How to Make a Shadowhunter Stele

Two Parts:Creating the BaseAdding Details and Paint

Do you want to cosplay as a Shadowhunter from the Mortal Instruments series by Cassandra Clare? Or maybe you just want to upgrade your pencil to look like a Shadowhunter stele. With some hot glue, a pencil, and paint, you can make your very own stele with ease.

Part 1
Creating the Base

  1. Image titled Make a Shadowhunter Stele Step 1
    Gather the materials. To make a stele out of a pencil, you'll need: a pencil, a hot glue gun, hot glue sticks, a sharp tool like an X-Acto knife or a dotting tool, paint and a paint brush and a makeup sponge.
    • Make sure to get silver paint for the base coat of your stele. If you want other decorations, choose the colors that work for the design you had in mind.
    • You should be able to get most of your supplies at a local craft store.
  2. Image titled Make a Shadowhunter Stele Step 2
    Remove the eraser. First, you'll need to remove the eraser as you'll eventually be adding a tip to the eraser end of the pencil using glue and paint. You should be able to remove the eraser simply by using your fingers. However, if it's on particularly tight you can use a pair of pliers. Slide the pliers between the metal casing of the eraser and gently wiggle them until the casing falls off.[1]
  3. Image titled Make a Shadowhunter Stele Step 3
    Apply hot glue. To make a stele shadowhunter, you need to create a casing of glue around your pencil. This will be painted over in silver later to create the look of a stele. To do this, load a stick into your hot glue gun.
    • You'll want to do this over either paper towels or newspaper, as hot glue tends to get everywhere.
    • Starting at the eraser end of the pencil, apply hot glue in rings around the pencil. After thirty seconds to a minute, the glue that you've already applied will be cool enough to touch.
    • Test it by touching it with your finger. If it's not too hot, rub the pencil between your hands to spread the glue down the pencil.[2]
    • Keep rubbing the pencil between your hands. This will allow the glue to spread down the pencil, covering it an even casing. Apply extra glue as needed. Keep going until your pencil is covered in an even casing for glue.
    • As you apply glue, there will be thin strains of glue that hang from the glue gun to the pencil. If you want, you can tear these off the glue gun and wrap them around the pencil with a finger. This will add some interesting texture to your stele.
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    Smooth out the glue. How smooth you make the base layer of the stele is up to you. If you want it to have a lot of bumpy uneven texture, you can leave it as is. Or you can roll it along your fingers and between your palms to smooth out the hot glue. Smooth out the glue while it's still slightly warm and wet. Dry glue may be hard to smooth out.[3]

Part 2
Adding Details and Paint

  1. Image titled Make a Shadowhunter Stele Step 5
    Form a base out of hot glue. On the eraser end of the pencil, add a few more dabs of hot glue. Then, smooth it out the base to form a cylindrical top to the eraser end. The idea here is to make the base end thicker than the rest. You want to give the stele a wand-like appearance. It can help to look up images of shadowhunter steles and try to manipulate the glue to mimic their basic shape.[4]
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    Add hot glue to create a snake design. Many shadowhunter steles have a snake-like design winding up their side. This is one of the easiest designs to create on a pencil stele. Simply place the tip of the glue gun on the eraser end and slowly draw a line spiraling around the pencil until you reach the tip.[5]
    • Keep in mind shadowhunter steles come in different shapes. If you feel more proficient at the glue gun, you can try to draw pictures of symbols using the glue gun. However, if you've never used a glue gun before it might be best to stick to the basic serpent design for your first try.
  3. Image titled Make a Shadowhunter Stele Step 7
    Add details to the eraser end using a sharp tool. Use your X-Acto knife, a sharpened pencil, or some other small sharp object, work on the base of your stele. The easiest design is to carve out a small circle at the eraser tip, creating a kind of dot in the center of the tip. If you feel comfortable, consider adding your own unique design.[6]
  4. Image titled Make a Shadowhunter Stele Step 8
    Paint the stele. You can use either acrylic paint or nail polish to paint the stele. Start with a silver paint. Use your brush, or a makeup sponge. Dip it in some silver paint and cover the whole stele in silver. If you want, you can stop here. However, you can add other colors or designs depending on the type of stele you're trying to emulate. For example, you can color the serpent-like design green and add markings like a snake. It's up to you and what you want your stele to look like.[7][8]
    • Leave the graphite tip unpainted if you want to use it as a pencil.


  • You might want to leave some space in case you want to sharpen the pencil.
  • Jocelyn's stele is described as "a gleaming wand-like instrument, made of a pale, opaque crystal," so you may want to centre your ideas around that. But remember that every stele is different, so don't be afraid to put your own spin on it!

Things You'll Need

  • Hot glue gun
  • Hot glue sticks
  • A knife or dotting tool
  • Pencil
  • Nail polish or paint
  • Pain brush or makeup sponge

Article Info

Categories: Crafts | Cosplay