Make Beautiful Sculptures and Masks with Paper Mache and Paper Mache Clay

Click the yellow button above to see my easy patterns for paper mache sculptures and masks.

  • Create beautiful gifts and decorative sculptures for your home.
  • Or quickly create professional-looking headdress masks for your local production of the Lion King play or a Vacation Bible School event.

The patterns make it easy, even if you’ve never made anything with paper mache before.

Latest Paper Mache Tutorials:

Jonni’s Sculpting Books

Paper mache recipes.

You can find all the traditional paper mache paste recipes on this site, plus my famous paper mache clay recipe (and several new variations). You can always find the recipe you’re looking for under the Recipes link at the tip of the site.

Or download my free booklet, The 5 Best Recipes for Paper Mache.

Your Host.Jonni Good, Paper Mache Artist

I’m Jonni Good, the creator of this site and the author of several best-selling sculpting books on amazon.com. You’ll find me on the Daily Sculptors page almost every day, along with many other friendly and supportive folks who love creating beautiful things with this exciting medium. Be sure to drop by and say “hi.” We’d love to meet you.

My Best-Selling Patterns for Paper Mache:

261 thoughts on “Paper Mache – for Beautiful Sculptures and Masks”

  1. Hi
    I was wondering if i can build my sculpture with the heaps of palstic bags and twist ties that i save because i can’t throw them out. Im hoping that i can upcycle them and make a paper mache sculpture. Do you have any thoughts about this ?

    Reply
    • Yes, absolutely! You can stuff some of them inside a plastic bag and use masking tape around the outside to squeeze the bags together and create the shapes you want. It’s a great way to form the basic shapes of an animal – or pumpkin. 🙂 Paper mache won’t stick to plastic, so you’ll need to cover the bag with masking tape. And you can add additional features by taping on crumpled paper in spots, or by using hot glue and crumpled foil. (The glue will melt plastic, so use the masking tape first.)
      If you do make something with them, I hope you’ll come show it off on the Daily Sculptors page. We’d love to see how it comes out.

      Reply
  2. Thank you so much for your clay recipe. I’m so excited to use it on my sculpture that I made.
    Have a beautiful day!

    Reply
  3. Dear Jonni,
    Today I told my husband my plans for the day ; Laundry and paper mache. He looked at me panic stricken and said, “Are you going to use toilet paper??” I burst out laughing. With today’s corona virus scare we can’t find toilet paper in our stores. I eased his mind by telling him I had some clay frozen, and then I was really stupid and told him I had three rolls Rolls of toilet paper in my paper mache bin. He replied, “ah…you shouldn’t have told me that” I may have to place it under lock and key!!?

    Reply
    • Good point! I’m not out of TP, thank goodness. I ordered a big carton from Amazon when I first started hearing the news out of China. Now they’re out, and my local store is out. Time to get out the old wash cloths, I guess. (My daughter knew someone way back in college who never used TP. Everyone else in the student boarding house thought she was crazy, but maybe she was on to something?)

      Reply
  4. Hi Jonni,
    Can paper mache projects (statues) be sealed to withstand extreme weather (snow etc)? If so, what do you recommend using?
    Thanks so much,
    Niki

    Reply
    • Niki,

      I was just reading an old article here about a goddess statue. The crafter covered it in thin set then sealed it with a polyurethane sealer. Sounds like that should be pretty weatherproof.

      Reply
      • Cassie, I used waterproof grout for my garden gnome, and it is definitely waterproof. But I didn’t put any paper inside of it, and didn’t use paper mache clay underneath it. Jackie’s method may have worked, but we haven’t heard from her for quite a while. I worry that the outside surface could develop small cracks, and that would let water inside to destroy the paper and paper mache underneath. But Jackie’s post did encourage me to try using the grout, (but without the paper). And it worked. 🙂

        Reply
        • Jonni, thank you! I had just found your gnome today and saved it as I research how to make the lawn tanuki I want to make. I’m very new to this and am absorbing all the information I can. The gnome has been the best method I’ve found and looks great! Thank you for posting it so we can all learn from it!

          Reply
  5. Hi Jonni
    I am Lorna Atkinson from Abudhabi in the United Arab Emirates.Please let me know if you have the masks for other animals like giraffe, rhino, elephant, deer etc.

    Reply
    • Hi Lorna. I have wall sculpture patterns for the elephant and deer, and a giraffe head sculpture that stands on a table. But no masks of those animals. Not yet, anyway. I try to make a new one once a month, though, so check back later.

      Reply
  6. Hi Jonni,

    I wonder whether this recipe would work for small oaxacan alebrije sculptures for sixth-graders (12 years old). I’d keep it simple. Would I use a foil armature or would I even need an armature for small, simple shapes like turtles and frogs?

    What do you think?

    Reply
    • Hi Lynn. The paper mache clay recipe can’t be formed in the hand, like real clay. That’s also true for my air dry clay recipe. They both need to be applied in a thin layer over an armature. In fact, it’s the armatures that take the most time, because that’s where all the real sculpting is done. You could use crumpled paper and masking tape instead of foil, so you don’t need the hot glue guns, but you’d need a lot of masking tape.

      WED clay would work for hand sculpting. It can’t be fired, but it’s slow to dry out, and a small piece my grandson made five years ago is still intact, even though it wasn’t sealed. You can sometimes find it at pottery stores. If you have to order it from amazon.com the price, which include shipping, might be too high for a school project, though.

      Reply
  7. I am looking for adult size mask patterns on otter, martin, deer, moose, eagle, crane, elk, fish, beaver, Linx, all wild animals of Ontario except squirrels, mice, rabbits,

    Reply
    • Hi Marie. I haven’t made mask patterns for any of those animals yet. I have a deer sculpture pattern, but it is intended to be displayed on the wall. I hope to make an eagle this year, though. Good luck finding what you need.

      Reply

Leave a Reply to Debbie Cancel reply

Heads up! You are attempting to upload an invalid image. If saved, this image will not display with your comment.

Heads up! You are attempting to upload a file that's too large. Please try a smaller file smaller than 250KB.

Note that images greater than 250KB will not be uploaded.