Christmas paper chains are so much fun to make and are an easy Christmas craft that the whole family will enjoy. These paper chains also double as a fun DIY holiday garland decoration.
In this post, I will be showing you how to quickly and easily make four different kinds of Christmas paper garlands. At the bottom of this post, you will find templates that I have created that will make the process much easier as well.
You can download the free template page for an easy way to make a Christmas Tree, Star, Snowman and Reindeer paper chain.
What is paper garland?
Paper garland are fun DIY Christmas decorations that you can make yourself this holiday season! A craft that only requires some paper, a pencil and a pair of scissors, it is great for kids and adults of all ages. Paper chains can be made in endless amounts of shapes and designs. Today, I’ll be showing you how to make four different Christmas designs using supplies that you probably already have at home.
- The free printable Christmas paper chains (the Christmas Tree, Star, Snowman and Reindeer templates are all available on the same page. The download link can be found at the bottom of the page).
- Construction paper or printer paper in any color of your choosing.
- Tape or glue (Optional. You will need this is if you are planning on attaching. Multiple paper chains together).
How to use the printable templates:
Step 1: Print out the template.
I would definitely recommend printing out the template onto cardstock. Regular printer paper would also work. However, cardstock is much thicker and will make tracing the shapes onto the paper chains much easier.
Step 2: Cut out each template along the dotted lines.
Using scissors, begin cutting out each template (or only the ones you are planning on using). Then, set them aside.
Step 3: Fold the paper chain
How to fold a paper chain
Step 1: Start with a rectangular paper strip.
What I usually do is fold a piece of construction paper or printer paper in half and then cut along the crease to form two rectangular pieces of paper.
Step 2: Fold three times.
Using only one side of the piece of paper (and keeping the other half for creating additional paper chains) fold it in half. Fold it in half a second time and then finally one more time for a total of three folds.
Step 3: Fold accordion style.
Next, unfold the strip of paper and then begin refolding it again, but this time accordion style along the creases that you just made. Accordion style means that you fold back and forth along each crease.
You will end up with a zig zag sort of paper. It is very important to ensure that the left hand side is the folded edge and the right hand side opens up similar to opening a book.
This is key in making sure that your final design pieces connects to one another.
Another important note is that when tracing the template, you must make sure that the right side of the design falls off the edge a little bit This will ensure that the design connects properly.
Due to printer differences and paper variations, sometimes the edges of the template might not line up perfectly.
If this is the case, all you need to do is extend the drawing a but so that the shape hangs off of the right side of the paper.
If you don’t do this step, you will end up with four separate cutouts instead of a connected chain.
Step 5: Cut and Unfold.
Finally, cut along the lines and then unfold the chain to reveal your final paper garland. You can repeat the process as many times as you would like and then tape or glue the chains together to form a longer garland.
Favorite Printable Supplies:
These are a few of my favorite supplies that I use for printable games and activities:
- White Cardstock: For most projects, I recommend printing onto cardstock. It is much more durable than standard printer paper and often produces a higher quality print.
- Crayons: A staple in any crafting household. Crayola is always the top notch choice!
- Kid Friendly Safety Scissors: These are perfect for little kids learning how to use scissors. They cut paper but not fingers or hair!
- Glue Sticks: These disappearing purple glue sticks are by far my favorite! I love buying them in bulk since we use them so often!
- Lamination Machine: Laminating printables are a great way to make them last longer. If you are planning on laminating to make games reusable, be sure to get a bunch of dry erase markers as well.
- Dry Erase Pockets: Dry erase pockets are a great alternative to using a lamination machine when wanting to make printable games and activities reusable.
- Printer: A high quality printer is always recommended for the best results. If you are in need of a printer this Brother Wireless Printer is a great choice.
Free Printable Christmas Paper Chain Template:
This template page has been designed to be printed onto a standard piece of 8.5×11 inch white cardstock or printer paper. I would most definitely recommend using cardstock if you have some available.
Four template shapes (Christmas Tree, Star, Snowman and Reindeer) will print on the same page. The folding instructions will also print out on this page as well.
Please feel free to download and print as many copies of the template as you would like. However, please do not edit or redistribute the files in any way. These templates have been created for personal use or classroom use only.
If you enjoyed this printable paper chain template, you might like to check out some more of our free Christmas themed free printables below:
- Free Printable Build a Santa Craft
- Free Printable Build an Elf Craft
- Free Printable Build a Snowman Craft
- Free Printable Christmas Light Template
- Free Printable Christmas I Spy Game
- Free Printable Christmas Advent Calendar
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