Creativity 521 #63 - DIY Chinese New Year Firecrackers

Posted by ~Summer~ on February 21, 2015
in , ,

Happy Year of the Goat, everyone! 祝大家合家欢乐, 喜气洋洋, 羊年行大运!

Matching family outfits kindly sponsored by MidouCeur


It's 初三 today and we are still going for visiting! Still, I have not forgotten that it's the 21st of the month which means it's time for Creativity 521!

For this year's Chinese New Year celebration in school, Angel's teachers came up with this brilliant idea of asking parents and children to come up with a DIY decoration for the child to use during the Show and Tell session.

I'm not sure if the other parents were as ecstatic as I was but I definitely welcomed the idea and was excited to brainstorm about what we could make together. To me, a craft session is not just about making beautiful, or sometimes not so beautiful, creations. It's more about having fun, learning and bonding with my kid.

So, I wanted to make full use of this opportunity and hoped that through this exercise, I could teach my girl more fun facts about CNY. In the end, we decided to make our one-of-a-kind CNY Firecrackers! Did you know? Firecrackers are used to celebrate the arrival of new year and also to ward off evil spirits.


1) Empty box
2) Toilet rolls
3) Gold, red and metallic red paper
4) Calligraphy pen
5) Gold string
6) Gold ribbon
7) Gold decorative tape
8) Sticky tape
9) Double sided tape
10) Glue
11) Single hole punch
12) Scissors
13) Pencil
14) Long ruler

Firstly, measure and cut out rectangular pieces of red paper which will fit around the toilet rolls neatly. I did the measuring and drawing of lines, Angel did the cutting while Ariel was just engrossed in trying to make a roll tower.

Next, apply glue along the border of the red paper and stick it around the toilet roll.

While Angel was busy sticking, I got to work on the centerpiece. I had wanted to find an octogonal box for this but since I couldn't, I had to make do with a square shape. I started by trimming the box from a rectangle to a square shape and used the extra cardboard to cover up the empty side.

Next, I used metallic red paper to wrap the box up.

You can feel free to design the front and back of the box in any way you like. For me, I wanted to teach Angel about two things, firstly, I wanted her to learn to recognise the word 福 (good fortune) and understand why it is often seen upside down. So I wrote out a bubble version of the word, cut it out and stuck it over a red paper as seen above.

For those who don't know, we say that "福倒了" which means that the word 福 is upside down, which also sounds like "福到了", meaning good fortune has arrived.

Secondly, on the other side, I wanted to teach Angel about the Chinese horoscope so I printed out the pictures of the 12 animals and cut out the word 羊 (goat) to paste in the middle. While Angel already knew that she was born in the Year of the Ox, and she also knew which horoscopes the hubby, meimei and I belonged to, I had never taught her the sequence of the 12 animals and so I thought this was a perfect time to do so.

It's really not that hard! We started chanting 鼠牛虎兔龙蛇马羊猴鸡狗猪 and to make it easier to memorise, we broke it down into three groups of four animals 鼠牛虎兔 / 龙蛇马羊 / 猴鸡狗猪. What amazed me was that she took less than a day to memorise the sequence by heart and had so much fun doing it. It just reminded me on how I can do more to teach my child and how she can be learning new knowledge every single day. It's only whether I try to fork out more time and put in more effort to do so.

To jazz up the firecrackers and add a bit of shimmer, we decorated the top and bottom with gold decorative sticky tape. This was carried out by Angel and she was so proud she did them all!

After that, I helped to punch two opposite holes on one end of the toilet roll for stringing purposes.

Next comes the hardest but fun part of all - Writing! One good thing is that Angel really likes to write Chinese words so I wanted to let her learn some CNY greetings which will come in handy when we go visiting! So, word by word, I guided her and we wrote a total of 10 greetings which she was really interested to learn, remember and even asked me about their meanings.

Next, I stringed the rolls with a gold string using knots shown above. Tie a dead knot at the last firecracker. I let Angel write the greetings on small pieces of red paper with a calligraphy pen and then stuck them onto the toilet rolls once done.

The trickiest part was to string through the square centerpiece and to do that, I made two small holes on the top and bottom. Then I tied the string to one end of a satay stick and used it to help me poke through the holes. Secure the top of the centrepiece with a loop.

Lastly, add in any gold ribbons or stickers if you want! My kids wanted to stick on some heart shaped stickers and I thought why not let our CNY be filled with more love?

Ta-dah! Presenting our DIY firecrackers which is now hanging proudly in our house after Angel shared with her classmates about what she had learnt through this craft project. You did a most awesome job, my dear!

We sure hope everyone is having a joyous and blessed CNY celebration too!

For our DIY tutorials and craft inspiration, visit my gallery here.


To fellow bloggers who have a fun craft session, DIY tip or creative idea to share, come join in the party! Highlight and press Ctrl + C to copy my button above, include it in your post/sidebar and add your link below. I will be hosting Creativity 521 on the 5th and 21st of every month, do hop over for more inspiration. Remember: The sky's the limit when it comes to creativity!


  1. Love this! What a fun way to learn about Chinese culture and words!

    1. Thanks! Yes it was lots of fun doing it this way! Hope you had a blessed CNY! :)


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