Author Name:    Posted: 12/10/2011 05:41:42 PM

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This is the time of year where these elegant and luminous pieces of paper ignite the neighborhoods in the Philippines.  Little bits of parol.

Two traditions:  Chinese lantern and the Mexican piñata combine to symbolize the star of Bethlahem.  Constructed with bamboo and covered with cellophane or rice paper, these five pointed stars represent the hope and faith of Christmas.  These colorful lights are beautiful during the day then stunning at night with small strings of lights to keep them lit during the night.

Whether they're hung in store fronts, homes, or along the streets, the Filipino parol is one of the exemplary parts of Christmas in the Philippines.  So we thought we'd roll up our sleeves and learn how to make these terrific and beautiful ornaments ourselves.

You'll Need:

  • scissors

  • tape

  • glue

  • glitter

  • pencil

  • ruler

  • 60 x 60 cm square colored paper

  • 2 pieces thin bamboo strips, approx. 80 cm

  • thread

  • 10 pieces of wire strips, about 18 centimeters long

  • 5 pieces of wire strips, about 8 centimeters long

Let's Make This:

  1. Tie the ends of each bamboo strip together, forming two circles bound with your thread.  This will be the base of your parol.

  2. Twist five of the wire strips and attach their ends to your two circle base, this will create the circular frame.  Set aside.

  3. Fold the colored paper into two equal parts. Trace a five-point star on the paper. The size of the star should more or less fit in the star-shaped bamboo frame for your parol. Cut them out.

  4. Mount one star on each side of the circular bamboo frame.

  5. Now, make a star frame from the circular frame and the two cut-out pieces of star paper mounted onto it.  Use the rest of your wire strips to create a five piece frame.

  6. Then, place this wire frame at the middle of the star frame, creating a three dimensional look.

  7. Secure all the ends of the star frame with thread.

  8. Cover the gaps in the star frame with the rest of your colored paper.

  9. Decorate with glitter.

  10. Cut out colored paper, created tails.

  11. Hang your parol.

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