diy project: cardboard stampede w/ ann wood

In 2006 I started making cardboard horses. They were a self imposed assignment, a daily creative task intended to motivate and loosen me up, little experiments, paralysis prevention. My plan was to make a cardboard horse everyday, Monday through Friday until I had 100. I did and exhibited the group at Tinlark in Los Angeles in 2007. I’ve made 3 patterns, two adults and a colt, to share and I hope you make a cardboard horse or two or three or maybe a little family or maybe your own stampede! –Ann Wood

CLICK HERE for Ann’s full project after the jump!


What you will need:

-Cardboard – you can use any kind – I think a medium weight is good, I’m using cardboard from a gift box for this demonstration.



-manicure scissors

-hammer and one nail


-thin wire


-paint and brushes, glue, paper, fabric, lace etc. – whatever you like, whatever you’ve got.



First download the pattern, cut out the pieces and trace them onto your cardboard, I’m using an old box. I like to use a pair of manicure scissors for the difficult small bits – corners etc. I included an optional tail and mane in the pattern. I’m foregoing those for this horse and will add a tail and mane of antique lace.


You can finish your horse with collage or fabric or pencil – the possibilities are endless – but if you choose to paint like I am today, then paint both sides to prevent curling. I’m using latex paint for the base.


And adding some dapples from my water color box.


And some splatters of ink. You can use a stiff paint brush or old tooth brush and I used a fine sharpie pen to draw on a very simple eye and mouth.


Next I’m adding the antique lace mane and tail using a glue stick ( or elmer’s glue if you prefer).
Once that is dry we’re ready to assemble.



Arrange the legs with the body sandwiched between and use the nail to

make a hole through all three layers. You’ll need to put a piece of wood or heavy cardboard underneath to protect the surface you’re working on.


Thread the wire through the button holes and then pass both strands through the legs and body.


Thread both wires through a small button on the back, pull it tight and twist to secure and trim the extra wire with pliers.


Add another piece of wire for hanging by twisting it around the buttons. I like to give all my horses a name, this is Sebald, horse #101.


Finished! I’ve hung Sebald amongst the snow flakes over my bed with Winston (horse #71).

  1. jhbump says:

    If you look at earlier comments, your’ll find Anne’s own words an a link to working template, “”:
    ann wood said:
    May 27th, 2009 – 5:12 pm
    Thanks so much everyone! And thanks Grace and Ann for sharing my stampede. It occurred to me today that it might be fun for littler kids to cut them out of construction paper and use those little brass paper fastener things for the joints.
    Thanks again- ann wood
    ps – the pattern download link is at the beginning of the instruction text and you can find it on my blog as well

    1. Cherie says:

      When I found this post last year I made a few of these. They are galloping across my kitchen wall and look amazing. I put a link to your page on my blog at the time too

  2. YAFIT says:



  3. Елена says:

    Veru nice!

  4. Debbie S says:

    The link to the pattern does not work. Can you please send me the pattern?

  5. Courtney says:

    This is great! I love horses so much, so this is an awesome craft. I am going to try the 100 horses idea. Such a great idea, thanks for sharing!

  6. Dawn says:

    I would love to try this but the pattern no longer works! I love how whimsical yours turned out.

  7. Kristin says:

    I would also love to try this project but the link to the pattern isn’t working. Re-link pretty please!

  8. Beth Rome says:

    Amazing! Your creativity, and use of color is incredible! You are one talented girl Ann!

  9. etoile says:

    so cute!!!!

  10. I love your project, though I’m not really clear on how you’ve hung them on your wall. I rent – love my house – but my landlord has one (and only one) rule – nothing hung on the walls. I lean pictures/stack books – whatever I can think of to add color.

  11. Naama says:

    This is beautiful:)

  12. Jamie says:

    Oh my god! I haven’t seen such a beautiful craft in at least two months. Since my daughter was sitting and cutting up some old books with some new scissors. It reminds me of bits of cards that someone has cut out a horse shapes, and than painted it! Witty!

  13. Joy Francis says:

    This is awesome..but the link is no longer found or not working….Can you share the pattern please…

  14. Tiffini says:

    This is perfect! Love the inspiration! creating a mobile for my baby daughter…but somehow think it will be hard to stop and a beautiful collection will grow on the shelf!

  15. Stacey says:

    I’ve got everything ready but the pattern! Please give us an update when it’s working! I’m SO excited!

  16. Melbourne Cup Crafter says:

    Pattern link above,
    Thankyou for the lovely project

  17. amydeanne says:

    these are beautiful, but I can’t down load the pattern! Could I possibly still get it? I would love it please!

  18. Mimi Hanna says:

    Love your horses…just downloaded the pattern…THANK YOU! Just what I love to do …among jillions of other things..

  19. Mimi Hanna says:

    Love this idea…Thank You!!! Cannot wait to create some!!!

  20. JenniferGT says:

    Our school mascot is the Mustang… I want to have each of my art students make one and hang them up around the front office :).

  21. Catarina Ek says:

    I love this. Made me think of doing a similar project with monkeys (I currentlt have a little thing for monkeys).
    Thank you so much for posting. It’s a beautiful piece of art.

  22. Sherree Williams says:

    Wanted to let you know how much I have enjoyed using you pattern for these wonderful ponies! First I made them with my grandchildren, than I made them with the tops of old Christmas boxes and sent them as Christmas cards! Thank you for sharing your art.

  23. Martha in Oregon says:

    I just ran across this! My boyfriend loves horses and these are going to start appearing on the walls of his place!

  24. Laurie says:

    A perfect test of class and style is when someone finds such a great site/article 4 years later and both the article and style are still fantastically gorgeous and still beloved. Good Job! I will enjoy trying to create some horses too .. .. tyvm for a great DIY Ann W. Respects

  25. Maggie says:

    This has so reconnected me with the preteen who loved horses more than anything else. Thank you!

  26. Cherie says:

    This is a wonderful project. I have put a link to your blog on my page. I hope you get loads of hits. x

    1. Karen says:

      Can you please share a current link for the horses pattern?

  27. Karen says:

    Nevermind…I googled and found it! Sharing here. Can’t wait to make some of these with my granddaughter! :)

  28. Lee says:

    These are so lovely! I was looking for ornament inspiration and found these; I didn’t realize you had a pattern, so I made my own. 18 horses later, I LOVE them all! Thank you for such inspiration!
    here’s pix of my ponies:;topicseen#new


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