Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Reader Question: How Do You Make That Paper Sun?


Welcome to today's episode of Reader Question wherein I give pause to your most burning, deeply-pressing, soul-nagging questions. And today's question?

"You know that paper sun up there on your header?...  How did you make that?"

Well, it's not hard at all in fact. I first introduced the paper bag sun back HERE after which point it found its way to my little header because, well... it's just so pretty is all. I borrowed the basic concept from Rachel Katz' spiky origami star, I put my own twist on it, and BAM, the paper bag sun was born!

Let's go through it, okay?

I start with a paper bag. I cut along one corner of the bag and remove the bottom. I then moosh the paper bag once, twice, thrice, quadrice (not a word but you know what I mean). This "mooshing" action softens the paper making it almost fabric-like.

I pass a hot, dry iron over the mooshed paper bag to smooth it out. Then I cut 14 little squares from my softened paper. These squares are 2.5 inches x 2.5 inches (6.5 cm x 6.5 cm). Pretty small.

Now I send you over to Rachel's tutorial because she does such a great job explaining the foldy bits... Come back when you have 14 individual folded components. Oh yes, and do not join them yet! Okay. Go see Rachel now. Go!

Once I have my 14 components, I paint the area below the bottom fold on each of the 14 components. I use watercolour paints in various colours. Notice my header sun is painted in warm colours. Today's version sports a mélange of colours. Choose whatever colours you like! Be bold! Make it your own!

Once the paint is dry, fold up the painted area of each component (as Rachel intended) and then fold each bit as shown.

And now to add the twist...

What I do here is I dip the spiky end of each component into a little dish of water and wrap that wetted end around a skinny paintbrush and hold for a few moments. I repeat this for each of the 14 components. I then throw the bundle of individual wet curly components in the microwave on HIGH for 30 seconds to speed up the drying process. But you can allow them to air-dry if you like. This gives each component a curly end.

And finally, to make the sun, I join the 14 bits as Rachel shows in her spiky origami star tutorial. Thank you Rachel!

This little guy finishes at 4 inches (10 cm) in diameter and fits nicely in my hand. He would make a lovely pendant on a necklace or unique wall decor, don't you think? Add a bit of ribbon and he's a Christmas tree ornament! Dark places in need of brightening? This little sun would surely do the trick!



  1. ... she makes it looks so easy!
    thankyou for your tutoriaal anyway, it sure is beautiful:-)

  2. thank you michele, as usual!!
    happy halloween, xxx Ale

  3. that´s what I always asked myself - how does she do those suns :)
    Thanks so much - I will give it a try!!

  4. sooo pretty!
    i knew i could probably find directions somewhere on your blog, but this is perfect.
    i just love the feel of brown paper after it's been mooshed.

  5. ...and for some reason,
    seeing the how-to on top of your wooden table makes it more approachable for me.
    it's almost like you're sitting at my kitchen table showing me the steps ♥

  6. Wow! You do make it look easy, but there is so much talent involved.

  7. Beautiful! Thanks for sharing the tutorial!

  8. Your fingers produce magic and make it look so simple! Thanks for sharing your SUN!

  9. He is fabulous, of course - and interesting that the origami aspect of him didn't strike me until you explained. Such a cool woven look, I wasn't even thinking about folds, but of warping and wefting. Great tutorial!

  10. Just in time to make package decorations for the Christmas gifts that get shipped, and a bow of ribbon will just get crushed. Thanks Michele!

  11. Love it Michele!! I'm going to have to try this out!!

  12. I too have admired the spiky sun wreath in your blog header. Thanks for showing us how to do it. Really lovely. I like the idea of making a bunch of them for Christmas ornaments.

  13. It is striking must admit.........wonder if it could work in fabric? lol

  14. Too cool Michele! I'm pinning this to try with my girls in the holidays!

  15. I too am wondering how this would look with fabrics. I am sure you could get some cool patterns and make this really stunning!


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