How to Make a Dagger Out of Cardboard

Written by mackenzie wright
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How to Make a Dagger Out of Cardboard
Old grocery packing boxes make for a good material for a cardboard dagger. (cardboard box image by MAXFX from

The right costume props provide a finishing touch when you are going to a parade, festival or Halloween event, but they can be a costly addition. If you are dressing up as a pirate, medieval knight or some other fierce warrior, a dagger makes an excellent addition to the look, and you don't have to break your budget to have one. With some scrap cardboard, paint and household craft supplies, you can make a wicked-looking weapon that you'll be proud to wield.

Skill level:

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Things you need

  • Scrap paper
  • Pencil
  • Ruler
  • Scissors
  • Heavy cardboard
  • Box cutter (optional)
  • Hot glue
  • Silver or grey paint
  • Craft paint brush
  • Black acrylic craft paint
  • Paper towels
  • White acrylic craft paint
  • Brown or black acrylic craft paint

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  1. 1

    Measure and cut a 12 inches by 3 inches rectangular piece of paper. Lay it on your surface vertically, so it is tall and narrow.

  2. 2

    Mark a vertical line half inch from the right edge, going from top to bottom. Make another half inch line from the left edge. Shade the centre block between the lines.

  3. 3

    Draw a horizontal line three-fourth inches from the bottom edge of the page. Shade from the line to the bottom edge. Ignore the vertical lines and shade from the left to the right edge.

  4. 4

    Make a second horizontal line 4 ½ inches from the bottom, and a third horizontal line 5 ¼ inches from the bottom. Shade the space between the second and third horizontal lines across the paper.

  5. 5

    Cut away all the non-shaded areas. The bottom section with the protruding tabs is the handle, and the top section is the blade.

  6. 6

    Measure across the top edge of the paper. Make a mark at the top centre. Draw a horizontal line 2 inches down from the top edge.

  7. 7

    Hold the ruler on an angle going from the horizontal line at the right edge to the top centre mark. Trace a line along the ruler. Make another angled line with the ruler going from the horizontal line on the left edge to the top centre.

  8. 8

    Cut along the angled lines to create a point at the top of the blade.

  1. 1

    Place the paper template on a piece of cardboard and trace the shape and cut it out. Trace and cut out another identical cardboard shape. Hot glue the cardboard shapes together, lining up the edges to meet. This will create a stronger dagger.

  2. 2

    Paint the blade section of the dagger silver or grey on each side and on the edges of the cardboard. Allow it to dry.

  3. 3

    Dab a dry paint brush into a tiny drop of black paint and brush it onto a paper towel until most of the paint is wiped off for a subtle, dry-brush effect. Brush it down one edge of the blade on the front and back to make a shadow.

  4. 4

    Dry-brush white paint on with a clean brush down the opposite edge, on the front and back, to create a highlight.

  5. 5

    Cut out four strips of cardboard measuring 3/4 inch by 3 inches. Hot-glue two strips horizontally on the handle, matching one up with the bottom and one with the centre protruding tabs. Turn over the dagger and hot-glue the other two strips, matching them up with the tabs.

  6. 6

    Paint the entire handle black or brown. Allow it to dry before using it.

Tips and warnings

  • Change the shape of your blade template, if desired, to make it curved, shorter, longer or whatever look you think will go with your costume.

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