Thursday, October 23, 2014

Paper Fan Garland

When I took a course with book binder, Linda Gimle, we warmed up by making traditional paper fans with her beautiful origami papers, and on to more advanced techniques.  Since I like to share ideas here that are very simple and that everyone can do, I thought this would be a perfect way to personalize with kids art and to share with you.  It's a craft that can also become a time capsule. Remember the joy of fan making like this as a kid? By returning to this simple fan fold that we all made as children, you can bring out your inner child or for you to make with your kids.


You don't need origami paper or special materials to make these. Linda mentioned during our course that she first made these with Barbra Bunke of Ljunggren's paper in Stockholm's Old Town. Once home, I wanted to personalise these childhood classic folds further with original art work.aper Garland can be made with anything from cast off kid doodles, splashy tempera art with your toddlers, patterns with big kids, old story book pages, newsprint, or extra pieces of art that you just don't know what to do with. These were made with old art work and we just love them. To me, these are the loveliest time capsules. I can't wait to see what you do.

These are such a way to hold on to kid treasures, personalise a room or prepare for a party!  When the kids were toddlers, we had pile after pile of these expressive paintings.  I continue to display some of these original paintings alongside their recent pieces (Are they secretly proud or terribly embarrassed of their sentimental mom!)  If you don't have enough art or don't want to harm it, just photo copy.

Follow below for full tutorial:
Let's get started:

Paper Squares, Double Sided Tape (this is mine, here), scissors

How to make Paper Fan Garland:
1. Prepare paper squares of same size. Cut your own or use origami paper.

2. Evenly fold paper in accordion folds.

3. Press the accordion flat and fold it in half.

4. Place piece of double-sided tape long the outer edge of the fan and press it onto the next fan that is upside down. Remember to hold this patter: one fan up, one fan down, repeat.

Continue building the garland in this fashion until you create desired length.

As always, I love to see what you do with this tutorial! I hope it brings you the fun that it's brought us, too!

Willowday wishes!

Something you might like:
Paper Bat Garland
Cherry Balloon Garland
Surprise Birthday PartyDIY: Flat Mailable Piñata
How to make a Yarn Labyrinth
interview with book binder Linda Gimle (not pictured)

Something you might like:
52 Handmade Willowday Projects from 2014 (Click HERE)

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  1. Oh wow, I didn't expect this to be so pretty! Clever idea!

  2. I lööve it that you made it with old kids art!

    1. Linda, oh thank you for zooming in on that, too! We could just keep creating!

  3. what size was your square? thanks

    1. Hi Bizute, In the above example, I used art work that the kids had made on A4's (210 x 297 mm.) I folded this paper in 1/2 along the long edge and made 10 cm x 10 cm squares. However, all you need for this is a square. This works with large squares and even smaller squares. I think I might have a link to instagram in my post that will show you the origami paper version that I first made and that one was made using squares there were about 6-8".. I'd love to see what you do!

  4. What a beautiful craft activity! I just saw this shared on FB at Creative Play Central. Pinning.

    1. Thank you, Theresa for this info and for coming by. I'm so very happy that you did and would love to see what you do! Warm thanks!


Thank you!