Cardboard, Paint, and Glue: How to Make a 3D Cat

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My father walked by a store window recently where they were selling a wooden three-dimensional cat (and for quite a bit of money, I might add).  He liked the concept of this piece of art and thought that he could replicate it at home as a craft project for his grandson.

He drew the following sketch:

cat sketches

When we arrived at his house for a visit one day, my dad was busy cutting cardboard.  If you’ve ever done this before, you know that it is not a simple task, so it is one that a grown up would have to complete before starting this project.  He then presented my son with the following:

  • One rectangle to be the background (I’d recommend an 8 x 10 piece (ours is slightly smaller))
  • One circle with tail attached (to be the back and tail)
  • One upside down u-shaped piece (to be the front paws)
  • One face with ears attached
  • One nose/mouth combo piece
  • Two oval eyes

cat parts

He told us that we would need paint and brushes, pipe cleaners for whiskers, and glue to put it all together.  He showed us his original sketch and how it would be assembled when we were done painting it.  We were very excited to have this project handed to us!

When we returned home, we took our paints off of my son’s easel and brought them outside.  My son painted each of the individual pieces and we set them out to dry.

little boy painting

Once the paint dried, we looked back at the original sketch and arranged the pieces of our cat in the correct order: background, then back with tail, then legs, then head, then eyes.  We carefully used our hot glue gun and assembled the pieces together.  We then found our pipe cleaners and created curly whiskers, attached them to the nose, glued that onto the face, and voila!  A 3D cat!

make a 3d cat

This was a fun craft project and looks really cool when it’s done.  Note: we’re considering trying foam sheets next time instead of cardboard for ease of cutting.

We brought the final project back to show my father and he was delighted!  Of course, though, we now want him to make more patterns of different animals for us!  For now, we will continue to work on making more cats, and I can anticipate getting more creative and elaborate each time.  I see googly eyes and glitter in our future!

Check out these other fun ideas for craft projects using cardboard:

 

 

Amy About Amy

Amy is stay at home mom to a 4 year old son and a 18 month old baby girl. Before becoming a mom, Amy was an elementary school teacher and has a Master's in Literacy Education and a Reading Specialist certificate. She is also the director and teacher of a local Kindermusik program. She loves theater, music, and dance, and of course, playing with her children. Amy writes Stuck Under a Baby, tweets as @stuckunderababy and can be found on Facebook.

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