Stitched Plywood Icosahedron Holiday Ornament

25 opens
8 copies

Project by

Taylor, MI

General Information

A very cool and modern 20 sided Icosahedron shape, also known as the D20 in some circles. I made it by stitching together plywood cut triangles.

Like this project Open in Easel®

Choose a Method

1 minute

Make it with an X-Carve or with WoodWorking Tools. You decide, like a choose your own adventure!

If you are using the X-Carve simply scale the Stitched Wood Icosahedron up or down to fit your needs. A few of the Ideas I had were christmas tree topper, hanging holiday ornaments, bowl, basket, pet cave, lamp shade, lamp base, decorative vase.

Disclaimer: I designed an easel project for making the triangles with all those holes, BUT I didn’t make it on the X Carve…..yet. My 1000mm X Carve is built, but I have no motion controller because I am waiting for the X Controller. My wife and I really wanted to see how it would come together, so I decided to use my table saw and drill press to make her one. After drilling 900 holes in 20 triangles, I learned that the next one will have to made with the X Carve when I get my X Controller.

For this project I used 1/4" BC plywood, but any 1/4" sheet material should be fine.


Use an X-Carve

45 minutes

NO X-Carve: go to STEP 3 Table Saw

YES X-Carve: Cut out the 20 Triangles complete with 45 holes. Then skip to STEP 7 Sand it Smooth


Table Saw

2 minutes

I used my table saw to rip lengths of 1/4" BC Sanded Plywood down to 6" wide strips.


Miter Saw

I set up the miter saw to cut 60 degree angles, I also attached a stop block. This set-up allows me to make a cut, flip the board over, cut, flip, cut, flip, cut… you get the point. What you left with is a bunch of triangles. You will need 20 in total for a full Icosahedron.


Drill Press, Drill 900 Holes!

First off you will need to mark locations for the drill holes. Each triangle has 15 holes on each of its sides for a total of 45. These holes are spaced 3/8" apart, and sit 1/4"oc from the edge of the triangle. Then I set up my drill Press with a 5/16" Drill Bit. Set the Fence and started drilling.
…nine hundred holes…


Drill Press, Drum Sander

I switched out my drill bit for my drill press drum sander. I used a metal washer and traced a curve to round out the pointy triangle, angles. Then with the drum sander I rounded them out by following the line I had just traced.


Sand it Smooth

I took my sanding block and sanded the edges smooth.


Stitch it Up

120 minutes

I used paracord to stitch this Icosahedron together, but you can use anything of similar diameter. Bailing twine or Zip-Ties could be cool. I melted the ends of the paracord. For one end I melted it and pulled it into a point, this allows me to thread it in the holes really easily. The other the I melted into a mushroom shape with helps it hold inside a hole, good for keeping the ends of the rope in place. There are no rules for the style of stitch you use, so go nuts.


You Did It!

By this point you should have a finished Icosahedron, and you are probably thinking:

X Carve User: That was fun, I should make another!

Woodworker: …ninehundred holes… never again! Gotta get an X Carve!

Happy Holidays!

Andrew Dewoody
Aren't there 900 holes? After all, 20 x 45 = 900.
Andrew Dewoody
Jay Hyde
NICE.. a "truncated icosahedron" is known as a "classic soccer ball." May have to "fork" your idea to make one for my kids (they play soccer - one fore her HS and one for her college!)
Jay Hyde
@Andrew Dewoody Oh jeez, you are right! Just updated the project, thanks.