When I last handmade a Christmas decoration, I Wish It Could Be Christmas Everyday was a fresh-sounding seasonal chart topper that glittery lurex clad party makers boogied to while knocking back their Snowballs.
I’ve never seen myself as a crafter, but increasingly I find myself reaching for the hot glue gun rather than my purse. Inspired by some images on Pinterest, I decided to turn my hand to paper pinwheel Christmas decorations.
Pleased with how my pinwheels turned out, I thought I would share the project with you as a DIY. As I was working on this post, the Houses Husband happened on me photographing snipped bits of paper artfully arranged on our coffee table. “You’re not actually suggesting anyone makes these are you?” he enquired incredulously. To be fair his skepticism was borne of witnessing at close quarters an afternoon’s worth of folding, gluing, threading, and swearing, interrupted only by 3 trips to Hobbycraft.
However, while I admit these were a bit of a faff to make, that is because I was pioneering. I’ve done the hard work so you don’t have to. They are, honestly, pretty easy to make. You might actually have everything you need already to hand, or at the very least, armed with my list of requirements, one trip to the craft supply shop should have this nailed. With the right materials, after you get the hang of it, you’ll be able to rattle one of these off in 10 minutes flat.
As well as being budget friendly, making your own pinwheel decorations means you make them entirely bespoke so that they work beautifully with your own scheme and the rest of your Christmas decorations.
Sold? So here’s how I did it.
- Paper (see note below)
- Glue (glue gun, Pritt stick or general purpose glue)
- Needle and thread
- Skewer, knitting needle or similar (to make hole for hanging)
- Ribbon to hang
- Metallic Duct tape (optional)
Each pinwheel needs 2 x A4 sheets. With your sheets in portrait orientation fold each into 3 equal sections horizontally (like you would a letter). Use the 2 folds on each sheet as a guide to cut it. You will end up with 3 equal sized rectangular sections per A4 sheet, so 6 in total.
Fold each section into a concertina, short edge to short edge. Each section should have 6 folds, creating 7 equal sections and making 3.5 “peaks”.
If you want your pinwheel to have pointed tips around the edge, with each section folded flat, cut a triangle.
Glue the 6 sections together to make one long concertina.
Using your needle and thread, draw what will become the centre of your pinwheel together. This will counteract the wheel’s tendency to spring out once it’s fanned. If your paper’s thin, ordinary thread will do, but do be gentle. Tie a knot in your thread to secure the concertina closely together.
Fan the other end out and secure the two ends together with a paper clip. Use your skewer to punch a hole in one of the tips, thread a ribbon or cord through to hang, and you’re done!
Go for Gold
This is the genius bit which elevates these pinwheels to something which looks, well, less crafty: To give your wheel a metallic centre or tips apply the metallic Duct tape along the long edge of each section before folding. The duct tape is really forgiving and can be repositioned easily if you make a mistake. It comes in lots of different finishes and colours. Washi tape would work equally well and could be used to create metallic stripes for example.
Have I inspired you to give these a shot? Go on, show the Houses Husband that I’m not alone in thinking these totally justify the effort.