How to make a Driftwood Seahorse

Dear Chicago House,

Mr. Chicago house and I had a little wander down to our favorite secret beach last week and collected a lovely bundle of drift wood.


With a bit of creative magic I used it to whip up Seahorse!

driftwood seahorse

isn’t she lovely…I have called her Sally, at the moment she is gracing a wall in my office.

driftwood seahorse

Would you like to know how to make one…read on

How to make a Driftwood Seahorse

What you will need:

  • Pieces of straightish driftwood, I had about a shopping bag full and had lots left over
  • Stiff Cardboard
  • Pencil
  • Ultility Knife
  • Hot glue gun
  1.  Sketch your starfish shape on your cardboard, mine  is about 36″ by 16″. I copied the shape from an abstract watercolor of seahorses
  2. Cut out your shape using a utility knife. You can see from this picture I taped two peices of cardbord together to get the height I wanted.
  3. Sort through your driftwood and start laying it over your cardboard, this process is really trial and error. I tried to keep the placement tight over the seahorse’s belly but was quite happy to have a more ragged look over the back. I kept the driftwood pieces mostly parallel.
  4. Once you are happy with your choice and placement of the driftwood, fire up your hot glue gun and start sticking everything down. I started at the tail and worked up.
  5. For the eye I used a driftwood walnut (Mr Chicago house can take credit for that!)
driftwood seahorse
driftwood seahorse
driftwood seahorse

Love from

Creative in Chicago


p.s. Sally the driftwood seahorse was featured on an episode of Unlivable on the FYI network >> read more

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61 thoughts on “How to make a Driftwood Seahorse

  1. Really neat idea if you can spend time walking the beaches, especially after a storm. Thanks for sharing.

  2. WOW! WOW! WOW! I can't wait to go and find some driftwood, this is truly inspirational, and would look TERRIFIC on my new bathroom wall!

    Love it!

    Judi in the UK

  3. This will look brilliant in the courtyard of the beach house villa at mooloolaba qld. I have some marine ply let over from another project to attach it to. Beautiful!

  4. I threaded some thin string onto a fat needle and stabbed it through the cardboard and created a loop. Hope that helps ans glad to hear your liked the seahorse!

  5. I love this idea! I would love it if you joined and contribute your awesome posts at my link party at City of Creative Dreams, starts on Fridays 😀 Hope to see you there at City of Creative Dreams Link Party.

  6. This is such a creative project. Love the soft look of driftwood and finding new ways to use it. Your seahorse is so sweet.
    Thanks for sharing,
    Pieced Pastimes

  7. I threaded some thin string onto a fat needle and stabbed it through the cardboard and created a loop. Hope that helps ans glad to hear your liked the seahorse!

  8. Can I say how much I love this. Couple of questions, how thick is your cardboard? I know that it has to be thicker than what it seems. Also, what is the height of it? Finally, would you just sell that one to me, I have no talent, no skills. lol!!!!

  9. Hi Erin ,
    The cardboard I used is very stiff, I am not sure how thick it is. I got it from the back of a large sketch pad. The height is about 30".

  10. I want soooooo much to make this seahorse, however, I live in an area that is far from the beach. Does anyone have an abundant supply, that they would care to donate, or sell?? I'd rather not purchase on ebay. Any replies will be very much appreciated.
    Thank you

  11. Hi Sherry,
    Glad I have inspired you to make a sea horse. You could always try making it out of twigs gathered from a woodland area or even a park…to make them look like drift wood you could try bleaching them first. Send me a picture once you make it and I will stick it up in a new blog post

  12. That is just brilliant! Exactly what I want and. Instead of buying one, I am going to try making it! Thanks for sharing 🙂

  13. I came across this a few months ago and have been dying to try it. I had to make driftwood since our nearby beaches are pretty empty, but I found a great tutorial online and Hurricane Matthew provided me with a lot of branches. I soaked them, bleached them, and now I’m just waiting for them to dry. Hopefully I will have time this weekend to create a “Sally” of my own. With your instructions I’m hoping it turns out as great as yours did!

  14. I really want to make one but are having a hard time finding a stensil that will print out big enough. I cant draw 🙁 help! 🙂

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