Introduction: Young Link's Deku Kokiri Shield

About: I like to refer to myself as "minimally talented". This means I can do an array of things but nothing too challenging for you to duplicate now that I've shown you how.

Last Halloween my son wanted to be young Link so l made him a sturdy cardboard shield to complement his costume. He loved the shield and not only does he still play with it but his cousins have each requested one for when they make believe Four Swords Adventure together. It has held up surprisingly well against the constant beatings from cardboard, wooden, and Nerf Swords and (no pride here) looks very nice. Hope your own young Zelda fans like this shield as much as mine does.

Step 1: The Body

Nothing out of the ordinary is needed for this craft; you probably already have everything in your house right now.

School glue
Duct tape
Something to cut cardboard with
Red paint
Brown paper shopping bag

See? Easy stuff.

Now take the cardboard and cut it to the correct size and shape. l made mine for a 3 year old so it is 15" x 11". l simply did an image search and lightly traced a sheet of cardboard until it looked the way l wanted it then cut it along the lines.

Once you have created a satisfactory shape trace it on another sheet of cardboard and cut it out to make two of the exact size.

Step 2: The Symbol

Now on the first cardboard shield draw the Kokiri symbol. Again l looked at an image and lightly copied with a pencil until it looked right. Once this looks satisfactory cut it out of the shield. A box cutter works great for this task. Set the first shield aside and focus on the second now.

Step 3: The Back

Where the child's hand and forearm will be we will need a band and a grip attached to the second shield. To make the arm band and grip, cut cardboard (or if you are a really cool parent, firm leather) into two strips that measure 2" x 10".

One the second shield cut a 2" horizontal slit just above and just under where the child's forearm will be and where their palm will be then fit the two ends of each strip into these slits. Adjust to their size then glue or tape in place. Cut off extra.

l centered my band and grip with 5" in-between them.

Step 4: Color the Symbol

There are many ways to do step 4, but l painted a thick red Kokiri symbol into a piece of computer paper then glued it to the back of the first shield. Or you could just use a piece of red construction paper or paint the front of the second shield. However l believe my way looks the nicest.

Allow to dry completely. Once dry generously apply glue to the shields then sandwich them together marrying them into one. If you have done everything right the Kokiri symbol should look engraved into the shield. Applying pressure during the drying period (a stack of books) should create best results.

Step 5: Bark

Great job, your shield is almost done. Now, it just needs to look more tree-ish. To make it look like this was really carved out of a Deku tree take a brown paper shopping bag and tear it into small random pieces then glue the pieces onto the shield without any pattern mimicking how tree bark grows. For best results mix in different shades of brown paper. Let it dry and voila! You child is equipped and ready to defend them self against the many enemies at large in Hyrule.

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