Saturday, October 22, 2011

DIY Diwali Decor 3: Woven luminarias

Remember that paper weaving thing we used to do as kids? Two strips of paper, then another two, then another...
Recently saw these flower baskets by the super talented Joel Henriques of Made by Joel and immediately thought of how I could use the idea in the third part of my series of luminarias for Diwali. 
And so, in a matter of an half-hour, I had my woven luminaria.
You will need:
·   2 squares of white or off-white paper
·   Slim ruler
·   Pencil
·   Cutter
·   Glue
·   Tea lights (or floating candles, which you can float in a small amount of water at the bottom of your holder)
·   Glass votive holders or other glass receptacles capable of taking the heat of the tea lights

Take one of the square pieces of paper, and fold it into nine equal smaller squares (like a tic-tac-toe pattern). Cut out the squares on the side. Joel’s tutorial is also great with showing this.
Now, with each of the 'arm' squares, mark lines the width of a slim ruler. Then, using your cutter, cut vertical lines (upwards from the central square) through which to weave your paper strips. Do not cut all the way to the top.
Using the width of the slim ruler as a guide, cut out your strips from the second paper square.
Start weaving your strips through the paper grid, pushing firmly down to the central square and gluing neatly to secure the starting tab and where the strip ends. Fold the strip neatly to go around corners: do whatever it takes to make a square-ish bottom.
Once you have woven all your strips to make a sturdy basket (and glued random bits, neatly but to your heart’s content), secure the top of the basket with a strip of paper cut to size for the purpose.
Place your tea light in the glass receptacle, light it, pop it into the woven basket, darken the room, and enjoy the glow.
Caution and disclaimer: Fire is fire: you need to be as vigilant around these luminarias, as you would be around lit diyas. Keep water handy, and do check that the glass of your holders is not too thin, and that it has not cracked with the heat.

You may also like
DIY Doily luminarias

DIY Vriksh luminarias


  1. Prima, loved the luminaries! Happy Divali, world. Let's have fewer crackers and more light and make this a silent light, holy light Divali.

  2. These are really cool, Prima. So much better to make these in droves at home, rather than buy those Chinese-made market-monopolised lanterns. Will try them with coloured paper.

  3. Hey Ben,
    Here's to a silent Diwali!
    Happy Diwali to you and all at home!

  4. Rashmi darlink!
    Thanks for the encouragement!
    Send me pics of the coloured ones.

  5. Hey Prima,
    I am glad you put the caution and disclaimer. It is actually a fire hazard as it is made out of paper. I think if look at the Bombay Fire Department Code Book, it may be illegal. Also you should have used other safer material besides paper. Anyway, I wish you all a silent Diwali. I know what the sound of crackers is, in the middle of high rise buildings in a booming metropolis.

  6. Hey Mario,
    Yes, Diwali is a dangerous time in its own way. Even diyas filled with oil are really risky. But let's hope everyone is cautious and safe... A happy Diwali to all of you too!


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