Kwanzaa is an African American holiday celebrating African American history, heritage and culture. The week-long celebration is observed from December 26th to January 1 and culminates with gift giving and a big dinner. Each night of Kwanzaa, families light the kinara – a seven candle holder. Each night of Kwanzaa is centered around one of the seven principles: Umoja (Unity) , Kujichagulia (Self-Determination), Ujima (Collective Work and Responsibility), Ujamaa (Cooperative Economics), Nia (Purpose), Kuumba (Creativity), Imani (Faith).
In the spirit of Kuumba, I’m excited to share an easy-to-make kinara that you can customize for your own family’s Kwanzaa celebration.
Unexpected Materials Make an Awesome Impact
I love using materials in unexpected ways and this project is no exception. Here’s a look at what you’ll need:
A 2.5” wide wood board cut to 15”
Decorative trim of your choice
5/8” drill bit
Just a few steps are required to assemble our Kwanzaa kinara. By using the post finial and fence post together, we can create a really beautiful, ornate kinda without any fancy woodworking!
Twist the finial into the pyramid post cap . You may want to first drill a pilot hole in the post cap to make this step a bit easier.
Next, drill a 5/8” hole in the center of wood board at 7.5”. Don’t go all the way through! Just deep enough so that the candle will fit snuggly in place. Once you’ve created the first hole, drill six additional holes as shown in the photo.
Use a wood screw to secure the wood board on top of the finial.
Add a decorative edge to your kinda with trim. You can secure this with wood glue or finishing nails…whatever you have access to!
Remove the “flame” from the top of the battery-operated candles.
Now it’s time to create our Kwanzaa candles in traditional red, black and green. Spray paint the “wax” part of the candle and allow to dry completely.
To finish off your kinara, paint the entire wood base with your favorite color then insert the candles into place.
Display Your Kinara
With the battery operated candles, you simply need to twist the flame to “light” each candle for every night of Kwanzaa.
This easy to make project is a home decor piece that will keep you celebrating year after year!
Can I let you in on a little secret? I have NEVER decorated outside for Christmas! I know… that sounds crazy right? I love decorating the interior of our home for the holidays, but I have never attempted to do it outside. When The Home Depot invited me to participate in the Holiday Style Challenge, I was both nervous and excited! It was time to step out of my comfort zone (literally) and try my hand at lighting up the great outdoors! I was given the theme of season shining and I tried my best to make our greenhouse and garden area shine for the holidays!
Decorating The Garden Arbor
When we built this garden and arbor earlier this year, I did not consider all of the possibilities there would be for decorating it. I was just thinking that my garden needed an entrance! Now I know that this entrance is perfect for these 5ft pre-lit artificial Christmas trees . I placed one on each side and then brought in Mr. Bear to accompany them. My kids were so excited about this bear from the moment I pulled it out of the box and assembled it. I mean, the bear even got hugs from them! Needless to say, this bear has made quite the impression and seems quite at home in his spot by the garden arbor. We also added this large, pre-lit wreath and bow to top it all off!
Light Up The Greenhouse
My greenhouse is probably my most prized backyard possession. She even has a name, Josephine. We recently added a porch to her which made decorating her for Christmas even more of a possibility! We strung bulb lights around her roofline and hung a simple battery-operated, pre-lit wreath on the door. I also placed the stacked up gift box set by the door. Josephine was already looking super cute! Then we decided to up the ante a little by creating a DIY “faux” marquee letters sign.
DIY Faux Marquee Letters Sign
The process to create these letters was fairly simple and straightforward. This type of sign can be used for a variety of events and celebrations. Check out this how-to guide on The Home Depot’s website to see how I did it!
This may have been my first time decorating outside, specifically the garden/greenhouse area but it certainly will not be the last! This was so fun and the kids love to see the space all lit up at night! We were able to find everything we needed for this project from The Home Depot which made it super convenient. The Home Depot was literally a one stop shop for everything that we needed, and I am so grateful for the app, ship to home options, and store pickup! I am already coming up with ideas for the next holiday!