cardboard mariachi instruments
DIY cardboard instruments mariachi

Cinco de Mayo Drive By Party

A couple of years ago I visited Mexico City with my friend Nadia Aguilar Cates of Casa Palomi. She is one of the most passionate people about her beloved country and she is so good about teaching people about it. She does so through her cooking lessons (she makes the most amazing tamales!) and tours. I’m dying to go with her to Oaxaca and see the beautiful artisans.

I was thinking about Cinco de Mayo and asked her how she might be spending it this year considering we can’t party like we used to. I had the idea to do an oversized papel picado garage door decoration and since her adorable kids are in marachi classes, they could play instruments as people drive by. Just add some music in the back 😉

Today, she’s explaining a bit more about what Cinco de Mayo is and how they celebrate it. After checking that out, scroll on to see some of our best Cinco de Mayo-themed crafts that we think will help you celebrate this holiday to its fullest!

You'll Need:

  • Cardboard
  • Paint
  • Scissors
  • Craft Knife
  • Glue gun
  • Tape
Oversized papel picado on garage door
Cinco de Mayo is a Mexican holiday that commemorates the battle of Puebla. It’s not Mexico’s Independence Day but a common celebration in the United States. Our family visited the city of Puebla when we lived in Mexico City, and fell in love with its charm and history.
For Cinco de Mayo, we love inviting friends and family to a party. But with the quarantine this year we’re hosting a drive by fiesta. I loved Brittany’s papel picado idea and will use it as inspiration to decorate my door. The bright, festive, papel picado decorates the streets of Mexico for festivities, with that as our backdrop we’ll give our friends homemade bottled salsa, totopos (tortilla chips), and Mexican candy!
– Nadia @Casa_Palomí

DIY Cardboard Mariachi Instruments

We made some instruments out of cardboard and painted them. A sweet yet simple touch! cardboard guitard

DIY cardboard instruments mariachi

DIY Cardboard accordion

This is my favorite! I love how it turned out.

DIY cardboard accordionDIY cardboard instruments mariachi

Materials:

  • Two rectangle boxes about 4 or 5″ by 8 or 9″
  • 3 pieces of white office paper
  • House paint or acrylic
  • paint brushes
  • tape

Instructions:

  • Paint your cardboard boxes in the color of your choice. Once it’s dry, add on the black details of the keyboard.
  • Make an accordion fold in the office paper the tall way and glue the three pieces of paper together.
  • Add on a handle by cutting a 1″ strip and taping it to the side of the box.

DIY Cardboard Guitar

DIY cardboard guitarDIY cardboard instruments mariachi

Materials:

  • cardboard
  • embroidery floss or string
  • scissors or craft knife
  • glue gun

Instructions

  1. Cut out two layers of the guitar base, including the neck.
  2. Cut out a circle in one of them.
  3. Paint the two pieces and then glue and glue together.
  4. Add on a 2″ strip for the bridge (where the strings are held at the bottom)
  5. Add on the neck of the guitar
  6. Glue the strings onto the bridge and up onto the neck.

DIY Cardboard trumpet

DIY cardboard trumpetDIY cardboard instruments mariachi

Materials:

  • Cardboard
  • paint

Instructions:

  1. Draw a trumpet shape onto your cardboard.
  2. Cut it out with your scissors or craft knife.
  3. Paint the trumpet.

Voila!

DIY oversized papel picado

Now, for the ginormous papel picado. This one is giant impact! And requires very little money, just a bit of time.Cinco de Mayo drive by party

Materials:

  • butcher paper
  • craft knife
  • scissors
  • masking tape
  • plates and cups for perfect circles

Instructions

  1. Measure out the door you’d like to attach your papel picado to. A lot of party supply places or office supply places have butcher paper by the foot and it’s about 3′ wide. We did ours 12′ and then lined up three pieces together and taped them on the back.
  2. Draw your design onto the paper. We used our own papel picado in our shop for reference. If you’re not confident with your drawing abilities, you can project the image onto the wall. Another trick is to divide up your image into a grid so you know where to apply the design.
  3. Once it’s all drawn out, start cutting it out! We used bowls and cups to create the scalloped edges and circles. But we also liked it to not be perfect cut so we allowed for the handmade touch.
  4. Apply it onto your garage door with some safe tape (like masking tape).

cardboard mariachi instruments

cardboard trumpetcardboard guitard
cardboard mariachi accordion
If you’re looking for colorful decor, look no further than our Fruit Tissue Honeycombs and classic Papel Picado Streamers. You might have seen a mini version of the streamers in our fiesta a few years ago, but we love bringing them back whenever we can! They’re a template that you can cut out on your craft cutting machine (AKA EASY) and can be made to any size to fit your Cinco de Mayo party! The Fruit Tissue Honeycombs are simple to make as well, and we think they add a fun vibe to the fiesta as a big pop of color and shape.
And the perfect centerpiece for your table? Try our Paper Wedding Bouquet, inspired by the colors of Cinco de Mayo! Make a large bouquet to sit in the middle of the table, or challenge your guests to create their own, and invent a new tradition this year making paper flowers.
Looking for more inspiration for your fiesta? Check out our previous post detailing our very own Lars Cinco de Mayo party we hosted in years past. We think we got everything: the streamers, the colors, and the food! We listed out our fiesta menu, and created a Cinco de Mayo party collection of things that we loved!

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