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Pinwheel Tutorial

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I posted these last week and was asked by several for a tutorial. I aim to please, so here it is! This tutorial is really from Mini Mustard Seed aka “Mini” aka Charlene. She’s my babysitter/nanny and helps me out with my business during busy seasons. She’s super crafty, so she makes most of my glitter letters and helped out a ton with the Christmas ornaments last year.  She brought a paper folding book home from the library one day and we both immediately spotted the pinwheel.  Sheet music…glitter…let’s mustardize these pinwheels.

We’ve since made some out of vintage division flash cards, scrapbook paper and a vintage “Dick & Jane” book.

(The Dick & Jane book ones are so cute, because of the soft colors.)

 

Here’s how to make your own…

Supply list:

  • 5/16″ dowel rod
  • paper
  • scissors
  • paper cutter (optional)
  • Elmer’s glue
  • 1/2″ artist brush
  • hot glue gun and glue sticks
  • glitter
  • silver head upholstery tacks
  • hammer

If you’re using scrapbook paper, you can simply cut it into quarters using scissors or a paper cutter.  If you’re cutting a piece of paper to size, Mini cuts them to 4 1/2″ square for small pinwheels or 6 1/2″ square for large.  It looks best to use a piece of paper with something printed on both sides.

 

Use a sharp pair of scissors and cut from the diagonal on each corner about halfway to the center.   Repeat on all four corners.

 

Use a small artist’s brush to apply Elmer’s glue to the edges of the paper.

 

Sprinkle the wet glue with glitter.  I use an equal mix of 70 and 90 grit silver German glass glitter, but you can use any glitter you want.  Shake off excess glitter.

Apply a dab of hot glue in the center of the front side of the pinwheel.

Fold over one corner and stick it into the hot glue.  Apply another dab of glue and press down the second corner.  Repeat with all four corners.

 

 

Hold the corners in with your finger or the end of a pen or pencil to save your finger prints.  I know we’re all familiar with the joys of glue gun burns.

 

Now apply Elmer’s glue to the exposed edges of the pinwheel and cover with glitter.

 

 

Cut a 5/16″ dowel to about 12″ – 14″ in length.  (You can do this at the home store if you don’t have a saw at home.)  Press a silver upholstery tack gently into dowel, about 3/4″ from the top.

 

Tap the tack gently in with a hammer, so it goes mostly through the dowel without coming out the other side.  Take your time on this step, so you don’t split the dowel.

Remove the tack from the dowel and push it through center of the pinwheel, then press into the hole you made in the dowel.

 

 

Don’t push it in too far, so the pinwheels have room to spin.   Obviously, these are indoor only pinwheels, since they’re made out of paper.

 

 

These are so fun for spring/summer parties.  You could also make a “bouquet” of them or simply “plant” one in a pot of moss.

 

 

Enjoy making them!

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Comments

  1. I saw this on pinterest and just loved the idea for making vintage looking pinwheels for craft shows I do so that kids have something they can buy. They are inexpensive and bring in a little additional cash for the larger items I have that take awhile to sell. I came up with 2 suggestions for the project that seemed to work for me. First, in saving time, I bought glitter glue instead of mixing glitter and Elmer’s glue. It was faster and I was able to apply it more evenly. Second, I purchased some fancy upholstery tacks, so when hammering them in, use a bit of cloth or felt between the hammer and tack so as not to scratch the tack’s surface. I also really liked the suggestion by another poster to Modge Podge the paper first. This makes it sturdier and easier to work with as far as gluing the corners to the innermost part of the pinwheel. These are amazing!

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