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How to Make a Paper Dragon

Learn how to cut, fold, and glue your way to a perfect Chinese New Year decoration.


  • TIP: Add sequins to the eyes and nose for extra flare.
  • Step 1: Glue the head onto one end of the concertina body.
  • Step 2: Curl ribbons by pulling them through one of the scissor blades and then glue them onto the end of the dragon's body, opposite the head, for the final touch.
  • FACT: In ancient Christian art, the dragon symbolized the devil, while in ancient China it was associated with fertility and prosperity.
  • Step 3: Cut teeth and eyes from the white paper and use the orange and yellow paper to add more shapes to decorate the head.
  • Step 4: Cut a 30-inch by 12-inch rectangle from the green paper. Then cut 28-inch wavy strips into the rectangle to make the dragon's beard and glue the beard to the back of the dragon's chin.
  • Step 5: Fold the bottom strip of paper flat over the top piece and crease the edge.
  • Step 6: Fold the top strip of paper flat over the bottom piece and crease the edge. Continue folding top over bottom and bottom over top until the strips are completely folded, resembling a concertina, and then glue the ends together.
  • Step 7: Draw the dragon's head with a pencil on the red piece of construction paper and cut it out with the scissors.
  • TIP: Make the head 30-by-30-inches.
  • Step 8: Glue the ends of the two strips of paper together at a right angle, or into the shape of an "L", and wait for the glue to dry.

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