Easy Paper Fan Cardinal Ornament for Christmas

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We have another oh so sweet Paper Craft for you today – a lovely little Christmas Ornaments that kids and grown ups can make: an adorable Paper Cardinal Ornament.

This Paper Craft comes complete with FREE Cardinal Bird Template or draw your own!

I have been wanting to make some Paper Fan Birds for ages – we rather love paper fan crafts. Paper fans are easy to make, look really good and can be turned into a number of fabulous paper fan projects – e.g. our paper fan butterflies (a must!!) or these fabulous paper fan fish!

So today’s paper fan birds are a natural progression. As Winter and Christmas head our way, we thought a paper fan cardinal ornament would be really sweet! I hope you like it too. I love the bright red colour of the cardinal – a perfect addition to the Christmas tree.. or hang them in your windows as “Winter Ornaments” to beat away the Winter Blues!!! These will really compliment our great list of 50+ Christmas Ornaments!

To make your easy paper cardinal ornaments – you will need:

  • Red paper
  • Red card (if you have it, else, glue 2 sheets of paper together (see below)
  • Our free Cardinal Ornament printable (if you need it, though the video below gives you instructions for drawing your own) enter $0+ at check out
  • Scissors, a little glue (to help balance the string)
  • An string for hanging (we rather love the red baker’s twine US/ UK (affiliate links))

This continues to be a free resource to Red Ted Art readers. Please enter $0 at check out or leave a small tip if you wish! Always appreciated but not necessary.

How to make a Paper Cardinal Ornament

Either watch our easy to follow Paper Cardinal Craft video on auto play or read the step by step instructions for how to make your paper cardinal ornament below!! Enjoy.

How to make a paper fan bird – step by step instructions

Draw your cardinal (or use the templates)

Begin by drawing your own cardinal bird template or print out our free cardinal bird templates – there are two sets of templates to choose from – one in 3 different bird sizes (we used the medium bird) the other in “back and front” birds, that you can print straight onto red paper, cut and stick together. Choose what suits you best.

If you are drawing your own bird and want to make your Cardinal Ornaments the same size as mine, aim for a bird roughly 14cm from beak to tail.

Make your paper cardina’s body

Cut out two sheets of red paper and glue together – to make it stiffer.

With a black pen add the “face” details to your cardinal paper.

For you paper fan bird’s wings you will need to –

Now take a piece of red paper approximately 15cm x 15cm or 15cm x 17cm in dimensions.

Fold the paper into a paper fan or paper concertina – with approximately 5mm width.

Now your basic pieces are ready.

Assembling your Paper Cardinal Ornament

Carefully cut a slot into the back of your paper cardinal – approximately 5mm-6mm – wide enough to fit your paper concertina.

Before you insert you concertina, cute some bakers twine (I love the red bakers twine for this! Get some here US/ UK (affiliate links)). Knot both ends. Push through the slit.

And push the concertina in the slit too. With the knots of the twine secured on EITHER side of your paper fan wings.

Now your paper cardinal ornament is ALMOST finished.

You will find that the cardinal topples over – it is hard to get the balance on these right, especially since often one wing sticks up more than the other. To account for this, we did two things:

  1. Glue your baker’s twine into the folds of ONE wing (it is a little fiddly, but doable) – see the video above if you need extra guideance
  2. Glue the BASE of the wing to the BACK of the paper fan bird – t his is literally about 5mm of glue. This will help the wings “stay up” in roughly the same position and balance your paper cardinal ornament a bit better.

Your lovely Paper Cardinal Ornaments are now finished! Wouldn’t they look amazing combined with our paper fan angels? What great paper fan ornament DIYs!!

Check out more of our Christmas Ornaments here

We have even MORE lovely WINTER Crafts for kids here…

And finally.. we are putting together a great list of Paper Fan DIY Ideas!! Watch this space!

Our Paper Cardinal Video instructions are also available on YouTube: