How to Build the Eiffel Tower with Things at Home


The Eiffel Tower is one of the most recognizable and iconic pieces of architecture in the world. Unfortunately, it's pretty far away for most of us to visit without an awful lot of planning, saving and preparation. Fortunately, making a model of the Eiffel Tower is relatively quick and requires only a few household items to complete.

Eiffel Tower made from yarn and wire.
(Megan Andersen)

Things You'll Need

  • Cotton yarn, any dark color, 1 skein
  • Scissors
  • Heavy-gauge floral wire, 2 rolls
  • Wire snips
  • Pliers
  • Decoupage medium
  • Foam paint brush
  • Large glass dish or marble slab
  • Metal spatula
  • Spray starch
  • Electric iron
Step 1

Print this Eiffel Tower template, enlarging it to the size you want your finished tower to be.

Draw a guide.
Megan Andersen
Step 2

Finger weave eight lengths of cord that are the same size. Use your drawing as a guide. If you're new to finger weaving, consult the instructions provided in Resources.

Finger weaving
Megan Andersen
Step 3

Drape one woven chain down along one side of the template. Spray with starch and iron flat on high heat. Use this shape as a guide when you apply the decoupage medium in the next step.

Shape the first chain.
Megan Andersen
Step 4

Place the starched yarn chain on a glass baking dish or marble slab. With a foam paintbrush, dab a generous amount of decoupage medium onto the yarn chain. As you paint, flatten and widen the chain, separating the loops as much as possible. Repeat to shape the remaining seven finger woven chains. Allow the yarn chains to dry completely -- up to 24 hours.

Apply decoupage medium to the yarn chains.
Megan Andersen
Step 5

Finger weave two more lengths of chain; one as long as the first eight you made, the other chain should be about 3 to 5 inches longer. Paint the decoupage medium onto these two chains in the same manner as the first eight, except do not curve them at all. Set these chains aside to dry.

Weaving additional chains.
Megan Andersen
Step 6

Use your metal spatula to scrape up the yarn chains once they are completely dry. With your scissors, cut the tail off of each end of the chain, and trim the skin of dried decoupage medium that surrounds each chain. The yarn chains should be pliable like fruit leather.

Trim the dried yarn chains.
Megan Andersen
Step 7

Using the wire snips, cut segments of floral wire, 3/4 inch to 1 inch long. Use the metal snips to kink the wire segments into “V” shapes. Additionally, cut 8 lengths of floral wire as long as your yarn chains. Weave a long piece of wire through the holes of each yarn chain for structural reinforcement.

Assemble the sides of the tower.
Megan Andersen
Step 8

Arrange two yarn chains to create a capital “A” shape, using the template as a guide. Insert the wire V's through the holes of the overlapping yarn chains and pinch the wire closed with your pliers. Continue inserting the wire pieces into the yarn chains and pinching them closed until you have one complete wall. Repeat to create three more walls.

Wire the walls together.
Megan Andersen
Step 9

Using the same wire support technique, attach the walls to each other, so that the base flares out wide and all of the spires come together in a tapered finish. Since the floral wire is so easy to manipulate, you can continue mold the shape of the tower to make it more realistic.

Pinching the wire.
Megan Andersen
Step 10

Drape the straight, flat yarn chains around the base of the tower to create the two bottom levels of the Eiffel Tower. Use the wire “V” technique to secure them in place.

Adding levels
Megan Andersen
Step 11

Cut four curved pieces of floral wire long enough to create an arch under the bottom level of the tower. This will add more support to the overall structure, and make your Eiffel Tower look much more authentic. Weave the wire ends through the base of the tower and wide the wire ends by bending them back with your pliers.

Add the arches.
Megan Andersen

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