How to make a Kwanzaa Headdress

What you need

What you need to make a Kwanzaa Headdress

What is Kwanzaa

Kwanzaa is a seven-day celebration from December 26th-Janurary 1st to celebrate and honor African culture. Kwanzaa comes from the Swahili phrase Matunda ya Kwanzaa  meaning “First fruits of the harvest”celebrations often include African dances, drums, storytelling and poetry.

Step 1 - Make the headband and headdress base

1. Draw and cut x2 15cm wide strip, horizontally, on 2 sheets of A4 paper. Glue the two strips together with a 2cm overlap to make a long strip like the image below. This is the headband, put the strip around your head to see if it fits. You may need to add another strip if it doesn’t fit.

2. Lay your headband flat and draw a 4cm wide line at the top and bottom.

3.  Draw triangles all the way along the top and bottom. Once drawn colour them in red, black and green. These are very important colours  that have meaning . Red represents blood, black represents black people, green represents Earth or abundance of possibilities the future holds.

4. In the middle of the two triangle strips draw and colour people dancing and playing drums. Keep aside.


Step 2- Making the Kinara (Candles)

5.  Glue 2 A4 sheets together so you have a thicker sheet. Fold it in half, vertically. Now draw half a Kinara (Candles). You can copy the Kinara in the image below or design your own. You can also choose to cut the gaps or keep it as one piece. Once you finished drawing colour the Kinara.

6. There are 7 principles that represent each day of Kwanzaa. A candle is lit on each day to celebrate this, starting in the middle. Please write the words and numbers as they appear in the picture below. So start with 6,4,2,1,3,5,7.

Day 1. Umoja – unity
Day 2. Kujichagulia – self determination
Day 3. Ujima – collective work and responsibility
Day 4. Ujamaa – co- operative economics
Day 5. Nai – purpose
Day 6. Kuumba – creativity
Day 7. Imani – fait

7. Draw, colour and cut 7 flames.

8. Glue the flames on top of each candle. Keep aside.

9.Draw, colour and cut x2 Africa map shapes.

Step 3- Assemble the headdress

10. Glue the Kinara in the centre of the headband, making sure that the point is in the middle at the bottom. 

11. Stick the African maps to either side of the headband as in the pictures below.




You can add some glitter to the Kwanzaa headdress to make it more creative and sparkle.

Have fun with your Kwanzaa Headdress

We would love to see your fantastic creations so please share your pictures with us on social media @mahoganycarnival.

Thank you for using our template. We hope you enjoyed making your Kwanzaa and we look forward to seeing you on our next creative making carnival workshop.