How to Make a Paper Scepter

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Decorate the scepter to make it look elegant and impressive.
Decorate the scepter to make it look elegant and impressive. (Image: Hemera Technologies/PhotoObjects.net/Getty Images)

The scepter is an ancient symbol of power and status. In its most basic form, a scepter is simply a long staff. But ancient kings, pharaohs, priests, judges and tribal leaders often carried scepters decorated with costly jewels and ornaments, so most scepters made for costumes have a fancy embellishment fixed to the top of the staff. There is no wrong way to decorate a scepter. Once you have the basic paper staff in place, adorn it with rhinestones, flowers, ribbons, glitter or other creative additions to give it some majesty.

Things You'll Need

  • 12-by-18-inch construction paper
  • Ruler
  • Scissors
  • Clear tape
  • Poster board
  • Pencil
  • 2 sheets of silver foil or gold wrapping paper
  • Craft glue
  • Silver or gold spray paint (optional)
  • Rhinestones, ribbons, glitter, flowers or other decorations (optional)

Cut a piece of construction paper longways into 3-inch-wide, 18-inch-long strips. Tape the strips together at the short ends to make one long strip of paper. Roll the strip tightly into a thick, short tube.

Hold the outside of the tube together in one hand. Grasp the end of the strip on the inside of the tube with your other hand, and slowly pull it out. As you lengthen the tube, twist both ends to keep the strip rolled tightly, so it holds its extended shape.

Pause when the bottom few inches are fully extended and tape them into place, if they are not holding the tube shape on their own. As soon as you see the paper starting to unroll, twist it until it is taut again and put a tight ring of clear tape around it. The tape ring should be horizontally straight, so it covers more than one layer of the spiraling paper.

Continue pulling and twisting, and stop again when the next section is fully extended to tape it, if necessary. Repeat this until you have pulled and taped the whole length of the strip.

Draw a pattern for a decorative topper for the scepter onto a piece of poster board. You can use a pattern you find online, such as the ones at Danielle's Place of Crafts and Activities, or you can draw your own. Include a rectangular tab at the bottom of the pattern -- about 1 inch wide and 1/2 inch tall -- which you'll need for attaching the topper to the staff.

Lay the pattern on top of two sheets of silver foil or gold wrapping paper. Cut through all three layers. Glue the back/wrong sides of the metallic sheets to the front and back of the poster board pattern, so the scepter topper is shiny on both sides.

Fold the tab at the bottom of the pattern to a 90-degree angle, making a flat bottom surface for the topper. Set the folded tab on top of the scepter, so the topper sticks straight up and the tab rests on the tube. Trim the ends of the tab so they are even with the tube.

Tape the tab to the tube. Stick one end of a piece of tape to the flat surface of the tab near one of its edges, and press the other end of the tape down over the edge and onto the side of the tube. Repeat this on the opposite edge of the tab.

Spray paint the tube gold or silver to match the topper if you wish, or ask an adult to do it for you. When the paint has dried, decorate the scepter with rhinestones, ribbons, glitter, flowers and any other ornaments to make it look authoritative or royal.

Tips & Warnings

  • Make another tube the same way if the first one is not long enough. Insert one end of the new tube into one end of the old tube, and tape them together into a single long staff.
  • Spray paint in a well-ventilated area.
  • Children should not use spray paint unsupervised. Young children should not be left alone with scissors.

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