Introduction: Light-Up 3D Paper Snowflake
In this 'ible, we are making these awesome 3D paper snowflakes that add a gentle touch of light to your holiday decor!
Step 1: What You'll Need...
Here's what you'll need to make one:
- 4 sheets of copier paper
- Hot glue gun and glue sticks
- String, floss, ribbon, or fishing line (or hanging material of your choice)
- A clear plastic box (preferably with a handle)--I got mine from the Dollar Store...it was filled with thumbtacks
- LED tealight (or whatever kind of single strand light bulb can fit into your plastic box...you could also use strand Christmas tree lights or fairy "twinkle" lights, and have the lights coming up and out of the snowflakes.)
Step 2: Folding the Base
1. Put your paper in front of you vertically.
2. Fold up the bottom about 1/2" to 1".
3. Accordion fold the paper. To do this, first fold the paper behind 1/2" to 1", then forward 1/2" to 1", etc.
4. When you're done, it should look like picture number two.
5. Fold this in half to get picture number three.
6. Repeat steps 1-5 with the remaining 3 sheets of paper.
Step 3: Design Your Snowflake
1. Draw a design on your snowflake. Start by only drawing the top half of the snowflake. You can feel free to start with mine (shown in the pictures) if you want to.
TIP: It's important to draw the design's cut-out parts only on ONE side of the snowflake (either the left side or the right, I did mine on the left side), and make sure that you stay on that same side for all four parts (papers) of the snowflake. Use this tactic even if your design for the different parts changes. This will make sure your snowflake lines up nicely when it's time to glue.
2. Cut out your snowflake design on the top half.
3. Fold the half over onto the bottom half, and trace the design onto the bottom half.
4. Cut out the bottom half's design.
5. Repeat steps 1-4 for your other two parts (papers) so that all four sheets look the same (unless you are doing different designs on each).
TIP: If you are going to change up the design, just make sure it matches the other design at the top so that it can glue together in unison.
Step 4: Glue It Together
Once you have cut out all four parts, take your first one and...
1. Glue the middle edges of it together. It usually works best when you put the glue on the upper corners (see picture).
2. Fan out the paper.
3. Repeat steps 1 and 2 for the remaining three parts.
4. Glue two half-snowflakes together to make one completed snowflake.
TIP: You will probably need to glue more than one area to keep the two halves together. Wherever it pulls apart at, glue there.
5. Repeat step 4 for the other two halves.
6. Now you will have two completed snowflakes.
Step 5: Light in the Box
Now, it's time to make the light in a box. I decided to put the light in a box for three reasons: A) It's easier to glue the snowflakes to the box. B) It adds stability and somewhere to hang the thread from. C) It keeps the paper from getting too hot (especially if you use strand lights or other lightbulb types).
1. Empty your box out (if it's filled with anything). You can clean it now if you so desire.
1a. If you are using strand lights, or a single bulb on a cord, you should drill a hole in your plastic now for your wire to come out of. Please note: breathing in the fumes from melting plastic (aka the fumes from when you are drilling a hole in the plastic) is TOXIC, so please take necessary precautions to avoid illness or serious risk.
2. Place your light in the box.
NOTE: You can glue it to the box, but it will be an "unchangeable" light when the battery or bulb goes bad. I would suggest just leaving it to sit in the base of the box is sufficient. Just a side note, the box is nice because it allows you to change the battery or bulb with ease just by simply opening the box at the top.
Step 6: Finishing Touches
1. With a considerable amount of hot glue on the center of the first snowflake, adhere the snowflake to the front of the box.
2. Once dry, turn the box over and attach the second completed snowflake to the back of the box in like manner.
3. Add your string (or whatever you're using) to the handle part of the clear box.
4. Hang in the location of your choice.
Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays!
Show us your unique snowflake lights below. :)