A few months ago I accidentally created one of these sweet colorful paper pom pom characters while trying to come up with a craft to make for the holidays. It didn’t really fit into that season, so it’s been smiling at me from my inspiration board, waiting for a use ever since. Then last weekend it occurred to me that I could make several more and create an adorable hanging decoration! Say hello to my DIY Circus Pals Mobile!
DIY Circus Pals Mobile / Room Decor
This project can be adapted to the supplies you have on hand. Be sure to check out my list of alternate supplies and uses near the bottom of this post for a few ideas.
Now let’s get started! Begin by gathering your supplies. For the mobile I created above you will need:
- Colorful cardstock paper | I used 5 different colors, but you can choose any assortment that you’d like
- White copy paper | 1 sheet
- 6 – 3/4″ wooden beads | Found at craft stores
- Glue stick
- Yarn or twine
- Black pen with a fine point | I recommend Pigma Micron Pens by Sakura
- 2″ Craft Punch | Or print out the 2″ Circle Template below
- 1″ Starburst Craft Punch | Or print out the 1″ Circle Template below
- Hole punch | I used a small 1/8″ punch
- Wooden embroidery hoop (inner ring only)
- Wooden skewer (optional)
CIRCUS PALS PRINTABLE TEMPLATE: Download includes 6 Paper Hat Cutouts, a 2″ Circle Template, and a 1″ Circle Template
1. Punch or cut out your 2″ circles. You will need a total of 35 (7 circles for each Circus Pal). Feel free to use just one color or mix and match colors. I used a 2″ Circle Punch by Uchida to make this project easier.
2. Use a 1″ starburst craft punch, regular 1″ craft punch, or hand-cut a total of five – 1″ circles. These will be the collars for your Circus Pals. Punch a hole in the middle of each circle with a small hole punch.
3. Print out the paper hat template and cut out five (there’s an extra one included on the printable just in case).
4. Use a fine tip pen to draw faces onto five of your wooden beads (leave one bead blank). Make sure that the holes are at the top and bottom of your bead before drawing.
5. Create the hats by applying glue to one straight edge of each hat shape.
6. Curl the glued straight edge over the top of the other straight edge to form a cone. Press down along the edge for a few seconds until glue sets. Repeat with all five hats.
7. Fold each of your 35 – 2″ circles in half.
8. Create the bodies for your Circus Pals by applying glue to the outer half of a folded circle.
9. Place another folded circle on top of the glued portion, aligning edges (folded edges should be facing the same direction).
10. Repeat this process until you have used all seven circles. Leave the last flap unglued.
11. It’s time to assemble your mobile! Cut five long lengths of yarn, approximately 18″ or more a piece. Tie a thick knot onto one end (you can double or triple knot if you need to). Place yarn through the center of one of the prepared paper bodies and seal the open flap closed with glue. Next thread onto the same piece of yarn: a 1″ collar circle, one wooden head bead, and a paper hat. If you are having a hard time feeding the yarn through any of these elements, you can use a wooden skewer to help thread it through.
12. Pull all pieces downward until they rest snugly on the knotted end of the yarn. Leave the long portion of yarn hanging from the top and set aside. Repeat steps 11-12 with all five Circus Pals.
13. Time to hang them up! Tie your Circus Pals onto the inner circle of an embroidery hoop, allowing Pals to hang at a length that you like. Loop yarn around several times and knot a couple of times on the inside. Trim off loose ends.
14. Once all Pals are hung, you can slide the knotted sections around the wooden hoop so that they are evenly spaced.
15. Create a hanger for your mobile. Cut five even lengths of yarn around 24″ a piece. Wrap a piece of office tape snugly around the ends of all five piece to create a narrow portion for threading (like the aglet at the end of a shoelace). Cut across the very top of the taped end to make it nice and neat. Thread yarn through your final plain wooden bead.
16. Tie each loose yarn end onto your embroidery hoop where you attached your Circus Pals. Knot on the inside several times. Now pull the plain wooden bead downward until it rests where you’d like it to. Pull one yarn at a time to adjust and make your mobile level. Trim off tape and use loose ends to suspend.
Variation suggestions: Feel free to adapt this project to suit the supplies you have on hand. For example: a stick, wooden hanger, or wooden dowel can be used in place of the embroidery hoop. Patterned paper can be used in place of the colored card stock, or get creative and paint or stamp designs onto plain white cardstock. You can even attach your Circus Pals onto bamboo skewers and use them as cake toppers! I can’t wait to see what clever ideas you guys will come up with!
Safety note: This project is not intended to be used as a toy. Small parts can pose a choking hazard. Do not suspend within reach of small children. Make sure all pieces are especially secure (I recommend using hot glue to attach all parts together) if hanging above cribs or changing stations.