How to Make Miniature Papel Picado

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At the Day of the Dead party for Festivities Magazine, I knew I wanted lots of paper crafts in general, and papel picado (perforated paper) decorations in particular.  Mexican folk arts are famous for spectacular and creative uses of paper, and I've always been a sucker for paper arts.  

Papel Picado against a stucco wall.

I made tissue paper banners to hang above guests heads in the courtyard, but also had the idea of miniature papel picado inspired by the darling cake bunting trend.  

Miniature Mexican papel picado bunting decorating small trifle dishes with tres leches cake.

Making the miniature papel picado bunting was incredibly easy, but added such a festive touch to the dessert table.

Materials for making miniature Mexican papel picado bunting.

First, cut narrow (approximately 1.5" wide) strips of colored paper.  I painted white paper with watercolors to get the ombre effect on my miniature papel picado, but it would be even easier to use colored scrapbook or construction paper.

I then used a Martha Stewart lace edging craft punch along the length of the strip of paper.  Once the lace edge was punched along the strip of paper, I simply cut it into tiny, equal length pieces.

I used a needle and thread to string the miniature papel picado on colorful embroidery floss, and tied it to two striped paper straws.

Miniature Mexican papel picado bunting decorating tres leches cake.

A little bit of glue and a couple miniature tissue paper flowers completed the look perfectly.

Miniature Mexican papel picado decorating plastic cups for a Day of the Dead celebration.

I ended up making far too many little papel picado flags, so I ended up using them to embellish plastic cups for the party, too.  A sharpie and a hot glue gun made quick work of the project, and made the plastic cups so much more fun (and identifiable, since each was different) than plain ones would have been.

Other Fiesta Party Ideas You Might Like:

Navigational image leading reader to tutorial for miniature Mexican tissue paper flowers.

Navigational image leading reader to tutorial for Mexican day of the dead headpiece.

Navigational image leading reader to tutorial for Mexican punched tin napkin rings.

Nicole Wills, creator of Tikkido

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