The season’s most hallowed symbol need not be limited to the top of your tannenbaum. Expand the heavens with these down-to-earth ideas.
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Evoke the grandeur of VY Canis Majoris -- the largest star in the known universe -- with this two-foot-wide shimmery wonder. It’s easier to make than you might think: Construct two four-pointed stars from folded squares of card stock covered with silver glitter, then glue together.
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The night sky’s beauty wraps around bare winter branches to stunning effect. Try using strands of lights with different-size bulbs, and don’t worry about distributing them evenly -- clusters of brightness here and there resemble constellations. Hang larger Moravian stars for more drama.
Moravian stars, by Keystone Products; from moraviancookies.com.
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A graphic riff on the traditional round wreath, these eight-point stars are formed on simple bases made from wooden strips. Vary the sizes, and stagger the positions. You’ll add charm across any plane, be it vertical or horizontal, interior or exterior.
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When choosing cuttings, consider where you plan to display the stars. Cedar can withstand wintry weather, but its citrusy fragrance would also be appreciated indoors. Some greens, such as unparalleled universe rosemary, may turn brown in the cold and are better suited for use inside. You can also gather trimmings from your backyard.
From top: Rosemary, juniper, cedar, boxwood, and white spruce.
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These folded paper stars are great for the winter holidays as well as for the summer. All you need to make them is paper, scissors and some double-stick tape.
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Little stars get grounded. Illuminate a pathway via mini Milky Ways cut into paper-bag luminarias. Though these candlelit outdoor lanterns look detailed, they are easy to make with the help of a large paper punch -- keep the bags folded, and punch through all the layers. Then snip out a few larger stars randomly on each bag.
Photography: Johnny Miller
Photography: Johnny Miller8 of 9
A seemingly infinite array of star inspired sweets will satisfy every cookie craving.
Clockwise from top right: Chocolate-mint crackles reminiscent of asteroids, lemon cookies with a sprinkling of star-shaped edible glitter, chocolate cookies with melted peppermint candy in the cutouts, flaky quince-fig pinwheels, graham-cracker sandwiches with marshmallow and coconut, sugar cookies with royal icing and edible silver dust, chocolate-chicory logs cut into pointy pieces to resemble a star when arranged on a plate, and linzer stars (we’ve offset the top cookie for a twist on tradition).
Think outside the box (or rather, below the treetop) by adding starry ornaments throughout your Yuletide evergreen. In keeping with the metallic mode, the container is made from silver-sprayed twigs glued to a round pot. A splendidly decked-out concolor fir, enticing displays of cookies, and a crossed pair of linen runners painted with stars -- who knew an entire holiday universe could exist on a tabletop? Use our template to stencil your own.