DIY Papel Picado

Papel picado literally means ‘punched’ or ‘perforated’ paper. This traditional cut paper folk art is found throughout Mexico.

Naturally I wanted some for my mother-in-law’s Birthday Fiesta. You can find it at some party supplies stores and on-line, but I came up with this cheap DIY version using doilies. They don’t look anywhere near as lovely as the real thing, but I think they turned out pretty cute and helped give the party a Mexican feel.

Soak. Dry . Done!


  • Doilies
  • Food colouring
  • Vinegar
  • String
  • Tape
  • Glass dish
  • Water
  • Paper towels
  1. Cut the doilies in half and set aside.
  2. Fill the glass dish with just enough water to cover the doily and add A LOT of food colouring of whatever colour you want.
  3. Add a table-spoon of vinegar for brighter colour.
  4.  Soak each doily for a few minutes until the colour takes.
  5. Be careful removing the paper from the water; it is very fragile. (You may also want to wear rubber or latex gloves because my fingers got super stained during this part)
  6. Lay them carefully on a few paper towels until dry.
  7. Repeat for as many pieces in as many different colours as you want!
  8. Once they are all dry, tape them to the string and you’re done!
Fiesta Party Decorations


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