Beautiful and Easy Ribbon Twirlers for Canada Day

Jun 20, 2016

Oh, I wish you could see these patriotic ribbon twirlers in action! You should see how elegant they look fluttering in the breeze as the kids whirl and twirl and dance with them. Your children can make these Canada Day twirlers to wave at a parade, or they can have fun with them in the backyard at your family’s holiday celebration.

Two children playing with the ribbon twirlers in a backyard. The twirlers are painted sticks with red-and-white ribbons attached. They flutter and fly as kids wave them through the air.

Our ribbon twirlers are really easy and inexpensive to make, and the process is an all-around good time! 

We started out with a nature walk to collect the perfect sticks for our craft. Then we painted them up, which is always fun, as the hooligans love painting sticks. A trip to the dollar store was in order so we could choose the perfect ribbons, and when we were finished, the kids danced and danced in the backyard, making their gorgeous twirlers come to life!

Let me show you what you need and how to make our twirlers.


  • 2 sturdy sticks
  • red and white acrylic craft paint
  • various red and white ribbons
  • sharp scissors

Craft supplies sitting on grass. There are three different widths of both the red and white ribbon.

Begin by trimming any small twigs and bumps off of your sticks so they’re as smooth as you can get them. 

If you want to extend the process a bit, you can have your child peel the bark off the sticks and sand them lightly as well. We’ve done that in the past simply to incorporate some new skills into the activity, but we didn’t this time as it’s not really necessary.

You'll also love: Printable Canada Day I Spy Game! 

I poured some paint into a pallet, and the children painted their sticks. Each child painted one of their sticks red, and the other stick white. We gave our sticks two coats of paint, letting the first coat dry in the sun for a few minutes before adding the second.

Two close-up shots of a child painting two sticks, one red and the other white.

While our sticks were drying, we cut long lengths of ribbon for our twirlers. 

We chose ribbons of various widths and materials. A mix of gauzy, wide ribbons and thinner, regular ribbons work beautifully. You could even use curling ribbon that you’d use for gift-wrapping in a pinch. 

All of our cut ribbons measured roughly 2 to 3 feet long. A smaller child might be better off with the ribbons cut closer to 2 feet. I would recommend cutting the ribbons a little on the long side. If you find they’re too long once your child starts using the twirlers, you can always trim them.

Painted sticks and cut lengths of ribbon, lying on the grass ready to go.

To attach your ribbons to the stick, stack a few together, and knot them around the end of the stick. You want the long tail of the ribbons to flow away from the stick rather than towards the handle end of the stick.

Close up shot of the ribbons knotted to the tops of the sticks.

We chose to put mostly red ribbons on the white stick, and mostly white ribbons on the red stick.  We did insert an opposite coloured ribbon on each stick just for contrast.  Your child, of course, can choose to make hers any way she pleases.

Once the ribbons are knotted tightly in place, dance, dance, dance!

Just look at all the fun we had with ours! 

A 3x3 grid of images of two kids jumping, waving and dancing with their ribbon twirlers in a backyard.

We waved our twirlers high, and we waved them low, and we twirled and swirled them, making graceful loops of colour and dazzling designs as we danced.

Happy Canada Day!

Article Author Jackie Currie
Jackie Currie

Read more from Jackie here.

Jackie Currie is a mother, daycare provider, and the creative spirit behind the blog Happy Hooligans. A self-proclaimed glitterphobe, she specializes in easy, affordable arts & crafts and good, old-fashioned play.

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