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You can find skeletons riding motorcycle yard decorations for a hundred or two, or you can make your own. If you make your own, you can use your own motorcycle, being careful to lock it up so it won’t be stolen—even if that means taking down the decoration each evening. You can also make the “skeleton” of a motorcycle using two used tires joined by a couple of two-by fours painted black. You can form “handlebars” from wood or find them at a junkyard.
The skeleton is just a scarecrow. You’ll need fresh straw or a straw bale. You’ll find bales at many places that sell fresh pumpkins this time of year. Be sure to get straw, not hay, or you’ll have unwanted weeds next spring.
Make a wooden frame or armature for the skeleton with two legs in an inverted V-shape and an upright for the torso. The legs will go to the ground and help hold up the motorcycle. You can add extra framing to prop up the bike if need be.
Now it’s time to dress and stuff the scarecrow. You can find a pair of old jeans at a charity shop if you don’t have one. Rather than struggle to get both legs over the wooden ones, cut the jeans in half and put on one leg at a time. Don’t worry if the jeans legs don’t cover the wooden frame at the bottom—you can use straw to close the gap. A rope through the belt loops and tied should be enough to keep the jeans together.
Stuff the jeans legs and top with straw. Stuff from the top with the first handfuls going all the way to the bottom—sort of like putting shingles on a roof. Remember that you’ll need extra at the bottom to hide any wood sticking out of the pants leg. A few cuts in the legs can let through bits of straw for more realism. We recommend against adding boots, because of the angle and the straw and the weather, but include them if you like. Put the half-finished scarecrow into position on the motorcycle.
Now you need a long-sleeved shirt. You’ll find lots of suitable shirts here. (You’ll be able to wash it and wear it once Halloween is over.) You can find some gory options, like the Shredder Skull or the Ghost Skull shirt. We like the Skull and Crossbones shirt, but any long-sleeved shirt will work.
Fill the arms with straw, enough to make them stiff, with some straw hanging out the ends. Put the shirt on the framework. Use painter’s tape to hold the shirt to the top of the framework. Stuff the bottom of the shirt into the jeans and secure with painter’s tape. Stuff the torso. When the bottom of the torso is stuffed, use a rope (preferably frayed) to go through the belt loops and tie to secure the shirt and jeans. Stuff the rest of the shirt, leaving some straw sticking out the neck. Use rope to tie the arms to the handlebars.
Now comes the head. Use a head-sized pumpkin, of course. But for goodness sake don’t light it with a candle—there’s way too much flammable straw in this design. Paint a skull-face on the pumpkin and top it with a skull wrap, like one of these. We especially like this one, but take your pick.
You can just put the head on the ground next to the motorcycle for that “headless horseman” look. Or, you can cut the top off the pumpkin, clean it out, and nail it to the top of the wooden armature. The wrap will hide the top of the head.
Now, take a picture and post it on the Eagle Leather Facebook page. Happy Halloween!