A paper chandelier!
There are lots of tutorials you can find on the web for paper chandeliers and pajaki's, which are the traditional polish paper chandeliers these creations are based on. We decided to pull aspects from many different chandeliers we liked and make our own version!
We documented our process to let you in on how we decided to make ours. We want to inspire you to piece together your own original paper chandelier; pulling some of the aspects you liked from ours and combining them with some of your own! These chandeliers are so fun to make and the sky is the limit when deciding how you want your chandelier to look!
DIY Paper Chandelier
What you will need:
Double sided tape
Hot glue gun
At least 8 binder clips
Metal ring, ring, or S hook (what the chandelier hangs from)
1 piece of normal white poster board
Tissue paper in as many colors as you want (we used 3)
1 paper straw
Thin yarn, bakers twine or string (color doesn't matter as it will be covered)
At least 10 pieces of pretty paper (we used a slightly sparkly Ecru Micah colored paper by Envelopments.)
You can buy just about any color paper you want, tissue paper, bakers twine, scissors, and ribbon at Broadway Paper!
Step 1: Creating your 2 paper frames
- First grab your poster board, pencil, ruler and stapler.
- We will be creating the frame for the top tier of the chandelier first (what the flowers attach to).
- Mark and cut 1 inch thick strips of poster board ( you will not need a full poster board worth of strips).
- Next use tape and double stick tape to overlap and tape together strips of poster board to make a strip that is at least 30 inches long.
- Next start at one end of your strip and make a mark every 3.5 inches, for a total of 8 marks. The last mark you make should be at 28 inches on your strip.
- Connect the ends of your strip with plenty of tape at the 28 inch mark, making sure the marks you make are on the outside of the circular frame.
- Next keep taping more strips along the inside of the original frame until it feels sturdy enough to hold its shape on its own. Use many strips of tape in many different spots to make sure the strips are held together tightly and securely.
- Next you will do the same thing for the larger bottom tier frame.
- Tape enough of your poster board strips together to make a strip that is at least 43 inches long.
- Start at one end of the strip and make a mark every 5 inches. You will make 8 marks with the last mark being at 40 inches.
- Connect the strip at the 40 inch mark with the marks facing out and keep taping more strips along the inside of the frame until it feels sturdy enough to hold its shape.
- You should have 2 circular frames that look something like this. Set them aside.
Step 2: Making your circles & straws
*The strings of the chandelier end up covered with what we will call straws and circles. The straws are made of pretty paper we will roll into straw like tubes and the circles are cut out of tissue paper.*
- First we will make the circles. Take whatever tissue paper color you want (we used peach) and fold it as many times as you can and still cut through it. Then cut out your circles that are a little less than 1.5 inches across. Cut out a few bunches of them and set aside.
-These will be grouped in 3 and used in between the straws.
- Next we will make the straws.
*You can always buy straws and cut them to size, but we wanted ours to be a pretty champagne color so we made our own!*
- Grab your pretty paper, ruler, pencil, scissors, the one real paper straw, and plug in your hot glue gun.
- Take 1 sheet of your pretty paper and mark and cut strips 3 inches wide.
- Next take one of those strips and your one real paper straw and begin rolling the paper around the straw as tightly as you can.
- Once you have rolled the paper all the way around the straw and overlapped it enough to keep the edge tucked under, take your hot glue gun and run a strip of glue along the paper next to the rolled part. Quickly set your glue gun down and continue rolling the straw tightly over the hot glue.
*This will take a little time to get used to working quickly and keeping the paper rolled, so don't be discouraged! If you are having a hard time, you can always grab a friend to help lay down the glue as you hold the rolled paper*
-Next grab your scissors and cut the paper as close along the straw as you can. It doesn't need to be perfectly straight.
- Next gently slide the paper off of the straw and you have your own pretty paper straw.
- Continue these steps on the same strip of paper until you have used it all. You can get 4-5 straws per each 3 inch wide strip of paper.
- You will need to make 72, 3 inch long straws and around 50, 2.5 inch long straws (give or take depending on your draping at the bottom of the chandelier).
- Once you have all your straws done, set them aside.
Step 3: Starting your strings
- Find a good place that you will be able to hang your chandelier from as you work on it, free of touching anything around it.
- Take your S hook or ring and hang it up.
- Next take your yarn, string or bakers twine and cut 8 pieces of string, each 130 inches long.
- Next make sure the strings are all lined up and fold them all together in the middle and create a slip knot to attach them to your hook or ring.
- You should have 16 strings hanging from your hook. Pair your strings off into 8 separate pairs and clip each pair together with a binder clip.
- Next take the binder clip off 1 pair of strings and thread them through your tapestry needle as if it was one piece of string.
- Next take 1 of your 3 inch long straws and string it on, then 3 tissue circles. Continue this until you have 5 straws separated by a group of 3 tissue circles on the string.
- Place a binder clip on the end of the strings to hold the straws and circles in place.
Step 4: Attaching your first frame
- Grab your smaller circular frame that you made out of poster board and one of the strings you just finished and wrap the string around the frame one time at one of the marks you made of the frame.
- We took the string around the outside of the frame, then up and through the middle of the 2 strings then used the binder clip to clip the string to that mark on the frame.
- Continue doing this for each string and matching it to each mark you made on the frame.
- Next make your frame as perpendicular to the floor as possible, it may take a little tightening or loosening of strings in different places. You want to make sure all your strings holding up the frame are pulling equal weight.
- Once your frame is perpendicular to the ground tape each set of strings in place and remove the binder clips.
- After you remove the clips take your stapler and staple over the tape in place.
- Now your first tier of the chandelier is done!
Step 5: Finishing off the body
- Now we are going to string more straws and circles on the strings.
- Take your tapestry needle and thread only 1 string through the needle. String 2 straws separated by 3 tissue circles onto each single string and clip them to hold everything on if necessary.
- Once all 16 strings have their straws and circles on them can start to pair them up again. You want to make sure that the 2 strings that are coming from one spot on the small frame are split up and paired with the string on the opposite side from its original pair.
- This will create downward pointed triangles where you can clip the strings together.
- Once this is done so that you once again have 8 pairs of strings you will be ready to attach the second circular frame.
- Grab your larger circular frame and repeat the same process as you did to attach the first frame. First lining up the marks on the smaller frame to land centered between the dots on the larger frame. This ensures that the strings are all symmetrical and look the same distance apart.
- Now begin clipping the frame to each string pair at each evenly spaced mark you made on the frame.
- Make sure to wrap the string around the frame before clipping it.
- Make sure the frame is as close to perpendicular to the ground and the frame above as you can get it. Then tape and staple the strings in their place.
- Next take your 8 pairs of strings and drape them back and forth and around the bottom frame.
- There is no perfect way to do this so continue to drape your 8 pairs of strings back and forth and around until you like the way it looks. Use your binder clips to keep the strings in the places you like.
- Next take one of your pairs of strings out of the clip, but leave your binder clip in the spot you had it attached on the frame. (This is only to help you remember where you wanted that piece).
- Thread your pair of strings through the tapestry needle once again and using your 2.5 inch long straws, start threading your straw and tissue circles onto your string until it is as long as you want.
- Continue this process for the remaining 7 pairs of strings. Once they are done you can wrap the strings around the frame, and tape them and staple them securely in place and trim off the excess string.
- Now your frame is complete!
Step 6: Tassels
- You can make your tassels as small or big as you want of course. We chose to make ours 3 inches long from top to bottom.
- There are countless tutorials on the internet that can show you how to create a simple tassel if you don't already know how, so we will skip that part.
- Take your bakers twine (we used natural with gold) and make 4 tassels making sure to leave the string to hang them with long enough that they hang where you would like them to. Our strings were 16 inch strings folded in half.
- Next take your tassels and tie them in a spot you like. Make sure they hang low enough to be seen once the tissue flowers are in place if hanging them from the bottom frame like we did.
Now the fun really begins!
- Take your tissue paper in as many colors as your would like and make your tissue flowers!
There are so many different kinds of tissue flower tutorials online so check them out and find the one you love. We decided to make standard peony tissue flowers in 3 different colors.
- First, take your tissue paper and fold it as many time as you can into 5.5 inch to 6 inch squares.
- Next cut out a flower shape and separate the layers into groups of 10.
- Next using the remaining poster board you have cut small 1/2 inch to 1 inch by 2 inch strips. They don't need to be exact or even straight as they will be hidden.
- Take a group of 10 cut flower layers and place a little strip of poster board in the middle and staple them all together.
- Next flip the stapled flower over so the little white strip is on the bottom and begin scrunching up the tissue paper one layer at a time.
- Repeat these steps in each color until you have 26 - 27 flowers total.
- Next take the flowers and tape the little white poster board piece to the chosen area of each frame. Make sure they are securely attached with tape or you can hot glue them.
- Cover the frames with your flowers all the way around until they are completely covered
- The final part is completely optional, but if you want to cover up the strings and tape that you see when looking on the inside of the chandelier, you can simply cut 1 inch strips of paper in whatever color you like and use double sided tape to attach them to the inside of the frames to cover them up!
TA - DA! Your chandelier is complete!
To see our chandelier stop by the store and take a peek in the bridal suite!
We would love to see the creations YOU make after reading this blog! Tag us in your photos on Instagram so we can see all your handmade beauties!