Classroom Decoration – Part 2: “Norman” Kite Shield

Part 1. Design

After the Viking shield (discussed previously on this website), I started working on what I thought would be a simpler build. I chose to try my hand at one of the two kite shields that I plan to make as part of the Viking Shield wall.

Tools used

  • Jigsaw
  • Hammer
  • Battery-powered drill
    • Screw bits
    • Drill bits
    • counterbore
  • Random orbit sander
  • Pens and pencils
  • Measuring tape
  • Paintbrushes
  • Clamps

Materials used

  • Two sheets of plywood (122 x 62cm) per shield
  • One long pole of 4cm by 3cm
  • Wood glue
  • Skai leather for the rim
  • Upholstery nails for the rim
  • Two cheap, fake leather belts for the handles
  • White linen
  • Screws of various sizes.
  • Acrylic paints (blue and white)

Part 2. The Build

Now, this did not go as planned, and if this were an honest reconstruction of a medieval kite shield, I would not have been proud. However, for classroom decoration, this will suffice.

I started by cutting the sheets of plywood into the teardrop shape with my jigsaw. I had first sketched it out using an improvised compass.

I then glued two plywood panels together and clamped them around some block of wood. I don’t know where I went wrong here. Probably the bend wasn’t aggressive enough, or the glue wasn’t the proper choice. Anyways, the wood bent back quite a bit. So much so that I added a horizontal bar of pinewood to make it bend into shape more and to keep it so. I screwed it in and hammered in some wedges for good measure.


I pushed forward and glued on the linen, picked the location for shield boss, and bolted it to the shield.


I sketched the design with a pencil, then added copious amounts of acrylics paints to decorate the shield. Meanwhile, I cut a strip of fake leather and started hammering it home with the upholstery nails. I love the look of this. The look I, initially, like a lot less was that of the design. I asked some friends for feedback and went back to the shield. I made the design stand out more and applied some more circles and circles within those cirles.


The handles for the shield were easy enough to make. I got the idea whilst shopping at an “action” store with my girlfriend. It was quite the experience, but I spotted fake leather belts for three euros each. I browsed the internet and found them for 2,5, which was a win in my book. I bolted these through the shield for some extra character and walked around like a knight for a bit. A neighbour spotted me. I was not ashamed.


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