Tuesday, 8 November 2011

Dodecahedron Star Lantern Tutorial

Last year I shared a star lantern tutorial that I'd been trying to make for ages and couldn't find instructions. This year a friend has shown me how to make the dodecahedron star lanterns - which I had also been lusting after - so I thought I'd share another tutorial to make them easier to find for others.

Dodecahedron Star Lantern Tutorial

Please excuse the quality of the photos - there is a distinct lack of day light with all of this miserable weather.

Technically you could use any kind of paper for the star lanterns. If you're using watercolour paintings you might light to oil your paper to get a brighter shine from the candle.
I think they'd be beautiful made with kite paper but they are a little tricky to assemble so maybe start with some construction/printer paper for your first try.

As with all paper folding crafts - the more accurate you are, the better the results. However, accuracy is not my strong point and my lanterns aren't coming out too badly!

What you will need:
Paper (see notes above)
Card to make a template (optional)
Glue (a prit-stick type works well)
Craft knife for scoring (optional)

Start by making a pentagon shaped template there are loads available if you do a google images search.

Use your template to cut out 11 paper pentagons and mark the halfway point on each of the edges (you don't need to draw the lines on the inside - that's just to help me demonstrate the fold lines).

Dodecahedron star lantern tutorial 1

Working from the halfway points you marked - make folds from point to point, all the way around so that you make a smaller pentagon with triangles folded over. I did this by folding the triangle shapes over the edge of my ruler to get a straight line. If you're confident with a craft knife you could score them for better accuracy.
Repeat for all of the 11 pentagon pieces.

Dodecahedron star lantern tutorial 2

Now to start assembling the dodecahedron.

Take two of your pentagon pieces. One will be the base, the other is going to be the first side piece. Sliding the bottom triangle underneath the base piece on one side, you can see how the shapes are going to fit together. Glue the triangles in place.

Dodecahedron star lantern tutorial 3

Next, add your third pentagon piece, securing in place with glue, as with the last one, and this time sticking triangles at the sides as well.

Dodecahedron star lantern tutorial 4

Continue sticking in this way.

Dodecahedron star lantern tutorial 5

You will complete the bottom section of the dodecahedron and then just keep going, adding a top layer (remember to leave a hole at the top for the candle) in exactly the same way.

Dodecahedron star lantern tutorial 6

It gets a little trickier to assemble as you move further up and have less space to manoeuvre your fingers but stay with it and it will come together - you're almost done!

When the last piece is in place, fold the remaining triangles around the top edge inside the lantern and stick with glue.

And there you have your lantern!

Dodecahedron Star Lantern Tutorial 7

Obviously, the lantern poses a fire risk so be careful when inserting the candle into your dodecahedron star lantern that it is in the centre and keep an eye on it - or use a battery operated tea light candle.

Dodecahedron Star Lantern Tutorial


  1. Love this. Made your star lanterns and window stars for so many people last christmas. looking forward to trying this out soon.

  2. BRILLIANT! Thanks so much for sharing this.....I will be making these for Christmas!

  3. These are great. Thank you v much for sharing, ooh Christmas is on it's way! They remind me of the lanterns that the children have in the Lantern Parades in Chester. x

  4. Looks wonderful - I'm not very good at being accurate but I will have a go!

  5. these are beautiful, love the little stars :)

  6. Love these, well done on the accuracy, it's not easy!

  7. I love this. I think I might have to make these up at Christmas prezzies.

  8. Looks like a great frugal chrIstmas gift

  9. Thanks for the great tutorial! Here is my version: http://craftingknowledge.blogspot.com/2012/12/star-challenge-day-twelve-dodecahedron.html.

  10. Thanks for the great tutorial! Here is my version: http://craftingknowledge.blogspot.com/2012/12/star-challenge-day-twelve-dodecahedron.html.


I'm trialling the word verification to avoid having to approve all comments (in order to weed out spam). Apologies if it bothers you.
If you're having a repeat problem with the form then please do email me at homebakedonline at gmail dot com and I'll do my best to sort it out.

I really appreciate the time you take to visit and comment :o)