Plumeria Lei and Grass Skirt

In celebration of King Kamehameha Day, we’re finally breaking out our paper-lei-making secrets for you.  It’s a pretty simple process so we’ve added a grass skirt craft to pair along.  Oh, and if you need more Kamehameha Day themed activities, be sure to download our coloring pages for this month’s Color for iPods contest.  We’ve got a page dedicated to the Hawaiian monarch for you to color.

Lei and Skirt Main

Supplies for the lei:

  • White paper or card stock
  • Green paper
  • Watercolors
  • Scissors or craft knife
  • Straws
  • String
  • Large paperclip
  • Hole punch


  1. Draw and cut out a five-petal flower from card stock.  Use this as a stencil to make more.  Cut the rest of the flowers out.  Punch a hole in the middle of each flower.  Paint the flowers and allow them to dry.  Lei and Skirt Flowers
  2. Fold green paper in half lengthwise.  Then fold it into thirds.  Draw three leaves as if they were a ‘Y’ shape, overlapping in the middle.  Cut this shape out and you should have 6 pieces.  Repeat this process until you have the same amount of leaves as flowers.  Punch holes in each piece.
  3. Next cut your straw into 1-1 ½” pieces.  You’ll need 1 for each flower.
  4. Cut your string about 3 feet long.  Clip on the paperclip at one end of the string.  This is to keep your lei intact while you string on the pieces.
  5. To put your lei together, string on a straw piece, a leaf and then a flower with the yellow paint facing up.  Repeat this pattern until your lei is the length you want it to be.
  6. Tie the string and set aside so you can make your grass skirt.

Supplies for grass skirt:

  • Paper grocery bag
  • Scissors
  • Green poster paint
  • Yarn or string
  • Hole punch


  1. Cut open the grocery bag and then remove the bottom panel.  To save some paint, cut the bag just enough to wrap around your child’s waist.
  2. Paint the bag green on one side and let it dry.
  3. Next, make your fringe cuts about ¼” wide and leave about 3-4 inches intact for the waistline.
  4. Punch some holes 3-4 inches apart near the waistline.  Thread some string or yarn through.  Wrap around child’s waist and tie string together.Lei and Skirt Yarn

Now you’ve got a plumeria lei and a grass skirt to wear to your next luau.  A flower hairpin would make a nice touch to complete your outfit too, but that tutorial will come in another post.

Lei and Skirt Complete