Published On: November 28, 2023

Ok, let’s talk about what you need to make these stars!

But before we start, a quick note up top. I’m linking to amazon stuff for a lot of this. Now, we all know amazon is evil incarnate! But I also know that it’s the easiest/cheapest option for a lot of folks, and that a lot of us (myself included!) live in places where this stuff simply isn’t available in a store near you. So I’m providing the links. And I’m also using affiliate links because if amazon’s going to get the sale, I’m ok with them giving me a tiny piece of it. But really, if you can, please do look elsewhere! I’ve tried to provide enough info for you to do that if you’d like to.

One of the best things about the stars is that they need very little in the way of materials! You really just need the right kind of paper, something to fasten the paper together, and a way to hang the finished stars.


The paper you use for these really matters. It needs to be translucent (so light can shine through it and show off all the layers). It needs to be lightweight (so you can fold it several times without it becoming too thick to work with). And it needs to hold a crisp fold (so your star will have sharp edges and maintain its shape).

I’ve tried a lot of papers, and one stands out as the absolute best choice. It’s called glassine paper (you sometimes see it called kite paper or Waldorf star paper too). It’s translucent, lightweight, and folds beautifully. (Someone always asks, so no, alas tissue paper doesn’t work well at all. It’s floppy and the light doesn’t shine through nicely and it’s a beast to work with.)

You can find packages of 10 or 11 colors of glassine paper on amazon or at some paper or school supply stores. This is the one I buy most often. It’s got 500 sheets of 8 inch square paper. This one is the same stuff just with 100 sheets instead of 500. You can also find it in 6 inch squares in packages of 500 or 100 sheets. It also comes in gigantic sheets (think ‘small poster’) in both multi color and single color packs if you want to make really really big stars.

The only trouble is that colors in those packs are…not my favorite. Even worse, several of them (the blue, purple, brown, and dark green) are so dark that light doesn’t really shine through them very well, so I don’t like using them for stars. There’s a company in Japan that makes the paper in 24 lovely solid colors and 12 gradient colors, but the paper is tricky to find in the US. The best way I’ve found to get it is to put ‘glassine origami paper’ into the search bar on ebay and look through the results. I bought a bunch and I love it! But I realize that it gets expensive to do it that way, so the other stuff might be a better place to start to make sure you like making these first.

All my stars are made with 3-4 sheets of 6 or 8 inch paper.


Each star is made up of several pieces of paper held together in the middle. Because the paper is translucent, you want to be sure that whatever you use to hold the pieces together is also translucent (otherwise you might see it when you hold the star up to the light).

I hold all of my stars together with round, clear stickers. They’re easy to use, nearly invisible and they hold up well over time. All my recent stars are held together with two round, clear stickers (one on the front, one on the back), each two inches in diameter. These are the exact stickers I used, but you can also just search for ’round clear sticker’ if you don’t want to use amazon.

You can also glue your stars together if you have more patience and greater hand-eye coordination than I do. And in a pinch, a circle cut out of clear packing tape will work too.

So those are the basics and the only things you truly need. But of course there are a few little extras that come in handy, either to display them or to make them.


These want to be hung in a sunny window to really shine. I hang mine with adhesive dots (just put one in the very center of the star).

I’ve used these removable ones (great if you want to keep your stars from year to year, but don’t hold quite as firmly as the permanent ones, and you might need more than one for the biggest stars) and these permanent ones (great if you want that star to stay where you put it forever, but you absolutely will destroy your star taking it down, and you’ll have to clean the adhesive off the window), but you can search for either ‘removable adhesive dots’ or ‘permanent adhesive dots’ if you don’t want to use amazon.

Folding Tools

If you’ve always wanted an excuse to get a bone folder, consider this your permission slip. You don’t need it, but it is really nice and if you do a lot of paper folding, you’ll enjoy having one.

Cutting Tools

You need to cut your paper to size. You can do that with scissors, with a craft knife, straight edge, and mat, or with a paper cutter. The stars look better the more precise your cuts, so again, if you’ve always secretly longed for a paper cutter, this seems like a great time to give in (I have this one). But you can absolutely just use scissors or a craft knife instead if you don’t have one.

The book with all the folding instructions should be out next week, but this way you can order the paper now so you’re ready when it comes out!

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