3 techniques to make your woven star stand out.

3 techniques to make your woven star stand out.
3 weaving techniques to finish your 8 pointed star.
3 ways to finish your woven star. Photo: One Billion Stars 2021

Ever wondered how people add fancy finishes to their woven star?

Or, maybe you’ve seen a woven star that has some fancy finishes to it and you’re like, “how did they do that?”

If you’re a passionate star weaver like me : ) you’ll want to learn all the techniques, tips and tricks to weave the most beautiful star your hands ever did make.

And why not, we have a goal of weaving one billion stars, so there’s plenty of opportunities to practice and experiment!

If you’re in Tāmaki Makaurau Auckland and you’re keen to have a go at some of these finishes, head on down to Silo 6, Silo Park. You’ll find Vaka to A Billion Stars up until next Sunday 18th July.

There you’ll find trestle tables, pre-cut ribbon and my star weaving tutorial to help you make the star.

Once you’re done, follow these simple instructions to make new folds that make your star stand out!

Go on, give it a try, it’s so fun! You might come with a new design yourself. If you do, make sure to share it with us on social media.

Tag us on Instagram @weave_onebillionstars or facebook @onebillionstars. Don’t forget to use the hashtag #VTABS

Please note: These folds also depend on how long the strands are after you’ve made all of your 8 points.

You might have to cut a little bit off the end if it’s way too long.

Technique 1: 4 small triangles.
Technique number 1: 4 small triangles made from the ends, once your 8 pointed star is complete. Photo: One Billion Stars 2021


Most of the stars will have longer strands on one side – this is normal. You can still create funky folds with shorter ends. The options are endless!

Here are our top 3:

You may need scissors to cut the end, or just fold the strand end again and tuck it in.

Technique 1:

Step 1. Fold your strand away from the star on an angle. Crease into place.

Step 2: Fold along this new fold/line to make a small triangle.

Step 3: Tuck the end back into the pocket above.

Step 4: Repeat this with the remaining 3 strands.

3 ways to finish your woven star

Step 1: Fold strand away from the star on an angle

3 ways to finish your woven star

Step 2: Fold along this new fold to make a triangle

3 ways to finish your woven star

Step 3: Tuck the end back into the purple pocket

Technique 2: 4 large triangles.
Technique number 2: 4 large right angle triangles made from the ends, once your 8 pointed star is complete.
Photo: One Billion Stars 2021

Technique 2:

Step 1: Fold a strand up over the pocket above it.

Step 2: Fold the strand on an angle towards the next pocket to make a right angle triangle.

Step 3: Tuck the end into the pocket underneath.

Step 4: Repeat this with the remaining 3 strands.

This is one of my favourites, because you get to mix the colours of your ribbons with each other, giving it a another dimension : )

They even look great when you use four strands of ribbon that are the same colour.

It adds another dimension to your star.

Remember, you can take to your star with a fine tip marker or pens to add patterns and designs to your finished woven star.

3 ways to finish your woven star

Step 1: Fold strand over pocket above

3 ways to finish your woven star

Step 2: Fold strand on an angle

3 ways to finish your woven star

Step 3: Tuck the end into the pocket above

Technique 3:

Technique 3: 4 folds/loops.
Technique number 3: 4 folds/loops made from the ends, once your 8 pointed star is complete. Photo: One Billion Stars 2021.

Step 1: Take the end of a strand and tuck it back over itself into the same pocket.

Step 2: Depending on how long your strand is, leave it as a folded loop

Step 3: Continue around your star, tucking each strand back into the pocket.

Technique 3. Part ii:

Step 1: You can also choose to crease the fold of the ribbon when folding it back into itself. That makes a cool effect as well.

There are so many ways to finish to your star, and it’s great for those that finish their star quickly and want another challenge.

Remember, you can have markers available for people to write their names on their stars, or the names of loved ones or just messages for people who will see their stars.

Some people have written names, messages like “Everyone is Welcome” or ”Love” and “Be Kind.” Some have even drawn beautiful patterns on their stars.

3 ways to finish your woven star

Step 1: Take end and tuck into pocket above

3 ways to finish your woven star

Step 2: Continue around your star tucking in each end

Make sure you check out the different stars and coloured ribbon combinations that locals in Auckland have made for Vaka to A Billion Stars. They are so beautiful and clever, and they are the exact same stars which are used in the installation of 300,000 stars.

Here’s the details again, in case you missed it:

Vaka to A Billion Stars is part of Matariki Festival and proudly brought to you by Auckland Council with support by Panuku Development Auckland.


7 July – 11 July (Wed – Sun). 12pm – 4pm. Weave A Star drop-in Session

14 July – 18 July (Wed – Sun) 12pm – 4pm. Weave A Star drop-in Session

Tag us on social media using #VTABS


A curated space created to awhi the 300,000+ stars while they visit Tāmaki Makaurau

Diwata and Moon Goddess

Louie Bretaña

Repurposed commercial materials

Navigators of the Sea

Tui Emma Gillies

Vinyl translation fo the original made of nagtu (Tongan tapa), umea (red earth from Vava’u. Tonga) and Indian ink

Floral Stars

Sione Monu

Plastic florals, foam board and beads

O le ‘Aniva

Rosanna Raymond

Niu Aitu: O le ‘Aniva

Celestial body…never set foot on eart…never needed to.

Not a Sun_Tagaloa-La_worshipper…especially after he impregnated Magamagafatua_Luai and Luana’a…prefers the Moon for company…Maaina…but not when she is full…Aofasa…as things tend to get a bit highly strung around that time.

Venus is good fun. Now she has stopped consuming me. But not in the morning…Fetoao…but when she comes out first thing at night…Tapu’itea…her penance is done. And she is ready for some fun.

The Long share,,Māngōroa…is an ancestor and faithful companion found in the dark matter of the Milky Way..O le ‘Aniva…they are always together. Anchored to the West…Lagi e aumuli…watch them. As they drop our of the night.


A workspace where you can learn to weave a star and features two video works which have been invited to awhi the kaupapa of the One Billion Stars project by Maryann Talia Pau


Tanu Gago in collaboration with Nahora Ioane

A performance piece dedicated by Nahora to the LGBTQIA+ community of Rarotonga and specifically created in response to the criminalisation of homosexuality in the Cook Islands and a beautiful gesture of standing in solidarity with her community.


Marc Conaco

An homage to the Babaylan. Biaaya pre-colonial queer ancestors. Keepers of traditonal and knowledge, ritual leaders, healers, and spirit link to the divine. Demonised and violently erased by the Catholic Spanish invaders. May you live forever in our spirit and memory.

Weave a Star. Start a Conversation.

Can’t make the workshops? All good, we got you. You can weave your own stars at home, using our star weaving kits online. Choose between 50 and 100 stars.

Stay warm and happy Star weaving!

Love and light,


Vaka to A Billion Stars

Vaka to A Billion Stars
Vaka to A Billion Stars. Woven Star Installation. Matariki Festival 2021.
Vaka to A Billion Stars. Designed by Numa Mackenzie, Marc Conaco and Raymond Sagapolutele.

This week, I’ll be making my way across the moana to Tāmaki Makaurau / Auckland Aotearoa New Zealand.

I’ll be launching a woven star installation of over 300,000 stars at Silo 6, Silo Park. Excited!

It feels surreal, preparing for international travel. The last time I flew overseas was home to Samoa before travel bans took place for community safety.

I haven’t been back for almost 2 years. And like many who have been separated from loved ones, it has been challenging for my mental health.

During these times of physical distancing, star weaving has been more than a meaningful Pacific Island and Indigenous weaving craft for social change.

Weaving is my therapy and important for my wellbeing and community connection.

I’ve even taken up outrigger canoeing, just as my ancestors have done before me! Every time I paddle, I know that across this ocean are my family. Even though I can’t be with them, I know that they are safe and well. When the time is right, we can all travel home.

For those of you who don’t know, I grew up in Tāmaki Makaurau and did most of my primary schooling there.

Looking back as an adult and now mother of school children, I have many happy memories of learning and playing as a child.

Before I understood what racism, sexism, violence and discrimination was, I had teachers that helped me believe that I could do any profession. The only barrier was my attitude and application.

These teachers made learning fun and rewarding and encouraged me to try all kinds of things with a spirit of enthusiasm and excellence. I enjoyed performing and singing in the school play, inter-school sports and leadership roles. I also loved volunteering to do before and after school pedestrian crossing (one of my favourite things to do at school : ) science and maths.

I’m excited to return to my other home, Aotearoa, Land of the Long White Cloud.

This has been a long time of dreaming and a few months in the making, working with Reina Sutton and Auckland Council. And how special that the stars will be on display during the Matariki Festival, which is currently on between 19 June – 11 July 2021.

Matariki is the Māori New Year and is celebrated annually across Aotearoa.

This particular New Year Festival celebrates all the things that One Billion Stars values, acknowledging timeless relationships between creation, sky, land, waters and people and celebrating our connection to each other and the possibilities for healing, empathy and progress.

“The Rise of Matariki in the winter skies above Aotearoa is an important time in the Māori calendar, as it signifies the start of the Māori new year. For Māori, astronomy was interwoven into all facets of life.

Experts would observe the night sky, charting star and planet movements, the relationship of the stars and planets to the moon and sun, while also noting what was happening on the whenua (land) and in the moana (ocean), lakes and awa (rivers). All of these celestial star beings were attributed qualities and named accordingly, and their stories were woven into the history of the people.

Historically, new year celebrations provided the opportunity for whanau to come together to acknowledge the year gone by, prepare and plan for the year ahead; to celebrate with kai, korero, ceremony and entertainment. For a time, these celebrations were only acknowledged and celebrated by iwi, but at the beginning of the 21 st century a cultural renaissance occurred, making knowledge of this special time of the year an important part of New Zealand’s history.

Today, everyone in Aotearoa can celebrate the unique places we live in, show respect for the land we live on, and to share and grow together through traditions that continue each year, with the support of kaupapa like Matariki Festival.” – Matariki Festival

A woven tar, made from pandanus. Photo: Alexia Costello-Rae. Ocean Club Maninoa Samoa.

The timing of the stars in Auckland for Matariki Festival feels like a second wind, a chance to action some fresh creative ideas and muster up some more courage to try new things before the end of 2021.

The journey of One Billion Stars is just starting, with incredible activations in Austin Texas and Kilkenny Ireland this year.

These weaving communities continue to build momentum and impact lives for the better.

My hope is that by creating more woven star installations around the world for communities to engage with and contribute to, they will help remind us that we can each make positive change.

Working together makes the work less daunting, less impossible, and more joyful. Bringing people together, finding common ground and building cultures of respect is so possible. It can also be fun! This is what star weaving for the One Billion Stars movement has taught us.

If you are in Auckland, please drop in with your friends, work or school communities to see Vaka to A Billion Stars.

Be a part of the journey to weave one billion stars by taking part in their free workshops and public programmes. Everyone is welcome. #VTABS

You don’t have to be in Auckland to enjoy learning how to weave a star. Check out our star weaving kits that you can buy online to do in your own time or with colleagues and friends.

If you’d like to create a woven star installation in your workplace or centre, please contact us hello@onebillionstars.net. We can meet in person or via zoom to discuss workshops and installations.

Vaka to A Billion Stars
When: Sunday 27 June – 18 July. Sunday 27 June. 2-4pm + Wednesday 30 June. 1-3pm Talanoa/Artist talk + star weaving workshop with Maryann Talia Pau.
Where: Silo 6, Silo Park, Wynyard Quarter. Auckland City
Cost: Free Suitable for: All ages

This installation is free, wheel chair accessible and family friendly. Please tag us in any of your star weaving photos using the hashtag #VTABS

Be well and Happy Matariki!
Maryann x