These festive, easy-to-make fans are ideal for last-minute Fourth of July entertaining. You can cluster a group of them in a bowl to create a celebratory centerpiece or place one on each place setting as a colorful and cooling party favor. Although Martha uses 8-by-15-inch paper for her fans, you can adjust the dimensions to your desired size; simply use paper that's as wide as you'd like your fan to be and about twice as long.
Tools and Materials
Wooden sticks or bamboo skewers
Waxed twine (optional)
Fireworks Fan How-To
1. Accordion-fold the paper, starting on a short side. (It's up to you how wide to make the folds; Martha's are about 1 inch wide.) Make a 45-degree diagonal cut at each end, then staple the folded paper in the center. (The staple should be perpendicular to the folds.) Glue one side. Open the fan so that the edges of one side meet. Glue the edges together, and hold the edges in place with a binder clip. (You should now have a partially opened fan.)
2. To create handles, position wooden sticks or bamboo skewers to the remaining sides, placing them inside the last folds; make sure the points are facing inward. Glue them in place, and attach binder clips while the glue dries. To keep the fan open, tie the handles together with waxed twine.
We used a glue pen from Making Memories, and we found the striped paper at Jack and Lulu. The colorful waxed twine was from the Catalog for Living.