Stellated dodecahedrons!

Hello there. I seem to be stuck in a geometric-paper-model rut at the moment! I promise this will be the last one for a while! (I have just white-washed a lot of the walls in our home so I have been looking to make some colourful objects to hang up…these are just the job).

Stellated dodecahedron

Making stellated dodecahedrons is fairly time consuming and requires a light-touch and a fair bit of patience…so teenagers/adults only! (I would say that each one takes about 2 hours to make…but you can do most of it with your feet up in front of the telly). They look fantastic and you will be super-chuffed when you have made one so don’t be put off. Greater effort = great satisfaction (hope you agree?!).

Stellated dodecahedron

As usual there is a how-to below…along with printable templates.

Stellated dodecahedron

It’s ‘summer’ here in the UK but it hasn’t stopped raining for months (or so it seems). Hope you are having less dissapointing weather wherever you are!

Stellated dodecahedron


You will need
– – – – – – – –

// Scissors
// Paper (or thin card)
// Double sided tape (I also made one using a gluestick but the tape yielded much better results)
// Ruler
// Needle…or similar sharp point for scoring the paper

– – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –

1. Download the template here (there is also a template with darker lines here as some people have had problems printing the lighter template). You will need 5 ‘shapes’ and there are two ‘shapes’ on the template…so you will need to print the template 3 times! Cut out each of the shapes as shown. Using a ruler and needle score along all the lines (the scoring is probably the most time consuming part of this project and accuracy is essential).

2. You then need to join the five ‘shapes’ together. Locate one of the little circle on one of the shapes and glue to the next shape.

3&4. Keep going until all five are stuck together.

5&6. Then you need to start creating the triangular points. To do this fold along the lines you previously scored and fold and glue….it looks complicated and perhaps a little confusing but I promise it will fall into place once you make a start.

*If you run into problems then do leave a comment below and I will get back to you ASAP*

Great stellated dodecahedron

141 thoughts to “Stellated dodecahedrons!”

    1. Thanks LittleWren…yep, I am becoming obsessed! Must try to divert my attentions to something else! ^_^

      1. Hello. I keep getting a WARNING when I click to download the pattern. Saying it may be a virus. Please send it to my email. I remember making these in 5th grade Math. Great memories 🙂

        1. Hi Jo Lyn. Please right click and save to your desktop. The file contains no virus so please disregard the warning. If you are still having problems then leave another comment ^_^

  1. Hi Kate,
    I just discovered your fabulous blog and I’m trying to follow and/or subscribe but I’m afraid I’m not familiar with wordpress….I’ve looked over the whole blog twice and can’t find a button to do what I want….
    Any help would be appreciated.

  2. It seems in the third picture that your icosahedron went wrong. Even if it fits, the faces must be regular triangles, and the final figure must be rounded, not like an egg.

    I don’t mean to bother you, it’s just that I’m a descriptive geometry teacher. If you wish I can share all my material with you. Have a nice day!

    1. Hi Bob…have you made the model?

      It really does fit together perfectly…….and it is rounded, not egg-shaped.

      Please have a go at making it and then get back to me ^_^

  3. When I printed off the template the actually shapes wouldn’t show up on either white or coloured paper so I was wondering if I could the template darker or is there a solution??
    Thank you!!

  4. I love this! Thanks for posting; I’m going to try with some metallic paper. Should be cool!

  5. I love this little star thing but I’m still really confused on how it all goes together… I’m a very visual person, it would be amazing if you could show me steps pass six? Just do I know what I’m doing when I’m doing it. Thank you!

    1. Hi Anne Lise, thanks for sending the link to your model….it losk great….yay! Have a happy Monday ^_^

  6. This star looks awesome, I can’t wait to make some!
    Do you also have a template for the shapes in the third picture? I would like to add them to your paper gem templates to make a mobile.


  7. People, do not make this with ordinary printing paper! It will not hold. An hour of work and lots of paper down the drain when I started to glue…

    The tutorial needs to be completed with further steps. It is not easy to figure out how to fold and glue. And also: how does the shape fit together after gluing?

    Lovely shape but definitely too hard for a beginner!

    1. Hi Andrea,

      Just a quick message to let you know that I’m always available to give help and advice in the comments section if you run into problems.

      I made mine with paper and it was fine….although thin card does make a stronger model. I would also recommend double sided tape rather than glue.

      Best of luck if you decide to try it again.

  8. I started making this and then thought, ‘Woh, I’m not gonna be able to finish it, it’s too complicated….but I got it and it looks great.
    I used just normal A4 copy paper and it has worked really well. I reinforced the joints where it could pull apart with a little bit of pva glue which has dried clear.
    My dodecahedron is going to look great on top of my tree this year!
    Thanks soooooo much for putting this up!

      1. I should add that the school entered the tree in a competition (with the star made from your template at the top) which won the school some new vegie gardens. So thankyou again for sharing!

    1. Hi Hannah…I think I am going to have to get a ‘new-and-improved’ tutorial up for this project but probably won’t have time until next week. So sorry to leave you in the lurch. I’ll email you once it’s done.

      You start by sticking the five pieces together….then you fold the long lines backwards and the short lines forward.

      Each group of three triangles comes together to form a 3d triangle (or point) then there is a spare tab which connects each point to the next.

      ….does that make any more sense?

      As I said…I’ll try to get a better tutorial up…let me know if you succeed in the meantime.

      Good luck
      Kate ^_^

  9. Hello :] I’m actually doing the star, i have already created all the triangular points, and glued them, but then, I’m left with the small connecting paper, which i don’t know how to connect :[ and cannot complete my star :[ Look in step 6, on the triangles there is a piece of scored paper left, what should i do with it? How do I glue it? Can you help me out, please? :]

    1. Hi Cookie…I think I am going to have to get a ‘new-and-improved’ tutorial up for this project but probably won’t have time until next week. So sorry to leave you in the lurch. I’ll email you once it’s done.

      You start by sticking the five pieces together….then you fold the long lines backwards and the short lines forward.

      Each group of three triangles comes together to form a 3d triangle (or point) then there is a spare tab which connects each point to the next.

      ….does that make any more sense?

      As I said…I’ll try to get a better tutorial up…let me know if you succeed in the meantime.

      P.S. If you want to send me a photo, let me know and I will email you directly then I can see exactly where you are having problems.

      1. I made it, thank you soooo much for your quick response, it did help me a lot. I’m really happy with the result, thank you sooooo sooooo much for your tutorial and your help. ♥

      1. that’s great i make the 5 star and bind with the ball looks nice at the door thnks very much Kate

  10. hi kate,

    i printed your template and looked at ur tutorial and realized that the printed side is actually the one that can be seen outside. no matter how i turned the paper its the black lines can be seen outside 🙁

    1. Bee….just flip the paper over so that the printed lines are on the inside…that’s what I did…works perfectly ^_^

  11. Improve the tutorial!
    Please, please, please, please!!! 🙂

    I really want to make this project! Actually, I did made it, but it looks nothing like yours! I just can’t figure out whats wrong, I think I don’t understand whats the right way to glue all the triangles together!

  12. I found this very hard to figure out (in fact I couldn’t figure it out at all) I didn’t want to give up because I love, love the shape. I did some research and found a tutorial for making the body and the points separate and taping it together.

    Here is a link to one made from Christmas cards;

    I want to make these as a permanent decoration for my home so my plan is to make it from poster board or thin cardboard (I save cereal boxes for this kind of thing). Once I have the shape put together nicely I am going to paper mache over it to make it more solid and sturdy and then decorate it. (I am going to paint the whole thing, then cover each point with a different design of scrapbook paper, then I am going to spray with a topcoat to seal it off) If they turn out to be easy enough I will decrease the size and make some for Christmas ornaments next year. I am thinking lots of glitter!

  13. Dear Kate,

    Pls send me the large templates so i take the print i want a large star so i want a large print on only one print on A4 sheet please hurry, actually i have a 4 month old a baby she is very attract to this so i want to make the large star… waiting your reply.

  14. Nice polyhedral models. Just a little clarifcation, the pink stellated model is an icosahedron (20 face triangles), a dodecahedron has 12 face pentagons!

    You should try making a “great icosahedron” it’s a real challenge. You can find the net in the book
    Mathematic Models by Cundy and Rollett

    1. Hi Samantha,

      I will be doing a new tutorial for this (lots of people are having problems with it) but can’t fit it in for about another 6 weeks :0

      Do pop back then and hopefully you will be able to make a lovely star rather than a crumpled ball of paper 🙂

      Kate ^_^

  15. Beautiful and mesmerizing! if only maths had been this addictive at school eh? thank you for doing the hard part for us and figuring out the pattern! just a query – do you have any sneaky tips to getting the last 3 joins together neatly? with no room to poke my fingers in to secure the double sided tape together I found this part the challenge. My new born is loving the black and white dodecahedrons i have made into a mobile for him. THANKYOU!!

    1. ah I see…you have stuck the tabs on the outside, yes that would have been easier! thanks again for sharing your loveliness.

      1. Hi Kirsten, well spotted…you can stick a needle through one of the corners and push it in that way…I think it would have been easier to do that it i used a stronger glue. I’ve just recently started using Bostick glu & fix which is really great and very strong.

  16. Hi Kate,

    Looks like a very nicely made model. I make these a little differently, see here:

    I use double-tabs throughout, meaning each edge has a tab and I glue the tabs to each other, and keep all tabs on the inside. I also add some parts inside for strength. I wrote a program called Stella to create and print out the nets (templates). I’m afraid it’s not free (years of work!) but there’s a free demo version. Stella also has a facebook page where I post a lot of my models:


  17. Hi! I would just like to know how you got the other angles after Step 6 it is for a school project it will be much appreciated

  18. Nice! well, not. maybe… Amazing! yes, that’s it! Just one (really little) mistake: The plural of polyhedron is polyhedra, and the same goes for any polyhedron name that finishes by -dron, it make a plural in -dra. If that makes any sense.

  19. Hi Kate, this model is amazing. I’ve attempted the model 2 times now, both look great but are not quite right… one somehow used 6 pieces and is symetrical but the points are no evenly distributed all of the way round. The other used only 4 and fits together yet is totally aysmmetrical. The first time I folded all of the triganles up seperatly and then attached together…the second time I attached all the pieces and strarted folding and attaching as I went along… with both methods I seem to be attaching the wrong triangles together… please help me!! 🙁

  20. Hi, I’m from Germany and I like your page very much. Sorry, but my English is not so good…I’ve tried several times to make this great star, but on the last two “wings” I don’t know how to fix this.
    Do you have a tip for me regarding my problem, or can you tell me how to do it the easiest. perhaps what wing I should at last. For your answer many thanks in advance.

  21. Hola todo esta bien pero solo muestran los tres primeros conos formados y los demas se hace igual o de otra forma… porfavor muestra la explicacion completa

  22. I did this while at the hospital with my baby boy in the pcicu. Everyone thought it was so neat and he likes to look at it when he’s awake. Thanks!

    1. You get a ruler and a blunt pin, nothing too sharp. Then line up the ruler on all the lines and use the pin to go over the lines, this will make it easier to fold.

  23. I am so not great at this sort of thing, but thought i would give it a go, I have no idea what to do after number 6, could you help me put it all together?! Please? Thank you!

    1. Hi Karissa,

      I’m so sorry – I don’t have any more photo’s. The only thing I will say is that if you have glued all the points together then it should be ok. All the remaining tabs should only really be able to be stuck in a certain place.

      This is a really tough model – especially if you are new to paper craft. It took me about three attempts to get it right.

      As soon as i can put a more complete tutorial up I will – but realistically that isn’t going to happen before Christmas.

      So sorry

      Kate ^_^

  24. Hello! This post is amazing! But I need something a little bit different and maybe you could help me 🙂 I’m looking for a geometric kind of star, but it has to work as a box because I plan to put confetti inside and hang it from the ceiling.. so people could pull a string or something and the confetti would fall on them.. Would you PLEASE help me with this? It’s for my daugther’s 16th birthday. I really want to make something special for her. Thank you!

  25. hey you say that we have to do needle scoring along the lines and i dont know what needle scoring is please explain to me what that is.

    1. hey 🙂 you are supposed to cut the dotted lines 🙂
      i made these too and took me a while to figure that out too 🙂

  26. Hi 🙂 I made these yesterday. It took me a while to get it but I did it. I have to ask you though. How did you glue the last one?

    1. Hi Gary, It seems like you know what to do and that you have made this before. What is needle scoring and which lines would I needle score?

      1. Hi Crystal – you cut around the outside first, then along the dotted lines. Finally you needle score the remaining solid lines. Hope that makes sense. Kate ^_^

    2. Hi Gary – I cheated and glues the last tabs on top *^_^*

      Glad to hear someone had had success with this project – I keep meaning to get a full tutorial up but time is against me!

    1. Hi Sadia123,

      You cut around the outside of the template first. Then you cut along the dotted lines. Finally you needle score the remaining solid lines. Hope that makes sense. Kate ^_^

  27. This figure turned out beautifully! It really isn’t until all the triangular points are glued that you figure out how to finish the piece. The points seem to tell you how they should go. I’ve included a few of these stellated dodecahedrons on my string of mini Christmas lights. Looks terrific.

    By the way, for those of us across the pond, what does “super-chuffed” mean?

    Best wishes.

    1. Thanks Mike – so glad it turned out well. I think they are pretty intuitive to put together. Although they seem confusing I think its hard to go too wrong.

      Chuffed = Happy
      Super = Very


  28. Hi! Great tutorial! Just one question. I have to make one of these for geometry, but I ran into a problem…
    I fold along ALL the lines, right? Because right now there’s this lump of triangles at one end and it doesn’t look right…
    Once I’m finished, how do I close the shape?

  29. Hey Kate,
    I made the shape, but it doesn’t fit together. Do the dark circles match with other dark circles or light circles. It’s all wobbly and strange looking. I’m not very crafty and have to do this for a math project, so I’m a little over my head. Any advice for egg-shaped wobbly looking ones?

  30. hello
    I made the shape, but it doesn’t fit together. Do the dark circles match with other dark circles or light circles. It’s all wobbly and strange looking. I’m not very crafty and have to do this for a math project, so I’m a little over my head.

  31. LOVE it I am working on it right this minute! Thank you for the template also.

  32. I tried this out and I couldn’t get past step 6, and I ended up throwing it away. It would be really appreciated if you could do a more detailed tutorial.

  33. I dont know why but when I print it out and try to follow your steps while putting it together, I had to flip it over or else it wouldn’t work. So my model came out with all the lines and dots showing 🙁

  34. Dear Kate,

    the first time I saw the dodecahedron I fell in love with it, cause I usually love all kinds of crafts and I’m good in them. so, I decided to make one. the print went ok.
    then, when I started cutting out the shapes I got a little lost cause it appeared that the template is actually a mirror image. however, with lots of circling around and “detective” work I managed to do it correctly.
    the joining of the 5 shapes also went difficult because of the mirror image. luckily, I managed to figure it out, too.
    and then the forming and gluing stage came along… and I totally lost it. I have no idea what to do.
    I see in the previous comments that you promise to do a more detailed tutorial. is it ready now? can you pls send me a link to it.

  35. im trying to print out the directions from my ipod touch but its rintingou everything i dont want it to print

  36. Did you ever make a newer tutorial? I think I understand this but thought maybe there was a newer one.

  37. can you please make a video on this? i am very lost on mine, and i dont wanna have to give up on it since i worked so hard on it already.

  38. Help needed .All cut out lines cut and scored and can see the black dot you have mentioned but haven’t a clue
    from the diagram what sticks to what . Would love to be able to complete this .

    Thanks Sue

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