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10 Crafts You Can Make With Just Paper

Make artwork, jewelry, even toys out of paper with these easy paper craft projects.

Margo Gothelf and Sarah Burns

Paper Snake Craft

The Craft Train

Paper is one of those things you probably take for granted: It’s kinda just… everywhere. (At school, at home, in the filing cabinet, in the bathroom …) But did you know that you can make stunning art, awesome crafts, and even beautiful jewelry out of nothing more than sheets of paper? Check out the projects below to see what you can do with this simple, but super-versatile material. 

1. Rainbow Paper Spinner Toy

Paper Spinner

Teach Beside Me

Make your own toy out of paper! This simple rainbow paper spinner beats a plastic fidget spinner any day. To make this easy craft, you’ll need strips of paper, a wooden skewer, a glue stick, and a glue gun: that’s it! You can choose to use all different colors to make a rainbow, or stick with different shades of the same color to form an ombré effect. Teach Beside Me has all the instructions. 

2. Ombré Paper Chain Wall Hanging

Paper Chain Ombre Wall Hanging

Design Improvised

This ombré paper chain wall hanging will instantly elevate any room. The simple design uses 19 rows of paper chains to create a subtle design. The chains are made out of cardstock and held together using just a staple. The hardest part of this project will be making sure you have all the paper rings in order — so consider enlisting an artists’ assistant (ahem, mom or dad).

3. Folded Paper Bracelets

Folded Paper Bracelets

Pickle Bums

It’s never been easier to make customized jewelry thanks to this DIY paper bracelet tutorial. Using watercolors, decorate your own paper with bright colors and designs. When the paper is dry, follow the instructions to turn the paper into a chain bracelet that you can wear. Folding the paper into chains might be tricky at first, but don’t worry, you’ll quickly get the hang of it after some practice. Make sure you paint a few sheets of paper with watercolors, so you can have a full stack of bracelets to show off. 

4. Paper Picture Frames

Paper Picture Frames

Kitchen Table Classroom

Why buy a picture frame when you can customize one out of paper? Head over to Kitchen Table Classroom and print out the tutorial for the frame. Then, get to work customizing your own design. Create the frame with the picture you want to frame in mind. This way, you can add in little details that will personalize it and make the frame even more special. 

5. Paper Lily Bouquet

Paper Lily Bouquet

One Little Project

Did you know you could make a bouquet of flowers using paper and your child's handprints? One Little Project has the instructions for this deceptively simple, beautiful paper craft, which turns your child's handprint into a bouquet of lilies. Best of all, unlike a regular bouquet, these flowers will last forever.

6. Fruit Slice Corner Bookmarks

Fruit Slice Corner Bookmarks

Frugal Mom Eh

Give your everyday bookmark an update with these fruit slice corner bookmarks. The tiny bookmarks fit right on the corner of your page, making sure to always keep your spot. This tutorial combines basic crafting and elements of origami to make little oranges, watermelons, and limes. You can also switch up the colors and add in yellow to make lemons or pink to make grapefruits. 

7. Colorful Paper Bird Craft

Colorful Paper Bird Craft

I Heart Crafty Things

Since it is definitely too cold to head outside and watch for birds, do the next best thing and bring the birdwatching inside. Head on over to I Heart Crafty Things to see how she brings the colorful creatures to life by folding and cutting paper in multiple ways. Once you have a flock of birds ready to go, race them around the house and see which ones can fly the fastest.

8. Paper Snake Craft

Paper Snake Craft

The Craft Train

Not all DIY animal projects have to be adorable — just look at this creepy paper snake project! The paper snakes are based on exotic species of pythons from Australia. While they are remarkable to look at on paper, they are definitely not creatures I would want to see up close. Judge the snakes for yourself and head over to The Craft Train for the full tutorial.

9. DIY Paper Weaving

DIY Paper Weaving

The House That Lars Built

This DIY paper weaving activity does double-duty as a craft and a de-stressing activity. All you need to get started on this relaxing DIY project is strips of paper. You can choose from simple construction paper to make fun color patterns or go for an upgrade with magazine paper and create abstract designs. No matter which direction you go, you can finish off the paper weaving squares with washi tape to give it a more official finish.

10. Easy DIY Craft Paper Orb Tutorial

Easy DIY Craft Paper Orb Tutorial

Creative in Chicago

Believe it or not, these cool decorative orbs really are made out of paper! To make them, you’ll need thick cardstock or cardboard, a crafting knife, some tape, and pens, markers, or anything you want to use to decorate them. Once the orbs are built, finish them with glitter or use geometric patterns to give them a stylish look. Check out Creative In Chicago for the printable template and tutorial.