In particular its a festival very close to my heart and always enjoy making new and colorful decorations every year. The festivities include setting up a stage (Mantapam / Peetam) to place and worship the Lord, decorating the Stage, placing a choicest Idol (Clay idol) and worshiping and of-course the festivities wouldn't be done without delicious sweets and savories. Now doesn't it explain why its close to my heart ;) ..................Its not just about the sweets......its gives a great chance to create some bright and colorful crafts every year!!
Last two years (DIY Ganesha Idol 2010,DIY Ganesha Idol 2011) I had been away from home, on a foreign land with limited resources for our kind of festivities. But I was all determined to celebrate this festival though away from home. And this is how I did it!!
I made an idol all by myself.......no clay, no mud.........just out of wheat dough!!
1. Making the dough: I used normal wheat flour used to make Chapathis- mixed it with water and a spoon of turmeric just to give it a pinch of sanctity and later shaped it on my own. The amount of dough needed would depend on the size of the idol. My idol was about 15cms tall and I used about 1/2kg of dough.
Important: Be sure to make a hard dough.....use just enough water. If the dough gets thinner it did be hard to give it a shape and would also take very long to dry.
2. Shaping the idol: I made one big dough ball to be the body and the folded shape of legs and made another slightly small ball to be the face. The face portion was shaped to make the trunk and the crown. Later added the ears, hands, eyes and other smaller parts. I also made a little mouse to go with the idol. After all Lord Ganesha's idol is never complete without his Lil mouse friend!
3.I dried it under the Sun(not direct exposure to sun, you'll have cracks in the idol)slightly in shade but make sure there is enough heat there to dry the idol. It would need a day to dry.
4. I painted using regular water colors. The dough will take up the colors very well. Here again DO NOT use a lot of water, just enough to pick the color onto the brush. Also using water colors would be more eco friendly. .You could choose not to color too, then you might want to mildly highlight the eyes and other significant parts.The paints to should dry in an hour.
5. I did add a slight glitter touch to the crown and jewelry and I was done!!
Also tried my hands at a few more crafts and put them all together in a day. So here I go sharing the pictures of the festivities (small scale version!!) at my place (in Germany!!)
Idol I made in 2010
Mantapam/Stage to seat the Lord
After the Pooja!
My 9month old enjoying the festivities in 2012
Its been a great joy putting all this together. Hope my readers are inspired to try their hands on making this eco-friendly Ganesha Idol........trust me the kids did love doing this and decorating the idol on their own plus...........the immersion is hassle free too.. Lets see what I come up with this year....now that am back home with family, friends and of course....all my craft resources too!!
Am happy to share this post as a kid-friendly craft idea at:
As always, thanks for viewing. Please do visit the page above for more such kid friendly craft ideas.......Shruthi has a great data base of ideas!!
Wishing you all a joyous festival.