My boys have both been reading the Young Samurai books by Chris Bradford recently, and there has been lots of role playing with pretend Samurai swords. Today, we thought we would have a go at making one.
Inspired by some of these old Japanese woodblock prints we drew a template then cut it out of cardboard.
These swords were slender and slightly curved, so to give it some strength we cut the shape out three times and stuck them all together to make the whole thing more robust.
We added two slightly narrower layers to the handle to give it a better 3D effect. The blade was then painted silver – I used some spray paint which is very quick, but acrylic paint would also work well.
Original katana have a rectangular or rounded guard, so we cut one out of cardboard and made a slit in the centre just wide enough to slide the blade through.
To decorate the pommel, we cut out some strips of black paper 2cm wide and glued them in spirals round the pommel to make the diamond pattern that is often found on these swords. Black tape if you had any, would make this a really quick and easy job. Paint the guard black or gold and add any other decorations that take your fancy.
Finished! Perfect for practicing obscure Japanese katas, or just annoying your little sister.