Celebrate a special day with a tissue paper birthday number. A tissue paper birthday number is the perfect way to celebrate their birthday. Use the 3D photo-worthy number as a photo prop, on the party table, or as decorations.

A child's hands holding giant handmade tissue paper birthday celebration numbers.
Handmade tissue paper birthday number photo props.

How to Make a Tissue Paper Birthday Number

A tissue paper birthday number is the perfect way to celebrate a birthday, anniversary, or other important date. Attach sticks to them, hang them from the ceiling, or use removable poster tape to attach them to the wall above a party table.

Tissue paper birthday numbers are an inexpensive way to celebrate an important occasion of someone you love. All you need is an old cardboard box that you can cut up, a packet of tissue paper (which you probably have from the holidays) and a glue stick.

Supplies Needed to Make a Tissue Paper Birthday Number

Note: Our two cardboard pieces measure 21″ by 18″. Our numbers measure 16″ high when using the method below.

  • Cardboard box
  • Tissue paper
  • Scissors
  • Glue stick
  • Printer and paper
  • Marker
  • Hot glue
  • Stick

Instructions for a Tissue Paper Birthday Number

Step 1

A screenshot of a large number being created as an image in PicMonkey.
Use a service such as PicMonkey to create your 8.5″ x 11″ number.

Using your computer, make a number that fits an 8.5 x 11″ piece of paper. I recommend using a service such as PicMonkey or Canva to do this because you can try out different fonts. You can see from the image above that I used PicMonkey and the font I used is called ‘Impact’. Save your number/s as a jpg image.

Step 2

Large paper numbers taped together on top of cardboard boxes to make tissue paper birthday numbers.
Cut out large numbers to use as templates on cardboard.

You will need to print your number as large as you can to fit on your cardboard. Our numbers are 16″ high. Follow this format to print your number over multiples pages.

  • Open ‘Paint’ on your computer
  • Open the image
  • Click ‘print’ and then ‘page setup’
  • Adjust the ‘fit to’ section from 1 by 1. I made ours 2 by 2, but if you want a larger number you can make these numbers larger too. Change the paper orientation to ‘portrait’. Print your pages – our image printed out over 4 pages.

Cut out the pieces for your numbers and tape them together. You’ll use this as a template on your cardboard.

Step 3

Large numbers being made out of old cardboard boxes.
Cut out numbers from the pieces of cardboard.

Trace around your number onto the cardboard with a marker. Cut out your cardboard number.

Step 4

Cardboard numbers with tissue paper fringing on them for a birthday celebration.
Glue a tissue paper fringe to the cardboard numbers.

Cut out strips of tissue paper and then cut fringing into them (see the image above). Glue the strips of tissue paper onto the cardboard starting with the bottom of each number and working your way up to the top.

Step 5

Hands holding large birthday celebration numbers made out of cardboard and tissue paper.
Tissue paper birthday celebration photo prop numbers.

Attach a stick to the bottom of your number if you plan on having the birthday boy or girl hold them for photos. If not, they can be attached to a wall using removal poster tape.


These carboard cutouts are perfect, but you could use the same method to make cardboard letters. However, we always used them to make to make a giant number.

Worried about the cardboard showing? Spray paint the cardboard first.

Another Paper Craft: Make paper dolls

DIY Tissue Paper Birthday Number

DIY Tissue Paper Birthday Number

Tissue paper birthday numbers are a great decoration or photo prop on a budget.

Prep Time 10 minutes
Active Time 1 hour
Total Time 1 hour 10 minutes
Difficulty easy


  • Cardboard box
  • Tissue paper
  • Scissors
  • Glue stick
  • Printer and paper
  • Marker
  • Hot glue
  • Stick


  1. Print out a number from your computer. You can print it as large as you like by printing it over multiple pages.
  2. Cut out the number, use tape to stick the pieces together, and then trace around it on the cardboard.
  3. Cut strips of tissue paper in your child's favorite colors, and then cut a fringe into the bottom of each strip. Attach it to the cardboard number using a glue stick. Work from the bottom of the number to the top.
  4. Hot glue a stick to the bottom of the tissue paper number.

More Birthday Party Fun On a Budget from Kids Activities Blog

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