How to Make a Life-Size Paper Mache Igloo

By Lily Potter

Making an igloo may be a fun project, but it's almost impossible to do in summer. There is simply not enough snow. However, making a life-sized igloo out of paper mache is really not that hard, once you have created a framework. While you might need a few more supplies than a traditional snow igloo, in some ways it's worth it. After all, paper mache doesn't melt, and can be enjoyed year round.

Bend chicken wire, using pliers, to form a large dome. Be sure to wear gloves, as chicken wire can be quite pokey.

Cut a semicircle out of the front of the dome, where the entrance will be, using wire cutters. Use pliers to bend back the sharp edges.

Fold a piece of chicken wire into a semi circle to form the entrance.

Attach entrance to front of igloo with wire by weaving wire through the chicken wire holes.

Cut newspaper into strips, about 2 or 3 inches thick.

Mix paper mache paste in a bucket, with 6 cups water for every 5 cups of flour.

Dip newspaper into paper mache paste, and place on chicken wire frame. Repeat until totally covered.

Allow igloo to dry, at least overnight. (It may even take longer, depending on humidity of where it is drying.)

Paint the igloo your desired color. Cover with one solid coat and allow to dry before adding any details.

Draw igloo bricks, with a thin brush, in a darker color.

Allow paint to dry thoroughly, then enjoy.

Tip

This project is messy, and best done outside or in a garage. If this isn't an option, be sure to cover the floor with tarps, so you don't ruin it. Feel free to decorate your igloo however you wish -- these instructions are for a very basic igloo.

About the Author

Based in Austin, Texas, Lily Potter has been freelancing since 2003. Recently, she has been reporting on local government for "The Statesman." While she holds a Master of Science in information science from the University of Texas, her true passions are research, writing and reporting.