elephant wall sculpture tn

Baby Elephant Wall Sculpture Pattern

Watch your visitors’ faces when they see this paper mache elephant “faux trophy mount” on your wall.

They’ll fall in love with her –  and they’ll be amazed when you tell them you made it yourself. (You don’t have to tell them it was easy because the pattern created all the shapes for you!)

This happy baby elephant is too young for tusks, but she’s still pretty darned big! Finished size: about 19.5 inches (496 mm) high, 22.25 inches (566 mm) wide and 9 inches (231 mm) deep.

This is a papercraft pattern (PDF). After you print the pattern on card stock and tape it together you’ll have a three-dimensional baby elephant sculpture that’s ready for her final coat of paper mache. Full instructions included with the pattern.

Watch the video below to see how to make your paper mache elephant sculpture.

A page from the instructions that come with the baby elephant pattern.
A page from the instructions that come with the baby elephant pattern.

As you can see in the video, you can use Jonni’s paper mache clay recipe for your elephant. It goes on so much faster than paper strips and paste, but traditional paper mache will work, too. (You can find the recipe for paper mache clay in the Art Library. The link is at the top of the page.)

The final skin is made with one-ply paper towels. That’s how you can get those nice wrinkles around her ears and eyes. Clear fingernail polish will make your elephant’s eyes bright and sparkly.

There are quite a few pieces in this pattern, but if you take your time and follow the instructions on the pattern and in the video you’ll end up with a beautiful wall sculpture. It’s sure to impress anyone who sees it.

To make this paper mache wall sculpture you will need:

  • 14 pieces of 110# card stock
  • A printer
  • Scissors
  • Clear plastic tape (like Scotch tape)
  • Peel N’ Stick Clear Laminate Adhesive Shelf Liner*
  • 1 ½” Styrofoam balls for the eyes
  • Glue gun, to attach the eyes
  • Masking tape (both narrow and wide)
  • Aluminum foil, shredded paper or foam packing peanuts for stuffing inside the pattern to support it. The foam peanuts are my preference, but the other options will also work.
  • Paper Mache (use paper strips and paste or paper mache clay. Recipes can be found on my website. Just click on the Paper Mache Art Library at the top of the site.
  • Paper towels
  • Gesso (home-made recipe can be found on my website. Or you can use acrylic gesso from the art store.
  • Acrylic paint and gel medium for the eyes. I also used a spray can of gray primer and two tiny pieces of black paper for the pupils. These items are optional.
  • Matte acrylic varnish

*You can find this in the housewares department of Walmart, or order it online. Or just use clear tape. It’s to keep the cardstock from getting wet when you add your paper mache.

You may also like these other patterns for paper mache:

To see even more patterns for sculptures and masks, click here.

Questions?

You can ask in the comment field below. I read all the comments, and I’ll get back to you as soon as I can. Or send me an email – [email protected] – be sure to put “paper mache” in the subject line so your email won’t get accidentally deleted.

 

106 thoughts on “3-D Baby Elephant Wall Sculpture Pattern

  1. Hello,
    I really love your videos and arts and i did a couple of them for my school creative activity and they turn out good
    But I’m a student and i don’t really have much money to buy some more patterns you make so i kindly request you to at least produces some patterns for free so that student like myself can learn more and fell in love more with arts
    Ralph jackson
    Student of the KHD school

    • Hi Ralph. I’m glad you enjoy the projects on the site. I do charge for some of the patterns, because keeping this site online costs a lot of money. However, be sure to take a look in the Art Library – there are over 400 articles on this site, filled with fun projects, and almost every one of them are free. I’m sure you’ll find something in the library that you would enjoy making.

  2. Hi, I don’t have a printer that works with cardstock paper. If i printed it on regular office paper, do you think it would still work? Or I could also trace or tape the pattern to cardstock paper.

    • Hi Meghan. It won’t work with regular paper, and tracing it would be really difficult. However, you could print the pattern onto full-page labels and then stick the labels onto your cardstock. That’s what I’m doing now with the lion mask I’m working on, and it works really well. I found labels that take up the entire sheet of paper, so you don’t have to worry about having part of the pattern cut off. They didn’t have any at my local Walmart so I had to order them from Amazon.com.

  3. Hi I wanted to know if there was a way to put tusks on the elephant? Also , would it be possible to put them on without changing the template?

    • Hi Baza. I didn’t add the tusks because she’s so young that the tusks wouldn’t be showing yet. If you want to make her older, it should be possible to add the tusks. Look closely at several photos of African elephants and note the way the shape of the tusks can be seen under the skin. Then look at your elephant pattern after it’s been taped together, and not the bulge on her trunk just above her mouth. That’s where the trunk would go. I would sculpt the tusks out of aluminum foil, to keep them light. And You’d probably want to make them long enough so the top part that’s under the skin can be pushed in through the hole and firmly attached to the inside of the pattern. Once that’s done you can continue with the project, and it should turn out really nice. In fact, I hope you’ll show us your tusked elephant when it’s done!

  4. helleo Jonny, I want to order the elephant mask, but I am directly sent to Paypal, on an email account that I can’t reach after. Can you send it to a different email address ?
    Thank you in advance for your answer.
    Excuse my english, I am french…

    • Hello, Mimi. I have no control at all over PayPal. When I click the button I’m asked to sign in to PayPal, and I need to type in my real email address. If you’re already signed in under the wrong address, you’ll need to sign out again. If you signed up a long time ago and you no longer have access to that email, you’ll need to go into your account and change it. Sorry I can’t do any of that for you.

  5. Hi Jonni, love your work. was just wondering whether it was possible to get templates that are slightly smaller in size? Id love to make a miniature version of this elephant. loosely the size of hand. Thanks!

    • Hi Amanda. You can make the elephant any size you want. The pieces will be a little more tricky to cut out and tape together, but if you’re patient it will work. Most printers will let you set the size by a percent of the original. If your printer won’t do that, you can take it to a local print shop and ask them to do it for you.

      Will you be using your elephant for a puppet?

    • Heather, are you trying to upload a photo of your elephant? I really want to see it, but the system didn’t take it. Your image is probably too big. You can use the free online tool here to make it smaller. I hope you’ll try again – what a great present for a new parent.

    • There’s a flat piece of cardboard on the back. You can just put a hole in the cardboard and hang it on a nail. This one is pretty big, but if you can find a wooden plaque that’s big enough, you can attach the head to the wood and use a metal hanger on the back. I use hot glue to attach my smaller faux trophy mounts to a wooden plaque, but I think you’d need to use epoxy glue for something this large. (It looks nice without the plaque – that’s how I display mine.)

    • I’m not actually sure – all transactions take place through PayPal. I just went to Google to ask if PayPal would accept INR, and several articles said no, but others say you can use an Indian debit card with PayPal if it’s from certain banks. I have to be honest and say I really don’t know the answer to your question, because I am not familiar with PayPal’s policy in this regard. I’m sorry I’m not being very helpful.

    • I’m not quite sure what you mean. If you click on the PayPal button near the top of the post, you can pay for the pattern. It will be available for download as soon as your purchase is complete, and you’ll also receive an email with download instructions. Is this what you were asking?

  6. Hi Jonni, just wanted to say thank you for the detailed instructions and video for this elephant. I made it for Christmas for my 3 year old daughter Olive and she loves it. Thanks again!

  7. Hello!

    I just had a quick question and i may have missed it if someone had already asked it but would this be big enough to fit over someone’s head? I plan on making a elephant head to wear kind of as a mask for some photos i’m thinking about taking.

    Thanks!
    Anna

  8. Beautiful elephant. I have questions about this method. I’m used to use 3d patterns and usually uses car putty for my finishing touch but what I found interesting is that your paper mache cay is really really sturdy almost as much as the fiberglass resin overall.

    But does the paper mache clay really stick to the Peel N Stick sheets? I could use this for a method to harden my 3d patterns without them to wrap. I have plenty of Peel N Stick from dollar store here.

    One plus is that when it’s completely dry, the clay is not that really heavy if layered smoothly inside the structure by hands.

    • Interesting questions. The paper mache clay can be peeled off of plastic, so no – it doesn’t really bond to it. It bonds to paper, so you could leave the plastic off the side of the pattern that the clay will be applied to. However, since all the items I make are rounded, and the pm clay goes on the outside, the paper mache clay doesn’t need the paper underneath for support so this has never been an issue for me. The pattern stays inside, where it belongs, and the wall sculptures are very hard and strong. It might be possible to pry the paper away from the dried pm clay, but I’ve never had any cause to try doing that.

      If you put the pm clay on the inside, what do you put on the outside?

      • Some plastic clay is meant to be used outside. One friend of mine that were working in an art shop like Omer Deserre suggested it to me because when dryed, it’s almost plastic and the cost is not that high overall, cam be sanded and painted very well and is lightweight. Il already use you paper mache clay to harden a part that is meant to be wearable. This is why I know it’s really strong because it can stand car Bondo filler sandin onto it. But winter is coming here and I can’t work anymore outside so I’m searching for alternatives.

  9. I am writing from switzerland. I never made a paper mache object. Is it possible to make this elephant?
    The pattern is the head or it’s the elephant with the body, it is how big and how much are the shipping costs for the Swiss.
    Thank you for your reply and best regards, Regina

  10. Hi Jonni,
    I love your work with papier machè and would like to make a baby elephant for my school sustainability project. I’m wondering if you think it would be possible for me to use the African elephant head with the Indian elephant body? Would it work if I combined the two template designs to make a baby African elephant?
    Thank you for the excellent tutorials; I’m really looking forward to getting started!

    • Hi Chimene. I didn’t size the elephant head pattern specifically to match the pattern of the baby Indian elephant, but the body pattern could be made smaller or larger, just by changing the size of the grid you use to draw it on your pattern material. The shape of a baby Indian elephant’s body is slightly different than the shape of an African elephant’s body, but you could easily change the pattern by looking at photos, if you wanted to. The differences are slight.

      The patterns for the two different projects are very different. The head pattern creates a hollow shape with all the basic rounded forms already created, once the pattern has been taped together. The baby elephant’s body pattern is flat, and simply shows the outline of the body and leg shapes. You add crumpled paper to fill out the rounded shapes. It would be interesting to see how the two types of patterns work together. If you try this, I do hope you’ll let us see how it turns out.

      • Thank you so much for your quick reply, Jonni! I will try that and make the adjustments with the body size once I have made the head. I will definitely keep you posted with my progress; the sustainability project is due at the end of my school term in three weeks time so I will be very busy. My teacher is just as excited about this project as I am.
        Thank you.

  11. I’ve never done paper mache before, but I’d really like to try doing this. I LOVE elephants! I just need to make sure I can get the supplies first. I don’t know what stock cards are. What size do they have to be? Can you use them in a printer that only has black ink? I apologize if these questions seem stupid I tried looking it up but there was a bunch of options on sizes to get.
    Thanks

    • Hi Stefanie. The paper I used is standard letter size, 8 1/2 inches by 11 inches. It is the heavy card stock that is sold in the office supply section of Walmart. It comes in a ream and is right next to the copy paper. Black ink is just fine.

      • Hey Jonni, thanks so much for getting back to me. As soon as I get the stuff I can buy the dl and start on my elephant. 😀

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