There are three ESSENTIAL elements to this project:
- Glue: I'm using Aleene's Quick Dry Tacky Glue, which bonds pieces of paper together in around 30 seconds. However, any tacky glue will be fine, but don't try to use a glue stick. It will leave a sticky mess on your hands which will get on the paper whenever you handle it.
- Paper: Good quality cardstock is also a must. I'm using acid and lignin free cardstock from Michaels. It has a 65lb or 176g/m^2 weight. For those of you who are thinking of using copy paper, it's not going to work. You are welcome to try it, but I can assure you that you will be disappointed, or left with a very flimsy elephant.
- Scissors or Knife: I personally prefer to use my stainless steel scissors for cutting out the pieces. If you choose to use an X-acto knife, you'll need a ruler to make sure all the cuts are straight.
While those are the essentials, here are some optional, but very helpful items:
- Ruler and Scoring Tool: To make folds neat and clean, I highly advise the use of a ruler and scoring tool. The scoring tool I used is a mechanical pencil WITHOUT ANY LEAD. By using the ruler to make a straight path while you run the tip of the pencil over the lines, you can make very crisp, professional folds. If you use lead in the pencil, you won't be able to distinguish the different folds, so make sure your pencil has no writing capabilities! However, any object with a blunt, yet precise tip can be used for scoring.
- Tweezers: Tweezers are useful for holding flaps that need to be glued while you wait for them to dry. They are particularly helpful in the tusks. I didn't use mine too often, but when they were needed, they were certainly helpful.
- Toothpicks: Like the ruler and scoring tool, I highly recommend you keep around 20 or so toothpicks with you. I used them for spreading the glue around the flaps once I put on a drop. The toothpicks help spread the glue evenly and avoid excess glue from oozing out when the flap is pressed to the paper. Once again, highly recommended.
- Clear Packing Tape: I use clear packing tape when for some reason, the glue won't hold the paper together. I also use it right before I put on the back of the elephant. During this time, I covered the entire interior with masking tape to reinforce the entire structure. It's super strong, and once its on the paper, it's not coming off the paper cleanly. Great to have, but not an urgent need.