Pipe Cleaner Turtle in 10 Steps with pictures – Moderate Step By Step 2 hour project

This pipe cleaner turtle will take about 2 hours to complete as instructed, or if you opt for more basic coloring of the shell you could probably complete it in 1.5 hours.  You will need roughly 25 brown and 25 green pipe cleaners to complete the project.  A wire cutter is also necessary.

Chenille stem turtle
Pipe Cleaner Turtle Completed
  1. Start with 2 brown and 1 green pipe cleaner and fold them in half.  Cut them in half with your wire cutter and fold the brown pipe cleaners in half again.
  2. Wrap the brown pipe cleaners around the ends of the green ones and twist both ends so you end up with two spiral sticks which will be the legs.
  3. Wrap the two sticks around each other at the center 3 times so they make an X shape, and weave two brown pipes around the center to make it more sturdy.
  4. Near the ends of the legs attach two green pipe cleaners perpendicular to each to create a rough outline of the shell.  The parts of the legs outside of where you attach these will be the part of the legs that show, so decide now how long you want the legs to be.
  5. Make a circle at this same point around the bottom of the shell with a brown pipe cleaner.  Attach an additional green pipe cleaner to this circle to give the shell outline a bit more substance.
  6. Fold one brown pipe cleaner in half and attach it to the circle with the pointy ends attached to the back of the circle and the rounded end protruding outward.  This will be the head.img_0563.jpg
  7. With half or quarter of pipe cleaner, fold in half and attach to the back of the circle to create the tail.img_0564.jpg
  8. Add some decorative outlining to define where the shell coloring will go.  This is optional and will add at least 1/2 hour to the project vs. using a basic coloring scheme.
  9. Fill in the secondary color (in this case brown) first and then fill in the primary color (green).  Fill in the botton of the shell with brown pipe cleaners from the outside perimeter inward.

  10. Wrap additional brown pipe cleaners around the head in a spiral patter to give it a bit more girth shape it as desired.  Bend the legs downward so the turtle can stand on it’s feet.

That’s it!  Now add some googly eyes if you feel so inclined.  Just don’t put hime in an aquarium or the pipe cleaners will rust.


For some simpler projects, look at the following:

Pipe Cleaner Octopus in 10 Steps With Pictures – Easy Step By Step 1 Hour Project (For Beginners or Kids)

Pipe Cleaner Crab

If you are ready for something more challenging:

Pipe Cleaner Eagle – A Step By Step guide with pictures (40 hour intermediate project)

Pipe Cleaner Giraffe (30 hour advanced project)

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