5 crafty Chanukah decor projects for a perfect personalised celebration
- Credit: Archant
For eight days the Festival of Light – better known as Chanukah – will take places in Jewish homes and communities around the world. Celebrate in style with these projects, suitable for both kids and adults
Steeped in history, many of the festivities are rooted in age-old traditions, including the lighting of one candle of the menorah every evening and the eating of fried food like latkes and sufganiyot to commemorate the miracle of oil.
There is also gift-giving of presents or gelt to young children, and dreidel playing with friends and family. Chanukah is a festive occasion to spend time with family and loved ones, and many crafty artists, bloggers and creatives have come up with original and personal ideas to make your own decorations, from menorahs to dreidels. Here are some DIY projects to try at home.
Kids’ crafty menorah
Nina Lozdan from the Creative Station East Finchley, which runs art and craft classes for toddlers, also gives workshops at JW3, the Jewish Community Centre and arts venue on Finchley Road. Here she shares one of her Chanukah craft ideas to try with your little ones: a paper plate menorah.
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What you’ll need: paper plates; jumbo lollipop stick; 9 regular lollipop sticks; glue; sticky tape; yellow, red and orange crepe paper; pens, paint, decorations
Cut the paper plate in half. Tape the eight regular lollipops onto the straight cut side of the plate, to represent the candles
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Tape the jumbo lollipop stick to the bottom of the round part of the plate, so you can hold it up
Glue pieces of the crepe paper to the ends of the regular lollipop sticks to create paper flames
Decorate the paper plate as you wish, with pens, paint, glitter, sequins… whatever you have at home
Find out more about Nina’s workshops at thecreationstation.co.uk/childrens-art-class-and-party-entertainer/london-finchley
Bookings or enquiries: 07931 531596
Make your own Star of David ornament
Perfect for decorating the dinner table, these Star of David ornaments by evermine.com are easy to make and effortlessly make the table setting look classy and put together.
What you’ll need: lollipop sticks; glue gun; glue; string
Plug in the glue gun. Once the glue gun is hot, dot a drop of hot glue on the end of one lollipop stick and secure another on top, to form two sides of a triangle. Measure the angle by placing a third stick at the bottom, to make sure the first dot of glue dries at the correct angle. Let this dot dry for about 20 seconds. Finish the triangle with two dots of glue on each end of the third stick and attach to the two open ends of the triangle. Set aside to dry. Continue this process for all of your sticks, thereby creating a collection of triangles. Wait about 10 minutes before affixing pairs of triangles together with more dots of hot glue to form a Star of David shape. Place the string loop and adhere with a generous dot of hot glue. Finally, allow your stars to dry for a half hour. Spray each star with a metallic silver paint or any colour of your choice. Let the stars dry about an hour if you’ve used matte-finish paint, and three hours if you chose a high-gloss paint
Golden wine bottle menorah
For each of the eight nights of Chanukah a candle is lit in commemoration of the miracle of light. A ninth candle called the Shammas acts as a “servant” to light the other candles. Menorahs are a great DIY project as they can take so many different forms, like this golden wine bottle example.
Incredibly easy to make this is a chic alternative to the traditional bought menorah.
All you need is nine wine bottles and some spray paint. Gold makes for a particularly festive look, but you can experiment with other Chanukah colours like silver, blue or white. This golden menorah looks great on the windowsill.
Project by littlemisspartyplanner.com
Chanukah stencilled napkins
DIY Chanukah stencilled napkins are a simple way to add a touch of elegance to your family gathering. Use royal blue fabric paint and crisp white napkins, or for a less permanent option use paper napkins and any paint or marker pen you fancy. The templates of two of the most prominent Judaic symbols—the Star of David and ‘Chai,’ the Hebrew word for ‘life,’ are easily cut out with a precision knife. Stick the page to a cereal box before cutting if you want to reuse your stencils a few times.
What you’ll need: Chanukah napkin stencil template (print out from attached); card stock; precision knife; blue fabric paint; white napkins; flat sponge brush
Using a precision knife, cut out the shapes of the symbols. Glueing the paper onto a piece of card can make cutting easier
Place the stencil over the napkin, hold in place, then paint, using a sponge brush. Don’t drag the brush — just lightly dab until the area is fully covered
Carefully lift the stencil up and allow the paint to dry. Be sure to lift it straight up to avoid smudges
Tutorial by everydaydishes.com
The Jewish Museum in Camden Town hosts a Chanukah event every year. This year, on December 8, at 4.30pm, the museum is open to all and free to attend. There will be dreidls, doughnuts, hot drinks and candle-lighting, as well as an opportunity to see some Chanukah-related items from the collection and hear about them from the curators.
For a DIY project, have a go at making your own dreidel with the Museum’s template, which you can print out here. Stick the page onto a piece of card (a cereal box will do), cut out the dreidl, fold the sides to make your dreidl 3D, then glue the numbered edges.