Paper Bag Stars - Great for New Year's Eve!
If you are looking for a fun, easy, and inexpensive holiday decoration, you might like these paper stars. These are not my brainchild -- I have seen them in several places on Instagram and Pinterest, but I haven't seen any of the smaller version that I am making, so that's what I am mainly sharing with you. That being said, you can use my instructions with any size paper bag that you'd like to use.
I always have trouble finding New Year's Eve decor that isn't cheesy, so I fell in love when I saw these. I love the natural brown paper, although they would look good done with white or colored bags, too. I can also see them lightly sprayed with paint -- maybe a pretty gold or silver? Many people use them for Christmas decor, and you can even cut them to look more like snowflakes if you want!
To make these stars, you will need paper bags (I found regular size at the Dollar Store & small size on Amazon), glue (use either white glue or hot glue - hot glue is much faster), scissors, paperclips, and string or twine.
You will use about 7-9 bags for each star. The more bags you use, the fuller your star will be (you might decide to use 10 bages - it is all in what you like best!). You can open the star while making it to see if you want to add more bags.
Begin by gluing 2 bags together. Make a T-shape of glue, and place one bag on top of the other. Important: be sure that you have all of the bags facing the same way, with the same side up. It does not matter if the bottom flap of the bag is on top or underneath, but you do need to make sure that each back is positioned exactly the same as the others.
After you have the first two bags glued together, repeat this step with two more bags, so that you have a stack of four bags glued together.
Next, you can either keep your bags the length they are, or you can cut them down. I cut about an inch off the top of this stack of bags. To make my smallest stars, I cut the bags in half. This is how I got my stars to be smaller & different sizes.
Then, work on cutting your design. You can either draw out your design before cutting, or just free-hand cut, like you do with paper snowflakes. These do not have to be perfect, although I have seem that some people post cutting templates for them. It is fun to play with different cuts!
If you'd like, you can open your star at this point, which will give you an idea of about how many more bags you might want, as well as the design you have created so far.
Next, close the star back up, and glue on additional bags. I used 7-9 for each star I made.
When you are done gluing, use your original cuts as a template to cut the rest of your bags. (If you wait to do all of your cutting when you have all the bags in the stack, it will be too hard to cut through all of them at once.)
Now open your star all the way (it will be so pretty!), and use paperclips to keep the ends together. Some people glue their star open, but I didn't want to do this because I would like to flatten my stars back out, pack them away, and re-use them next year. Other people who make these want to re-use theirs, too, and they tie the ends together with the same string that they hang the star with. I tried this method, but I found that the star did not open up as pretty as it did when I firmly paper clipped the points together:
Now lay your star out on the table and/or hold it up from different points, to find the best point for the "top" of your star. I found that this was generally the point opposite the paper clips. You will see what I mean when you do this. There will be a point that looks best at the top of the star. When you find this point, poke a hole for a hanging string (you can use a hole punch if you have one).
Here are two different stars I made, photographed when I got to this point in the process:
That's it! These are SO easy and beautiful! Like I said, you can play with different sizes and cuts so that you have a variety. Here are the smaller ones in my kitchen window:
And some larger ones in our living room window (see the largest one? That style might be my fave. I didn't do any fancy cuts on that one. I just cut one point at the top of the bag):
If you liked this project, please like, save, and share this post -- it makes all the time I put into typing these up worth it! I also love when you comment, and try to respond as soon as possible. Some of you share the most fabulous ideas in comments for slightly altering the project (thank you!).
Also, you can always see more photos from my projects on my Instagram and Facebook pages, and be sure to check out my other Hometalk Projects, if you'd like!
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Barbara Buchan on Dec 30, 2022
I saw a demonstration where the bags were cut with a saber saw--it was demo for guys, but why not?
Guernsey Girl on Dec 31, 2022
Great idea. Thanks.
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