Learn how to make your own DIY paper Filipino star lantern. Called the parol, this Christmas decoration originated from the Philippines.
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DIY Filipino Christmas Star

December 4, 2022

Today we're showing you how to make your own DIY Filipino Christmas Star! This decoration, called a parol, is traditionally made out of Japanese paper and bamboo and lit with candles or lamps. Nowadays, people make them with other materials such as cellophane, plastic straws, capiz shells, and string lights. In this tutorial, we will make them mostly out of construction paper and tissue paper. Filipinos picked up the tradition of carrying lights on their way to celebrate Simbang Gabi when they were a Spanish colony (Spain colonized the Philippines from 1565 to 1898). Simbang Gabi happens every December and is an event where Filipino Catholics attend church every night for the nine days leading up to Christmas. Parols started out as simple rectangular shapes but over time they turned into the iconic, colorful star design that we recognize today. Filipinos across the world carry the tradition of the parol and usually hang it by their windows for all to admire. Hope you and your loved ones have fun making this unique Christmas decoration!

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Download PDF Instructions


• 8.5 x 11” cut up in thirds
• 8x8” square tissue paper
• Staple or tape
• String
• Hole puncher

Part 1: Make a Star
With printer paper, fold lengthwise twice, then widthwise once
Open up, fold top corners inward, fold top part to meet the bottom crease

Flip over and fold top corners again, fold two edges to meet the center

Fold the bottom edge up until it meets the triangle, make four more, insert ends into the flaps to form a star
Part 2: Make the Tail
Taking the 8x8 tissue paper, fold into triangle twice, take the bottom point (90° corner) and fold against the top edge
Cut alternating slits, open up and staple to star, hole punch top point & attach string to hang