My sister, who is certainly not so little anymore, had to join a parade for our hometown’s fiesta celebration (its a traditional Filipino thing). And yes, a makeshift float was in order! What can be more lovely than a little garden at the back of a pick-up? So we arranged to rent some plants and I looked for some butterflies to spice things up. Turns out, the ready-to-display kind (made of mesh fabric, paint and silver dust) was way too expensive for my budget. My economical funk was in full motion, so I ventured to the nearby wet market to get some local craft supplies.
Here’s the slightly more usual, more pricey version…
Here’s a step-by-step DIY for my own butterflies.
I used a local fiber known as abaca, from a banana species that grows in abundance in my beloved Philippines. It can also be found in Ecuador and Costa Rica. (so says the all-knowing Google, hahaha). I also bought some thin wire (the thinner, the better) and I stumbled upon some extra silver dust in my supply chamber (also known as my mostly messy room).
Start by cutting out a butterfly shape onto the abaca fiber (be sure to use the kind that has been treated into a stiff board).
Then, use the extra scraps of fiber and fold them until they resemble a cigar-shape that’s exactly the size of your butterfly’s center.
With the thin wire, attach the cigar-shape on your butterfly, weaving the wire in and out of the cigar.
Leave some extra wire at the end of your butterfly. You will need this extra length to attach the butterflies on the sticks/twigs.
Line the edges of your butterfly with glue and sprinkle some glitter on them. Let the glue and glitter dry and shake off the excess glitter.
Attach the butterflies on the twigs. You may also attach them on real plant stems, or any other appropriate surface.
By the way, this is the most basic butterfly I could muster (it was a DIY cram, hahaha). You can add more layers of abaca fiber and certainly the world needs more glitter!
And voila! I freed them multi-colored butterflies into the sun, where they filled the blooms with color and the fiesta with lots of fun!