Mexican Independence Day Decorating & Crafts

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The most widely and festively celebrated national holiday in Mexico is Mexican Independence Day on Sept. 16. Also known as El Grito de Dolores, this holiday is celebrated with parades, festivals and battle re-enactments. Festive decorations are found in homes, city streets and cars to commemorate the popular event.

Mexican Flag Banner

  • Get three pieces of poster board: one green, one white, one red.

    Lay the green poster board, dull side up, on the table. Lay the white poster board, dull side up, next to it. Overlap about an inch of the white over the green. Glue it down with craft glue. Be sure that the edges match up evenly.

    Tape the seam with a piece of clear packing tape. This will be the back of the banner, but clear tape will be less unsightly if you are going to hang it.

    Overlap the red poster board, dull side up, about an inch over the other end of the white poster board. Glue it in place, making sure the edges are even. Tape the seam. Allow the glue to dry overnight.

    Turn the banner over so that the shiny side of the poster board is up. Use large letter templates or stencils to write across the front "!Viva, Mexico!" Hang your banner for a festive decoration.

Papel Picado

  • Take gift-wrapping tissue in the colors of the Mexican flag: green, white and red. Cut them so that they are equal size squares or rectangles.

    Fold a piece of tissue. You can fold it in half, and then fold the edges back, accordion style. Alternately, you can fold it in half once, then in half again into a square.

    Use a sharp scissor to cut shapes into the tissue paper. These can be hearts, flowers, diamonds, circles or whatever designs you choose. It's similar to cutting paper snowflakes.

    Unfold the paper to reveal the designs. Hang a string or twine along the wall. Bend the edge of the tissue papers over the twine and tape them into place.

    Line the papel picado side by side, alternating colors.

Decorative Sombreros

  • Get some straw sombreros from a party or craft store.

    Take rolls of different colored crepe paper streamers. Decorate the hat by making bands around the brim, or leave long, wispy streamers trailing from the edge.

    Make simple flowers with colorful tissue paper and green pipe cleaners. Cut the tissue into 6-inch circles. Layer them and accordion-fold them. Gather them in the center and twist a pipe cleaner around them to hold them together. Spread the tissue out like flower petals.

    Use miniature flags, feathers and other decorations you find to tape or glue them to the hats.

    Hang the hats for the celebration on doors and walls like you would a wreath. Put one as a table centerpiece or pass them out for people to wear.

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