Downloadable Patterns for Paper Mache Sculptures and Masks

The easy way to create beautiful handcrafted works of art.

Giraffe, lion and wolf mask patterns for paper mache.

Lion King Jr. Headdress Patterns:

Jenny W.  said:

I built EIGHT headdresses for our community theater’s production of Lion King Jr. – What an experience! I enjoyed every step of the process and learned so much! The kids loved them.

I will be downloading more of your patterns for my own projects – they are amazing. The instructions and video tips are excellent, too! I can’t wait to attempt another creation!

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How to use the downloadable (PDF) patterns:

Print the pattern pieces, attach them to cardboard, and cut them out.
Print the pattern pieces, attach them to cardboard, and cut them out.
Taping the dragon mask together
Tape the pieces together.
Add paper strips and paste.
Add paper strips and paste.
Paint your dragon with your favorite colors
Add paint and your own imagination to bring your mask or sculpture to life

Sculpture Patterns:

Build Your Own Custom Set of Patterns and Save! Get 15% Off Any Order of $30 or More. Use code 15%OffOver30

 Mask Patterns:

Skye S. said:

I was commissioned to make a lion mask for a music video, and I’m so happy with how it turned out! It’s been a while since I used paper mache but this project was a blast. Thanks Jonni for such a great pattern!

About the mask and sculpture patterns…

These downloadable patterns are designed for adults (thirteen or older). They will help you create sculptures or masks you can be proud of. This is not the paper mache you remember from grade school!

Because they’re designed for adults, young kids probably won’t have enough patience to cut out the pattern pieces and tape them together. Some of the patterns also require sharp knives for cutting cardboard.

However, many children have helped their parents and grandparents create sculptures and masks using these patterns. The kids and adults have a lot of fun, and they’re excited when they see how well their sculptures turn out. Plus, creating art together is a wonderful bonding experience that will be remembered for years.

cow mask pattern pieces and instructionsHow do the patterns work?

Most of these armature patterns create all the basic shapes for you. Just cut them out of card stock or cardboard as indicated in the instructions, tape the pieces together, and cover them with just one layer of paper mache or paper mache clay.

Then add your own creative touches and a coat of acrylic paint, and you’ll have a one-of-a-kind mask or sculpture that could be treasured for years.

A few of the patterns go on the inside of your sculpture, and you add the rounded forms with crumpled paper or foil. The life-sized standing elephant, the unicorn and bunny, and the baby panda all work this way. This is the same way all the projects in my best-selling book Make Animal Sculptures with Paper Mache Clay are made.

Do you have to use paper mache to create sculptures and masks with these patterns?

Paper mache and paper mache clay work well for these sculptures. That’s how I made most of these masks and sculptures myself, with the exception of the baby unicorn and mini-bunny, which were made with Apoxie Sculpt.

Some people have covered the wolf and lion masks with fake fur. And one of our younger artists was in a real hurry to complete a school project, so he used spray paint directly over the cardboard on his wolf mask. It came quite nice. So use whatever material your own creative genius comes up with, and then come back and show it off so we can see how it comes out. 🙂

Do you have a question or need help with your pattern?

If you have a question about putting your pattern together or painting it, leave a comment below or on the Daily Sculptors page. I read all comments and answer them as soon as I can, usually within a few hours. Some of my readers might ideas for you, too — we have a very supportive community on this site.

Downloading your files: To see exactly how the downloading process should work, click here.  If your pattern doesn’t download correctly and you can’t see the solution on that page, let me know right away so I can help. This is a one-person business, but I check my inbox regularly and will respond as fast as I can.

Patterns for Paper Mache Sculptures and Masks

566 thoughts on “Patterns for Paper Mache Sculptures and Masks”

  1. Hello. You are so talented. I am looking for a tiger mold. Like Aubie. The auburn mascot. Do you make one of those?

  2. Hi my school is doing the Cinderella production and I am looking for a horse mask, would you happen to have a pattern for that?

  3. These are wonderful! How long do you think it would take, on average, to complete the baby elephant sculpture? And is it pretty easy to adjust to make it a smaller size? Thank you so much for your help with this!

    • Hi Angie. I have two baby elephant patterns – are you asking about the wall sculpture of the African elephant, or the four-legged baby Indian elephant? The patterns are very different.

      For the wall sculpture, you can make it smaller with your printer settings. As long as every page of the pattern is printed at the same percentage, all the pieces should fit together. The numbers on the tabs may become difficult to read, though, at smaller sizes. You would want to give yourself several hours to print the pattern, cut out the pieces, and tape them together. It may take a little longer. Adding the paper mache or paper mache clay will take several hours, and will then need to dry. Give it at least two days to dry, just to make sure there’s no moisture left before it’s painted. A few more hours for paint and varnish will complete the project.

      The standing elephant will take longer. The pattern can be drawn at any size, but drawing it by hand will still take time. To draw it smaller than the 30″ high size, just make a grid with smaller squares. I recommend using heavy cardboard instead of the plywood if you’re making it smaller. The rounded shapes are built up with crumpled paper, and that took me a couple of days to complete. A smaller elephant could be done faster. Then the paper mache goes on, which also took me several days for the life-sized elephant.

      I hope this gives you some idea about the time required. Of course, each person will take a different amount of time for each step. Have fun!

      • Hey Jonni, I LOVE your work

        I am the director of a youth non-profit theatre company that is looking at producing Lion King, Jr. after a LONG break on stage due to Covid.

        Do you have a full package for Lion King? (includes all the characters) If so, I would love to know the cost.

        • Hi Ann. The four lion characters come as a set, for $28. Zazu, the hyenas, Pumbaa, Rafiki and Timon are all sold separately for $12 each. I don’t have a set that includes all of them in one package.

  4. Hello,

    I was admiring your beautiful work; it left me wondering if you also might have a mask pattern for the plague doctor (an icon of past centuries). Thank you for sharing your amazing talents and knowledge!


    • Hi Barbara. I don’t have one of the 3D patterns that you put on cardboard, like most of the ones on this page. However, there is a plague doctor mask in my book about making masks, and I show how to make it in this video. Unfortunately, I don’t think it will really stop plagues, but it is a fun mask to make. 🙂

  5. Hi Joni,
    I loved your animals in paper mache / clay. l brought 2 eBook and have enjoyed making some of the animals. I am make baskets to hold Easter eggs for Easter for the grand children using the technique you used making the goose, but l hope to make different figures on the six. I cannot wait to see what comes next. Regards,


  6. Hi! I love all of your amazing work! I was wondering if you can make a waterproof sculptures from paper mache clay.


    • I haven’t had any luck doing that, but some people use Flex Seal over their sculptures and they say it does work. Any water that gets past the sealer, like through a hole pecked by a bird, will eventually destroy paper mache. I use epoxy clay for small outdoor sculptures. For bigger ones, I use the materials shown in the gnome videos. You can find the first one here.

  7. I need to make a Roblox Piggy mask for my 6 year old grandson before Christmas. Do you have any patterns that would work.

    He requested a Roblox Piggy costume on his Christmas list and his mother tried to explain that this is not available in the market. His response was “Santa knows how to get it.”

    CAN YOUHELP!!! urgent please

    • Hi Cecila. I don’t know how to make the rest of the costume, but the head would be pretty easy. It looks like a big ball with an extension that’s sort-of snout-like. And it has teddy-bear-shaped ears, for some reason. You could start with a ball slightly larger than your grandson’s head, and draw a quarter section on it. This would be the part you don’t cover, so his head can fit in. Then make another mark that would give him room for his neck. (See diagram below.) Then cut a circle that has a diameter about half that of the ball, and hold it away from the ball with a strip of cardboard. You’ll have to play around to get the strip the right shape to fit against the ball. The ears can be cut out of cardboard and taped on. I would cover it with a two layers of plaster cloth first, and then a layer of paper strips and paste, like I did when I made Humpty Dumpty. Painting him will be easy, and there must be some onesie pajamas that would work for the rest of the costume.

      I know that makes no sense when written out, so here’s a scribble that might help you see how it could be done – first showing how much of the ball to cover with your plaster cloth and paper mache, and then how the ball will look with the big silly nose stuck on.

      piggy mask

      This should be a really fun project. I hope you’ll come back to the Daily Sculptors page and show it off when it’s done! 🙂

      • Just to say, Jonni – you really are lovely. How thoughtful to give such a full response to this lady’s query – it’s no wonder your followers hold you in such esteem.

        I loved making the giraffe sculpture and, if I say so myself, it turned out fabulous thanks to your pattern and instructions. My wish list is now for a horse or zebra pattern.

        Best wishes for Christmas and thank you.

        • Hi Linda. Thank you so much for your kind thoughts, and I’m glad you had so much fun with your giraffe. We’d love to see it – 🙂

          You’re not the only one who’s asked for a horse, zebra or unicorn. I keep promising to make one, but for some reason it isn’t done yet. I’ll move it up to the head of the list. 🙂

  8. Hi, I love absolutely love your creations and methods! I’m trying your different pm recipes on some Xtra large projects with great success. I saw on your wall in a YouTube video a hippo, is this pattern available?!

    • Hi James. I started to make a pattern for that hippo several months ago, and then I got distracted. I can’t promise when it will be finished, but I do intend to get started on it again soon. Thanks for reminding me! 🙂

  9. This was a great find…we are having a birthday party for my soon to be 12 year old daughter. Originally I thought paper mache pumpkins but now thank you, we will be making pumpkins from paper mache clay.

  10. is there something I can use other than toilet paper to make the clay? I hate the thought of killing all those trees just for decorations. I would prefer to find some kind of something I can recycle like newspaper or office paper that have already been used.

    • Yes, you can use recycled paper. Just soak it longer so the fibers fall apart. The result might not be as smooth as using toilet paper, but it will still work.

    • Hi Mimi,

      I live in the Pacific Northwest. Here, the Lumber Industry grows trees just for the purpose of making Paper Products of all kinds. Toilet Paper, Napkins, Paper Towels, etc. Thank Goodness Trees are a renewable source. They are grown and managed for this purpose, leaving many behind for old growth for animal and bird homes, and air quality. Forest Management.

  11. Hi Jonni…This is quite wonderful! I’m potter from “back in the day” and moved on to fibre/textile art…but I miss working with clay (but don’t have a kiln and don’t want the heavy work anymore)….am having great fun with your PM clay. I live in Australia now (30+yrs) and miss my favourite NA animal…the moose. I really want to make life-size (or nearly) moose head. The deer is not close enough and too small….just wondered if you had a pattern for this head (even something I could scale up.

    Thanks for any help!
    Judi (Queensland, Australia)

  12. I love your creativity.
    Please can you tell me if the items can be used in the garden once dry or are only for indoor decoration.

    • Hi Jo. If you use paper mache of any kind on the patterns, they cannot go outside. Paper mache and paper mache clay are not waterproof. I believe you could use them outside if you use an epoxy clay to cover them, but you would need to cover them inside and out – and you wouldn’t want to leave even a tiny opening where water could get inside and get the cardboard pattern wet.

  13. Hi Jonni,

    I want to make a few neutral masks and some cultural masks of my own specific styles. I used to make it with paper strips a long time ago and am thinking of using your papier mache clay method. I am not sure how to make the scaffolding/armature for the masks. I used to do it by creating a clay form then make a mold with plaster and place the strips on the inside of the plaster mold. Do you have any suggestions that would be quicker and easier for the armature/pattern/scaffold for the masks?

    Trainee Art Therapist


    • Hi Daniela. You could create your original model with clay, and put your paper mache directly over the clay. This video shows how it can be done. There would be some distortion to the clay when you remove the dry paper mache, but if you use oil-based clay you could easily repair the shapes, or change them a little for the next mask.

  14. Hi Jonni,
    I watched your videos of paper mash and it helped me a lot to make my projects. Thank-you for teaching us such good techniques.
    I have one question, do you have any pattern or video for carousel horse which can help me to make it.

    • Hi Deepti. I’m glad you’re enjoying the recipe. I don’t have a pattern or video specifically for a carousel horse, but there is a set of posts about making a colt on the site. I did a lot of experiments when I made him, years ago, and I wouldn’t do it the same way again. But you might get some useful ideas. I also have a pattern for a small adult horse in my book, Make Animal Sculptures With Paper Mache Clay. It’s at the end of the book because it’s one of the more challenging projects.
      When you finish your carousel horse, I hope you’ll come back and show it off. We’d love to see it. 🙂

  15. Jonni I am now doing a katrina mask. Do you have any suggestion on how I can make paper mache flowers to put on the head?


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