When 9th grader Ja’shon Lambert considered the outfit he would wear to see Marvel’s Avengers Endgame, he determined that an Iron Man suit would be perfect. While there were many options online and in-stores, Lambert decided to create his own using cardboard and a hot glue gun.
“I was on Youtube and I saw people making costumes and after that I watched Iron man and I thought ‘what if I built an Iron Man suit’? But I was on a budget so I had to think of something that was cost effective and efficient so I thought to make it out of cardboard,” he told Because of Them We Can.
This was Lambert’s second Iron Man suit. He made the first one last year over the course of five months. His latest, which he finished over the weekend, took him just one month to complete.
“For the first one I felt as if it was a little rushed because when I was making it we were in the middle of moving. I saw many flaws that could be improved in a new one so I decided to make another one. After school I would come home and immediately start working on it.”
At 5’11” finding enough cardboard to cut and manipulate was a challenge. Thankfully Lambert’s mother, Monique Riley, found a solution at a local store in Sailsbury, North Carolina.
“We went to the local Rent-a-Center. They gave him the big cardboard that came off of the washer boxes. When we told them what he was trying to do the guy shook my hand and told him to come back once he finished,” she said.
Lambert was hospitalized due to pneumonia and was unable to finish the suit in time for Endgame’s release. The delay pushed his completion to this past weekend and as promised, he went to the Rent-a-Center, dressed from head to toe as a reimagined Iron Man.
“In the future I plan to do more creations as well as engineering and robotics to take the suits to the next level,” Lambert shared.
While he says he would love to have a 3D printer to assist with his build out in the future, the experience has taught him something invaluable.
“You don’t need the fanciest of things to create what you want.”
Lambert plans to take an engineering course in high school next year. Until then, his mom plans to help him find better materials so that he can improve his next build.