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5-Pointed Star in One Snip

Cut a 5-Pointed Star in One Snip

George Washington's original pencil sketch for the flag indicated 6-pointed stars, a form he apparently preferred.

Betsy Ross, however, recommended a 5-pointed star. When the committee protested that it was too difficult to make, she took a piece of paper, folded it deftly, and with a single snip of her scissors, produced a symmetrical five-pointed star. This seeming feat of magic so impressed her audience that they readily agreed to her suggestion.

To you we pass along the secret...

Take a thin piece of paper 8-1/2" x 10" (or an exact proportion thereof), fold it as indicated and cut yourself a perfect 5-pointed star.

Thanks to the Betsy Ross House for providing these instructions. Thanks to Arnold Tubis for his expert help in improving them.

cutstarStep 1. Fold an 8-1/2" x 10" piece of paper in half.

cutstarStep 2. Fold and unfold in half both ways to form creased center lines. (Note: be sure paper is still folded in half.)


cutstarStep 3. Bring corner (1) right to meet the center line. Be sure to fold from the vertical crease line.

cutstarStep 4. Bring corner (1) left till edges coincide, then make the fold.

cutstarStep 5. Bring corner (2) left and fold.


cutstarStep 6. Bring corner (2) right until edges coincide. Then fold.

cutstar7aStep 7. Bring right edge AC and the left edge AB together, crease, and unfold. Join points A and C, crease, and unfold.

cutstar7bStep 8. Cut on the angle as shown in the picture (from point C, through the intersection of the fold lines from step 7, to the left edge). Then unfold the small piece.


cutstarStep 9. Marvel at your perfect (we hope!) 5-pointed star! If your star is not perfect, take a fresh piece of paper (8-1/2" x 10" — not 8-1/2" x 11") and return to Step 1.

For more detailed instructions, Click here

For an animated demonstration, Click here

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