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Sand Castle Display/Deco-Lamp


Here’s a great idea for a cool display or even go so far as to make a neat light with a sand castle, all made by you! What you need are:


  • sawdust -- you can usually find it free at your local hardware store or a lumber yard. Or you can substitute sand you can get at the beach. (Sugar Sand we call it here in Florida and there is defintely NO shortage of it.)
  • wallpaper paste powder -- you can also get this at a hardware store, but not for free
  • water for your paste
  • sand castle molds: leftover paper towel rolls, cans and paper cups
  • a few spoons and a butter knife for sculpting and molding



Now about that neat looking lamp display...Definitely enlist an adult for any of this project as working with any kind of electrical wiring or something involving electricity, its far better to be safe then sorry. Now get idea for what kind of castle you want. Then you must make a cabinet to hold your display and to firmly anchor the light to. This is a weekend project variation I think would be a great way to add to any person’s bedroom, or make an interesting piece for a living room or den.


Once you decide on the size, go shopping for what you need:


  • Wood for your cabinet, nothing too thick, I would go with ¼" plywood in a nice sized sheet you figure you can get all the sides you need.
  • You need some type of baseboard for extra flair for it as well as to make it all come together. There are three main sides, a top and bottom.
  • You need some kind of sturdy clear plastic that you can allow the light to be shown upon your creation. The baseboard effect also helps hide the light at the top, and makes for a more ‘finished’ look.
  • A simple small bulb light that you can purchase in a hardware store is fine and keep in mind you will not want it to be too powerful so that it overpowers the sculpture.
  • Some construction paper to make the sand foundation in the display.
  • The addition of some small flags atop the paper towel molded towers and some colored plastic of your favorite color and you have yourself all you need to make it happen!


You decide and have the measurements done on paper before going shopping to make it easier and more fun. You nail together your cabinet sides. Take the plastic clear piece and size it appropriately and place it in the finished cabinet. I used penny nails to anchor the sides of the cabinet and to form the base and top. Next you take some construction paper and glue to make a sand base to lay inside the display that will be underneath your castle and other decorations which could include small pewter figures which a re very popular these days.


I used real sand and glue to form my castles out of paper towel rolls, old tissue boxes, any kind of small box that would be usable. You smear glue all over the cut to size roll or box, before coating it with sand to accomplish a similar effect as to the other forms above. No matter which way you go, you have a really nice sculpture you can enjoy and be proud of for a long time.


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