Mini Faux Papel Picado

Making real, authentic papel picado takes patience and dexterity. If you want to make a quick, fun mini-version with the niños, here’s a fun craft to do.

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Mini Faux Papel Picado

What you need:

• colored construction paper
• scissors
• clear tape
• floss, string or yarn
• an imagination

Cut out small rectangles of colored construction paper, equal in size.

Fold the paper in quarters. (You can fold it more or less – whatever you like.)

Cut little snips and shapes out of the paper at different angles. (Remember making paper snowflakes as a child? Same technique.) … Also, it looks best if you scallop the edges in some way.

Repeat this process with rectangles of different colors. When finished, line them up on the table and tape them to a piece of floss, string or yarn before hanging up.

Paper Marigolds

Marigolds are the flower used to decorate for Día de Los Muertos (Day of the Dead) in Latin America. The Marigold is also a popular flower in bloom in gardens in the United States during Autumn.

I decided I wanted to make some, but all crafts for making flowers involved tissue paper, which I never seem to have on hand. What I do have an abundance of is colored construction paper, so I set to work to figure it out. After a few false starts, I finally came up with this method. The result is so nice that I wanted to share it with you so you can make Marigolds with your niños.

Paper Marigolds
(caléndulas de papel)

What you need:

• construction paper (preferably orange colored)
• scissors
• a drinking glass
• a pencil
• a stapler


Use a drinking glass to draw 3 circles on a piece of orange construction paper.


Cut out all 3 circles. (It doesn’t have to be perfect.)


Hold all 3 circles together and fold in half, (so it looks like a little taco.)


Fold in half again. (Now it should be more of a cone shape.)


Place one staple in the pointy end to hold it together.


Cut slits, evenly spaced, into the rounded side. (You will want to cut a little deeper than what you see in the photo.)


Pinch your flower open. Use your fingers to pull the layers apart from each other and shape the petals.