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How to make an altar of the dead at home

Don't let COVID ruin your celebration! We tell you how to make a home altar for the dead, without spending a large amount of money, so that you do not stop celebrating this tradition despite the pandemic.

It is well known that, as a consequence of the accelerated development of technology and the presence of the COVID-19 pandemic since March of this year, celebrations that involve many people have stopped taking place. Sadly, the Day of the Dead has not been the exception.

However, and fortunately, in some towns and cities of Mexico there are still many traditional families who seek to decorate their homes and remember their deceased relatives with joy and faith; And because it is very important to preserve and appreciate the traditions that give us identity and pride as Mexicans, this time we share some ideas to make a home altar of the dead on a low budget, following the appropriate security measures and using materials that many we can have at home. Take note!

How to make an altar for the dead at home on a budget:

  1. Place shoe boxes or cardboard to make the structure of your homemade altar of the dead
  2. Color the back of recycled sheets and cut or draw shapes on them
  3. Draw and color marigold flowers and skulls on your recycled leaves
  4. Use Christmas lights to replace the 7 chakra candles
  5. If you do not have photographs, write the name of your deceased and place them in the drawn skulls
  6. Add food such as pan de muerto, water and sweets

Place shoe boxes or cardboard to make the structure of your homemade altar of the dead

We all have a shoe box or cardboard at home that is only collecting dust. To begin, you must clean the boxes very well and place them staggered, one on top of the other, to achieve that your home altar of the dead has different levels. 

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If the boxes are not static, <a href="https://thevistek.com/">try placing toothpicks</a> or toothpicks inside to join them together so that they remain fixed. You can also use tape or glue.

Color the back of recycled sheets and cut or draw shapes on them

If you do not have access to confetti, a good idea to decorate the boxes, which is also ecological and practical, is to take sheets that have been used only once, either when printing on them or for writing, and color the reverse in white with markers, mark texts or wood colors. This will not only save you a trip to the stationery, it will also give you a relaxing time.

When you finish coloring and cutting out the recycled sheets simulating confetti, you can wrap them with the shoe boxes that make up your home altar of the dead and place them around your altar. 

Draw and color marigold flowers and skulls on your recycled leaves

No home altar of the dead is finished without marigold flowers and sugar skulls, and since the purpose of this decoration is to be made with a low budget, the solution we propose is to draw, on the same recycled leaves that you used to make papel picado, a great variety of these flowers and figures, of different sizes and shades.

Place them in different places on your altar with small pins or masking tape.

Use Christmas lights to replace the href="https://chakrapray.com/chakra-candle/ ">7 chakra candle</ a>

It's never early to dust off those Christmas lights! 

If you do not have access to candles or you are concerned about the safety of your home, you can place around your home altar of the dead these little lights that we all have stored in the closet, and connect or disconnect them from the electrical current when convenient.

It is very important that the light bulbs are yellow, since their main purpose is to resemble the light of a candle.

If you do not have photographs, write the name of your deceased and place them in the drawn skulls

Many times we do not have photographs of our deceased relatives, so, to make them present at the home altar of the dead , it is advisable to draw a skull or object that reminds you of their presence on recycled paper, color the drawing as you like and write on it, the name of the person you want to remember. 

Despite the fact that a traditional altar carries photographs, this is a good idea to remember all the family and friends who left and not to leave them out of this tradition. 

You don't have to be a great artist, the intention is what counts!

Add food such as pan de muerto, water and sweets

Finally, you must not forget the most important thing ... The food! 

At your low-budget home altar of the dead , the food shouldn't be too fancy. Try placing assorted sweets, fruit like apples or tangerines and some pieces of pan de muerto. In Mexico City, for example, there are bakeries and pastry shops that offer very good options for this dessert.

You should not forget to add water, soda or a drink that reminds you of your deceased, and if this is a nuisance, take the freedom to get creative with the foods you include.

The important thing is to have fun!

Enjoy this day of the dead in the company of your family and with all the recommended hygiene measures. 

Don't miss out on participating in these beautiful Mexican traditions and consider these ideas on how to make a creative, fun and low-budget altar of the dead at home !