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Head-Waiter Tray

Sometimes you need more than a hand serving guests -- you need a head. Create a helping head to entertain your captive dining companions.





  • Paper towels
  • Gauze
  • Brewed coffee
  • Flour
  • Corn syrup
  • Coffee
  • Styrofoam head


  1. Step 1

    Two days before your party, crumple 10 paper towels and several swaths of gauze (enough to cover the display surface). Dip each in brewed coffee, and set to dry, in their crumpled state, where they won't be disturbed. This will give the towels and gauze a wrinkled, veiny appearance.

  2. Step 2

    Prepare the head: Mix a solution of 2 tablespoons flour, 1 tablespoon corn syrup (or use Mod Podge glue), and 1 tablespoon coffee. Stir with a craft stick, and then use it to apply a thin layer to one section of a Styrofoam head. Uncrumple paper towels, and spread over that section; repeat until surface is covered. Place the gauze on a tray and the head waiter in the center, or display him on a sideboard or buffet.

Halloween 2004, Volume 2004 Special Issue 2004



Reviews (23)

  • beehives 13 Sep, 2012

    I got my head from only $3.99 exact same head

  • hoop72 18 Oct, 2011

    I got my glass head several years ago from Pier 1 Imports but I know they still have them. They run about $20 - and it's recycled glass. Hope that helps danikac.

  • thisgirlluvs2cook 13 Oct, 2011

    Continued from above..
    and they got saturated with the mix, leaving the paper towels to shred easy and fall apart. I opted for using Modge Podge and it worked a lot better. I also say rip your paper towels in strips, makes it MUCH easier to work with and looks better. Don't expect the mummy to look like the pic, because mine never did. It's hard to form the paper towel around the eyes, nose and mouth with the corn syrup method because it's doesn't stick well enough!

  • thisgirlluvs2cook 13 Oct, 2011

    I love a lot of MS's ideas, she always makes it look SO easy! BUT she also has 100 plus helpers doing most of the work for her. That being said I decided to try this craft idea out. I thought, "really how hard can it be". I purchased two styrofoam heads, dried out my paper towels, etc. when 3 days passed (that's how long it took the paper towels to dry out, not 2) I began the process. First off, the corn syrup concoction is a sticky mess & hard to work with. My paper towels never really stuck..

  • danikac 17 Sep, 2011

    I've been wanting to make this, but I won't do styrofoam since it is so increadibly ecologically irresponsible. I'd like to see if I could find one of the glass heads mentioned below, or paper mache, or some other more sustainable material. Any ideas?

  • TrashyT 20 Oct, 2010

    What a great idea! I want to make this! My question is....does the head keep falling over, it being syrofoam and you moving around serving drinks? Do you need to put some kind of weight underneath or glue it down to the tray?

  • beehives 8 Sep, 2010

    I make a couple of these every year for the windows they look great in the day and night and as the evening gets later I give them to the neighborhood kids. Its become a tradition for me to make these for Halloween. I get my styrofoam heads from $3.99 can't beat that!

  • Syl26 4 Oct, 2009

    If you have trouble finding a head, I found a female head at Sally's Beauty Supply Store. It was only like $3 - $4

  • cookiesgalore 24 Sep, 2009

    Word of caution: If you store this (or anything made with flour,corn syrup or glue) in your attic or basement, it could attract mice and bugs. They will DEFINITELY eat this stuff or use it for nesting material!! So store it in a clear, heavy duty plastic container that has a locking lid and is airtight, to prevent them from getting to it.

  • xie 29 Aug, 2009

    I did this last year and it worked wonderfully! And, last time I checked on my spooky creatures, they were still looking good in the attic almost a year later!

  • Kati-Roo 24 Aug, 2009

    Try looking for a used display store or even just the local display store. I found the styrofoam heads for $1.00. They were a little dicolored but who cares since they are being covered. Mine don't have ears but you really can't tell the difference.

  • Kati-Roo 19 Aug, 2009


  • Texy 22 Oct, 2008

    I used a female head, as that's all I could find, too, but it looks great! I used Mod Podge, and when I tried gluing on a full paper towel, it was a disaster - it was too much to work with - so I tore the paper towels into strips, which worked like a charm! Only used 4-5 paper towels this way.

    Also, it took several days for my paper towels to dry after dipping in coffee, so keep that in mind, although I don't know that it was necessary that they be completely dry.

  • animalfriend 19 Oct, 2008

    they only had female heads at the wig shop. they were 4 dollars each

  • animalfriend 19 Oct, 2008

    they only had female heads at the wig shop. they were 4 dollars each

  • animalfriend 19 Oct, 2008

    they only had female heads at the wig shop. they were 4 dollars each

  • animalfriend 19 Oct, 2008

    they only had female heads at the wig shop. they were 4 dollars each

  • monkeyd 13 Oct, 2008

    This would be great for serving Disgusting Deviled Egg Eyeballs!

  • Sirbear 5 Oct, 2008

    try pier 1 and use a glass head - you would have to cut in hald and then glue and work over top fo the seam, but you can make several this way...

  • Texy 27 Sep, 2008

    Someone told me last year that you can buy styrofoam heads at beauty supply stores. I haven't confirmed that yet, but it makes sense!

  • cole10 22 Sep, 2008

    I just purchased one from ebay. The seller was tshirts-hats and it was cheap in price. They also have super, super fast shipping! They have the old timey generic looking face head and the lifelike one shown above.

  • concretebunny 22 Sep, 2008

    where can you find styrofoam heads?

  • HolidayQueen 4 Sep, 2008

    I made this last year. Sooo much fun! I think this year I'll make a female version.