How to Make a Lion Tail to Paint

by Steve Sparkes
No lion costume is complete without a tail.

No lion costume is complete without a tail.

Hemera Technologies/ Images

Make a snazzy lion tail to complete a Halloween costume or to use in a "Pin the Tail on the Donkey" type of game at a safari-themed birthday party, replacing the donkey picture with a lion. A homemade lion tail will cost just a dollar or two, or almost nothing if you use recycled materials. Allow 15 to 30 minutes for construction and two hours of paint-drying time before using the tail.

Items you will need

  • Two cereal boxes
  • Scissors
  • Pencil
  • Art glue
  • Yellow and brown poster paints
  • 5 toilet roll tubes
  • String
  • Brown wool

Cereal Box Lion Tail

Step 1

Use scissors to remove the front, back and bottom panels from a cereal box so that the panels stay joined. Repeat using another cereal box of the same size.

Step 2

Draw the outline of a lion tail with a pencil on a plain side of one sheet of cereal box card. Make the tail wider at the top, taper it toward the bottom and add a curve and a bulb shape on the end.

Step 3

Cut the tail shape out and trace around it on the other sheet of card. Cut that tail shape out.

Step 4

Glue the two tail shapes together with art glue with the plain sides facing out.

Step 5

Paint the body of the tail yellow with poster paints and paint the bulb on the end brown.

Toilet Roll Tube Lion Tail

Step 1

Cut two lengths of string 8 inches longer than the length of five toilet tubes joined end to end.

Step 2

Glue each length of string down the inside of opposite sides of the toilet roll tubes, joining the tubes together. Leave a small gap between each tube to allow the tail to articulate. Leave equal lengths of the string at either end of the tube tail.

Step 3

Draw a 3-inch-diameter circle on a piece of card with a 1.5-inch circle in the center. Cut the 1.5-inch-wide ring out.

Step 4

Tie the end of a brown ball of wool around the ring. Cut the wool off at a manageable length and wrap it around the ring, pushing it through the center hole and around the outside. Tie on new lengths of wool and continue winding it around the ring until only a half-inch circle shows in the middle. Cut the wool at the outside of the ring. Move the cardboard ring off center and tie a piece of wool tightly around the middle of the bunch of short wool lengths. Take the ring off and fluff up the pompom you have made.

Step 5

Attach the pompom to the bottom of the tail with the excess string.

Step 6

Join the extra string at the top of the tail together with sticky tape.

Step 7

Paint the toilet tubes yellow.

Tips & Warnings

  • For a simple-to-make and sturdy tail, cut 2 feet off a length of spare rope and fray out 2 or 3 inches at one end. Paint with acrylic yellow paint.

About the Author

Steve Sparkes started writing professionally in 1982. He was a journalist and photographer for "The New York Waste" magazine for a decade. Sparkes has a diploma of art and design and a Bachelor of Arts in history of art from the South-East Essex School of Art. He also has a Master of Arts in photography from the London School of Printing and Graphic Arts.

Photo Credits

  • Hemera Technologies/ Images