Plastic Bottle Crab




About: a Designer and Digital illustrator, working full time as a web and game designer. Work mostly on fun online media like Web games and rich web content. In my free time(when i'm not gaming) i do a lot of 3d mo...

Make a 3d crab out of an old bottle

Teacher Notes

Teachers! Did you use this instructable in your classroom?
Add a Teacher Note to share how you incorporated it into your lesson.

Step 1: Materials

1 plastic bottle (one crab per bottle)
1 pair of scissors or whatever cutting instrument you are comfy with


enamel paint or other pigment that will stick on the plastic

Step 2: Cutting the Eye Stalks

cut off the top of the bottle.
cut a inch and half strip and fold it up..the eye stalks will be cut out of this

Step 3: Cutting Out the Claws and Legs

cut two stips on either side of the first flap.. give them spoon shaped ends(refer to the image) we'll fashion a pair of claws from these

cut as many more flaps as you like for the legs...i prefer six legs, but some like 8...whatever is biologically accurate i guess

Step 4: Eyes, Claws and Legs

cutout the eye could stick marbles or buttons on the stalks for eyes i guess

fold the claw-arms so they become more rigid...split the spoon and mke folds like in the image ..this gives you the claws..
the legs are pretty simple..fold fold fold :)

and thats about it.. you can decorate yours with paint and whatever else you like :)

dangle this crab under a light or in a window...

Step 5: Paint It Up White

i used acrylic paints, but you could use enamel paint or spray cans too.

1) paint a base coat of white as the primer.. priming the surface ensures that your colours will turn out bright. a common mistake is that people spray on the colours they want.. and then it doesnt quite turn out as bright as they thought it would.

Step 6: Paint Your Colours

once the base paint is dry, go ahead and paint on your colours.
i've hand painted it, so it looks a bit shabby .. for a finer finish i would have used spray cans or an airbrush

Step 7: Stuff Created by Kids

I occasionally do workshops with kids at schools or children's homes, here are some of their creations. sometimes i come up with new stuff like the scorpions you see in these pics

Keep the Bottle Contest

Participated in the
Keep the Bottle Contest

Be the First to Share


    • Art Skills Challenge

      Art Skills Challenge
    • Make it Move

      Make it Move
    • Teacher Contest

      Teacher Contest

    19 Discussions


    Reply 9 years ago on Introduction

    me too.. this only looks great once painted. unfortunately i gave away the painted one long ago before taking any pics :( , havnt had the time to do it again. 


    Reply 10 years ago on Introduction

    i've used regular enamel paint... the glossy kind used to paint on wooden doors n stuff you can also use a spraycan for a good finish


    10 years ago on Introduction

    It would be awesome to see an uncut bottle with all the cut marks drawn on it with a permanent marker. This instructable would be much easier to figure out if you did. That being said, the end product looks great!

    5 replies
    chaitanyakLance Mt.

    Reply 10 years ago on Introduction

    have added diagrams...couldn't figure out how to shoot the lines on the bottle, without making it look too complicated :)


    10 years ago on Introduction

    That is REALLY good! Keep going with him and add more angles/folds to create even more of a 3D effect. Those claws would look even more impressive, with two more folds down the middle of them so you could give them a real curvature.

    4 replies

    Reply 10 years ago on Introduction

    Don't get me wrong , he is AWESOME!! Prior to you posting this I had an Octopus, all ready to go. I should post that I'ble and we could have a little under water party.


    Reply 10 years ago on Introduction

    i almost turned i into a jelly fish, with thinner strips.. octopus sounds good...put it up quickly :) and if you can get your hands on a bunch of bottlecaps or toothpaste tube caps, you could use them as suckers for the tentacles :)