Welcome to my contribution for "A Very Jewish Summer", craft foam succah lanterns! When I was asked to participate in this blog hop with four other great Jewish bloggers, and to come up with something that says "Jewish" and "summer" I immediately thought about using lazy summer days to prepare for the holidays in a stress-free and fun way. Namely make succah decorations now! Pack them away carefully and you'll be so very very happy that you took my advice, as once Succos rolls around there is usually so much to do that unless the decorations are your top priority (in my case, of course!) they usually fall last on the list, which is truly a shame.
These craft foam lanterns are fun for the whole family, and even younger kids can help assemble them if provided with pieces carefully cut by someone a bit older.
- craft foam, mine is laminated with fabric, so cute, and there are also glittered
- thin chord or string, I used lanyard chord
- beads suitable for the string you'll be using, a variety of sizes,shapes and colors is nice
- a hole punch
- a ruler and craft knife (preferably for straight pieces) or sharp scissors
Small lanterns were made with six pieces of craft foam, 5" long and 1" wide. For best results use a ruler and pencil to mark these dimensions on the craft foam, and then cut with a craft knife. Straight even pieces make for better results.
Large lantern was made with eight pieces of craft foam, 8.5" long and 3/4" wide.
Punch holes in both ends of each strip and then begin stringing pieces and beads onto chord as shown below. Make sure to make a knot on the end of your chord and start with a bead that will sit nicely on top of that knot, and then start adding the first end of your strips, followed by a middle section of beads, and then the second end of the strips. It's really quite simple.
After your pieces look like the photo above, tie another knot on top to hold the whole thing together and then start fanning the pieces out. Pull out one and fan to the left, pull of the second and fan to the right, or just play around until your lanterns look even. That's it!
After you've fanned out one example to see how it looks, I'd recommend storing them flat, as seen above, and come Succos, bring them to life. Once you make the shape into a fan, you can also collapse the shape to save for the next year by releasing the top knot. And of course, these little lanterns would make great party decorations, or even a sweet little mobile to hang over a baby's bed, don't you think?