DIY clock tutorial: How to make a paper clock

It’s time to get super crafty with Zoë Patching’s surprisingly simple DIY clock made of folded paper circles

paper clock main

If you’ve ever made a folded flower topper for one of your cards, you’ve seen how simple origami can make lovely petals shapes so we decided to take that crafty idea and go large with it to make a DIY clock out of folded paper circle!

This pretty DIY clock is sure to be a real treat for the eyes next time you find yourself clock watching. Created using delicate, double-sided patterned papers in fresh blue hues, this project will look lovely just about anywhere in the home! And although it may look complicated to do, the basics are straightforward. 

Simply follow Zoë Patching’s step-by-step guide below, where you’ll find six stages for how to create your clock. And don’t worry about the
clock mechanism itself as everything you need to know can be found on the packaging. 

There are several way to add the numbers (you can just add 12, 3, 6 and 9) – stamp them, use stick-on numbers or just place a decorative sticker to represent each number. 

So, let’s get going… it’s time to start folding your own paper clock!


You Will Need

  • Double-sided patterned paper
  • clock mechanisam
  • Double-sided tape
  • tacky PVS glue
  • Buttons

Step 1

Cut a circle of patterned paper. A diameter of 14cm is ideal. Fold the circle in half, and fold in half again along the dotted line shown here, to make a quarter-circle.

paper clock step 1

Step 2

Next, carefully fold the one layer of the curved section over to reveal the contrasting side of the paper. Make sure this fold is at the very top of the straight side edges.

paper clock step 2

Step 3

Turn the shape over. Repeat step 2 so the other layer’s curved section is folded down. Open the folds you made in step 1 up again, so the shape looks like the picture below.


paper clock step 3

Step 4

Fold one of the outer diagonal edges in to meet the centre fold, revealing the curved tab on the outside. Repeat on the other side, using double-sided tape to secure


DIY clock Step4.jpg

Step 5

Repeat steps 1-4 to make eight paper petal sections in total. Cut a 20cm circle from card and divide into eight sections with pencil lines and position the petals around it.

paper clock step 5

Step 6

When you’re happy with the arrangement of the petals, stick them down with Tacky PVA glue. Add the clock mechanism and embellish with numbers and buttons!

paper clock step 6

Step 7

Fitting your clock mechanism is very simple. It comes in two parts – the hands for the front and the mechanism and battery pack to place at the back. Before you put everything in place, you will need to make a small hole through the centre, so use a sharp tool to do this first.


If you want to add tiny buttons for detail, you can either stitch them on straight through the paper and backing circle (remember to poke holes through first) or glue them in place, if you are short of time.

Make it in miniature

paper clock mini

You can use the same technique on show in the DIY clock tutorial of folding paper circles to make a flower topper for your cards! Dorothy wood has made this card using 5cm daintier circles.

Best paper cutting tool for circles

Looking to cut quick and easy paper circles to make the most of this technique? Using a die cutting machine with circle dies is one great option, but if your budget won’t stretch to that, check out the Circle Spin and Trim, which you can find out more about in our Best paper cutting tools, trimmers and knives article.


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