DIYdiy projects

Modern Paper Ornaments

by the curiosity shoppe

beauty beauty.jpg
it’s official. we drove by a real-life christmas tree lot today, which means that it’s time to get cracking on our holiday decorating. these paper ornaments can be hung just about anywhere (from a tree, in a window, from a chandelier) and they are super simple to make. all it takes is some paper and a stapler to make any room feel festive. just click here for more photos and full instructions.

happy decorating!
derek & lauren


Here’s what you’ll need:

-Various colors of paper or cardstock, cut into 1″ x 11″ strips. We used 5 colors of cardstock plus silver and gold gift wrap.
-X-acto blade
-Metal ruler
-Cutting Mat
-Thread or monofilament for hanging

Using your X-acto blade and straight edge, cut a few sheets of each color paper into strips that measure 1″ wide by 11″ long.

Lay out your color combinations. We used 3 colors per ornament, repeating the middle color on the outside of each one.

Cut the center strip down to 6″ long. The following concentric layers will consist of 2 pieces, each measuring 7″, 9″ and 11″, respectively.

Make sure the tops of all the strips are flush, and then staple them together. Then line up the bottom edges on the opposite side, so that they are flush, and place a staple on that end. We kept it nice and simple, but there are a bunch of different configurations you can do by playing around with the lengths of the strips and different placement of staples. Now just find a favorite spot to hang them. Ours are clustered above the dining room table.


Suggested For You


  • d & l, this is a great project. it reminds me of the years when my mother would hang ornaments in the corners of the ceiling, or along the tops of the window sills … simple, magical, and fun!

  • These are fabulous! I spent so many evenings as a kid making paper chains with my mum for christmas, think I’ll make some of these using just white paper : )
    thanks for the inspiration. Could get out of hand (think Will Ferrel in Elf!)

  • We have a small chandelier that hangs over our table, so we just draped the ornaments on that. You could also hang them from a dowel or circular embroidery hoop and suspend that from the ceiling!

  • oh, the cuteness! i can’t wait to make these. i’m going to use old pages from magazines. can’t wait.

    thanks for the fun holiday project!

  • Thank you — a lovely antidote to the cheesy landfill sprouting
    everywhere just now — I will do some tonight.

  • this is excellent and perfect timing for the ornament making party i’m going to sat. now i know what to bring!

  • These would probably look cool in a more 3-d fashion of a ball. Or in tree shape or bell shape.

  • These are great! An idea for those papers that are one-sided — double them up so that there is an inner pattern and an outer pattern…

  • Thanks for sharing this idea! I will have 24 Girl Scouts making this as the decorations for an upcoming Christmas party for underprivilged kids. So simple and graphic.

  • These are so great, and there are endless possibilities to making them. I didn’t think anything could get me in a festive mood, but i can’t wait to make these.

  • love! if you want to make things even easier, just cut all the paper strips to the same length, align them on the top, arrange them the way you like them, staple, and trim the end. (i am very lazy.)

  • This is so awesome! I was looking for a fun alternative to paper lanters. This is definitely better! :)

  • This is so beautiful and simple, I love it. We’re going to make a ton of them here in my art department and hang them all over the office for holiday decorations.

    Thank you!!!

  • in my own place for the first time this christmas, and trying to craft all of my decorations (cheaply!) by hand… this is a GREAT suggestion!

  • I love these! I think I’m going to make a bunch in different sizes to hang over my bed as a grown-up mobile. Thanks for the great tutorial.

  • emil, for a nonpermanent solution, you can use those plastic 3m hooks that peel off with no damage (smallest size, clear plastic) — attach them, hang ornaments with fishing line, take them down whenever. we’ve used them to hang things temporarily from the ceilings at school.

    they are with the framing supplies usually at art stores like michael’s or hardware/framing supplies at any department store. they are good for temporarily stringing up holiday lights as well.

  • What a lovely, simple, beautiful idea! I have some white patterned velum that would be just perfect! Thank you!

  • What a cleaver idea! Never thought of using foil or wrapping paper before. great craft for kids too-Thanks!

  • Very 60’s & 70’s! I saw some on Haight Ashbury in San Fran, way back when. From an old hippie with a young outlook.

  • I love this idea so much!
    I thought 1″ wide was too small, so I made mine 2″, with lengths going from 6″ to 12″. It looks really nice and it has so much possibility in terms or colors and sizes! I will make some tiny one and will try to find bigger construction paper to make really large ones…

  • thanks for this lovely idea–a friend and i are hosting a small kids holiday crafts workshop at our local farmer’s market the next two weekends and these will definitely be on the menu!

  • thank you so much for this super-simple and stylish tutorial, I will make some of these from wallpaper and wrapping paper I think!

    Cheers, Joey x

  • I love how simple and effective these are. I saw these back when you posted them in November and not only have i made christmas ones, I’m going to make some to decorate for my mum’s 50th birthday! thank you so much for sharing your ingenious and easy art with us!

  • I love these! I’m going to have my Girl Scout troop make these at their holiday party next week. Thanks for the tutorial!

  • oooh – divine!

    Thank you for the tutorial! Can’t wait to make some – what a lovely antidote to tacky plastic and tinsel….

  • I did those right this afternoon ! For the first one I took measures (and took the trouble of converting them into centimeters , ha ha !)but for the others , no need and I also used remnants of paper to make tiny ones . I tied them all at different length on a dried branch which I hanged from the ceiling . I love the result . It was fun and fast to make . thanks for sharing this tutorial !

  • I’m so glad you reminded me! I’m a very old lady now, but used to make these, back in the 40’s, out of anything I could think of! Adults can try this with heavy duty aluminum foil, too, and/or add dots of glue and sprinkle some glitter on the glue dots. Lovely!
    And try it with scraps of wallpaper and heavy wrapping paper, too! I must do this again!

  • We made a ton of these for our office party, and they were so cute! Folks couldn’t get over the idea of “handmade” ornaments. Thanks!

  • Totally loved the ornaments.

    I used recycled holiday cards, which I used for decorations in my picture window and for gift tags.

  • love these…made a grouping of ten for our guestroom and hung them at slightly different heights and have got nice compliments…

  • Made these last night and had so much fun. Thanks for posting the tute. I provided a link on my post to you since this is just too cool. :)

  • This was the BEST idea, made them for my office at work and everyone loves them (gave you credit of course).

  • I’ve mean to do these since it was first posted, finally got around to it. It couldn’t be easier and fast to make! I just wish I had a rototrim at home to make the cutting faster!

  • Oh these ornaments are so wonderful, I have to thank you for posting this!

    I had plane tickets to visit my family in Hungary over the holidays (I live in Sweden) but had to reschedule and ended up unprepared for christmas and no time to do something big.

    This idea was so simple and right up my alley (I love the retro feeling they give) and gave me an alternative to the regular christmas tree.

    Your idea prettied up my home over the holidays! =)

  • I love these! I meant to make them last year but ran out of time.

    This year I plan to make them with my niece, something pretty to dress up her bedroom over the holidays! It’d be easy for me to prep the strips before she comes over, and then we’d have plentry of time for the fun of putting them together!

    Thanks, thanks, thanks!

  • i’m planning a holiday cocktail party to celebrate our mid century modern home turning 50 years old and wanted to make modern christmas ornaments for folks to take home…this is PERFECT!

  • Thanks for sharing this idea! I will have 24 Girl Scouts making this as the decorations for an upcoming Christmas party for underprivilged kids. So simple and graphic alıntı yaptım I TURKİSH

  • Just made six big ornaments for my front window. I might make a couple of small ones to fill up the empty spaces. Thanks for the tutorial!

  • I have to say… I made these 3 years ago when you first posted them, and they have held up. I bust these bad boys out every year!

  • tks very much for sharing! Love it! I think I am going to try this weekend! a quick question: how do u fix it to the ceiling easily? I would appreciate very much if u could send me a msg to my email. tks a lot!

  • Thanks for the tutorial! I made a mobile for my nursery. I hung three of varying sizes on each fishing line and strung 10 of these on an embroidery hoop I had covered in ribbon. Looks fabulous!

  • That was fantastic.i really really loved it. i am gonna make it for sure. Thanks a lot.

  • Those are some beautiful paper ornaments. Is there an easy way that you could modify it so that the ribs poked out in all directions and gave it that 360 degree look?

  • I used these as a measurement and comparative measurement lesson. My class LOVED it!!!

  • color combinations are paper ornaments are really cool. I would love to try them out. I can see that you have very creative.