Easy Cinco de Mayo Craft: Papel Picado

Last Updated on January 11, 2023 by Ellen Christian

This is an easy Cinco de Mayo craft for kids. Cinco de Mayo which is Spanish for the fifth of May is a celebration of Mexican heritage, freedom, and pride.  It is the date that the Mexican army beat the French in the Battle of Puebla that took place on May 5, 1862. 

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I found everything you need to get started in this kit including a DVD for a really great price.

Easy Cinco de Mayo Craft for Kids: Papel Picado

Easy Cinco de Mayo Craft for Kids

Cinco de Mayo is celebrated throughout the United States although I find very few Mexican culture activities here in Vermont.  My husband is from Houston where Cinco de Mayo is a much larger holiday and you can find many ethnic celebrations and activities.

Mostly, we enjoy a few of our favorite Mexican foods like my Mexican Mochaccino and my Chicken Enchilada Stew.

So, if you’d like to introduce your children to Cinco de Mayo and find yourself in an area that isn’t having any events or celebrations, you can introduce them to the Mexican art of paper cutting which is called Papel Picado by making this easy Cinco de Mayo craft for kids.

Materials for Papel Picado

  • Sheets of multi-colored tissue paper
  • Scissors
  • Hole punch
  • Pinking shears
  • String or thread


  1. Cut tissue paper sheets in roughly 8″x14″ size. Fold each in half. Then fold each into an accordion and punch holes in random places to make a design.
  2. Carefully unfold the accordion and fold each tissue paper sheet in half.
  3. Run a piece of string or thread from one end of the window to the other and hang the Papel Picado sheets over the thread.

Easy Cinco de Mayo Craft for Kids: Papel Picado

This is such an easy Cinco de Mayo craft for kids to make. Let them hang the Papel Picado from their windows, the headboard of their bed or string them from one end of the wall to the other.  

Save tissue paper that you get as gift-wrapping or you can purchase it new in packages at the dollar store. If you’re searching for Cinco de Mayo activities for adults, you can easily enjoy Papel Picado as an adult by making more intricate cuts.

So, if your child is older, you can have them use scissors to cut shapes out of the tissue paper as well. Mexican craftsmen use punches and chisels to make designs in the paper. Sometimes they are random designs and sometimes they depict scenes from the Bible. They then hang the decorations in windows or as banners.

Now, If you’d like more information and traditional Mexican crafts to do, check out Cinco De Mayo (Celebrating American Holidays: Arts & Crafts).

Finally, if your child enjoyed this craft, maybe they’d like to try making origami boxes.

3 thoughts on “Easy Cinco de Mayo Craft: Papel Picado”

  1. Pingback: Cinco de Mayo Party | Home Entertaining | Recipes and Crafts
  2. I'm always on the lookout for craft ideas for my kid, as she tends to get bored easily.  That looks like something she'd like to do.  Thanks for sharing :)

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