Paper Fireworks

As I am trying to put together my 4th of July mantel this year (yay! one of my favorite holidays to decorate for!) I realized I never posted this on my own blog last year!  This was done as a contributor post over on I Heart Naptime.  

I  loved making these cute paper “fireworks” and still think they are so cute and versatile.  Here is the tutorial on how to make them.  
I love the Fourth of July.  It is a wonderful day to spend with family and friends to remember and celebrate, for just a moment, how truly blessed we are to live in such an amazing country.
That said…. I don’t want to spend a fortune decorating for it.  
This year I came up with some of my most inexpensive, yet positively eye-pleasing, Fourth of July decorations to date!  And I’m so excited to share them with you today.  I will show you how to make some easy fireworks decor for your Fourth of July barbecue you are hosting. Or maybe just to gussy up your mantle for the occasion?  Either way, I’ve got you covered.  
Step 1: Go through your scrapbook paper stash and pull out your red, white & blue papers.  This works with cardstock as well as regular paper.
Step 2: Cut your paper to size.  I made various sizes so here is the formula… cut your paper to whatever width (the diameter) you want your firework to be.  Then the paper needs to be 1.5 times as long. 
8 inch diameter firework= 8″ x 12″ sheet of paper
7 inch diameter firework= 7″ x 10.5″ sheet of paper
6 inch diameter firework= 6″ x 9″ sheet of paper
5 inch diameter firework= 5″ x 7.5″ sheet of paper
4 inch diameter firework= 4″ x 6″ sheet of paper
I probably wouldn’t go much smaller than 4 inches.
Then score your paper every inch or so.  Varying scoring widths here will give you different effects but just make sure it’s consistent.
Step 3: Fold paper back and forth like an accordion along scored lines.
Step 4: Find the center of your paper and staple it as perpendicular to the paper as possible (my stapler wasn’t QUITE long enough to get it perfectly straight, but it still worked!).

Step 5: Cut the ends of the paper in a decorative way.  Again, different cuts here create different effects.  Round it, cut it at an angle, cut it to a point, etc…. play around!

Step 6:  Fan out half of the firework and tape it together at the top.

Step 7:  Use either regular Elmer’s glue or a hot glue gun and glue in two sticks (I used inexpensive bamboo skewers from the grocery store) on either side of the bottom folds.

Once dry, secure the two sticks together and you’ve got yourself a cute decorative fireworks fan!

I can just imagine these down the center of a barbecue table in bud vases or mason jars!  Or maybe smaller ones stuck in everyone’s drinks?  One on each plate?  Endless possibilities!

I decided to forgo the sticks on some of them and simply taped them together on each end.  I then hot glued them to a ribbon and created a fun garland for my mantle!

Combined with the amazing printable Sugartots Designs shared on I Heart Naptime and some paper lanterns I made a while ago, I have one festive Fourth of July mantle going on here!

The best part?  It cost me $0.  Now THAT’S the American (crafters) dream!  Happy Fourth of July!


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  1. says

    Love these! I just made some and stuck in a vase and in a bucket! They are so simple and fun! I can see myself making these for many occasions:)
    One question though…how did you secure the sticks? I hot glued them together but do not like seeing the glue bubbles.
    Thanks for sharing!

  2. Shawna says

    I have tried this about 5 times and my ends will not meet up…I measured exactly as you said! What am I doing wrong??


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