Cheap, but fun, spider webs for virtually any scale figures...

An example web, complete with skeletal Reaper Bones 28mm
"victims" suspended within the Spider's web, amidst the trees...

Someone mentioned, on DM Scotty's Forum, that Hot Glue would not stick to Parchment Paper...  I read that comment, and I knew that I could use that bit of information to create spider webs, for my fantasy miniatures games!  Here is how I did it:

Step 1:
Lay out a piece of Parchment Paper (found in your local grocery store, next to the Wax Paper, and Aluminum Foil supplies -- Hot Glue will stick to these, so don't bother trying them...) -- you can re-use it many times before you will need to replace it.  NOTE:  do not draw out a pattern with pencil, or other marker, or ink pen, as the Hot Glue may pick it up off of the Parchment Paper, making it a permanent part of the 'web'...

Step 2:
Pre-heat your smallest Hot Glue Gun, and only use High Temperature Hot Glue, as it is stronger than the Dual Temp, and the Low Temperature Glues.  You will want the smallest Hot Glue Gun, so that you have the smallest tip to squeeze out a thin line of Hot Glue.

Step 3:
Run several straight lines of Glue, crossing in the center, in a radiating pattern.  Then make irregular 'circles' of Glue around these straight lines, forming a pattern like a real-life spider web.  Be sure to leave openings large enough to insert figure bases, which will allow you to position victim miniatures within the webs...  (See photo's below, for examples of what this will look like.)

If there are any gaps, just go back and fill them in with more Hot Glue; if any strands break, either melt them with the hot Gun tip, or apply more Hot Glue to the break, to repair it.

Here is a sample web, laid out on top of my Ping Pong gaming table surface, with a toy,
rubber-like spider figure sitting in the middle of his new web, just waiting for visitors to arrive...

Step 3a:
This is optional, but it could be fun for your RPG sessions:  measure out the dimensions of a character's Web Spell, and create a template for it, using the Hot Glue Gun, drawing it out on Parchment Paper.  The rulebook (AD&D Player's Handbook, in my case) will give the dimensions.  This can be an eye-opener for everyone involved, so make sure you do it 'by the book', to avoid arguments in the game.  Remember:  if you trace a pattern out on the Parchment Paper, the Hot Glue will likely pick up the pattern, so use caution.

Step 4:
Wait for the Glue to cool, and solidify.  Then remove the 'web' from the Parchment Paper; it will likely lift off, without needing to peel it, but handle it with care, as the web strands are still not terribly strong -- thankfully, they are easy to repair!

Step 5:
Paint the 'web' with Pearlescent Medium acrylic paint -- normally, this stuff is mixed with other craft, acrylic paints, but for this application, just use it straight up.  It will give the webs a pearly glistening look, which does not show up in the photo's very well, but it is very visible on the webs to the naked eye.

The circular web, on the left, has been coated with Pearlescent Medium, while the Web Spell template, on the right, has not been painted yet.  There is a marked difference, but it does not show up on camera very well, unfortunately.  The Wizard miniature is shown for scale -- he is 28mm tall.

Step 6:
Buy some cheap, plastic, rubbery spiders from your local toy department/store.  They are inexpensive, and available in different sizes, but the spiders which are 1"-2" in diameter, are perfect.  I mounted mine, several years ago, but for this application, they will work best unmounted.  Place them, as needed, on the webs, or even on top of their victim miniatures.

A Spider's web, on the left, and a Wizard's web spell template, next to a Wizard who might cast such a spell...

Two skeleton victim figures nestled within the Spider's web, spun amongst some tall Pine Trees (6" model trees).

A Wizard casting a Web Spell on an attacker.  Note the transferred pencil marks,
visible within the Web template -- don't draw a pattern to copy, with pencil...

The Wizard has cast Spider Climb Spell, and foolishly, he has chosen to meet the foul Spider on his home turf...  Nobody said Wizards had high Wisdom scores -- Intelligence doesn't always see the downside, until it is too late.

Next time, I will forego the base for the Spiders.  I use them in my 2nd Ed. BattleSystem games, and for that, bases are nicer, as they clearly define the zone of control, or area occupied, by the Spider monster, to make determining which figures can attack the creature much easier to decide.  For RPG sessions, a bare-bones Spider figure would be much nicer looking.

The Wizard tries to immobilize the two attacking Skeletons with his Web Spell.

Another view of the Web Spell in action.  Note that this Web Spell template has not been painted with Pearlescent Medium paint, yet.  It is bare Hot Glue, with its characteristic milky white color.

Here are three Adventurers attacking a Giant Spider in its web...
Either that, or lunch is being served in the All A Monster Can Eat Buffet!

There may be ultra-thin Hot Glue strands criss-crossing your webs, but don't worry, they will actually add to the overall effect.  Make your webs as small, or as large, as you need.  If you want to feature Lolth, herself, in a ginormous web, go ahead!  It will only cost you some time, and a few glue sticks.

These webs will not win any modeling competitions, but they may just put a smile on a DM's face, and a gasp of terror in the mouth of your players...  Happy Gaming!  Cheers!


  1. Great idea! I'd like to try that out, particularly the pearlescent paint.
    I've a (possible) solution to your pattern transference problem. While it's been a little while since we last used parchment paper, I believe it'd be translucent enough to show a pattern done on the _reverse_ side of the sheet, especially if it was done in a very black marker. Or have a bright white paper sheet with the pattern on it, underneath. If it's still too opaque, possibly projecting the pattern onto the paper might work.

    1. Thanks, Anne, for the ideas. Good luck with your web project. Cheers!

  2. Ive done lots of things with hot glue for scenerey (alien spires, pools of ichor etc) This is genius. sure beeats using a paper template or stirng.

    1. I agree with you on paper, and string! I have used the round web, with some spiders, in an RPG session, and it worked well enough. I have not had a chance to use these in a BattleSystem game, yet, but I look forward to it. Cheers!