How to make a Shield

-Out of Bristol Board-

Today my husband took the day off work. It was so nice just being together as a family with nothing that needed to be done. We played outside, watched a movie, and the boys (my husband and son, that is) built a model canon, which led to playing war, which naturally resulted in a craft. We couldn’t possibly defend our castle without the proper armour. Shields were needed. So when the girls went to nap and my son went to karate I went into crafting mode. I also made my first YouTube VIDEO! You can check that out if you want to watch me make the shield, or you can keep reading this to stick to our more typical print tutorial.


  • Bristol board (one sheet makes two kids’ shields)
  • Toilet paper roll
  • Tape (I used moving tape)
  • Pencil (optional)
  • Scissors
  • Scrap cardboard (or you can cut an edge off your Bristol board)


  1. Cut the bristol board in half. An easy way to cut without measuring is to just fold it in half and then cut it on the fold line.

2. Shape the shield however you want. I kept one as a full rectangle and shaped the other one a bit. You can let your kids decorate it now (or you can decorate it now!) or you can wait until the end. I waited until the end so that once it was painted and dried it was completely done.

3. Cut two strips of cardboard, approximately an inch-and-a-half wide (it has to fit into the toilet paper roll) and about 13 inches long. I like to use frozen pizza boxes for this because the sides of the box are the perfect width to fit through the toilet paper roll. (Talk about lazy. I don’t want to do the measuring step. What? Like it’s hard?)

4. Slide the cardboard through the toilet paper roll so it’s in the middle. Fold down both sides right at the edge of the roll, and fold again, about two inches from the end.

5. Take the other cardboard strip and fold it about two inches from each end.

6. Something to think about before you tape on your handles: If your child is right-handed the toilet paper roll handle will go on the right side of the shield, and the plain cardboard strip will go on the left. Reverse this is if your child is left-handed. You want their sword arm to be their dominant hand, and their shield arm to be their non-dominant hand. Tape down the ends of the toilet paper roll strip, leaving room for a hand to slide underneath the toilet paper roll.

7. Tape on your arm sling. You need to have an idea of how big your child’s arm is for this part. If your child is small you’ll need the handles closer together. If your child is big you’ll need more room inside the sling to fit their arm. Simple tape both ends down as you did with the handle, leaving the appropriate amount of space. Since we’re just using tape to stick it on it’ll be easy to adjust, or redo, if you’re made it the wrong size.

7. Decorate. We used paint. You could use markers, crayons or pencil crayons so you don’t have to wait for it to dry, for instance: if you’re making these with friends and want to get on with the fighting. You could also use stickers, or (if you want to make it look like metal) you could cover it in duct tape. So many options! If you find success with another idea post a picture for us to check out!

8. FIGHT!!!

It was pretty funny watching the kids trying to decide who was going to be the bad guy and who was going to be the good guy in this war. And it’s wonderful to watch them use their imaginations in their play! If you’re looking for other crafts with toilet paper rolls you could try out our Fire Starters, and if you’re looking for a quick and easy weapon out of toilet paper rolls definitely check out our Nunchucks! Now time for a SHIELD WALL! ATTACK!


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