Wednesday, 12 June 2013

DIY 3-D Star

I have been wanting one of those really-cool-vintage looking-3D-stars for such a long time!  But $25 is way too much for me to spend on one of them (I am such a cheap-o).  I looked all over the internet (and when I say internet, what I really mean is Pinterest :-), and I could not find any instructions for a big star.  There were tons of ideas on how to create the little teeny tiny ones, but I wanted a BIG one!  I finally decided that I needed to get off my lazy bum and just figure out how to make one myself.  Now, I get to share my new found knowledge with you!  Lucky.

Here's what you'll need:

3 Cereal Boxes
Hot Glue Gun
Hot Glue
Paint (I used the cheapest I could find - surprised?)

Here's what you do:
These first few steps (1-5) are what you need to do to make the stencil.  They only have to be done once!

Step 1-  Open each of the cereal boxes so that they lie flat.  The face and back of each of my boxes was about 11.75" x 7.5" (not including the sides), but really you could use any size that you want.

Step 2-  On one of the boxes, measure half-way across the top and the bottom (on mine it was 3.75" in).  Make a mark at each half-way point.  Now draw a line from mark to mark.

Step 3-  From the bottom of the box measure up 4 inches on each side and create another mark.  Connect those two new dots.  You should now have a cross drawn on your box.

Step 4-  On that shorter line that you just drew, measure in towards the center of the box 1" from each side.  Again, make a mark at each of those spots.

Step 5-  Draw four new lines connecting the top and bottom marks to each of these new marks.  Now it should look like you have a kite drawn on your box.

Have I lost you yet?  Here's a photo to help.  (Sorry about the poor quality, it was taken with my phone...)  

Phew!  Are you still with me?  Don't worry, the rest of the process is easy peazy!

Step 6-  Cut out the "kite" shape along the last lines you made (labeled step 5 in the photo above).

Step 7-  Using this kite shape as a guide, trace 5 more of the same shape, using both the front and back of each of your cereal boxes.

Step 8-  *Make sure you read this entire step before you begin cutting*.  Cut out each of the shapes, making sure that you leave between a quarter inch or half inch "seam allowance" along the shorter lines.  Unlike in step 6 you will NOT be cutting directly on those shorter lines.  You will be cutting a quarter of an inch outside the lines.  This buffer will be where you will be gluing, so it is super important.  The longer lines, however, you will be cutting directly on (the outer points of the star).

Here is what the completed cutouts should look like:

Step 9-  Now take your ruler and scissors, and score each piece right in the center from top to bottom (on the line labeled "step 2").  Make sure you do not cut all the way through the cereal box, you're just making a shallow cut.  *Hint* Score the side of the cereal box that you want to be on the BACK of the star (the side you don't want to paint).  

Step 10-  Take each piece and slightly bend in along the line you scored.  You will be bending it so that the cut is on the inside of the bend.  In the same direction you bent the scored line, also bend along the shorter lines that you traced (next to the "seam allowance").  These shorter pieces you want to bend 90 degrees.

Step 11-  Now, glue each piece together - seam allowance to seam allowance.  Don't freak out when you have all of them glued together and you star looks like this:
I may or may not have had a minor freak out moment, just saying.   Take a deep breath and just glue the final seams together.  Voila!  You have a beautiful 3D star, ready for paint!

Step 12-  Paint using any paint of your choice.  I first painted the entire star a light brown.  And once that dried the real fun began.  I wanted a little bit of an antique look, so I used glue as a second base coat.  Then after it had dried a little bit (not too much though) I painted on the acrylic paint.  The glue kind of makes the top coat of paint crackle.  In short, glue became a cheap substitute for crackle paint.  Sweet!!!!  And it looks great!  If you have any questions about this painting process, just send me a message, and I'll help you out.  

Metalic paint would probably look pretty cool too.  Use your imagination!  Make the star your own! 

Step 13-  In order to get the star hang-able I glued a popsicle stick on the back, then looped a rubber band around the stick.  You could probably come up with better ways than that, that's just what I did.  Worked like a charm though!  

Here is the final price breakdown.  The only thing that I had to buy in order to complete this project was paint.  I bought three small bottles of acrylic paint for a total of $2.11!  That's it!  The cost may even be lower for you, if you already have paint lying around the house!  Way better then spending $24.99 on Ebay, am I right?

Have you completed this project?  Let me know how it went!  


  1. I love it Melissa!I am super impressed, especially after you told me you are not crafty (which I never believed) :) I am going to try this for sure.

  2. This is SO cute! when I saw the pic I thought, ahh man, another craft I won't be able to get the supplies for.. (I live in a third world country) and then I saw that you cereal boxes! brilliant! DOING!

  3. Awesome! I would love to hear how it goes, Stephanie!