How to Make the Darkhold from Cardboard

by Stephen
diy Darkhold Template

The Darkhold in the MCU is so cool looking (much cooler than the book in Agents of Shield) so I thought I’d make it out of cardboard! It was featured in the Disney+ show Wandavision and Dr Strange Multiverse of Madness.It looks ancient and awesome and what better way to celebrate Friday the 13th than with a dark and mysterious spell book! ?

I love how it turned out. It makes me feel like I can put a spell on someone.


Materials List:

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Steps to Make A Darkhold:

  • Part 1: Front Cover
    1. Cut the top, bottom, and 1 of the narrow sides off a cereal box so it “opens” like a book.
    2. Trace it onto corrugated cardboard and cut 3 pieces out…2 will be used for the front cover and 1 for the back cover. 
    3. Take 1 of these cardboard rectangles and measure out the following:
      • 2 cm in from both of the long sides
      • 4 cm in from the bottom
      • 2.5 cm in from the top
    4. Connect the lines so you get a box. It’ll be a little thicker on the top and the thickest on the bottom.
    5. Use a utility blade to cut out this box. It will look like a picture frame once the center is cut out.
    6. Put this “picture frame” on top of the 2nd piece of corrugated cardboard. Trace the inside of this box onto this 2nd piece. Remove the “picture frame”.
    7. On the 2nd piece, measure about 1 cm in from the line from the sides, top, and bottom. Connect all the lines and cut it out. It will look like a picture frame with a slightly smaller opening. When these two frames are stacked together it looks like the second one is recesses below it, which just mean it looks sunken in.
    8. Glue them together.
    9. Glue a piece of cereal box cardboard on the back to fill up the big hole in the center.
    10. Hot glue on two rectangles at the top corners so it looks like a castle and hot glue pieces on the two bottom corners to extend the cardboard. **alternatively you can just add these to your tracing in step 2 so it’s one solid cardboard piece**
    11. Cover everything in white glue and gently press paper towels into the glue and all the corners. It will look like a mess, but once it’s painted the texture will look really nice. Allow it to dry completely before continuing.
    12. Cut out ring 1 from cereal box cardboard and glue onto the center of the recessed panel.
    13. Cut out ring 2 from cereal box cardboard and glue onto the center of the recessed panel.
    14. Sunburst at the side: Cut out long, thin triangles from cereal box cardboard. Glue them onto the right side so it looks like a sunburst coming out of the rungs you just glued on. Make sure you fold them so they follow the “step up” height change of the panels. Please see the YouTube video for reference.
    15. Fold over and glue down the ends. Cut off any overhang.
    16. Sunburst at the bottom: Cut out long thin triangles and glue down. Allow them to hang over the bottom of the panel.
    17. Using your Hot glue gun, add some squiggles on the recessed part of the cover.
    18. “Key”
      1. Get 9 sheets of cereal box cardboard.
      2. Glue together stacks of 3.
      3. Trace the key design onto each of them and cut out.
      4. Divide in half and glue together (you want 2 thick key pieces at the end).
      5. And edges until round.
      6. Hot glue onto the center of the recessed panel.
    19. Covered the center gap with a strip of cereal box cardboard.
    20. Add as many detail pieces as you’d like to the front cover. A circle here, stack of squares there, etc.
    21. The final step is to add a thin line of hot glue all around the inside edge of the top later to act like a mini raised up border.
  • Part 2: Spine
    1. Measure the width of the side of the cereal box you are using from Part 1 Step 1.
    2. Trace onto corrugated cardboard and cut it out.
    3. Make sure the top and bottom are jagged so the spine of the Darkhold looks banged up.
    4. Either glue down paper towels or smear around hot glue until you get a rough texture.
    5. Cut symbols out of cereal box cardboard and glue down
  • Part 3: Back cover
    1. Take the 3rd (and last) rectangle of corrugated cardboard that you cut out in Part 1 Step 2. This will be the back cover.
    2. Hot glue on top pieces and cut asking the bottom so it isn’t a perfectly straight line. You want it to have a unique shape.
    3. Glue big pieces of cereal box cardboard onto the back.
    4. Cut circle 1 out of cereal box cardboard. Hot glue on a ring in the center.
    5. Take making tape and tape from the center down until the entire circle is covered.
    6. Glue onto the center of the back cover. As you can see it’s 3d and juts out a bit.
  • Take your cereal box from Part 1 Step 1 and glue on the front cover, spine, and back cover. Allow the glue to dry completely before painting.
  • Paint the entire cover in black craft paint.
  • Part 4
    1. Each page will be 1 side of a cereal box. I recommend making 10 pages, but I didn’t have that many cereal boxes so that’s why I did less in the video.
    2. When you’re breaking down your cereal boxes, you want the big flat panels so you be cutting off the narrow sides of your cereal box. However, you’ll want to leave about 1.5 cm overhang on each of the narrow sides so the manufacturer fold line is still there.
    3. Paint the front and back of every cereal box sheet with a mix of black, white, and purple craft paint.
    4. Take scissors and cut all around the edges so the pages would look torn and rough.
    5. Trace the magic designs onto two pages. It will leave an indent.
    6. Paint or draw in the designs, following the indent you made.
    7. Weather the pages so they look old and dirty.
    8. To attach the pages, hot glue on very thin strips of corrugated cardboard between all the pages in that overhang section you kept. The manufacturer fold lines will allow the pages to open easier once it’s all stacked together.
    9. Once dried, put a lot of hot glue onto the ends and glue it right into the spine of the Darkhold.
  • Final paint job: Take silver craft paint and add a very, very light dry brush on the entire cover to make the details pop.
  • Enjoy!


**prints out on one page of regular computer paper (8.5×11 inch)**

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