Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Hamsa Hangings

I wish I could take credit for this wonderful craft project but I can't. It's straight from this fantastic eclectic site called Kid World Citizen. I have always loved hamsas, hand shaped "amulets" that are made in the Middle East and elsewhere. I have several hung in my house, all made in Israel where some of my family lives.

I knew hamsas were Islamic in origin but at this site I learned that Jews consider it the hand of Miriam, Moses's sister who protected and saved him, that the five fingers can be representative of the five books of the Torah, or Old Testament. And that some Christians call it the Hand of Mary.

The Picasso's Basement artists used old cereal box cardboard as the base and cut the shape, covered it with heavy aluminum foil, and painted the eyes on with acrylic paint.  They started designing into the foil with blunt pens and pencils but in the end all made the decision to use thin sharpies to really get the designs to pop! They also punched holes in them and strung them with a strand and a bead or two. The link I mentioned has a series of photos that show the process so I'll get to the punch.

Here's what our artists created!


  1. They are fantastic. They look professional . What talented young artists!!!!!

  2. Paula, what a wonderful idea! I bet the kids were really proud of these. I think the lesson is Pin-worthy!

  3. Thanks Phyl! I actually found the original project on Pintrest. The only variation is that the kids really wanted to draw on the foil rather than engrave on it. Once one suggested using a sharpie they all followed suit. But I think you'll find it on my Art For Kids: Middle School board. Pintrest has become such a wonderful tool for finding new projects and inspiration.