How to Make a Flag With Solo Cups

party picnic and celebration disposable red plastic cups image by Steve Johnson from

With all that extra energy to burn over summer break, making an American flag out of plastic cups is a great kids craft to keep them busy and active. Kids love to help decorate for Independence Day, and this craft is easily adaptable with regards to the materials you have on hand. The flag does not have to be used for the Fourth of July; it can be used for any sort of school project involving flags of varying nations.

Red Solo cups are ready-made for a red and white color scheme.
party picnic and celebration disposable red plastic cups image by Steve Johnson from

Things You'll Need

  • Cardboard Or Card Stock
  • Popsicle Stick
  • Blue Paint
  • Paintbrush
  • Silver Glitter
  • Heavy Book Or Other Object
  • Glue

Cut the cardboard so that it is in a rectangular flag shape.

Cut a red Solo cup down one side, stopping where the bottom of the cup begins. Carefully cut around the bottom, leaving the entire piece intact. Set it aside. Cut the Solo cup into 13 strips, being sure to cut off the top lip of the cup.

Glue each strip onto the cardboard, alternating colors so that there are six of one color and seven of the other. Glue the strips in a red, white, red, white pattern so that they cover the entire piece of cardboard.

Cut off the red stripes in the top left-hand corner. Cut the circular bottom of the cup to fill in the spaces where the red stripe cutouts were. This will be the square part of the flag and later will be covered with dark blue paint, so the cutting does not have to be perfect. Just be certain that the whole square is covered with plastic. If you run out of room, flip over the red stripes so that the white sides are up and use them.

Glue the Popsicle stick onto the back of the flag. This allows you to use your craft as a fan, but this step can be omitted if you are planning on hanging the flags instead.

Set the heavy book (or other object) on the flag and allow it to dry. The heavy object will keep the glue and the plastic from curling up. Allow it to dry this way overnight to be sure that the strips of plastic will not move.

Paint the white square with the blue paint. Allow it to dry completely.

Draw several stars with the glue onto the blue surface. Given the size of the cups, you will not be able to draw 50 stars. Either draw a few stars to represent the flag, or just put small dots that will represent stars.

Tap the glitter onto the glue. The glue will dry, leaving the glitter in any shape that you have chosen, so be careful. Allow the glue and glitter to dry completely before using.


  • Be sure to supervise small children when using scissors.