How to Make a Paper Mache House

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Things You'll Need

  • Cardboard

  • Glue

  • Water

  • Newspaper

  • Drop cloth

  • Masking tape

  • Paint

  • Mod-Podge

Paper mache crafts commonly include small items such as rocks, bowls and animals, typically made using a balloon or glass as a base. This craft is made in daycare centers, schools and homes. Paper mache does not only consist of small items, but large items such as chairs, full-size people and houses. Creating such large works takes a little more planning and time. Different supplies are used to create larger works such as PVC pipe, wire and cardboard boxes. Boxes are great to use when constructing a paper mache house.


Step 1

Throw a drop cloth down over the area in which you will work. Mix the glue by combining 1 cup of white glue with 1 cup of water, stirring until mixed. Cut five 10" squares from the cardboard. Tape them together to make an open box. Tape all seams well.

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Step 2

Cut two 12" triangles and two 8" triangles out of the cardboard. Tape together to make the roof of the house (see Resource 1). Tape the roof to the top of the open box. Ensure the seams are well covered.

Step 3

Rip newspaper into strips about 1" by 6". Dip the newspaper strips into the glue solution until fully wet. Pull strips out one at a time, gently removing excess glue. Lay the strips on the box starting with the top. Cover the entire house in the newspaper strips. Carefully lay the strips around each seam, patting down to remove any bumps. When complete, allow the house to dry for at least 24 hours.


Step 4

Rip more newspaper strips and prepare more of the glue mixture. Repeat the process of dipping the strips in the glue and layering the house. The house must be layered a total of three times. Allow the house to dry at least 24 hours in between layers. When the house is completely dry, paint as desired. Cover the house with Mod-Podge after the paint is dry to protect it for years.


Let each layer dry fully before applying a new layer.


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