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Friday, October 28, 2011

DIY // West Elm / Dwell Studio Papier-Mâché Animal Head

I gotta tell you, this project was easy-peasy.  I was pretty intimidated at first, but once I got going things just seemed to work themselves out.  Here's my first attempt at the ever-popular mounted animal head ~ mini-style.

  • copy paper
  • scotch tape
  • plaster
  • round wood plaque
  • liquid nails

The awe-inspiring stag, of course.  Not only is this a beautiful creature, but I get brownie points from the hubs who is a Harvey Mudd grad.  (Go Stags!)  My choice for a mini-version was out of convenience (it would fit on our "control center" wall) and it would be less daunting than a lifesize version.


Nothing technical here.  I started by twisting paper into forms that semi-resembled a stag head and antlers, then I wrapped tape around the form to mold it into the shape I wanted.  Once, I was happy enough with the paper/tape creature I mixed some plaster and spread it on.  After drying, I forwent the sanding and left the plaster rough and glued it to the wood plaque with some good ol' Liquid Nails.  (Note to self:  invest in glue gun.)  I tried to leave the wood in its natural state, but it looked unfinished and boring.  So, I painted a coat of Behr "Glacier Blue" that I had left over from the family dresser project. Wow, does it make a difference.

While it is obviously more bovine in nature (with antlers), it still rocks as a first attempt and it gives me some much needed confidence to tackle this subject in non-mini form.  Next time, I think I'll try using newspaper.  The thinness of the newspaper should allow for more accuracy in sculpting, so no more bull-stag.

Ah, kids!  I was just about to take a photo of the finished product when Mr. Grabby-hands snagged it off the counter and threw it on the floor.  So, after cleaning it up and doing a few adjustments to the proportions, I applied a coat of plaster, let it dry, then glued it with my trusty Liquid Nails.  Deja Vu?

Did I mention it was a mini-version?  I think its just about time to start on a bigger one. 

What about you, do you have any DIY animal head projects? 

Until next time,


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