20 Easy & Fun Leprechaun Trap Ideas

20 Easy & Fun Leprechaun Trap Ideas

leprechaun traps
teri_arteaga/Instagram

The St. Patrick's Day our kids celebrate today is wildly different than the holiday of our youth. I'm a child of the 80s. When I was a kid, St.Patrick's Day meant eating my mom's stellar shepherds pie and trying soda bread every year only to discover, once again, that I'm not a fan (don't @ me). St. Patrick's Day was special, sure, but it lacked the excitement of Halloween or Valentine's Day. 

Now, St. Patrick's Day is a full on holiday, and it's tons of fun. There are green foods to eat such as green grapes, Lucky Charm rice treats, and bagels dyed emerald green. They make cool clover and rainbow-themed crafts.

But the most imporant St. Patrick's Day task is setting the all-important leprechaun trap. 

For those who have no clue what a leprechaun trap is (aka me last March when the assignment came home from preschool and I raced to the internet for answers), the idea is simple. Kids (and let's be honest, parents too) design and build a tiny trap in hopes of catching a leprechaun of their very own. No one's managed to do it yet, but half the fun is in trying, right? 

The trap is set out the night before St. Patrick's Day. When kids awake, they race to see if the trap was a success. Although there may not be a leprechaun waiting, some mischievous ones have been known to leave evidence behind in the form of a note, glittery footprints or sometimes even a small surprise such as candy or a trinket. 

Leprechaun traps can take any form, but the key elements usually include something gold and shiny to tempt them to come close. Leprechauns love rainbows and sugar too! Let these 20 easy and fun leprechaun traps serve as inspiration, and good luck catching one this year.

  • The Hat Trick

    1

    This leprechaun trap is a snap for busy parents to help put together. A St. Patrick's Day hat (check the dollar store or party section) prevents finding a box and waiting for paint to dry. Glue on some fake gold coins and a craft stick ladder and for a totally put-together leprechaun trap.

  • Lego Trap Door

    2

    Can't find a cardboard box or shoebox to transform into a leprechaun trap? Inspiration is just a toy box away. This clever concept uses Duplo Legos to form a tempting box, complete with a rainbow staircase. A carefully laid paper trap board baited with yellow foam circles or game pieces just begs a leprechaun to come and investigate. 

  • Rainbow Ramp

    3

    Every kid knows that leprechauns love to follow the rainbow, which is why a ROYGBIV walkway is a great idea to lure magical creatures to a trap. There's no need to blow cash at the craft store to make one. A yardstick decorated with colored stickers or construction paper works perfectly. 

  • Clover Catcher

    4

    For kiddos who adore getting their craft on, help them create a leprechaun trap with tons of eye-catching features that will (maybe, almost) catch one. Fake clovers or ivy can hide a trapdoor, and cotton balls can be picked apart to form a fluffy cloud line. Don't forget to add a rainbow and a ladder. 

  • Gravity Grabber

    5

    This clever trap idea is perfect for kids who love engineering and design. Rather than scattering gold pieces to tempt a leprechaun, this options dangles one shiny tempting piece as bait. Once the leprechaun tries to jump for his prize, gravity takes over, forcing him through the hole and into the trap (fingers crossed!).

  • Camouflage Trap

    6

    Want to make sure a leprechaun has no suspicions that this rainbow is actually a trap? Cameflouse contact or wrapping paper around a shoe box helps disguise it. This idea is great for those short on trap-making time. Kids can color a rainbow entrance while mom and dad wrap the box. 

  • Impossible to Resist

    7

    Sometimes subtlety works to catch a leprechaun. Other times, giving them the full razzle-dazzle is the way to trick them into entering a trap. Raid the toy and craft bins to make an eye-popping entryway that's sure to impress. Melting beads can easily form a rainbow, and cutting the hole in the shape of a clover adds a special touch. 

  • Follow the Charms

    8

    Fresh out of gold to bait the leprechaun trap? Fortunately, they'll also go anywhere to score some Lucky Charms marshmallows. (Wouldn't we all do the same?) A trail of sweet cereal leading to a construction paper rainbow helps hide the fact that there's a trapdoor in this box waiting for an occupant. 

  • Candy Land

    9

    For an easy trap with tons of wow factor, try using different rainbow candies to decorate the scene. This one features gummy rings, Skittles, and gold sticker accents that kids can easily put together with the help of a glue stick. A super fancy leprechaun trap without any paint? We're so in. 

  • Reverse Psychology

    10

    This reverse psychology leprechaun trap is a good choice for older siblings who have tried the glitter and rainbow methods and are looking for a fresh approach. Hand over some old golden costume jewelry as bait, and carefully arrange a box that will spring down on any visitors who come to claim the treasure. 

  • A Sweet Trap

    11

    Using candy to catch kids worked for the witch in luring Hansel and Gretel, so it's worth a shot when trying to capture a leprechaun. A cozy box decorated with crepe paper, Lucky Charms, and mini marshmallows looks like the perfect spot for a magical being to come and stay a while. 

  • Garden With a Secret

    12

    Finally put all those toilet paper tubes the family's been saving to use with this garden-themed leprechaun trap. Fingers crossed that a field of towering wildflowers and a colorful crayon walkway will distract a leprechaun from the fact that this rainbow has an ominous cave in the center. 

  • Tunnel Fun

    13

    Like kids at a playground, no leprechaun can resist climbing into any tunnel he comes across. But this trap has a twist. Rather than reach the treasure at the end of the slide, this tunnel leads to a trap! It's a great STEM option for young kids who are beginning to learn about cause and effect.

  • Golden Egg Grab

    14

    Waited too long to make a trap and now the St. Patrick's Day section is wiped out? Don't stress, just head over to the Easter section for plenty of leprechauns nabbing supplies. Mini plastic eggs can be painted or wrapped in gold as treasure, and that green Easter basket grass works well for forming a pathway. 

  • Box-Free Trap

    15

    Struggling to find a box when the recycling was picked up Tuesday and the leprechaun trap assignment comes home Wednesday? Buying new shoes for mom is an option we fully support, but if there's not enough time to hit the mall, a solid stockpot can serve as a makeshift box. 

  • Slide Surprise

    16

    Kids who hate getting messy will like this sleek leprechaun trap design. String some beads on stiff wire to form a rainbow, and use pre-dyed craft sticks to form a ladder. A craft store green pot (or a Halloween cauldron covered in spray paint) becomes a trapping unit with the help of some glittery cardstock and a plastic bottle cut into a slide. 

  • Lego Cabin

    17

    This adorable Lego leprechaun trap is one we'd totally AirBnB if we could. Even if it doesn't have a new occupant on the morning of St. Patrick's, kids will love making a Lego cabin in shades of green and yellow. Clover garland and cupcake toppers help this prime real estate really stand out. 

  • Top Hat 'O the Morning

    18

    Older kids will like this leprechaun hat trap idea. Paint over an empty oatmeal tube and add construction paper to form the base and hat decorations. Glue chopsticks and toothpicks together to form a ladder. Last, paint some garden rocks a glittery gold to guarantee a leprechaun visit. 

  • Gold Rush

    19

    This leprechaun trap is all about that bling. Raid the gift wrap stash for some glittery or gold paper, and cover a craft stick podium with shimmery pipe cleaners. Look through any leftover wedding favors for a little bucket to hold some gold bait, and sit back and wait for a leprechaun to come along. 

  • A Simple Plan

    20

    Leprechaun traps don't have to be elaborate to be awesome. This idea features a simple cardboard box lined with St. Patrick's Day themed tissue paper and baited with leftover Halloween candy. Once the leprechaun goes for the candy, the chopstick holding the trap up is sprung. Success!

crafts holiday decorating st patricks

More Slideshows