How to Weave Animals From Palm Fronds

palm fronds backlit by the sun image by Yali Shi from

The sixth and final Sunday during Lent in the Catholic tradition is Palm Sunday. Palm Sunday is the beginning of Holy Week and marked with the priest blessing palms and giving them to the parishioners. People display the blessed palms in the home to protect from evil spirits or to bring good luck. Some people weave several of the blessed palms together to create crosses, animals and simple decorations. They then display these woven items, give them to a loved one or place them on a loved one's grave.


Cut two palm fronds to 1/2 inch by 11 inches.

Fold the 11-inch fronds in half to form two 1/2-by-5 1/2-inch strips.

Place one folded frond on a flat surface vertically with the fold on the bottom.

Open the second folded frond slightly and insert the bottom piece through the fold on the vertical frond. Pull the end of the frond through the vertical frond to form the letter L.

Mark the ends of each frond with a very small letter using a pencil. Label the top vertical frond with the letter X. Label the bottom vertical frond with the letter Y. Label the top horizontal frond with the letter A. Label the bottom horizontal frond with the letter B.

Pick up the frond labeled X. Fold the tip backwards and bring it down and in between A and B. Do not crease the fold.

Pick up the frond labeled B. Fold the tip forward and place it through the loop made by X. Do not fold the crease.

Pick up the end of the frond labeled X. Fold the frond forward and over A. Place the end of X through the loop made by B.

Pull on each frond to tighten the weave.

Flip the fish over.

Pick up the frond labeled B. Weave the end over Y and under X. Pull on all four fronds to tighten the weave.

Cut the two short ends of the fronds at an angle toward the center of the V to form the fish's tail. Cut the two long fronds at an angle to form the fins.


Disconnect the leaf from the center vein three-fourths of the way up the palm leaf using your fingers. Begin the disconnection process at the pointed or small end of the leaf.

Label the two separate leaf sections A and B. A is the top leaf and B is the bottom. Fold A under and to the back of the center vein. Continue the folding process and bring the tip of A over the center vein and place it through the loop just made. Pull it snug. Flip the palm over and repeat the process so the leaves show an overlapping pattern. Continue the folding process until the body is five to seven folds long.

Tie a knot in the exposed vein close to the finished body. This is the front of the grasshopper. Disconnect the remaining vein of the palm leaf. Fold the vein up and through the body until it is snug.

Bend the two palm leaf sections up that made the body. Bend them flush with the bottom of the body. Take the tip of the leg section and make a 45-degree angle bend 1/2-inch above the body to create the bottom of the legs. Tuck the legs between the separate palms at the back of the body.

Tear the palm frond at the back of the grasshopper to look like its tail. Make the grasshopper move by pushing down on the vein that extends above the body.