Posts Tagged: paper projects

How to Make a Kaleidocycle

Kaleidocycle, yeah!

Remember the Kaleidoscope? This twisted little paper project operates by some of the same principles. Made up of a circular “chain” of pyramids, the kaleidocycle can be turned in on itself over and over again to produce cool optical effects! (Plus, the process of making one is kind of meditative.)

Before getting started, you’ll need to pick a template. Try coloring a Mandala kaleidocycle or, if you’re feeling extra spicy, you can design your own from scratch! Either way, it’s best to do all of the coloring before you start folding.

What You’ll Need:

Scissors, Glue (a glue stick or mod podge might work better than school glue), Chubby Bird KaleidocycleColor Your Own Mandala, or Design Your Own Template

Kaleidocycle Step 1

Print out a template on cardstock and and color it as you please.

Kaleidocycle Step 2

Make creases along all diagonal lines of the template. You may have to crease them several times to make sure that they fold back and forth easily. These creases will allow the kaleidocycle to turn.

Kaleidocycle Step 3

Crease, Crease, Crease. Making sure to fold right on the lines.

Kaleidocycle Step 4

When that’s done, crease down the middle of each parallelogram (see dotted lines below). Once again, folding both ways will make the kaleidocycle for flexible and easy to turn.

Kaleidocycle Step 5

Fold the template hot dog style so that it overlaps itself and glue. Be sure to match up the middle crease of the “glue” segment with that of the top parallelogram so that they will bend together.

Kaleidocycle Step 6

Glue all sections keeping the tabs out. (It’s a Kaleido-worm!) You may have to wait until the glue dries before proceeding to the next step.

Kaleidocycle Step 7

Bend the Kaleidocycle into a circle and put glue on the outside of each flap.

Kaleidocycle Step 8

Tuck the flaps into the inside of the last pyramid and hold it until the glue is secure. Wait for your kaleidocycle to dry completely before trying to turn it.

Kaleidocycle Step 9

After the glue has dried you may need to slowly turn the kaleidocycle several times to redefine the creases and “loosen the hinges”. Enjoy you’re twisty turny kaleidocycle!

Look at the Kaleidocycle spin!

Winter Break Project Ideas

Winter Break! Woohoo! Looking for ways to keep your littles away from the television? We put together a little list of some of our favorites winter break project ideas. Give ‘em a try, and have fun!

Here goes (click project titles/links to get detailed instructions):


Paper Christmas Tree

Still figuring out how to set the table at Christmas? These cute little trees might do the trick!


Happy Lists

This is a wonderful time of year to think about all the things for which you’re grateful. These happy lists are a perfect activity for adults AND kids!


Bows (or flowers)

Still wrapping presents? These little bows are super easy and fun for a gift. Also great for a message board, to decorate a wall, or on some sticks as a little bouquet! (Wouldn’t that be a sweet gift at Valentine’s Day too?!)


Heart Garland

Speaking of Valentine’s Day…this sweet garland is so pretty! Great hanging above a threshold or even – if you’re not worried about snow or rain – decorating a space outside for a party!

Peacock + doodle coloring page

Adult Coloring Page

We just love Sonja Emily’s coloring pages (more options at this link), and we’re sure the rest of your family will too!


Paper Stars

We love the idea of making a bunch of these and grouping them together to hang above a table or in a corner of a room.


Play Dough

Making play dough yourself is actually pretty easy! We are still loving the batch of play dough we made for this project – the texture and colors are just great!


Spring Bird

Putting a bird on it is so 2000s, but we still love this little guy. Super easy and fun to make!



Chinese New Year 2016 is Monday, February 8! But it doesn’t have to be an Asian themed party to have paper lanterns. Hang these with your Christmas lights strung throughout for a pretty and fun little scene.


Fortune Teller

Check out this printable to find out your future! What will 2016 hold? We hope it’s filled with unicorns and magic and all the fun you can muster up. Happy, happy holidays, friends!


How to Make a Paper Wreath


How to Make a (our) Paper Wreath

When I think “fall” I think leaves, Thanksgiving dinner, football (or, moreover, marching bands!), sweaters and scarves…and wreaths! What is it about fall that makes us think about wreathes? It’s a funny thing. No matter the reason, it seemed about time to make up some sort of fall paper wreath, don’t you think?

So, armed with some random art supplies, an old cereal box, and a paper grocery bag, I came up with this! I think it’s cute. It’s not huge, for sure, but a collection of them would look pretty adorable! Enjoy!



Cardboard cereal box, flattened
Paper grocery bag
Streamers or tissue paper or fun-colored paper napkins
Pipe cleaners
Plastic beads (as many beads as flowers you’d like to make for your wreath(s)
Paper punch (heavy duty is best)
Bowl for drawing a circle (the wreath shape)
Ribbon or string for hanging

Outline your wreath shape – use the top of the bowl for the outside, then flip it over to make the inner circle. You’ll end up with what looks like a wreath outline on your cereal box. Don’t worry if it’s not perfect. You can adjust as you cut, and once you wrap it, the “perfectness” or lack thereof doesn’t show as much.

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Cut out the wreath base.

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You’ll end up with something like this!


Make paper strips out of the paper bag.

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Start wrapping the wreath base with your paper strips. Tape one end to the back of the base and wrap around, layering it slightly left as you wrap (so you progress around the whole thing eventually). Once you get to the end of the strip, secure it to the back (you might have to trim it to make sure the end hits the back), and move on to the next strip. I used glue and tape to make sure it all held.

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Occasionally you’ll have some spots that don’t seem to want to make the corner. Just squish them down and fold over. It’ll work out in the end!


Repeat until the entire wreath base is covered.


Time to make your flowers! I started with some streamers I had left over from our unicorn piñata tutorial! Fold the streamer over itself over and over again (not accordion style, but like you’re making a loose roll – see the green streamer photo below). Then cut the edges so you’re left with a stack of tiny pieces of tissue paper (in turn, you could start with tissue paper and cut that similarly into tiny pieces). ask a question I make some of my other flowers out of orange paper napkins (hey, use what you’ve got, right?)! The pieces should be about 2×2 inches.

I made orange, green, and pink flowers. You make whatever colors you’d like (and post the pics on Facebook tagging Inspire(d) Media)!

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Arrange your beads over your piles of paper to decide which colors you like best.


Decide which part of your wreath you want at the top. Make a little notch so you remember (this is also the place where you’ll attach your ribbon or string for hanging).


Using your heavy-duty paper punch, punch a hole in the middle of the first pile of papers.

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Cut a bit of pipe cleaner (it doesn’t have to be green, although green looks like a stem). This is to attach the bead to the flower and the flower to the wreath.


String the pipe cleaner through the bead, then the two side of the pipe cleaner through the hole in the stack of papers. The two ends of the pipe cleaner will be sticking out the back.


Punch a hole near the edge of the wreath (so you can attach the pipe cleaner through both sides).

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Twist the pipe cleaner ends together to attach the flower to the base.

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Ruffle up the flower a bit! I trimmed around the edges to make it more circular, and also cut into the =center a bit to create “petals”. Then I just, as I said, ruffled the edges to make it look more flower-like! (I had to cut into the paper napkin flowers a bit more to make them look more flowery.)

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Repeat for the remaining flowers (as many as you’d like to make), until they’re all attached.


Attach the ribbon where you made your top-of-the-wreath notch earlier, leaving a long string for hanging.


And you’re done! Hang it up and enjoy! Obviously, the back isn’t the prettiest, so this won’t work over windows, but would look great over doors, at walls, etc.


Like this paper project? Check out all our other projects here!