How to: dragon kite crafts

Written by courtney johnson
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How to: dragon kite crafts
Dragon kites were once used to scare away enemies in China. (China Photos/Getty Images News/Getty Images)

The dragon is viewed as a symbol of power in China. The symbol of the dragon is often found on products including kites. Dragon kites are traditionally flown at the Chinese New Year, but were also once used as a weapon of safety to scare away the enemy. This craft offers an opportunity to create your own dragon kite using recycled materials including garbage bags, ribbon and tinsel from the Christmas tree.

Skill level:
Moderately Easy

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Things you need

  • 2 white garbage bags or pieces of ripstop nylon
  • Cloth tape
  • Tape measure
  • Pencil
  • Scissors
  • Bamboo stick - 48" long and 1/8 " wide
  • Tooth pick
  • String
  • Tinsel and other decorations
  • Hobby stick

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  1. 1

    To create the dragon's head, take a white garbage bag and cut it open lengthwise. If you are using rip stop nylon, you can skip this step. Lay the garbage bag flat and tape down if needed. Using a marker or pencil, and tape measure draw a 16-inch diameter circle. Inside the 16-inch circle, draw a 14-inch in diameter circle.

  2. 2

    Cut out the 16-inch circle (outer circle) to make the dragon's head. Using a tape measure, make 2-inch vertical marks all the way around the circle. Cut each vertical mark to make slits all the way around the circle.

  3. 3

    Bend a bamboo stick to form 14-inch circle. Tape the stick at the ends to secure it. Don't be shy with the tape. Place the bamboo circle down onto your dragon's head. One at a time, overlap the slits you just cut onto the bamboo circle and secure with tape.

  4. 4

    Make your tail by slitting open another piece of garbage bag. If you are using ripstop, cut a piece that is four feet long and one foot wide. You will also need to cut the slit open garbage bag to those dimensions. Place on the back side of your dragon head and tape it down so it is secure. You will want three to four inches of the tail to overlap onto the head. Any extra tail material that is off to the sides of the circular dragon head's frame on either side can be cut off.

  5. 5

    Place the tail material back over the dragon's head so it overlaps three to four inches again. Now draw a line to form a half circle from the top of the material around where the material hits the overlapping slits on your dragon's head. Cut off the half circle of extra material. Tape the tail to the dragon head. With your cuts, it should line up equally.

  6. 6

    Find the centre point of your dragon head. This will serve as your bridle point, where the kite will pivot side to side on the string. Place two holes a half inch apart at your bridle point. Cut your bridle string to a length of 16 inches. Now, place the string through the bridle holes from the front and tie, with a fat knot on the end.

  7. 7

    Decorate your dragon with markers, tinsel and recycled or leftover craft supplies.

  8. 8

    Cut your fly line to at least fifty feet in length. You will want to attach the fly line to a hobby stick. Create a four inch loop at the opposite end and create a larks head knot to secure it to the string used for the bridle point. See resources for instructions on how to tie a larks head knot.

  9. 9

    Launch your kite. It is recommended that you let out at least thirty feet of line before letting go.

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