How to Make a Carousel Horse

Updated July 20, 2017

A carousel horse is an excellent addition to any collection. With the help of modern technology, almost anyone can now create a realistic reproduction of this beautiful work of art. All you need is the ability to manipulate a paint brush, drill and glue gun. You can then make and decorate any kind of carousel horse you wish.

Purchase the size and style of horse you want. The largest ones are typically 65 inches tall. Clean your horse with soap and water before you begin. Make sure you dry it thoroughly. Remove the handles from the horse's head.

Find a place to hang the horse where you can paint it. Take the metal clothes hangers, and insert them in the holes where the handles used to be. Sprinkle the horse with a base white with a spray enamel. Make it as smooth as possible, and avoid causing runs. Put two coats of enamel on your horse, which enables you to paint a colour of your choice without the original coat showing through.

Select the colours you want for your horse's body and mane. Some people like to recreate the look of a traditional, carved wooden horse. You can purchase special paints that enable you to imitate a wood surface. Choose the colours for your saddle, bridle and accessories when you are finished choosing the body and mane paints.

Paint your horse, beginning with the mane and tail. A technique known as dry brushing is most efficient in painting these areas. Paint the hooves and the shoes in your chosen colour. Sink the brush in the paint and then unload it to a cloth, adding one layer at a time until you get the appropriate effect.

Continue with the accent portions. Paint the bridle first, then move on to the saddle area, using the colours of your choice. Paint the round part of the eyes--starting from the inner corner to the centre--with either black or dark brown. Then, paint a white crescent-like shape at the top of the horse's eye.

Spray a clear sealer over the horse to protect the paint when all the paint has thoroughly dried. Cover the top, sides and bottom evenly with the sealer. Use a hot glue gun to fasten wooden plugs over the handle holes and the holes where the springs were originally located.

Attach the horse to the pole. Make a hole in the saddle and belly with the help of a drill and bit. Slide the horse onto the pole and decide where you want to set the horse up. Drill a hole into the pole so that you can put in a screw to keep your horse in position. Use the drill and bit again to make a hole in the base. Set the pole onto the base with a 3-inch lag screw going firmly through the base and into the pole. Select the colour stain of your preference. You should always do this after you put the clear sealer on the horse. Finally, decorate your horse.


Be as creative as you can with your horse.


Be careful when embellishing your horse, because it can become messy if you don't take care.

Things You'll Need

  • Mold of carousel horse--full size, half size or small
  • Soap, water and cleaning cloths
  • Paint brush
  • Paint sprayer
  • White base enamel paint
  • Decorative coloured paints
  • Clear sealer
  • Glue gun and glue
  • Drill and bit
  • Metal clothes hangers
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About the Author

Yuliya Prilepina is a third-year English major at the University of California, Davis. Throughout her college career, she has crafted and submitted papers for various classes and has extensive experience in academic argumentative essay writing. As a writer with a commitment to crafting her work, Prilepina has a particular interest in learning to incorporate new styles into her writing.