked Makers on YouTube. According to Brown, Halloween isn't widely celebrated in Australia, but the holiday has been gaining popularity in recent years, especially with her kids, who helped her give Mavis her signature black and red finish when they built her last year.

As a budding Halloween enthusiast, Brown — who started pursuing her passion for DIY art at the start of the pandemic — did her best to follow the Wicked Makers' tutorial step by step, documenting the process on her Instagram Stories along the way. "I love all of that weird, gooey texture on her from the foam. It just makes her extra creepy," she tells POPSUGAR, adding that the foam-and-water technique she used to cover Mavis's body was the most difficult step to replicate.

"I'm nervous about hanging it up."

After a few trips to the hardware store to gather supplies (cling wrap, hot glue, expanding foam, PVC pipes, and acrylic spray paint included), Brown spent two days crafting Mavis, using a balloon and an exercise ball as the base for the haunting arachnid. Once the spider was complete, Brown briefly hung Mavis up to test her durability, adding that the eerie creature was able to withstand a massive storm in 2021.

When she's not clinging to a bed of cotton cobwebs on the front of the house, the large spider is resting on the floor in the family living area with her legs across the room in a cardboard box. But Mavis's time to truly shine is almost here once again. "I'm nervous about hanging it up," Brown says, adding that she's glad she "didn't make any children cry" in 2021 when Mavis was first introduced. In a neighborhood where Halloween is a growing phenomenon, the giant black widow will definitely have its time in the jack-o'-lantern-illuminated spotlight, and Brown hopes Mavis won't be the only DIY spider lingering over someone's doorstep this Halloween.

"I just love teaching people how to make things and coming up with ways that people can be creative, because when you become an adult, you don't get to have those times to be creative," she says. "My focus is [helping] people make things that they love but also get a lot of joy out of the process of the making."

Creating a giant spider from scratch is a lot of work, but retailers like Costco, Amazon, and more have us covered with life-like animatronics. Recently, we've even seen stores get extra creative by releasing a six-foot punk-rocker skeleton, a 12-foot animatronic mummy, and a 13-foot Jack Skellington decoration. Needless to say, there's no shortage of ways to keep your neighbors on their toes this Halloween.

Ahead, check out a step-by-step tutorial for re-creating Brown's giant DIY spider, and keep reading to shop similar ready-made spiders as you prepare for Halloween.

How to Make a DIY Giant Halloween Spider

Whether you like spiders or not, this DIY giant spider makes for a fun family Halloween craft and a cool Halloween decoration.

DIY Giant Spider Step 1: Make the Body
Sophie Brown

DIY Giant Spider Step 1: Make the Body

Begin by inflating the balloon and the exercise ball. Using duct tape, connect the balloon to the ball to create the spider's body and head. Next, cover the base of the spider in cling wrap, and spray with water.

DIY Giant Spider Step 2: Cover the Body in Foam
Sophie Brown

DIY Giant Spider Step 2: Cover the Body in Foam

Wearing gloves and a face mask, cover the top half of the spider in a layer of expanding foam. Immediately after applying the first coat, spray the foam with a generous amount of water and wait 10 minutes for a skin to form. Next, using gloves, shape the top of the spider's head and body by smoothing out the foam to your preferred texture.

DIY Giant Spider Step 2: Cover the Body in Foam
Sophie Brown

DIY Giant Spider Step 2: Cover the Body in Foam

Let the top half of the giant spider dry overnight. Next, repeat the foam-and-water technique on the bottom half of the spider and allow the foam to dry.

DIY Giant Spider Step 2: Cover the Body in Foam
Sophie Brown

DIY Giant Spider Step 2: Cover the Body in Foam

Once both halves of the spider are completely dry, use scissors to snip away any imperfections.

DIY Giant Spider Step 3: Paint the Body
Sophie Brown

DIY Giant Spider Step 3: Paint the Body

Using black paint and primer spray paint, coat the spider's body to create the pattern of a black widow.

DIY Giant Spider Step 3: Paint the Body
Sophie Brown

DIY Giant Spider Step 3: Paint the Body

Make sure to use a bold shade of red so the giant spider's markings stand out at night.

DIY Giant Spider Step 4: Create the Legs
Sophie Brown

DIY Giant Spider Step 4: Create the Legs

Use a utility knife to cut four circles the same width as the PVC pipes on either side of the spider's body — be sure to cut all the way through the foam. This is the first step to creating the legs. (The exercise ball will likely be deflated or can be popped with the utility knife.)

DIY Giant Spider Step 4: Create the Legs
Sophie Brown

DIY Giant Spider Step 4: Create the Legs

Using super-strength glue, push the PVC elbows into the holes with the pipe opening facing upward.

DIY Giant Spider Step 4: Create the Legs
Sophie Brown

DIY Giant Spider Step 4: Create the Legs

Cut your PVC pipe into eight equal-length pieces for the legs. Repeat this step three times for the three different sections of each leg.

DIY Giant Spider Step 4: Create the Legs
Sophie Brown

DIY Giant Spider Step 4: Create the Legs

Using super-strength glue and three different sizes of foam pipe insulation, cover the PVC pipe to create a thick upper piece, a thinner middle piece, and a tapered bottom piece for each leg.

DIY Giant Spider Step 4: Create the Legs
Sophie Brown

DIY Giant Spider Step 4: Create the Legs

Once all three sections of each leg are complete, thread a galvanized tie wire through a thick upper-leg piece, a center-leg piece, and a tapered bottom-leg piece. Using hot glue, connect all three pieces of the leg around the wire, and push the wire into one of the eight holes on the spider's body. Repeat this step for the remaining seven legs.

DIY Giant Spider Step 5: Create the Eyes and Fangs
Sophie Brown

DIY Giant Spider Step 5: Create the Eyes and Fangs

Using a combination of clear Christmas ornaments, clear Easter eggs, and table-tennis balls cut in half, paint the inside of each "eye" with two coats of black paint.

DIY Giant Spider Step 5: Create the Eyes and Fangs
Sophie Brown

DIY Giant Spider Step 5: Create the Eyes and Fangs

For each fang, thread wire through two pieces of interconnected foam pipe insulation, and stick the end of the wire through the spider's foam body, using hot glue to keep each fang in place.

DIY Giant Spider: Finished Product Photos
Sophie Brown

DIY Giant Spider: Finished Product Photos

Once all of the pieces are finished, assemble the finished giant spider by attaching the legs to the body. This may require more glue to ensure the legs stay in place. If you plan to disassemble the spider after Halloween and save it for next year, however, it may be best to hold off on any adhesives at this point.

DIY Giant Spider: Finished Product Photos
Sophie Brown

DIY Giant Spider: Finished Product Photos

At this point, you can either put the spider in your yard or drill two holes on either side of its body, then attach hooks and fishing wire to make it easier to hang.

DIY Giant Spider: Finished Product Photos
Sophie Brown

DIY Giant Spider: Finished Product Photos

Whether you plop your DIY giant spider on the front lawn or leave it dangling from the rafters, prepare to be the coolest house on your block this Halloween.

DIY Giant Spider: Crafting Tips

For specifics on what to expect when crafting your DIY giant spider, check out Brown's behind-the-scenes TikTok video documenting all the changes she made to the original crafting instructions.

Giant Spider: Libay 6.6-Foot Giant Halloween Spider
amazon.com

Giant Spider: Libay 6.6-Foot Giant Halloween Spider

Libay 6.6-Foot Giant Halloween Spider ($24)

If you're not in the mood to build your own giant spider, this fuzzy decor piece will definitely do the trick in adding a bit of spookiness to your Halloween display.

Giant Spider: Grandin Road Black Skeleton Spider
grandinroad.com

Giant Spider: Grandin Road Black Skeleton Spider

Grandin Road Black Skeleton Spider ($64, originally $80)

Looking for a sleeker spider to add to your Halloween display? This glowing skeleton spider is nothing short of eerie.

Giant Spider: Halloween Spider Decorations Set (6 Pack)
amazon.com

Giant Spider: Halloween Spider Decorations Set (6 Pack)

Halloween Spider Decorations Set (6 Pack) ($15, originally $30)

Cover your yard in an entire cluster of spiders with this six-pack of fuzzy spider Halloween decorations.