Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Tutorial Tuesday: Paper Medallions

It's officially the holiday season! I hope everyone has been very busy filling orders and taking part in successful craft shows! For this week's tutorial, I wanted a quick project with some seasonal style. I had noticed these paper medallions in a few places, and really wanted to learn how to make them to hang in my front window. I think they will look great, along with some paper snowflakes.

Time required: 10 minutes for each medallion

Supplies: paper, cut into rectangular strips

coordinating paper, cut into circles

glue gun

paper cutter and circle cutter (makes things easier, but not strictly necessary)

glitter (if desired)

The process is very simple. Cut a strip of paper. A paper cutter is great here, because unless the edges of the strip are straight, folding will be more difficult and your medallion won't line up properly.

The width of your strip determines the circumference of the finished medallion. The wider you make the strip, the longer it needs to be. And seriously, the longer the better; make your strip at least 11 or 12 inches (28 - 30.5cm) long. I made mine 4 cm wide, and about 35cm long.

Fold your paper strip in accordion pleats, like you would if you were making a paper fan. The size of the pleats determines how many "scallops" the finished medallion will have. I made small folds, about 0.5cm each.

Now it's time to glue the strip together to make a loop. Make sure that the folds remain continuous (up, down, up down), trimming off a bit if necessary. Re-crease the edges and let the glue dry. Push the medallion flat, by gradually coaxing it into a lampshade shape, and then forcing the middle flat. This can be tricky and takes a little practice. Have your glue gun ready, and immediately glue the coordinating paper circle over the middle of the medallion. Be generous with the glue and make sure all the folds get attached to the circle. If you want to stack medallions in contrasting paper and graduating sizes, start with the smallest. As you continue on with the larger medallions, use those already completed smaller ones like the paper circle to hold the flattened strip in place.

Decorate as desired. These look very cute when hung as a garland. You can use them to spell out short words, with one letter on each of the center circles. If you want to hang these, use a small hole punch on the folds hidden by the circle in the middle.

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