How to Make Antique Paper Stars


This article shares information on how to make antique paper stars that can be used for any holiday celebration.

If you are new to this blog: Welcome! My name is Anna and I share information on collecting antique/vintage items, refurbishing furniture and making small crafts/projects. The purpose of this blog is to share with you how to use creativity and antiques to make your home beautiful. In addition to information here on the blog, you can also follow me on the following social media accounts InstagramFacebook or Pinterest.

Back Story

Although most star crafts are associated with Christmas or a Christmas tree, I made these in honor of the 4th of July.   With a collection of antique and vintage flags, I wanted to create some stars that felt old.  With a few tricks, I was able to achieve the effect I was after.  Now these vintage paper stars hang proudly behind the collection of the old flags to commemorate this summer holiday.  In this blog post, I will walk you through each step for making these antique paper stars and share a few lessons learned along the way.  After Mr. SLH and I made a few of these stars, we became huge fans of these simple decorations. They were easy to make and could be used for so many purposes.

How to Make Antique Paper Stars

Antique Paper Stars

Before jumping into the instructions, I want to share some insights.  When making these decorative paper stars, I decided to use old sheet music paper.  However, you can use just about any paper source you like, including:

  • Vintage Books  – book pages
  • Wallpaper
  • Paper bags
  • Heavy weight wrapping paper
  • Vintage maps
  • Construction paper
  • Scrap booking paper

Look around your home to see what paper you have on-hand for making your own beautiful antique paper star. 

sheet music


As with any project, the first thing we need to do is gather our supplies.  Most of these supplies are readily available.  As mentioned, I added an extra step to give the paper an “antique” appearance.  However, this is optional, so I am listing the supplies for this separately.  Where possible, I am providing links to online supplies.  

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Supplies for Making Antique Paper

These supplies are optional.  You can make these stars without aging the paper.  However, I wanted an antique look to the stars we made. 

  • Lipton tea bags – I used 2
  • Instant coffee or espresso
  • Clothes pins

Now that all the supplies are listed, let’s get started. 

Create Antique Paper

If you are using paper without a glossy finish – from old books or sheet music- this technique will give your stars an older appearance.  I would not recommend using this technique on wallpaper or wrapping paper. 

Fill a couple of tea cups half way with hot water and add a Lipton tea bag to each cup.  Laying out your paper, use the wet tea bag to stain the sheet of paper.  Then sprinkle some instant coffee or espresso on the sheet of paper and rub it in using the tea bag.   I used 2 tea bags to age 6 pieces of paper. If you want to age more paper, you will need more tea bags.

Flip the paper over and repeat this process on the other side. 

Antiquing the sheet music

Using some twine to make a clothes line and some clothes pins, hang up the sheets of paper to dry.  Here is a quick tip, if possible use two clothes pins to hang your paper on the twine.  This prevents the paper from curling.  I learned this the hard way. 

The antique paper you created should be dry after an hour. 

Make the Paper Stars

The key to making these stars is having two square pieces of paper the same size.  Using the sheet music paper, I folded over one corner to the opposite edge of the paper to create a square 8. 5 inches long on each side.  Then, repeated this process on another piece of sheet music, so I had two squares of paper the same size. 

Larger stars have a maximum impact and smaller stars offer a thoughtful touch.  So, it all depends upon how you want to use the stars you make. 

Some origami paper folding is required for making these paper stars but it is very simple and easy to do.  Another tip – make a few practice stars so you get the hang of the process.  

Here are steps for folding each piece of paper:

Step 1

Create Diagonal Folds – Fold the square diagonally in half. Then, fold the square diagonally in half in the opposite direction

Step 2

Fold in Half– Flip the paper over and fold the square in half. Then, fold the square in half in the opposite direction. If you have a decorative side of the paper you want to use for the outside of your star, make sure the right sides of the paper are face down for steps 3. 

fold paper in half

Step 3

Cut the Star Tips–   Use your scissors to cut to the halfway point between the edge of the paper and the center along the center folds.  Do not cut the pointed edges.  You are are only cutting the midpoints along the edges. 

Cut the star tips

Step 5

Make the Star Tips – Fold the edges of the points in along the existing seam.  Repeat this for all four corners.

Fold star tips

Repeat steps 1-5 for the second square. 

Plug in your hot glue gun and get ready for the last steps for making your antique paper star.

Step 6

Glue the Star Tips – Once your star halves have been folded, plug in your hot glue gun.  You are going to glue the triangles on the folded tips together. 

Another tip – Use a chop stick on the inside of the star points when pressing the glued paper together. 

Step 7

Attach Twine-  Using your hot glue gun and piece of twine 3 inches long, attach the twine to the inside base of a star point.  If you are making a smaller star, you can use a shorter piece of twine.

Attach twine to star

Step 8

Glue the two star halves together.  Gently hold the two folded pieces of paper together as the glue dries, usually 20-30 seconds.  

Repeat steps 1-8 to make an assortment of antique paper stars. Making a variety of star sizes creates an appealing display. 

Apply Glitter

​Applying glitter is also optional but I felt it gave the stars an extra special touch.  Using some rubber cement glue, brush it on the tips of the star and then cover the area with glitter.  Hang up your stars and let them dry.  Another tip – rubber cement glue doesn’t cause paper to warp or wrinkle. So, it’s important to use this type of glue to attach glitter.

Antique Paper Stars

Now you can enjoy your beautiful decorative paper star! (Or stars if you are making multiples)

Enjoy your Antique Paper Stars

As I noted earlier, we used these paper stars to decorate for the 4th of July but you can use them celebrate all sorts of occasions.

Feel free to Pin the images below if you want to bookmark this post for future reference.

Antique Paper Stars

These stars are intended for indoor use – creating a charming and celebratory atmosphere.

Antique Paper Stars

Final Thoughts

In addition to hanging them in your home, here are some other ideas on how to use them:

  • As table accessories
    • Use them down the center of your table; or
    • Add them charger plates, glasses, bowls or vases
  • Pair them with fairy lights fa or magical setting at night
  • Use them as present toppers
  • Make a smaller star as an ornament

If you don’t want to make your own stars, I found some paper stars that are similar.

Thank you for stopping by the blog today. Wishing you a safe and festive 4th of July.

Anna Signature Block

If you enjoyed this post, you might also like the following:

Collecting U.S. Vintage Flags 2

Collecting Vintage Flags

DIY Small Flag Holder

DIY Small Flag Holder from Spindles

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  1. These look fabulous, I especially love the glitter tips!
    I also love the idea of pairing the stars with fairy lights.
    thank you!

  2. I love these! I would love a whole tree filled with them for Christmas. And I love them made out of old music, but maps or book pages would be cool, too. Totally going to try these. Pinned!

    1. Thank you Lora! I can absolutely picture these stars in your home with all your vintage Christmas decor.

  3. These are truly amazing, Anna. I’m so in love! I can definitely see these being used for the 4th and during the hohlidays but also for birthday parties and special events too. They’re just gorgeous! Great job as always sweet friend. Your creativity never ceases to amaze me. Sending you hugs, CoCo

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