Joyful Jewish

Egg carton chanukiah with pipe cleaner candles

Posted on: 4 November, 2010

You can never own too many chanukiot!  This home-made chanukiah is easily assembled (with help from an adult) from a few simple items.

– egg carton of the size that holds a dozen eggs
– pipecleaners in various colours
– aluminium foil, the sort you use in the kitchen
– orange or yellow cellophane.  I had plenty left over after making the Stained Glass Magen David last month.

Equipment I used
Scissors and something sharp to punch holes in the egg carton (I used a leatherman tool, but a knife or possible the end of a scissor blade would work just as well.)

How to make your chanukiah

1. Cut off the lid and flaps from a 12-egg carton, then trim the base and cut it so that you have two strips of 5 “bumps” and two single “bumps”, as shown below.  These will form the base of your chanukiah (candelabrum).

2.  Before you decorate it,  assemble the chanukiah and punch the holes for the candles.  You may need to cut the egg carton slightly to allow the pieces to overlap neatly.  The two longer pieces overlap in the middle, and the two smaller pieces stack on this central point to form a raised place for the shamash (helper candle).  (Below you will see my own little helper!) Use a sharp pointed tool to put a small hole in the top of each “bump” – one for each day of Chanukah and one for the shamash candle.

3. Decorate your chanukiah.  You could paint it or cover it in tissue paper, for example.  Or, like me, you can  go for the quick and no-mess option of covering it with aluminium foil.  If you’re using 30cm wide foil, two pieces of approximately 20cm width and one of 10cm width will amply cover this egg carton.  It’s OK to cover up the holes you just made, as the alfoil easily tears when you insert your pipe-cleaner candles.

4. Make your candles.  Cut regular length pipe cleaners in half, and select two lengths in different colours.  Football team colours are optional!

Place one over the other, hold them horizontally with both hands, and twist.  If you twist both ends at once (up with one hand, down with the other), you will quickly bind the two pipe cleaners together.  Then bend the twisted pipe cleaners in half, and voila – one fancy striped chanukah candle.   Keep going until you have nine candles.

5.  Add some flames!  Guaranteed to thrill your junior pyromaniac, without requiring a visit from the fire brigade.  Take a square or rectangle (mine were approx 5cm wide but it really doesn’t matter) of flame-coloured cellophane, fold it in half and scrunch it up a bit.   Slot the cellophane in the bend of your pipecleaner candle.

6. Put it all together, and start singing your favourite Chanukah songs!  Bring on the latkes and doughnuts!

Warning: If you leave any spare pipecleaners lying around, be prepared to find them schmoozing with your candles and getting in on the Chanukah action!


1 Response to "Egg carton chanukiah with pipe cleaner candles"

I did my final teaching practicum at Carmel School this year and I believe it is so important for children to learn about other cultures and gain an understandings as to how different cultures celebrate their lives I hope you don’t mind I linked your recycle apple tutorial to my blog!

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Fun crafts and activities for Jewish families with young children

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