Tuesday, October 21, 2008

How-to: Folding Stars

I'm not quite sure why I was drawn to this little origami, other more complicated shapes have always frustrated me in the past. But I'm glad I gave it a go, because now I'm totally hooked. Here is a site with clear, well-photographed directions:

Foldastar.com

Commercial star-folding paper is available. Klutz makes a kit, which is sold at Kinokuniya bookstores. I've also seen it in craft stores, it runs about $7.00. I've seen packs of folding star paper ranging from $1 - $10+ in other places, like Pearl River Mart, or hole-in-the-wall Chinatown shops. (Have I mentioned lately that I love working in Manhattan?)

I prefer to make my own. Until two weeks ago this was accomplished by using a good old pair of scissors. I've upgraded to a guillotine style paper cutter, but still use the scissors a ton. Some tips:

* Practice on cheap scrap paper! Typical copier paper is a good weight to start with. This craft doesn't have to cost you a dime!

* Different papers need different sized strips- If your paper strips are too wide it will be difficult to get a good, sturdy star before running out of length. Generally the skinner the paper, the shorter the length required.

* Experiment! My favorite materials to make stars from include junk mail, catalogs, magazines, manga, maps, fliers, posters, etc.

* Stars can then be turned into jewelry, or displayed in bowls and jars. A word of caution- if you make a bowl of these at your desk warn co-workers that they are not candy!
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2 comments:

Blogging Molly said...

i just recently became addicted to making these little stars, and sacrificed a sundance catalog to make a bunch. do you put some sort of sealant on them to give them that glossy look and keep them stiff?

Paperelle said...

They are addictive! The ones that get made into beads are coated with acrylic varnish. I'll take a photo of my sealing setup the next time I do a batch, it's...um...special. They're pretty stiff on their own, but the sealant adds a little extra reinforcement.