Lei is the Hawaiian word for garland. Leis are constructed of flowers, leaves, shells, seeds or nuts. A lei is given in a sign of respect and friendship -- it would be impolite to refuse one if it's offered to you. With tourism being such an important industry in modern-day Hawaii, leis are commonly given to visitors to the islands upon their arrival.
The tradition of making leis came to Hawaii with the Polynesian people who settled there. Traditionally, they were given to friends or family members for special occasions or as peace offerings between tribal chiefs.
- string or wool
- coloured straws cut up into 2 inch lengths or coloured pasta (macaroni)
- hole punch (or just use scissors)
- Optional: beads
- print template of choice (I like printing the black and white template on various colours of construction paper or brightly coloured photocopy paper).
- Cut out the template pieces (can be pre-done).
- Poke a hole in the middle of each flower
- thread one flower, one straw, one flower, one straw, etc onto the string. You can also add beads to the pattern.
- tie a knot and hang around your neck.
- Close the template window after printing to return to this screen.
- Set page margins to zero if you have trouble fitting the template on one page (FILE, PAGE SETUP in most browsers).