A Day in the Park Sailboat

By  Helen Bradley  for  AMACO

size: 9"x2"x10"

  • A Day in the Park Sailboat


  • AMACO Balsa Foam, soft density: 6”x9”x1/2” sheet
  • Wooden dowel, 1/4” diameter: 13” length
  • Unbleached muslin or lightweight cotton fabric, 12” square
  • Wire, 22-gauge: 12” length
  • String, 6” length


  • Small hand drill or awl
  • AMACO EZ Grip Modeling Tools
  • Acrylic paints: blue, white
  • Gesso
  • White craft glue
  • Fabric glue

Basic Supplies

  • pencil sharpener, scissors, ruler, white copy paper, paintbrush, newspaper (to cover work surface)
  • 1. Measure and cut three 2"x9"x1/2" balsa foam strips. Glue strips together creating 1-1/2"x2"x9" rectangle. Let dry.
  • 2. Use pencil to lightly sketch base of sailboat on balsa foam rectangle. Make sure sailboat has flat bottom to stand upright. Use 2" side for deck and 1-1/2" area for sailboat's depth.
  • 3. Use modeling tools to carve sailboat shape in balsa foam rectangle. Begin by carving away larger pieces, gradually working to create a more-detailed sailboat shape. Use fingers to smooth surfaces.
  • 4. Adults, help kids when cutting dowels and drilling holes. Measure and cut wooden dowel into one 5" and one 8" lengths. Use pencil sharpener to sharpen end of 8" length into point. Press pointed end into center of sailboat. Use hand drill to drill hole at end of 5" dowel and into mast above deck. See photo as guide. Use wire to attach 5" dowel to mast.
  • 5. On covered work surface, paint sailboat and wooden pieces with gesso. Let dry. Paint sailboat blue. Let dry. Add white stripe along sailboat body. Let dry.
  • 6. For sail, measure and draw 9"x7-1/2" triangle on white copy paper. Cut triangle from paper. Trace triangle onto white fabric. Cut out sail. Fold hem along edges, leaving enough room for dowel to fit through, and use fabric glue to secure. Insert sail over mast; attach loose corner of sail onto dowel using string.
  • 7. Glue 8" wooden dowel into boat. Adjust sail as needed.