Free Printable Chinese New Year Firecrackers – Year of the Dragon!

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Get ready to welcome the Year of the Dragon with our free printable Chinese New Year Firecrackers!

This engaging craft activity is perfect for families and kids of all ages, immersing you in the heart of Chinese traditions. Not only is it a fun art project, but it also brings a slice of Chinese culture into your home.

Let’s dive into the step-by-step guide and explore the festive significance of a string of firecrackers.

We should point out that the paper firecrackers are not explosive—that would just be irresponsible! They are made simply with the free printable template, scissors, glue, and red string!

Don’t have time for this printable now? Be sure to tap the heart icon in the bottom right of the screen to save this post for later!

Chinese New Year Firecrackers Free Printable Craft for Year of the Dragon

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Chinese New Year Firecrackers

10 February 2024 is the start of the Chinese New Year and the Year of the Dragon!

Your Chinese zodiac is Dragon if you were born in one of these years: 1952, 1964, 1976, 1988, 200, 2012, and 2024.

We have been sharing Chinese New Year Printables since the Year of the Monkey in 2016, and these printables are updated annually to reflect that year’s zodiac animal.

It also happens that the Year of the Dragon was one of the first big things we celebrated on The Purple Pumpkin Blog back in 2012 with a Chinese Banquet!

If you are planning your own dinner party, be sure to take a look at these 50+ Delicious Recipes for Chinese New Year.

Firecrackers—A Chinese New Year Tradition

  • The Story of Nian: In Chinese folklore, a monster called Nian would come out to eat villagers and destroy their houses on New Year’s Eve. The villagers discovered that burning dry bamboo to produce an explosive sound scared away the monster. Since then, it has become a tradition for the Chinese New Year.China Highlights
  • Bàozhú: The Chinese word for firecrackers literally means “exploding bamboo” and symbolizes the triumph of good over evil spirits.
  • The First Firecracker: Gunpowder was discovered by accident during the Tang Dynasty (618–907), and when inserted into bamboo stalks and thrown into a fire, it would make loud noises, so the first firecracker was born! The Song Dynasty (960–1279) introduced the use of paper tubes instead of bamboo.
  • Dragon’s Roar: The explosive sound of firecrackers is reminiscent of the mighty Dragon’s roar, celebrating this powerful zodiac animal.

Where is the Chinese Firecrackers Download?

  • You will find the download links at the bottom of this page, surrounded by a purple box.
  • Tap the purple download buttons to save the file(s) to your device.
  • Printables are available in two sizes – A4 and US Letter (8.5″ x 11″).
  • Download the size suitable for your printer.
  • Open PDF files with Adobe Reader.
Chinese Firecrackers Craft

Making Red Paper Firecrackers!

You may be looking at the string of firecrackers thinking that they look tricky to make, but honestly, they are easier than they look!

The full tutorial is in the printable card further down this post, but here is a quick guide:

  1. Print and Prepare: Download and print the firecracker tubes and octagonal toppers.
  2. Assemble with Ease: Form tubes from the prints, securing with glue or tape.
  3. Constructing the String of Firecrackers: Secure a red wool loop to the octagonal topper. Space out additional lengths of red wool along it at regular intervals.
  4. Firecracker Formation: Attach the tubes to the wool extensions using tape. Feel free to trim any excess wool for neatness.
  5. Optional Tassel: Add a flourish with a tassel made from red wool, tied off with a piece of gold ribbon or wool. Gold represents power, wealth, longevity, and happiness.

We made this string of firecrackers for the first time in 2016 for the Year of the Monkey, and while our tutorial photographs show our gold monkey graphic, the printable downloads are updated annually with that year’s animal.

For 2024, it is the gold version of Dingxiang the Dragon, as it’s the Year of the Dragon.

Year of the Dragon Chinese New Year Firecrackers Free Printable

Decorating for the Year of the Dragon

  • Festive Display: These paper firecrackers are perfect for New Year’s Eve or as part of your family reunion dinner decor, embodying the strength and good fortune associated with the Dragon.
  • Cultural Harmony: Pair them with dragon dance propsChinese Lanterns, and a Chinese New Year banner to create an immersive festive environment.
  • Community and Family: Crafting firecrackers with our free printables can unite family members, fostering unity and shared cultural heritage.

Fun Facts and Cultural Insights:

  • Historical Roots: The tradition of firecrackers can be traced back to ancient China, with a special emphasis during the Dragon Year for its association with strength and luck.
  • Celebrations: From the streets of Hong Kong to the communities in Northern and South China, firecrackers are a staple in Lunar New Year festivities.
  • Red Paper: Red is a lucky color for the Chinese people, and the red paper that falls to the ground after (real) firecrackers are used is not swept until after a day so as not to sweep away any good luck and wealth.
  • Educational Aspect: This craft is fun and educational, offering a hands-on experience to learn about Chinese traditions and the lunar calendar.

How To Make Paper Firecracker Decorations

You can make your string of firecrackers any length you like. We made 20 firecracker tubes and used a 2m (6½ft) length of wool, doubled up. (You will need extra wool to attach the firecracker tubes.)

There are several designs to choose from in the free printable download—the zodiac animal (single and couple), plain, and with Fu (福), the Chinese character for good luck.

Pick your favourite or mix them up. You could even use Chinese zodiac animals from years past.

Chinese New Year Firecrackers Craft

Chinese New Year Firecrackers Craft

Yield: A String of Firecrackers
Active Time: 1 hour
Total Time: 1 hour
Difficulty: Intermediate

Use the free printable template to make a string of Chinese New Year firecrackers!


  • White Card or White Paper
  • Red Wool/Yarn
  • Gold Wool/Yarn
  • Free Printable Template (links in blog post)


  • Scissors
  • Roller Glue
  • Double-Sided Tape
  • Sticky Tape
  • Paper Clips


  1. Print off 2 octagonal toppers of your choice, and 20 individual firecracker tubes onto good quality (120gsm/30lbs) thick paper or onto thin card. Cut pieces out.

  2. To assemble the firecrackers, roll around to form a tube, and seal with either some double-sided sticky tape or roller glue. If you are using regular glue, you may want to use a paper clip to hold them in place as they dry.
  3. Measure out approximately 2m (6½ft) of red wool and fold in half. Stick the looped end to the back of the octagonal piece with sticky tape. Stick another octagon on the back to cover the workings, and leave enough of the loop so that you can hang up the string of firecrackers.

  4. Cut 10 x 30cm (12″) lengths of red wool, and tie them to the long piece of wool at about 5cm (2″) intervals. These are the pieces of wool that you’ll attach the firecracker tubes to. Even if you double knot them, you can still slide the pieces of wool up and down to place the firecrackers where you want when finished.

  5. Attach one tube to one of the wool extensions with some sticky tape, (I stuck them inside of the tube). Cut off any excess wool if you need to. Continue attaching the tubes to the wool extensions until you have used all of them up.

    Attaching Firecracker Tubes

  6. You can end the string of firecrackers here if you want, or you can continue to make a tassel. To do that, cut about 10 pieces of red wool, 30 cm (12″) in length. Holding them all together, fold them over, and tie another piece of wool around the looped end to hold them all in place. Use that to then tie to the firecrackers. You can then wrap gold wool around the knot to hide it if you wish.


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Free Download of Chinese Firecrackers Craft

Grab the free printable templates to make these awesome firecrackers using the instructions in the tutorial card above.

Download The Free Printables Here:

Visit The Purple Pumpkin Printables Shop for more awesome printables and products! (Opens in new tab.)

Crafting these Free Printable Chinese New Year Firecrackers for the Year of the Dragon is more than just a seasonal activity. It’s a vibrant way to connect with the Chinese Lunar New Year and its rich traditions.

Whether you’re celebrating for the first time or adding to your yearly traditions, these paper firecrackers are sure to add excitement and cultural depth to your Chinese New Year celebrations.

Happy crafting and wishing you a roaring Year of the Dragon! 

The free printables are in PDF format and can be opened with the free-to-use Adobe Acrobat Reader (or other PDF Readers). If the download is a Zip File, it can be downloaded with WinZip, WinRar, or other software typically bundled on computers. Printables designed and created by The Purple Pumpkin Blog and its Designers are for PERSONAL USE ONLY and NOT FOR RESALE under any circumstances. Please read our full Terms and Conditions. You are welcome to print these free printables at an online print shop or print shop in-store if you don’t have access to a printer; however, some print shops may not print licensed characters. Colors may vary slightly on printing due to different screen and printer settings. You may share this free printable blog post on social media, including Pinterest, and on your blog/website with a link to this blog post. Please DO NOT share the PDF on social media or your blog/website. If you use any of our printables, it would be awesome to know about it! Post a picture on the social media platform you hang out on, and follow us on FacebookInstagram, or Pinterest. Use the hashtag #TPPBprintables so we can find you!

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