In this post: How to make paper pinwheel banners for budget-friendly decor or gifts.

Around the holidays a couple of years ago, I created a simple yet beautifully vintage-looking paper pinwheel banner for a women’s event I was speaking at.

joy pinwheel banner

After the event, a woman approached me.

At the time, I knew only a bit of her story and of her health struggles.

She told me how much she loved the banner – so I sent it home with her as an early Christmas gift.

This Christmas, settled into our new home, I decided to recreate that banner.

Now when I pass by it I think of my friend and am reminded to say a little prayer for her and to be JOY-ful this Christmas.

DIY Joy Paper Pinwheel Banner

joy paper pinwheel banner



  • 15 pages of sheet music
  • Scotch tape
  • Scissors
  • Glue gun and glue sticks
  • Computer and printer
  • Paper and a cereal box or card stock
  • Mod Podge (or white glue)
  • Foam brush
  • Coarse glitter
  • Jute or hemp string
  • Clothes pins (mini or regular sized)
  • Cookie sheet covered in tin foil to contain glitter and mess (optional)


1. Accordian-fold all 15 pages of sheet music. (I used one page of sheet music from an old hymnal, color-photocopied fourteen times. My sheet music is truly vintage, from my Mother-in-Law no less, and quite fragile. Photocopying it allowed me not to rip and tear my sheets as I worked. Please be aware of copyrights if you choose to do this).

step1_sheet music folded

2. Tape 5 folded sheets together. Bend around and tape ends together. This will be your pinwheel. Don’t worry if it pops up in the middle and looks more like a lampshade – we’ll fix that in the next step.

step2_folded sheet music

3. Cut a small piece of cardboard or paper and hot glue to the back of your pinwheel to keep it from popping up in the middle.

step3_pinwheel back

4. Repeat steps 2 & 3 for each pinwheel.


5. Now print out J-O-Y in the font of your choice – I used Century Schoolbook sized to 400 points in a really light gray color. Ideally print directly onto card stock. (My printer won’t accept card stock, so I printed onto regular weight paper and glued that onto a piece of cardboard cut from a cereal box! Make do with whatever you have if necessary).

step5_joy printed

6. Using a foam brush, brush Mod Podge (or white glue) all over your letters. Then sprinkle with coarse glitter. Let dry.

7. Using sharp scissors carefully cut out your letters.

Step6_joy glittered on tray

8. Hot glue one glittered letter onto each pinwheel.

step7_letter on pinwheel

9. Attach pinwheels to jute or hemp string with clothespins. Hang and enjoy!

step8_hanging one

That’s it – an easy, glittery and festive decoration that expresses just a little bit of the spirit of the season!

finished_joy pinwheel

What do you have to be joyful about this holiday season?

shannon photo and sig oct 2022