There are many things people think on when the word “Kwanzaa” is mentioned. Some think of Ancient African traditions while others think on fun filled days of family and food. One of many activities, families and Kwanzaa celebrants alike involve their selves in is Kwanzaa crafts. Kwanzaa crafts are almost as popular as the actual holiday. Along with making Unity Cups, Kinaras and Mkeka mats, people also make Kwanzaa “Celebration” beads. This craft is sure to be one that you repeat over and over every year with the kids!
Celebration Beads Materials: Open end Pasta (Macaroni, Conchiglie, Rotelle, Fioriettini)
Food Coloring (Red, Green, Black)
Step 1: Let’s get it started! The first step to creating these spectacular “Celebration” beads is dying the pasta. In order to dye the pasta the different colors, red, green and black you will need to grab the food coloring. Once you have found the food coloring, proceed to mix it with a little bit of alcohol. This will prepare the food coloring for staining. Its best if you prepare the different colors in separate cups to make things go more smoothly.
Step 2: Once you have selected the type of open end pasta you’re going to use, drop a little of each into the cups and swish them around. Do this until the entire pasta shell is covered, you don’t want any blank spots!
Step 3: Once the shells are covered entirely, either spoon or pour them out of the cup and lay on news paper or a paper bag. A paper bag would be preferred as it has less words and texture to take the paint off your shells.
Step 4: While you’re waiting for your shells to dry, grab the black yarn and unroll it until you get the perfect size for your necklace. The length of the yarn is really up to you, you can choose to make a neck chain, chest chain or something a little bit longer.
Step 5: After you’ve selected the length you want, take a piece of tape and tape one end of the yarn. This will prevent your beads from slipping all the way off on the other end. It’s also recommended that you hold the other end as you string beads onto the yarn just to be safe.
Step 6: Now that you have everything ready, you can begin to place your colored beads on the black yarn. When placing your beads on the yarn, remember to go in a color pattern. Try putting 2 reds, 2 greens and then a black or however you want it. String the beads on the yarn until you have about 1 or 2 inches of yarn left. You will now need to tie a knot with both ends of the yarn to complete your “Celebration” beads. Once both knots are joined, you can now “Celebrate” the Kwanzaa holiday the right way!