Friday, December 9, 2011

12 Days of Christmas Ornaments - Day 7: Cardboard Igloo

Today's ornament was inspired by these adorable ornaments from Anthropologie. I love the idea of raiding the recycling bin for craft supplies!

I decided to make an igloo, but really the possibilities are endless with this one. Just dream up something to create and have fun building it! Here's what I did...

1. Start with a cardboard box with thin walls (29 or 32 lbs/in). The cardboard gets hard to work with if it's much thicker than that.

2. Run the pieces over the back of a chair or edge of a table. The cardboard is easier to work with if it's already bent a little.

3. Make the roof of the igloo by cutting one rectangle and two petal shapes. Tape them together.

4. For the walls, cut a long, narrow strip of cardboard and tape the ends together to make a circle. Attach it to the roof using tape. It helps to press on the roof a bit to flatten it before attaching.

5. Once the roof and walls are in place, trace around the base of the igloo and cut just inside the line to make the floor.

6. Cut another strip of cardboard and wrap it into a semi-circle with a flat bottom to make the door. Cut a hole in the side of the igloo big enough to fit the door.

7. Put a line of glue around the edge of the door...

...and fit it into the hole. Attach the floor with glue as well.

8. Starting at the bottom, begin attaching bricks with glue. Once you reach the second level, switch to the modified bricks, slightly overlapping the bricks on the level below. Continue with the modified bricks until you reach the top. Towards the top, you may need to trim the bricks to fit as you go. You can stop once you've put 4 layers of bricks in place and cover the remaining space with a circular top piece.

9. Poke two holes in the top piece and run a string through them. Make a knot underneath and attach to the top of the igloo with glue. Let dry overnight.

10. When the glue is dry, paint and decorate however you wish! It's hard to tell in the photos, but I used a silver luster dust over white paint, which gives the "ice" a slight shimmer. Silver metallic paint or glitter would work too!

I don't have a formal pattern for this one, but I did make some quick sketches along the way that you can download here. It's mainly for reference though, so make sure you trim your pieces as needed to make them fit together!


  1. I just saw this and looked at the Anthropologie one. It says it contains styrofoam, so I'm guessing they covered half a styrofoam ball with the cardboard pieces, might be a bit easier than trying to get the shape out of just the cardboard.

  2. Your igloo looks great, but I cannot imagine ever sitting down and doing a project like this. To each her own!

  3. I'm going to show this to my son and hopefully he'll make one for me, it's so cute! I'm featuring this in an ornament round-up at The Crafty Crow soon!