Make a Cardboard Chandelier

Posted September 6th, 2009 by Taylor Bug

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So…..Have you ever wondered if you could make a Chandelier, and if so, would it look as good as these examples below?

The answer is YES and you make them out of cardboard!

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You can buy a ready-to-make kit from Talk Of The Town!

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Here is the 12 steps to making your own Chandelier.
A list of  items you will need is:
  • xacto knife w/extra blades
  • medium tipped marker
  • One large piece of posterboard
  • yard stick or measuring tape
  • sharp scissors
  • 4 pieces of double core cardboard
  • Hot Glue Gun & Low Temp Glue
  • mutli-purpose glue
  • One large diameter wooden dowel (for center support) 3 foot long
  • One small diameter wooden dowel (for the faux candles) 3 foot long
  • One or two round wooden balls about 1 inch in diameter
  • two feet of hang cord or chain
  • Spray paint (your choice of color & sheen)
  • braided cord, trim, beads, glitter, tassels, etc (to embellish) optional
  • One eye bolt (to hang your chandelier from)
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Step 1- Use poster board to draw one side of your Chandelier. Then fold the posterboard in-half to trace the second half of the Chandelier, so both sides match. This will be your template. Note: What shape your Chandelier will be and how big it will be is up to you, be creative!

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Step 2: Using your template, trace 4 exact copies onto your double-core cardboard.

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Step 3: Using a sharp xacto knife cut out all four chandelier pieces. Warning...this will take a while and your arms will be sore by the time you are done. I used a new blade with each of the four pieces I cut out. Sharp blades cut a clearer edge.

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Step 4: After all 4 pieces where cut out, I used my yard stick to draw a staight line at the center of each piece (from top to bottom). Using your xacto knife score through ONLY one layer of the cardboard. By doing this the four pieces can be bent in a "V" shape.

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Step 5: I decided to have faux candle sticks inserted into the four arms of the chandelier. As pictured...I cut small notches through ONLY one layer of the cardboard on all four pieces of cardboard. You will have a total of eight notches when complete. Remember when you start gluing all the cardbooard layers together, NOT to glue these notches.

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STEP 6: To make a strong center for your chandelier, use the large diameter wooden dowel and glue a wooden ball to the bottom. (let dry) STEP 7: Glue all four pieces of cardboard together (one-side at a time) to the wooden dowel center. I used multi-purpose glue for most of the surfaces but I also used a little hot glue to (Quick-Set) all four sides together around the seams. The hot glue drys very fast and will hold the cardboard together until the multi-purpose also sets up. STEP 8: Make sure all your ends lined up well and your center dowel also had enough glue to hold together well. Let all glues cure completely. STEP 9: Use spray paints (outside-well vented area) paint All surfaces of the Chandelier with two to four coats of paint. Let dry well between coats.

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Step 10: Measure out 3 to 5 inch pieces of the thinner diameter dowel rod and cut all four to the same length. I used a pencil sharpener to taper one end of the dowel rod. Then spray paint all four faux candle sticks with at least two coats of paint. Then let dry completely.

Step 11: Attach the eye bolt to the top of the center dowel and add a 2 foot length of chain or cord to the eye bolt. You can paint the eye bolt or wrap it with ribbon to make it look more elegant.

Step 12: Now to complete your Chandelier….is up to you. Just painted may be ok for some people but if you want to get fancy you can trim all the cardboard edges with braided trim or add glitter, beads or fringe. There is no limit to your imagination! Have fun and make it your own. This project would be great for a parent to help decorate a child’s bedroom or to make a party look a little more FANCY!  Please let me know if this post helps you and I would love to see your completed Chandeliers. Please email your pictures to: pho...@babydogstyle.com.