From Wiktionary, the free dictionary
Jump to navigation Jump to search


Alternative forms[edit]


An Upper German verb, from earlier besteln, iterative of Middle High German besten, from Proto-West Germanic *bastijan. The -a- is perhaps dialectal or through readaptation to the underlying noun Bast (bast).


  • IPA(key): /ˈbastəln/, [ˈbastl̩n]
  • (file)


basteln (weak, third-person singular present bastelt, past tense bastelte, past participle gebastelt, auxiliary haben)

  1. to do DIY, to perform handicrafts without much expertise
  2. (especially) to build something from paper, fabric, and related materials, by cutting, folding, gluing, etc., e.g. such objects as kites, lanterns, calendars, greeting cards
  3. to tinker (to fiddle with something in an attempt to fix, mend or improve it)


Derived terms[edit]

Further reading[edit]

  • basteln” in Digitales Wörterbuch der deutschen Sprache
  • basteln” in Uni Leipzig: Wortschatz-Lexikon
  • basteln” in Duden online
  • basteln” in