diy · Holidays & Crafts · Mothering

Leprechaun Trap DIY

On St. Patrick’s Day eve, a leprechaun visits our household to hid his pot of gold, leave treats for the kids and make mischief for mom and dad to clean up. He is super sneaky and none of us can ever seem to catch a glimpse of him; no matter how hard we might try! We even build a leprechaun trap with hopes that our creativity will lure him and allow us to capture him!

Why might we want to catch a leprechaun you ask? Well, because if you do, he will grant you wishes! Legend says that if you are lucky enough to catch one, they can use their magic to barter for their freedom through the granting of up to three wishes.

Leprechauns are attracted to gold, shiny objects, rainbows, and shamrocks; so, with this years’ trap, we were sure to incorporate as many of these items as possible. Check out the instructions below for any easy guide to making your very own leprechaun trap! And, if you happen to catch one, remember the person who taught you how to make your trap and feel free to use one of those wishes to send me on a kid-free tropical vacation!


  • Cardboard box (I used a shoebox)
  • Colored construction paper
  • Gold glitter card stock
  • Stick or dowl
  • Yarn/string
  • Extra cardboard (if your box isn’t very big)
  • Cotton balls
  • Glue
  • Scissors
  • St. Patrick’s Day-themed stickers
  • Index card
  • Permanent marker
  • Tape


  1.  Wrap the bottom/large part of the shoebox in green construction paper. I cut the paper to size for each side (leaving some room to wrap around the edges) and then used glue to secure it! This process was very similar to wrapping a present. I also used some clear tape to help keep the paper down around the edges.
  2. Decorate the green box with stickers – I got the kids involved in this step and they loved it!
  3. Cut a rectangle out of the extra cardboard. You will use this to make your “rainbow”.
  4. Cut the colored construction paper into strips; mine were approx. 2 inches wide. Glue them onto the cardboard rectangle to resemble a rainbow.
  5. Glue several cotton balls to one side of the cardboard rainbow to make a cloud.
  6. Cut approximately 20 small circles out of your gold sparkle card stock (these will be used as “gold” to lure the leprechaun to the trap). I traced the bottom of a shot glass to keep my circles uniform in size.
  7. Glue the gold circles onto the rainbow and cloud. Make a “path” traveling up the rainbow for the leprechaun to follow into the trap.
  8. Tie a strand of yarn (approx. 2-3′ long) to the stick for pulling then the leprechaun enters the trap.
  9. Use the stick to prop up the shoebox over the cloud of gold and rainbow.
  10. Write a message on the index card using the permanent marker. We wrote “FREE GOLD” on ours to entice the leprechaun in!
  11. Place the sign somewhere in your trap.
  12. Set up your trap on St. Patrick’s Day Eve, hideout and wait for the little fellow to make his appearance. Once he has entered the trap below the shoebox pull the string to remove the stick and BOOM!, trap the leprechaun!

*Please Note: It is highly unlikely that you and your kids will ever be lucky enough to actually trap a leprechaun. So be sure to set those expectations prior to setting up the trap. I plan to send my kids to bed and split the overnight shifts with my husband. 🙂

Have fun with this project and let your kids get creative. Pinterest has several great alternative traps to choose from as well.

Happy St. Patrick’s Day!!

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