It wouldn’t be Dia De Los Muertos without marigolds. Marigolds, the beautiful orange and yellow bloom is believed to help assist the spirits to their respective alters using the vibrance of their color and the allure of their scent. I make a marigold garland every year and use it as a border to my DDLM alter. Once I decide how big I want the alter I measure the length and go from there. I fill the center with all the foods my deceased loved ones enjoyed. I always write different words in the center with rose petals, depending on my mood or recently departed. This year I wrote ‘Cacique’ as an example, last year it was ‘amor’, the year before that it was my uncle’s name…. it’s always different. I hope you make this marigold garland part of your traditional and make it personal to you and yours. May all the spirits rest in peace and have a party somewhere among the stars. Feliz Dia De Los Muertos.
WHAT YOU NEED
- 30 to 40 fresh marigold flower heads
- Scissors or cutting shears
- Large sewing/stringing needle
- 6 feet of dental floss
HOW TO MAKE IT
- Remove marigold flower heads from stems of marigold plant by cutting them with scissors or cutting shears. Make sure to cut right below the base of the head of the bloom, leaving about ½ inch of green. Set to the side until ready to string.
- Take one end of the dental floss and carefully string through the hole of the sewing needle. Pull to the opposite end until both ends meet up again, and then tie a knot at the end of the floss. You now have a double string which should be about 3 feet in length.
- Push the sewing needle into the side of the base of the bloom until it comes out of the other end. Then push it down to the bottom of the string. Continue with the next marigold bloom. String the flowers as if they were a beads. String until the entire string is filled with marigolds from one end to the other.
- Once all flowers are strung, cut the needle off the string with scissors and tie the two ends together to make a knot.
- Your marigold garland can be used in a variety of ways. Use as a border to your Dia De Los Muertos alter, or hang in a doorway, or use as a runner down the center of your dinner table for a beautiful centerpiece.