Palm weaving is the folding and weaving of strips of palm leaves (also called fronds). You can make anything you like weaving palm; but, there is a tradition of making religious symbols representing Easter. [Photo by A Hacking]
According to scripture, Jesus entered Jerusalem on a Sunday. As he entered the city, people laid palm leaves along the street because palm leaves were a symbol of triumph & victory. Today, churches commemorate Jesus' entry into Jerusalem by passing out palm leaves on Palm Sunday.
Later, the palm leaves are returned to the church, burnt, and the ashes used for Ash Wednesday services. Alternatively, the palm leaves are folded into religions symbols such as crosses and a crown of thorns. The use of palm fronds to make religious art has been encouraged and promoted by Sister Cecilia Schmitt. [Photo by K Steppe]
Other cultures have used palm, banana, and coconut leaves to weave baskets, hats, food wrappers, and decorative elements. Flickr has a section dedicated to palm leaf art.
Books of Interest
- Fun with Flax by Mick Pendergrast
Shows how to make a simple windmill, a dart, a whistle, puzzles, balls, birds, fish, a caterpillar, and more.
- What are Fronds For? by Wendy Arbeit
Teaches you how to fold toys & gifts, decorations & party favors, mats & plates, baskets & carriers, fans & ornaments, hats & visors, and more.
- How to Weave Hawaiian Coconut Palm Fronds by Jim Widess
- see palm weaving books in: USA, Canada, UK, Germany, France
See weaving projects for kids: