March 1st through March 9th is Carnival down in Rio. I have never been, but I have seen the cartoon and have looked at many pictures. One thing I love to look at are all the costumes, the masks and head dresses I see are always beautiful and amazing.

So to have our own little Carnival we made our own masks, today it was just Rykar and I since Azalea is at school but I did create a mask for her to decorate later when she gets home. You can go to your nearest craft store and buy a mask but to save money we created our own with paper plates. Honestly, this is the better route if your kids are like mine, they like to destroy things or will lose them not to long after making them.

Supplies you will need:

  1. Paper plates
  2. paint or markers
  3. feathers, pom poms, or any decorations you want on your mask
  4. String or Popsicle sticks
  5. Scissors
  6. Xacto Knife (optional)


Start off by cutting your plate in half, on the first plate I cut the eye holes with scissors but I honestly struggled with that so I used an xacto knife for the next two.



Next, paint the plates! I used CraftSmart Acrylic paint for mine but for this kids I used this washable paint with glitter. It can be a tad light so my kids really like to layer it on for the color to pop out which will make drying time longer. I like it because it comes off walls and clothes easy and it has glitter in it so I don’t have to clean up tiny glitter specks later on from the kids getting it everywhere.

Once the paint is dry, it’s now time to decorate. Before you decorate you can punch a small hole in the sides for string or you can glue a Popsicle stick to the bottom for you to hold up  the mask. We chose to use the stick for ours. Rykar didn’t decorate his mask but i used glitter, pom poms, and feathers for mine. I thought I could get away with not having glitter all over my table until I dropped my mask down on the table before the glue was dry. Yeah, a huge groan for that clumsy mistake.



And there you have it! Easy paper plate masks. Tomorrow is Mardi Gras and these will also be great for any party you have for that. I will post on our Instagram later of Azalea’s mask once we get home from Gymnastics tonight. I know she is going to love making one of these.

If you’re not into making masks and want to hear some good Brazilian authors or books about Carnival I have looked up a few.

I recently got into the Caraval Series by Stephanie Garber, if you haven’t read it yet I suggest you check it out. It’s not like Rio but it surely is interesting, the first book is about one girl on a mission to save her sister, you start to wonder what is actually real and what’s not. I wasn’t able to trust anyone in this book. When I looked up more books on Carnival I wasn’t able to find many, just mainly on books I consider to be about the circus. For example, Water for Elephants by Sarah Gruen, which is a wonderful book if you haven’t read that one.

To be honest I don’t know any authors from Brazil. So I went searching on google, on I found their list of top Brazilian authors. Here are some of the names on their list that I plan to check out:

  1. Machado de Assis, he was a founding figure of Brazilian literature.
  2. Rubem Fonseca, he has short stories and novels about the violence and crime in his city which is one genre I do like to read. (Rio de Janeiro) He has also had some short stories translated into English.
  3. Moacyr Scliar, he wrote “The Life of Pi” which is one book I have been wanting to read.
  4. Adriana Lisboa was born in Rio de Janeriro but currently lives in Colorado, US. According to Culture Trip, her novels are based on Brazilian characters moving around into other cultures and being around other languages. I think I would enjoy reading a book like that so that’s why she’s on my list.

If you have any book or author recommendations let us know and don’t forget to tag us in your Carnival Paper Plate Masks.