How to Make a Star Jar
What You'll Need
- Glass Container: It could be a bottle like mine, a mason jar, or any old glass container.
- Paper Strips: Each strip needs to be 1cm by 13cm.
- You can vary the width of the strips. This will result in different-sized stars.
- If you're cutting your own paper, cardstock is preferable.
- Normal printer paper will work alright, but if you're using it, you should cut the strips a little longer because the paper is thinner.
- Get a few different colors and textures so your star jar is super exciting and cute. You can also buy these papers online.
- It's simple once you get the hang of it. Basically, you tie one end of a paper strip in a knot. Don't crumple it—simply flatten it down once it's pulled tight! It makes a pentagon shape.
- One end should be long, and one end should be really short, as in less than a centimeter. Take the short end and fold it over. It'll go right into place, because geometry.
- Then, take the long end and keep folding it over the sides of the pentagon shape - until there's only a tiny bit left!
- When your long end has become too short to fold it over another time, take the end and tuck it into a fold so it's not exposed.
- Once you've done that, you should have a little paper pentagon. Take your thumb and pointer finger, and pinch the corners of the star. This will make the front and back puff out, amping your origami from the second to the third dimension! Pinch all of the sides, and you'll have a tiny, puffy star.
You're going to need some patience for this DIY—it takes a while to fill up an entire jar! You'll need to make a couple hundred stars. Once you get the folding down, you can do it while you're watching a show or sitting in class. That's where I did most of my folding. Keep the jar with you and drop them in as you go. Make sure the width of your paper doesn't exceed the width of the jar opening or they won't fit inside!
- Sometimes, you'll have a few stars that don't work out. They're a pain, but you have to know when to give up. I usually fail during the pinching process. If you can't do it, throw it out and try a new strip!
- Your fingers will hurt, your fight will weaken... But soldier on! It's totally worth it in the end.
Backstory of the Stars
An old friend of mine, Diana, introduced me to the lucky paper stars. I was in a photography class in high school, and our assignment for the week was to capture something in motion. I asked Diana to be my model, and I stayed over at her house for the night just to shoot photos. Turns out, we were having so much fun that we forgot about the project until my mom was five minutes away from her house. As we frantically searched through her house for ideas, we came upon a jar of stars.
We decided she should get a big handful and blow them straight at the camera. The goal was to capture the stars and their trails as they moved across the picture plane. We got the photo just in time! My photography teacher loved it.
Diana told me that in Korea, they say you can make a wish if you fold 1000 stars. She taught me how to fold them, and we spent ages making these little guys.
We'd fold them in class, at home, and whenever we could find the time. We filled up jars and jars! The bottle in this photo was my first full jar of stars that I folded on my own. Since then, I've given star jars as gifts and taught others how to make them.
Upon some digging, I've found the photo of Diana blowing stars, as well as another from the same shoot. Here they are, for old time's sake!