Make amazing cardboard castle DIY easy
How to Make a Model Castle
There are many pre-made model castles available at craft stores and online. However, if you’re on a budget or you want to make a specific design, you can easily create your own castle from scratch! First, choose your building medium. Your choice will depend on your skill level, budget, and amount of free time. Next, find a design online or create your own. Once you have a design, begin cutting and crafting the different sections of your castle. Last, paint the castle and add accents to bring it to life.
Choosing a Building Medium
Decide whether or not to use cardboard.Cardboard is an excellent building medium for beginners. It’s also great if you’re on a budget as many of your building materials can be found around your home. However, models built from cardboard won’t be as durable or sturdy as models built from other materials.
- Empty cereal boxes, paper towel tubes, and toilet paper tubes are great cardboard building materials.
- Adhesives include masking tape, craft glue, and spray adhesive.
- Other household materials such as tin cans and scrap paper can be used as well.
Consider using craft foam.Craft foam, also called foam core, is sold in thick sheets at craft stores. This medium will create sturdy and lightweight structures. However, some beginners have difficulty cutting the foam. If you’ve never used foam before, buy extra sheets to practice on. To work with foam, you will need:
- A sharp craft knife for slicing the foam
- A heated foam wire cutter for cutting large pieces of foam (optional)
- Tacky glue, a hot glue gun, or a liquid adhesive
Choose wood as your building medium.Wood is the best choice for large, sturdy castles. These castles can last years if they’re built properly. However, beginners may find woodworking difficult and expensive. Tools for woodworking include:
Consider your limitations.Before designing your castle, consider any factors that will affect your design. For example, consider your space limitations. This includes your workspace and the display space. If your design is too large, you won’t have anywhere to put your castle.Other things to consider include:
- What are the limitations of your building medium? For example, paper castles won’t last as long as wooden castles.
- How big is your budget? Paper castles are cheaper than foam or wooden castles.
- How much time can you devote to your project? Wooden castles are very sturdy, but they will take weeks to complete.
Designing the Castle
Decide whether or not to create your own design.There are many excellent model castle designs available online and at craft stores. These designs are good for beginners or for those working with unforgiving mediums such as wood. However, if you have a specific design in mind, it may be best to design your own castle.
Sketch the castle to scale.When a drawing is “to scale,” it is drawn with accurate proportions.To create accurate proportions, scale the measurements of your castle down. For example, if your castle will be three feet by two feet (.9 meters by .6 meters), your drawing could be three inches by two inches (7.6 cm by 5.08 cm).
- It may be useful to use graph paper to sketch your castle.
- Include any small details such as turrets or a drawbridge.
Separate the large and small sections.Your castle will be composed of several large sections with many small sections mounted on top. For example, if you’re building a simple square castle with towers on each corner, your large section would be a square shape and your small sections would be cylinders.
- Sketch each section separately to help you visualize the building process.
Measure and plan each section.Use your sketch as a guide. Create measurements for each separate section of the castle. Visualize building the castle with these different sections to help check your measurements. Make sure you include any accent features. For example:
- A large base for your castle
Consider making paper templates.This step is optional, but it may be useful to create paper templates of any repetitive forms.For example, if you’re making a foam castle with a lot of towers, create a paper template of a tower. Next, lay the template on each piece of foam to cut out the tower. Each tower will be the same size and shape.
- This method is also useful when creating paper castles. Instead of drawing and measuring each repetitive section, make a paper template to use.
Crafting the Castle
Cut out each piece.Depending on your building medium, you may need a saw, craft blade, or heated wire foam cutter. First, use a ruler and a pencil to mark the places you need to cut. Next, carefully cut out each piece of the castle, using your design as a guide.
- It may be tempting to begin building after the first few pieces. However, if you cut all of the sections out before starting, it will be easier to finish the project.
- It may be useful to number each piece to help you keep track of where they belong.
Cut any accents into the building pieces.Before you assemble the castle, cut out any windows, turrets, or doorways. Use your template as a guide. Otherwise, you may cut in the wrong places. If needed, use your ruler to measure any accents before cutting them out or create a paper template. For example:
- Measure out and draw small 1 x 1 inch squares (2.5 x 2.5 centimeters) along the top of the wall. Next, cut out every other square to create turrets.
- Create a paper template of a window. Use this window as a guide to ensure that all your windows look the same.
Craft the larger sections.These sections are the foundation of your castle. Use an adhesive such as tape or glue (or a hammer and nail if you’re working with wood) to assemble each large section. After they’re assembled, place each section in its proper spot. Remember to use the correct adhesives for your medium. For example:
- For foam, use spray adhesive, hot glue, or tacky glue.
- Use wood glue, screws, and nails to connect pieces of wood.
- For cardboard, use white craft glue, glue sticks, and masking tape.
Assemble the smaller sections.These sections are the structural accents, such as towers, rooftops, and large gates. Completely assemble each section before connecting it to the larger base sections. When you have finished assembling these sections, your castle will be ready to decorate
- If you use tacky glue, spray adhesive, or wood glue, let the structure dry for a few hours before decorating it.
Attach the castle to a base.If you want to create a large, complex landscape around your castle, you will need a large base. Alternatively, use a small base as a simple mount for your castle. You won’t be able to add a landscape, but the base will help keep all of the pieces together. Attach the castle with an adhesive if you’re building with cardboard. If the castle is wooden, attach it with nails or screws.
- Use a strong foam board base for foam or paper castles.
- Use a strong wood sheet as a base for wooden castles.
Paint the walls of the castle.Most castles are painted gray. However, there are many castles that are beige, white, and brown. Additionally, consider using a darker shade of the same color to outline any bricks or embellishments. Each medium works best with specific kinds of paint. For example:
- You can use almost any kind of paint on wood. However, spray paint and water based acrylic paint work best.
- Any water based acrylic or latex paint works well on foam. However, avoid using spray paint as it will dissolve the foam.
- You can use water and oil based paints on paper and cardboard. However, use spray paint sparingly as it may make these mediums soggy and weak.
Paint any accents.Once the walls of the castle are dry, you can begin painting any embellishments. Use a variety of colors to paint accents on your castle. For example, use a deep burgundy to paint any rooftops. Other accents include:
- Window sills
- Window panes
- Doors and gates
Create your landscape.If you’re building a simple foam or cardboard castle, consider painting the landscape. This is a quick, easy way to give your castle a colorful backdrop. If you want to create a realistic landscape, visit a craft store for fake grass and small stones. Other realistic touches include:
- Creating small hills with foam and covering them with grass
- Lining a small pathway with stones
- Creating a moat and filling it with clear epoxy to create “water”
Add accessories.Place small accessories around the castle or on the landscape. Accessories can include small human figures, trees, shrubbery, bridges, and gates. Many of these items can be purchased at a craft store. However, if you’re on a budget or if you’re feeling inspired, you can make your own at home. For example:
- Make your own trees by gluing a shredded green sponge to some copper wire.
- Craft a drawbridge using tongue depressors and hot glue.
- Create small bushes by crumpling small pieces of green tissue paper.
- Use a small jewelry chain to create a realistic drawbridge.
QuestionHow do I make a clay castle?wikiHow ContributorCommunity AnswerRoll out sheets of clay and let them dry until they're firm but not chalky. Next, cut out the different shapes of your castle. To assemble the pieces, use the "scratch and slip" method, a common handbuilding technique. When you've finished your castle, fire it in a kiln to harden it.Thanks!
QuestionCan I use cardboard boxes and empty toilet paper rolls?wikiHow ContributorCommunity AnswerYes you can! You can even use empty paper towel rolls, cereal boxes, and tissue boxes as well.Thanks!
QuestionCan you use paper for the walls?wikiHow ContributorCommunity AnswerNo. Paper will be too wobbly. You could stack and glue several layers together to make a stronger, sturdier piece of paper, but this is time-consuming.Thanks!
QuestionHow do I make a castle moat?wikiHow ContributorCommunity AnswerYou could make a bridge from cardboard, use necklace chains to hold the bridge up, and use blue tissue paper for the water.Thanks!
QuestionCould I use empty toilet paper rolls instead of tin cans?wikiHow ContributorCommunity AnswerIf you're using the toilet rolls as turrets, and they aren't used to support the weight of your castle, then yes.Thanks!
QuestionCan you make a castle with only plastic bottles?wikiHow ContributorCommunity AnswerPlastic is not a recommended building material. Paint has trouble sticking to this medium and it's not very sturdy. Additionally, if you only used plastic bottles, you would have trouble making any straight walls or rooftops.Thanks!
QuestionHow do I make the bricks of a castle look real?wikiHow ContributorCommunity AnswerBuild the walls out of foamboard (can be found at local craft store), then either spray it with a textured spray paint or cut in shapes using a box cutter.Thanks!
QuestionWhat can I do if I don't have the right plastic shapes to build a mosque or a house?wikiHow ContributorCommunity AnswerYou can get creative and use different objects from home, like a funnel.Thanks!
QuestionIs there anything I can use instead of popsicle sticks?wikiHow ContributorCommunity AnswerYou can use a variety of things! You can use cardboard and paper towel tubes, paper, or Styrofoam. You can even use toothpaste lids, just as Charlie Bucket did in Charlie and the Chocolate Factory.Thanks!
QuestionIf I cover the pieces in tinfoil before I put them all together, will I still be able to paint the tinfoil?wikiHow ContributorCommunity AnswerIt depends what kind of paint you have. Acrylic paint and spray paint will cover the tinfoil, while watercolor will not. Also, you will have to be careful not to handle the finished castle too much. Paint does not stick to metal very well, and will chip if handled too often.Thanks!
If you want to make your own model castle, sketch your design to scale, writing down measurements for each separate section of the castle. Measure and cut the pieces of your castle from your building medium, then cut out any windows, turrets, or doorways. If you have a lot of repetitive shapes, it may help to cut out paper templates that you can use to trace the shape multiple times. Build the larger sections of the castle first, then the smaller sections, adhering the pieces with spray adhesive, glue, tape, or nails, then paint your castle.
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