Feathery Faces


Join in the fun of Mardi Gras! Have a ball making these elaborate, decorative masks. Display them for Halloween and other occasions, too.


1. Mardi Gras began many hundreds of years ago in France to welcome and celebrate spring. This holiday is usually celebrated on the Tuesday before Ash Wednesday.

2. With your classmates, research Mardi Gras and find out how it is celebrated in countries around the world. Some of the most famous celebrations are in New Orleans, Galveston, and Shreveport in the United States; Quebec City, Canada; as well as in Italy and Switzerland.

3. Most Mardi Gras events include a parade with grand floats, costumes, masks, balls, and special food such as moon pies and King Cakes. Men and women dress in formal clothing or costumes. They also wear elaborate masks in styles that reflect local traditions.

4. To make a decorative mask similar to those worn at Mardi Gras, first crumple newspaper to make a face-shaped armature. Hold the newspaper in place with masking tape.

5. To make your own distinctive mask, knead color from Crayola® Washable Markers into white Crayola Model Magic. Cover the armature with the modeling compound. Shape the face to include a nose, ears, and hair.

6. Embellish the mask with colored Model Magic.

7. Embed chenille stems or other decorative craft items into the mask. Air-dry at least overnight.

8. Use Crayola School Glue if needed to hold the decorations in place. Air-dry the glue.

9. Display your masks to celebrate Mardi Gras!

Safety Guidelines

Adult supervision is required for any arts & crafts project. Observe children closely and intervene as necessary to prevent potential safety problems and ensure appropriate use of arts and crafts materials. Some craft items, particularly beads and buttons, are potential choking hazards for young children. Avoid use of such small parts with children younger than 3 years. Craft items such as scissors, push pins and chenille sticks may have sharp points or edges. Avoid use of materials with sharp points by children younger than 4 years. Read all manufacturers' safety warnings before using arts and craft supplies.

Crayola Modeling Materials including Crayola Model Magic®, and Model Magic Fusion™, Crayola Air-Dry Clay, and Crayola Dough—

  • Keep away from open flames. Do not use to make candleholders, hot plates, trivets, or other similar objects that will be used or placed near fire and other heat sources.
  • Do not put in an oven, microwave, or kiln.
  • Do not make into vessels/containers that will hold unpackaged food.
  • The use of modeling material to make items that look like food is discouraged for children younger than age 5 to avoid their confusion with real food.
  • Unless sealed with a water-resistant glaze, do not make projects exposed to or immersed in water, such as boats or outdoor bird feeders. They would disintegrate when exposed to moisture.
  • Crayola Dough—contains gluten (wheat flour) as an ingredient.
  • Crayola Air-Dry Clay, Crayola Model Magic and Model Magic Fusion are gluten-free. However, they are produced on the same machinery as Crayola Dough which does contain gluten. Although the machines are cleaned prior to the start of each production run, there is a slight possibility that trace amounts of gluten from Crayola Dough may be present in the other modeling compound products. For information regarding specific ingredients or allergic concerns, please call our Consumer Affairs department at 1-800-272-9652 weekdays between 9 AM and 4 PM Eastern Standard Time.


  • Children research the history of the Mardi Gras celebration.
  • Students discover similarities and differences among various international Mardi Gras celebrations.
  • Children create decorative Mardi Gras masks.

Related Lesson Plans

Lesson Plans

Share on Facebook


crayola supplies
  • Markers
  • Model Magic®
  • No-Run School Glue
household supplies
  • recycled newspaper
  • masking tape
  • chenille sticks
  • decorative craft items



  • Grades 4 to 6


  • Language Arts
  • Social Studies
  • Visual Arts


  • 30 to 60 minutes
  • Multiple Sessions


  • Children research the history of the Mardi Gras celebration.

  • Students discover similarities and differences among various international Mardi Gras celebrations.

  • Children create decorative Mardi Gras masks.


Research Canada Standards
Research UK Standards
Research U.S. Standards