Get some inspiration with these Day of the Dead Altar ideas that you can make at home to honor your deceased loved ones or even your pets.
My list of dead people has been growing, and in honor of them, I celebrate this day, teaching my children about this tradition.
Every year we make a little altar for them or at least I light a candle in their memory.
These lovely Altars were part of an exhibition at the Latino Cultural Center in Dallas.
IDEAS FOR DAY OF THE DAY ALTAR
LATINO CULTURAL CENTER EXHIBIT
Every year, we used to go to the cemetery to clean my beloved one’s tomb and decorate it with flowers. When I was a girl we would only visit my great-grandmother and then my grandmother would take us on a tour of the pantheon to “visit” the graves of other friends.
I was very young and I didn’t meet my great-grandmother so what I expected most that day (besides not having to go to school because is a holiday) was to buy fresh sugar cane and candy outside the cemetery.
Unfortunately, over time the list of dead people has grown in my family and friends, every day I remember them with great affection.
I remember them when I listen to some song or when I cook a meal they liked. I also remember them when I see them in pictures. There is no day that I don’t think of them.
On the Day of the Dead, we usually build an Altar at home while I tell my children about this tradition. We also tell them stories about the loved ones who have already left us.
My muertitos are buried in several pantheons in Monterrey, so when we go there and you can, we visit them, but as I tell you, we remember them every time.
We went to visit the LCC Day of the Dead festival. I really enjoy attending these kinds of events so that my children learn the traditions of my country, Mexico.
On this occasion, there were altars of the Day of the Dead, decoration of sugar skulls, crafts and activities for children, an art exhibitions, cartoons, face painting, etc.
Check out these easy marshmallow sugar skulls I made with my kids.
As you may know, the altar of the dead also called Ofrenda, is a Mexican tradition in which we honor our loved ones who have already passed away.
The Altar is decorated with photographs, papel picado, candles, cempasúchil flowers and some favorite objects of Muertos. You can also place their favorite Mexican dish or drink but let’s see what you can not miss in your offering.
ELEMENTS OF a dead of The dead Altar
- Photo of the person to whom the offering is dedicated. If the altar is dedicated to a single person, the photograph is placed at the top, centered. If several people are honored, separate photographs are placed on each of the steps of the altar. You can make a frame with colored paper or foam like this.
- The favorite food of the deceased. Near the photo of the deceased, place his favorite dish such as mole, entomatadas, tamales, etc You can also add a fruit.
- Favorite drink. And well, your favorite drink should not be missing, it could be coke, beer, pulque, or tequila! I would like a tepache.
- Pan de Muerto (“bread of the dead”) “. It’s essential for the altar, the typical bread of the dead is made with yeast, it is shaped like a concha but it is decorated with pieces of bread that resemble skeleton bones.
- Candles to illuminate the arrival of the deceased. The best are the candles that come in a glass jar, they are safer since the altar has a lot of paper decoration.
- Cempazuchil flowers or marigolds is the typical flower of the Day of the Dead, it is yellow-orange in color, has a strong aroma
- Sugar skulls. The typical ones are white, decorated with colored meringue, and with the name of the deceased on the forehead.
- Cross. A cross made of flowers on the floor and also a cross on the altar can not be missing from the altar.
- Papel Picado. It is a banner or banderillas of colored china paper to decorate the wall behind the altar of the day of the dead. It can have cut-out drawings of skulls, flowers, etc. You can also make a skull banner.
- Favorite objects of the deceased, for example, toys, sporting goods, or related to what he was most passionate about.
- Salt and Water. These elements vary according to the customs of each family. It is said that the water is to quench the thirst of the deceased and the salt serves to purify him and facilitate the return journey.
More ideas to observe the day of the dead
- How to make papel picado with video and printable.
- Champurrado Recipe
- Literary Skulls
- Chocolate Skulls
- My altar from a few years ago
The altar of the dead has certain characteristics, but you can make it as elaborate or as simple as you prefer, the important thing is not to forget about our loved ones and maintain the traditions.
What do you think of the altars of the dead? How do you celebrate this day?