Cardboard Wall Clock




Introduction: Cardboard Wall Clock

About: Hi! I´m Cristina, and I love to make new stuff using old things! I think it´s just awesome! At the same time I´m trying to help a Foundation that help children in Bangladesh, buy offering my stuff in exchan...

Hello and welcome to my Cardboard Clock instructable!

In this instrutable I will show you how I made this clock.

Why did I make it?

Well... first of all beacause I like to make stuff, second because I have a big pile of stocked cardboard to resuse/recycle :) and last, because I saw this clock on the internet and got inspired.

Hope you like it and get inspired too! :)

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Step 1: Materials and Tools Needed


  • cardboard
  • wood veneer roll (see step 3)
  • burlap
  • clock mechanism (22mm shaft) + clock hands
  • white wood glue
  • silicon liquid glue
  • A4 printer paper
  • découpage glue


  • x-acto craft knife
  • scissors
  • pencil
  • felt pen
  • ruler
  • rubber band
  • sandpaper sponge
  • printer
  • electric multi tool (see step 5)

Step 2: Cutting, Rolling and Gluing

To start making our clock we need stripes of cardboard.

Use the ruler to measure stripes 2 cm wide and cut them with the x-acto crafting knife (you can use a metal ruler to help cutting straight lines).

I strongly recomend using a cutting board . If you only have a small cutting board like mine (im reusing an old kitchen cutting board because I don´t have a "proper" one), you´ll have to keep ajusting it undernearth. Even so, using the board will make your cutting easier, protect your blade and prevent damage to the surface you cut on.

The lenght of the cardboard stripes are not very important, because you will be rolling them up, and when you are done rolling and gluing one, you just pick up another stripe and continue from there.

And this is how it goes most of the´s a bit time consuming and tedious process, but it´s worth it!

After cutting a few of 2 cm wide cardboard stripes, roll them as you see in the picture, aplying white wood glue (it was the best glue I had, and it worked out very well)

When you run out on stripes, cut some more and repeat the process.

I know, you might be thinking..."why not cut all the stripes I´ll need?"...well, you are right... you could do that...but while you go cutting again, your previous gluing work has time to dry, so when picking it up and continuing you have a more sturdy and strong piece to work on. Also...doing it like this is bit less tedious because you change tasks more often.

Step 3: The First Inner Veneer Frame

When you have a nice circular cardboard structure with enough space for your clock hands to operate, it´s time to glue the first inner frame.

When mine had a diameter 13cm, I then glued (with white wood glue) the veneer on the circular edge of the cardboard. I cut the veneer to have the exact size to make one turn. (The outer veneer frame with have several layers, but here I decided to go just with one layer)

I placed the rubber band (as you can see in the photo) just to help to stay in plce while drying the glue.

Step 4: More Cutting Rolling and Gluing

And now for more... cutting, rolling and gluing! :)

In this step we have to repeat what we did in step 2:

Cut 2 cm wide stripes of you see in the picture, and start gluing and rolling them up on to the veneer (only in the first turn, as when you finish the first turn you we be gluing over cardboard again (still with white wood glue).

When you finish gluing a stripe just pick up another (or cut more) and continue the process until you have your full sized clock. Mine has a 34 cm diameter, mas it really depends on what you want and what size are your clock hands.

I made some breaks during this process to let the glue dry well on each two or three layers in between, so no to damage the work already done when applying more outer layers of cardboard.

Step 5: Making the Hole

Before making the hole, make sure the glue has dried and your face clock is well glued and sturdy.

The best way to go here is really using a drill. However I didn´t have one (and still don´t) so I used the next best thing :) , the x-acto craft knife!

The center is easy to because it is where you started rolling the cardboard. With the knife I pretty much sticked the blade all the way through and rotated it until satisfied with the opening to fit the clock´s mechanism shaft.

Step 6: Making Space for the Clock Mechanism

I needed space on the back to accomodate the clock's mechanism.

For that I marked the spot and used an electri multi tool to cut a square slightly bigger that the mechanism, and about 0.80 cm deep.

Step 7: The Second Inner Veneer Frame

In this step we are going to repeat exactly was we did in step 3.

Cut a veneer strip the exact size to cover the cardboard edge one time, and glue it with white wood glue.

Step 8: Burlap Back

For this we a need a piece of burlap that can cover all the back and also the veneer edge.

Spread white glue generoulsy all over the back and glue it to the cardboard back of the clock.

The burlap must be well strechted but not creating tension.

When the back is dry, apply white wood glue to the veneer and start gluiing step by step the burlap. Because of the circular shape you may need to cut the burlap to you can glue it straight.

Dont´t worry about imperfections while covering the veneer with the burlap, because we will be covering the edge again with veneer. Just be carefull not to overlap the burlap and try to keep it stretched.

When all is dry, just use a scissors to cut of the excess burlap, as close to the edge as possible.

Don´t forget the hole in the burlap back for the clock mechanism shaft to pass. I made a cut with the x-acto knife.

Step 9: The Outer Veneer Frame

In this step we again do the same as step 3 and seven, but this time this will be our final veneer frame.

Because of that, we will spread glue on the burlap edge, and roll the strip of veneer as we did with the strips of cardboard. I continued gluing for three turns of the circle. The three layers where enough for a sturdy and nice looking frame.

As the veneer strip is rolled, it ends up overlayed soI used a sandpaper sponge to smooth the end, making it more even.

Step 10: The Clock Mechanism

Now it´s time to place the mechanism permanently.

Apply some liquid silicon in the mecahnism space we made (be carefull not to let silicon get into the mechanism). Then place the mechanism and let dry (see instructions

This mechanism is where the clock will be hanged from, as it has a hanger, so it´s importante to have it fixed to know where you need to place the numbers on the front.

Step 11: The Numbers

Now we will have to choose the font and size of the numbers on Word, and print them out.

Place the the printed sheets on some cardboard and cut out your numbers. Don´t forget to use your cutting board.

Before placing the numbers apply decoupage glue on the face of your clock.

Glue the numbers with silicon glue, and then "paint" them with découpage glue. Very important before gluing the numbers: remember that your hanger on the back is fixed, so you will have to guide where you glue your numbers.

The découpage glue will give it a nice finishing.

When all the glues are dry, just place on the clock hands and we´re done!

Step 12: Finished Clock

And here we have it: a beautifull clock (if I may say so), from recycled cardboard . Low cost and easy to do!

Hope it inspired you to make one to!

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Cardboard Contest 2016

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6 Discussions


2 years ago

looks good and 100% natural & recyclable excluding the clock mechanism :)

Cris DIY
Cris DIY

Reply 2 years ago

Thank you! :)


3 years ago

Cool clock! cardboard is so beautiful. Well done!

Cris DIY
Cris DIY

Reply 3 years ago

Thank you so much! Loved your rubik cube stand. Think I´ll try to make one! :)

DIY Hacks and How Tos

Interesting way to use cardboard. I kind of like how it looks a little like tree rings.

Cris DIY
Cris DIY

Reply 3 years ago

Thank you Jason :)