Introduction: Instructables Holiday Ornament - Icosahedron

About: I am a Graphic Designer by trade and a passionate crafter, tinkerer, and inventor at heart

Happy Holidays from all of us at Instructables. To celebrate, let’s do a little papercraft together! Here’s an ornament that’s fun and easy to build, and learn about the beauty of geometry along the way. If you’re feeling the joy this holiday season, build this project with family, friends, or for yourself.

To learn more about Icosahedrons and the other Platonic Solids, check out this Numberphile video:

Step 1: Supplies

  • Printed templated (regular 8.5x11" or A4 copy paper)
  • Scissors
  • Glue (glue stick preferred)

Print Options:

  • Color: Full color print with decorative patterns in orange and yellow - ready to go!
  • BW: Black and white print with decorative patterns - color it in!
  • Blank: Black and white print with blank circles - decorate it yourself!

Ornament Dimensions: 2.5inch/6cm complete, using 20 x 1.5"/4cm diameter circles

Step 2: Cut

Cut out 20 (1.5"/4cm diameter) circles

You can cut out each circle individually for a precise ornament, or use this speedy shortcut to decrease your cutting efforts:

  • Cut along the 2 horizontal "cut" lines.
  • Carefully fold in half along the center "fold 1" line.
  • Open the page up again and fold along the two remaining "fold 2" lines to bring each cut edge to the center fold.
  • Fold again along the center line. You should see 5 circles now. Cut along the dotted lines ( through all folded layers), resulting in five layered square.
  • Cut out each layered circle (through all folded layers)
  • When complete you should have 20 (1.5"/4cm diameter) circles.

NOTE: There are 2 additional "blank" circles at the top of the sheet incase you make a mistake, or want to personalize your ornament with a unique design!

Step 3: Template Triangle

  • Cut the triangle "template" circle from the top of your paper.
  • Carefully fold along each line to create an equilateral triangle. This will be used as your folding template.

Bonus: here's a fun tutorial from CutOutFoldUp on how to make an equilateral triangle from a circle. If you don't have the center dot, you can find the center of a circle by folding it in half, and then again into a quarter circle. When you unfold the paper, the intersecting point of the folds will be the center.

Step 4: Fold

Use the folding template as a guide to fold the remaining 20 circles. Be sure that the decorative side of the paper is located inside of the tiny paper triangles you're making.

You should have 20 equilateral triangle shapes when complete.

Step 5: Glue

Stick triangles together by applying glue to the flap of a triangle and sticking it to the flap of another triangle.

To create your ornament you need to make:

2x - Hat shape

  • Glue five triangles together such that a single point of each triangle meet in the center.
  • These hat shapes will form the top and bottom of the ornament.

1x - Hoop shape

  • Glue ten triangles together in a row such that the triangles alternate pointing up, then down, then up, then down... and ultimately forms a long band.
  • Once all ten triangles are glued in a band, connect the first and last triangle so that you form a round hoop.
  • This hoop shape will form the center body of the ornament.

Step 6: Hanging Loop

Create the loop from which your ornament will hang:

  • Cut a piece of string/rope/yarn/cord approximately 5"/13cm long.
  • Double the cord over and tie the two loose ends in a knot.
  • Thread the loop through the small opening where the triangles meet at a single point on one of the hats, from inside to outside. (Making sure that the knot is on the inside of the ornament).

Step 7: Final Assembly

  • Glue the flaps of one hat to the flaps of an open side of your hoop.
  • Once secured, turn over and glue the flaps of the remaining hat to the flaps of the bottom open side of the hoop.

Step 8: Voila!

Congratulations ! You just completed an Instructables Holiday Ornament.

Step 9: 2019 Ornament Photo Challenge & Giveaway! - NOW CLOSED

************* THIS GIVEAWAY IS NOW CLOSED **************

When you post a photo of your ornament papercraft on

This Instructable as an "I Made It",Twitter, - or -Instagram,

we’ll send you an Instructables giveaway pack (shirt, mug, or notebook, stickers, and more)! Additionally, Instructables staff will feature the best recreations of this papercraft project on our Twitter and Instagram Stories (and tag you, of course).

Here's how to participate:

Create your Instructables ornament by following the detailed instructions in this project.Post a photo of your ornament in its polyhedral glory to Instagram and/or Twitter, tagging @instructables and #iblesOrnament. (You’ll have to follow us on each platform so we can DM you.)Alternatively, post your creation as an "I Made It" at the bottom of this project.We must receive submissions and iterations of this project by January 7, 2019 (11:59pm Pacific Time) to be eligible for this offering.

************* THIS GIVEAWAY IS NOW CLOSED **************