As the seasons change, it is time for some more free kids crafts to inspire you to get creative. Today, unleash your creativity with some fabulous and easy Mardi Gras Crafts for Kids! Celebrate and have fun before the sombre days of Lent, during which we have some wonderful Religious Easter crafts for you to explore.
What is Mardi Gras?
Mardi Gras is a celebration before Lent. It is usually celebrated with festivals, carnivals and parades… a last time to let your hair down before Lent. Famous Mardi Gras celebrations include those from New Orleans in the United States, Rio de Janeiro in Brazil, Sydney in Austalia and of course Venice in Italy.
It is an opportunity to enjoy rich food, don some fun costumes and of course where some fantastic masks!
In the UK people celebrate with Shrove Tuesday or also popularly known as ” Pancake Day ” – an opportunity to use up all the rich foods in the pantry, in time for Lent. It is a day of celebration and enjoyment, before the days of fasting and reflection. In some countries Mardi Gras or Shrove Tuesday is also known as “Fat Tuesday”!
When is Mardi Gras celebrated? When is Mardi Gras 2023?
As Mardi Gras is tied to Easter and the 40 days of Lent, it changes every year.
Usually Mardi Gras is mid to end of February. This year Mardi Gras falls on Tuesday the 21st February 2023. Giving you plenty of time to have a crafty morning and get yourself Mardi Gras ready.
Is Mardi Gras always on a Tuesday?
Yes! Mardi Gras is always a Tuesday, 40 Days before Easter Sunday and it is followed by Ash Wednesday.
Mardi Gras Themes and Colours – What is a good Mardi Gras Craft?
There are lots of fun things to make for Mardi Gras!
I would say the most popular Mardi Gras Craft for kids and prescholers is indeed the Mardi Gras Mask – festive masks – which are such a big part of the Mardi Gras Carnival celebrations. Crowns and Jesters are also popular themes.
Many kids also love to make shoe box floats. Think carnival and party atmosphere. These are particularly popular as classroom activities or for school Mardi Gras competitions.
Popular colour themes for Mardi Gras in the United States are yellow, purple and green. Though in the rest of the world “all colours of the rainbow” are popular. You will often see Spring colours as well.
Why are Mardi Gras colors purple, green and yellow?
The popular Mardi Gras colors of purple, green and yellow are derived from the New Orleans Parades dating back to 1872. That year’s Rex, chose these colours and later, it was claimed that the colors had the following meaning:
- Purple for justice
- Green for faith ad
- Gold for power
However, these colors tend to mostly be used in America only. If you go and visit the carnival celebrations in Venice or Brazil, all colors of the rainbow are presented! You can read more about the Mardi Gras colors here.
Mardia Gras Activities for kids
Just a quick heads up.. I have tried to mix up the Mardi Gras crafts a little for you today.. the most popular activity (as you will see) is making Mardi Gras masks. And I have a few options for you. There are also some fun noise makers and Shoe Box floats to inspire you. I have purposefully steered away from slime, sensory bins and anything that contains too much plastic – as there are so many fabulous ways to have fun getting creative this Mardi Gras that doesn’t need unessary landfill. So instead of plastic beads, think crepe streamers. Instead of slime, maybe make playdough? Right?
Mardi Gras Mask DIY Ideas
As you can imagine, any set of Mardi Gras activities simply HAS to contain a make your own Mardi Gras Mask. I mean.. the masks are probably the most iconic thing about Mardi Gras and you simply have to give these a go! The majority of the DIY Projects today, only need simple supplies, you won’t even need a hot glue gun to get crafty. So hopefully, you can get started on these straighta way!
Posh Lil Divas also has a go at fabulous Mardi Gras Masks! Cut you paper plates in half, cut the eye holes and decorate to your heart’s content. Go back to the traditional Mardi Gras colours of yellow, green and purple. Add eco friendly glitter and feathers as embellishments.. maybe some streamers and you have yourself a fabulous DIY Mask for Mardi Gras!
We LOVE empty Toilet Paper Roll Crowns, they are so so fun and easy to make. You can wear them with just some elastic and like a party hat or thread a headband through it and you have yourself a great alice band crown craft.
Want a more “realistic” crown craft? Grab this fantastic paper crown printable and colour in purples, yellows and greens. Perfect!
Or try this simple paper crown coloring page from the Mardi Gras Outlet.
Another cute printable option, wher eyou can go wild with the stickers, decorations and glitter, is this adorable bird feather mask printable from Skip To My Lou!
Another wonderful variation on the paper mask theme is this lavish paper mask from The Joy Of Sharing. Adore the huge paper feathers. So fun!
I made this mask many moons ago for a fancy dress ball. I did use a plastic mask as a base to build the paper mache… if I made it again, I would use a cardboard base instead and make it more eco friendly. Then use a piece of ribbon from a chocolate box to help tie the mask on! A little info here.
Similarly, how fun would these Mardi Gras Glasses Printable from Hattifant be?
What she said has some super duper cute Handprint Masks for Mardi Gras. Aren’t they fun? The glitter paper is extra festive – love the glittery sparkle! Though these days, do see if you can find eco friendly glitter! Once done, you are ready to visit the local parades with your diy mask!
Here is a similar version from The Iowa Farmer’s Wife. So cute! Your little crafter will love this!
Paper plates don’t just make fablous masks, they also make BRILLIANT Paper Plate Crowns, that are so so easy to make. Check out Alpha Mom for info.
Jesters Hats are also a lot of fun to make. Here is a Jester Hat Craft (with free printable template!) again from the Mardi Gras Outlet Blog. Print our the template. Trace the shapes and cut out!
Make Mardi Gras Carnival Music (aka some noise makers! Teehee)
Use large can such as coffee cans or formula cans to make these fun tin can drums for kids. We used resist art to the triangles on them.. but my son also went a bit wild with the colours. He loved it.
This ia great 5 minute tin can craft! Make tin can drums and shaker toys.
Fun with homemade maracas! These are eco friendly and bio degradable.. as we used real egg shells, chopsticks, paper, rice and chickpeas… we may have used PVA glue, but these days I would remake them with our fantastic paper mache paste. So easy to make. Super strong AND eco friendly!
Simple Castanets or click clack toys are fun and easy to make and you can decorate them in lots of different ways.
Simple Paper Plate Tambourines.. we actually made this rainbow one for St Patrick’s Day.. but of course it would look lovely for Mardi Gras too!
Mardi Gras Wreath and Decorations
Paper Garland for Mardi Gras frin Vicky Barone. Love the simplicity of this and it would be quick to make a some long garlands.
DIY Mini Mardi Gras Floats made from Shoe Boxes:
The next topic our set of fun Mardi Gras Crafts are Mini Floats! Many schools have “show box” Mardi Gras float decorating competitions. So if you are researching those for the first time and need some ideas and inspiration, then this section is for you! They are just a sample and hopefully will spark your creativity to get hands on!
30 Seconds has a super cute example of a fun shoe box parade float to make for a Shoe Box Float decorating competition at school!
No instructions, but a great set of Shoe Box Mardi Gras floats to be inspired from on Ask Audria! How cute is the mermaid theme and the tulle around the outside? FuN!
Craftiments has a great Animal Float to inspire you. Have a rummage through the toy box and see what you can use!
Gina Tepper’s Dragon Float is super fun too!
This Sole Mum with a Mini Disney Float! So cute and perfect for Disney fans out there.
Other Mardi Gras Crafts Kids will Love!
So.. onto the last handful of Mardi Gras crafts the kids will love…
Easy Pasta Necklace for Mardi Gras from Activity Village! Colour your pasta beads in Mardi Gras colours and then get stringing them up. A lovely little fine motor activity for little kids at Mardi gras too! These colourful pasta shells would make lovely bracelets too!
Mardi Gras Outlet Blog has some fun pinwheels in Mardi Gras colours. Aren’t they cute!?
One thing that I am still “missing” and will look into providing for you in the coming weeks is a fun toilet paper roll Mardi Gras craft. I mean.. I literally have Toilet Paper Roll Crafts for EVERY seaon, but not this one! Tut tut! Having said that, you could make our Firework TP Roll Blowers in Mardi Gras colours? Now that would be fun and certainly worth of being part of a Mardi Gras celebration!
And finally.. a Mardi Gras King Cake
Finally don’t forget to bake a Mardi Gras King Cake – all recipes has a great one! he Mardi Gras frosting looks so festive!
What is the King Cake Game?
As with our Three Kings Day cake – the King Cake should contain a small item such as a bean, a coin, a nut, or a tiny baby figurine (with the Thre Kings it is usually a ceramic figure from the nativity). The person to find this item, as good luck for the day! Some people say you are the King for the day and you are bound to host the next King Cake party!
Pancake Day Fun
Don’t forget that Mardi Gras is also celebrated as Pancake Day in the UK. If you want to explore this tradition.. do take a look at our fun Pancake Day Activities, including our free Pancake Day Cootie Catcher Quiz and fun Pancake Day Chef’s Hat!:
Finally.. how about our collection of DIY Party Poppers, Noise makers and blowers? Surely they should be part of any festivities – whether a birthday party, New Year’s Eve or Mardi Gras! You can customises these activities by adding extra yellow, greens and purples!
Once the party celebrations are over, why not explore our Religious Easter crafts? You will find lots of amazing resources from lovely Cross Crafts, to Resurrection Eggs telling the story of Jesus: