Thursday, June 27, 2013

DIY 4th of July decorations: Paper stars for planters or center pieces

I started decorating for pthe 4th of July around the 4th of June this year...of course, if you read 2IY regularly, you already know this.  We've got the "Land for the Free, Home of the Viscounts" wood sign and the Pottery Barn knockoff burlap stars and stripes banner.  Well, my latest project is these festive paper stars that are great for indoor planters or center pieces. 

They're really easy to make and you can mix and match the paper to create different looks with very few supplies.   Here's what you need... (as always, I've created the entire supply list for you in Amazon so you can order everything or just what you need and get it right to your door):
  • Dowel (I used 1/4 x 48 found at AC Moore for about .79)
  • Scrapbook paper of your choice 
  • Hot glue gun
  • Circle Paper Cutter (optional)
  • Zig Zag scissors (optional)
  • Jute rope or ribbon

Start by laying your paper so the short ends are at the top and bottom.  You can either use a full size piece of paper or you can cut it down to make smaller stars.  Mine are about 6 inches wide. 

I wanted my edges to have a zig zag so I used my zig zag scissors to cut the long sides before I started folding.  Then I simply folded the paper like an accordion or fan all the way from one end to the other flipping the paper from the right to the wrong side with each fold.

Once it's all folded, tie a piece of string or ribbon tightly around the middle.  The string should be in the center.

Now take the top fold on each side of the ribbon and have them meet in the middle.  Use a little hot glue to glue the pieces together so you create a fan.  This is half of your star. Do the same thing for the other half of the star.

When both sides are folded and glued into fan shapes take another piece of ribbon - this time a little longer - and slip it through the little holes that are in the center of each fan. (See it above, where the white piece of ribbon is?)  Use this string to tie the two halves together.  (Am I making any sense here? Sorry...hopefully the pictures help explain better than what I'm trying to say here...)

To cover the center, cut a piece of coordinating paper in a circle (I used my Fiskars circle cutter) or an embellishment (I used a metal star that had broken off some other decoration a while back) and glue it in the center.

Cut your dowel down to about 12 inches (or whatever size you prefer) and put a big dab of glue in the center of the back of the star.  I put mine right on the jute that I used to hold the stars together. To make sure the dowel stays in place, tie the ends of the jute rope or ribbon around the dowel.

That's it! I stuck mine right into the dirt of one of my house plants.  Obviously, these are paper so they're not great for outdoors.  But they'd also make super cute center pieces or decorations for a July 4th party. 

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