I recently made a fall foliage DIY paper leaf branch arrangement for our living room. And now I felt the urge to step it up a notch for my Halloween decor. When I paged through a recent Grandinroad catalog and saw paper moths as Halloween decor, I knew what I wanted to make! I do have to admit that I’ve had a slight obsession with moths and have been pinning moth tattoo designs for a while now. So I had to come up with a way to make a paper moth myself.
How to make a paper moth as a Halloween craft
So today I want to share with you how I made a simple moth craft to add to my lit paper leaf branches in our living room. I just love making things like this so much.
Not only do the unique colors of insects fascinate me but the shapes do too. I mean butterflies are pretty, we all know that but there is something mysterious about moths. There are many kinds of dark moths and light-colored moths such as the Common Clothes Moth, Luna moth, Domestic Silk Moth, Death’s Head Hawk Moth, Tiger Moths, Peppered Moth, Indianmeal Moth, and Lymantria Dispar Moth. Just to name a few. Let’s not get too scientific now 😉
Here is my inspiration that I talked about earlier.
Most of us know the moth from “The Silence of the Lambs” movie poster. (Read more about the moths meaning in the movie, it’s interesting) The moths with the marks that resemble a skull are apparently Death’s Head Hawk-moth Acherontia atropos and they are in dark colors of blacks and browns but there are many other moths with different colorings. I definitely wanted to make my DIY paper moths in browns and blacks and I also wanted to include a skull shape on at least one paper moth.
Note: I made the moth templates in Photoshop on my computer and included 2 versions below. You can also purchase different moth designs for around $12. If you don’t like mine.
The simple outlined moth template would be perfect when using the other papers. Simply cut out the shapes and trace them on decorative paper such as vintage book pages, maps, or mulberry paper. Those papers would look cute but I wanted them to stand out from the brown paper leaf branches which is why I didn’t.
DIY paper moth video tutorial
It’s always best to see what the process of making a project is on video which you can do below. If the video doesn’t load for you for some reason then you can watch it on my YouTube channel instead.
Step-by-step paper moth instructions
I have to mention that my paper moths are not anatomically correct.
Step 2: Cut out moth shapes
Cut out the shape of the moth with scissors. I made a lot of paper moths for my branches and since this is a lot of cutting, I didn’t worry about cutting too exact and it was fine.
Step 3: Apply glue to the back of the paper moth
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I like using spray adhesive because it applies a thin coat and avoids wrinkling of the printer paper. If you do this project with children then it might be better to use regular craft glue or a glue stick.
Step 4: Paste paper moth on thick black paper
Carefully paste the paper moth shape into a corner of the black craft paper. Repeat that with the other moth shapes as well until the black paper is full.
Step 5: Cut out the moth shape again
Time to cut out the moth shape a second time. I left a thin black border around the glued on moth shape because I like the look. If you don’t care about that then you can just paste the entire template onto the black paper and only cut out the moth shapes once. I took the extra step though.
Step 6: Fold the moth in half
Take the moth and slightly fold it in half. I’m saying slightly because I didn’t crease the center. Repeat that with all the other moths if you are making multiples like I did.
Step 7: Glue the paper moth to an alligator clip (optional)
Use your hot glue gun to apply a thin line of hot glue to an alligator clip and then carefully press the center line on the bottom of the paper moth into the hot glue.
Of course, my furry inspectors had to check out this project as well LOL. And Maya blends in.
Isn’t this such a unique and fun way to decorate for fall and Halloween?
More of my craft projects
- alligator clips
- hot glue
- black paper
- glue (I used Elmer’s spray adhesive)
- moth shapes (included)
- grasses such as bunny tail grass
- I made the moth templates in Photoshop on my computer and included 2 versions below.
- You can also purchase different moth designs for around $12. If you don’t like mine.The simple outlined moth template would be perfect when using the other papers just mentioned. Simply cut out the shapes and trace them on the decorative paper.
- You can also use vintage book pages, maps, or mulberry paper which would look cute but I wanted them to stand out from the brown paper leaf branches which is why I didn’t. But more to that later.