Turn Your Sad Castle Into a Stunning Sandcastle

10 tools that will help you become a master sandcastle builder.

By: Ryan Reed

It's time to take your sandcastle game to the next level this summer. For larger and more detailed designs, ditch the traditional tools you're familiar with and try these tricks of the trade instead.

Materials

  • potting spade & rake
  • pvc pipe
  • funnel
  • kitchen spatula
  • spray bottle
  • putty knife
  • measuring spoons
  • wooden skewers
  • straws
  • paint brush
  • plastic cup
Sandcastle Materials

Sandcastle Materials

Photo by: Jalynn Baker

Jalynn Baker

Potting Spade & Rake

How to Build a Better Sandcastle

How to Build a Better Sandcastle

Photo by: Jalynn Baker

Jalynn Baker

Leave those flimsy plastic shovels at home and opt for the real deal instead. With these gardening tools, you can quickly set the perimeter of your castle and add a nice moat as well.

PVC Pipe

How to Build a Better Sandcastle

How to Build a Better Sandcastle

Photo by: Jalynn Baker

Jalynn Baker

Use a PVC pipe if you want the base of your spires to look crisp and smooth. Fill a plastic cup with sand and dump it into the PVC pipe that you have placed strategically on the sandcastle. The trick is to add a little water just before you top off the PVC pipe and then finish with more sand on top. The water will help the sand hold its shape.

Funnel

How to Build a Better Sandcastle

How to Build a Better Sandcastle

Photo by: Jalynn Baker

Jalynn Baker

Spires are an unusual shape, which makes them extremely difficult to replicate out of sand. There’s a trick though. Fill a small funnel with sand and use the putty knife to help you drop the sand on top of the base you just created with the PVC pipe.

Kitchen Spatula

This is the perfect tool for blending your castle spire so that it looks like one natural structure made out of sand. Feel free to use it elsewhere on your castle that needs some finessing to look more realistic.

Spray Bottle

As you probably already know, wet sand is much easier to work with. It holds its shape better and you can do more with it. Use a spray bottle to keep the sand moist as you work. It can be the difference between a masterpiece and a lot of frustration.

Putty Knife

How to Build a Better Sandcastle

How to Build a Better Sandcastle

Photo by: Jalynn Baker

Jalynn Baker

We mentioned earlier this can be used to help create the spires but it’s also handy when it comes to building mini-stairs. Use it to carve out a grand stairway and don’t forget to smooth out your lines to make it look as natural as possible.

Measuring Spoons

How to Build a Better Sandcastle

How to Build a Better Sandcastle

Photo by: Jalynn Baker

Jalynn Baker

Want to add a unique design element to your castle? Top off your measuring spoons with sand and carefully place the half-circle embellishments at the top of your sandcastle.

Wooden Skewers

How to Build a Better Sandcastle

How to Build a Better Sandcastle

Photo by: Jalynn Baker

Jalynn Baker

We’re not done with the finishing touches quite yet. To really stand out, use wooden skewers to add fun designs to the side of your castle. If you can draw it, you can carve it. Have fun and think outside the sandbox.

Straws

How to Build a Better Sandcastle

How to Build a Better Sandcastle

Photo by: Jalynn Baker

Jalynn Baker

You’ll likely have some excess sand from your wooden skewer designs, and maybe elsewhere too. Reusable straws are a great way to blow the loose sand away from your designs so that they really stand out.

Paint Brush

How to Build a Better Sandcastle

How to Build a Better Sandcastle

Photo by: Jalynn Baker

Jalynn Baker

It’s time to put the finishing touch on your castle. Use a paint brush to make the base of the castle as smooth as possible and free from any loose sand. Stick two mini-flags into the sand and you’re all finished!

How to Build a Better Sandcastle

How to Build a Better Sandcastle

Photo by: Jalynn Baker

Jalynn Baker

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