Introduction: Make an American Flag Out of Paint Sticks

I remember making an American flag out of paint sticks as a child in art class, however no longer have one and want another. So, as I make another I figure some of you want to share in the patriotism with me! Let's get started.

Materials you'll need:

  • Drill (with small bit)
  • Saw (I will use a jig saw)
  • Ruler
  • Pencil
  • 10 paint sticks (or ¼” board stock cut to size)
  • Wood stars
  • Sponge brushes (one for each color and fixative)
  • Acrylic paint (red/white/blue)
  • Glue
  • Acrylic fixative (for hanging outside)
  • Twine

Step 1: Prepare Your Sticks

  1. Cut the handle end off of 3 paint sticks using your saw, they should measure 8″. Danger: Keep all your body parts and clothing out of the path of the blade while in operation to avoid serious injury or loss of life. (Do not saw through yourself!!!!!)
  2. Drill two holes (centered) in an UN-cut paint stick at 3″ and 9″ using a small drill bit. Danger: Again keep all body parts and clothing away from the drill and bit during operation to avoid serious injury or loss of life. (Do not drill a hole in yourself!!!!!!)

Step 2: Paint Your Sticks

Designate one sponge brush for each color.

  1. Blue Field
    1. Arrange 7 paint sticks into rows, place the one with holes at the top.
    2. Sketch, lightly, a pencil line at 4.75″ from the left on the top 4 sticks. Paint this smaller section and edges blue using the blue sponge brush. Do not paint the back, and let dry before adding another coat of paint.
  2. Red and White Stripes
    • Paint the first stick (with holes) red using the red sponge brush to the right of the blue, then paint the next stick white using the the white sponge brush. Paint all edges their designated color and allow each stick to dry before adding another coat of paint. Do not paint the backs. Continue painting the sticks in alternating color until they are all painted.
  3. White Stars
    • Paint the stars and their edges white using the white sponge brush. Again, do not paint the backs.

Step 3: Adhere Your Sticks

All your painted pieces should be dry before this step

  1. Sticks
    1. Line up your flag correctly and flip each stick over, as if you were turning a page in a book. Spread the sticks slightly apart.
    2. Lay your 8" unpainted sticks across the long sticks. Place glue dots on the sticks to adhere the sticks together, pressing or using weight to keep everything in place until the glue is dry. Caution: Do not glue the sticks over the holes so you can thread twine through them later Stars

  2. Stars
    • Flip the entire flag back to the front. Adhere the stars onto the blue field in the upper left corner. Caution: Again, do not glue the stars over the holes so you can thread twine through them later.

Step 4: Fixate the Paint on Your Sticks

  • Paint your fixative using its designated brush all over the front and outer edges. Let dry.

Step 5: Step 5: Twine and Hang Your American Flag

  1. Thread twine or sisal through the drilled holes and tie off (you may need to use the drill bit to reopen the holes you made earlier due to paint and fixative).
  2. Hang your American flag with pride where you want and when you want!

Congratulations, you're finished! Now you can display your patriotism with pride.