How to Make a Hawaiian Lei from Coffee Filters(48106)Credit: Amberdawn 2011Are you planning a Hawaiian themed party? Nothing says "Hawaiian party supplies" like a flowery lei that your guests can wear as necklaces. To make your own Hawaiian lei for each of your guests out of simple coffee filters, or as a craft with children, follow these simple steps.
Things you'll need:
•    Basket style coffee filters
•    Food coloring or markers
•    Bowls of water
•    String or twine
•    A needle (or hole puncher if working with children)  
How to Make a Hawaiian Lei from Coffee FiltersCredit: Amberdawn 2011Color the coffee filters. Decide what colors you want the flowers of your Hawaiian lei to be. Make sure your colors coordinate with your other Hawaiian party supplies.  Usually Hawaiian colors consist of vibrant pinks, yellows, oranges, greens and reds.  You can add food coloring to the water, then dip the coffee filter upside down so the edges get colored and the center stays white. This will give the flower for your Hawaiian lei some "depth." You will want to make at least 15 of these flowers for each lei. Make more if you want the flowers to go all the way around the string for your Hawaiian lei.
If you are working with children, here is an alternative to step 1. Have them color the coffee filters with washable markers, then drip water on to achieve a "water color" effect for the flowers of your Hawaiian lei.
How to Make a Hawaiian Lei from Coffee Filters(48104)Credit: Amberdawn 2011Poke your finger into the center of the flower for the Hawaiian lei, and wrap a rubber band around it. This will make the "petals" splay out a bit. It will also create a separator, so when you string your flowers together for your necklace they don't all bunch up together like the filters did in the package! While you allow the wet coffee filters to dry, cut the string to the desired length.
String the flowers together. Using a needle, poke the string through the center of each flower for the Hawaiian lei. Tie the string so you have a ring of flowers in the form of a Hawaiian lei to hang around your neck. Aloha!  With just a few more Hawaiian party supplies like little drink umbrellas, tiki torches, and Hawaiian themed music, you’re ready for a luau.  Have fun making your Hawaiian party decorations.
More tips:
If you are working with children, here is an alternative to step 6. Before you even color the coffee filters, punch a hole in each one. That way children can thread the string through the holes instead of threading them with a needle.