Alhamdulillah Zakat Basket {Tutorial}

My daughters and I enjoy making a different zakat (‘alms-giving’ in Arabic) box, as part of our 30 day Ramadan crafts challenge, to collect money. We have made them out of wood, glass, picture frames, and even recycled materials.


Zakat is one of the five pillars of Islam and an obligatory form of charitable giving for all Muslims that have the ability to do so.


We wanted to try something different this year and collect money, plus perishable food, daily. We painted a basket with Alhamdulillah (Arabic for “”thank Lord!”). According to Wikipedia: So frequently do Muslims and Arabic-speaking Jews and Christians invoke Alhamdulillah that the quadriliteral verb hamdala (حمدل), “to say al-ḥamdu li-llāh” was coined, and the derived noun ḥamdala (حمدلة) is used as a name for this phrase.


At the end of the month, we will donate everything inside the basket to a local food bank.


The project was inspired by the Bismillah Painted Tray {Tutorial} and uses the same banner letters. I received the paints as my role as Plaid Ambassador.



Glitter paint
Coastal paint
Banner letters

We took our letters to the local craft store to find a basket big enough for food inside and the letters outside.  Once we brought it home, we lined up the letters to spell out Alhamdulillah.

We used the Sharpie to outline the letters.

Next we painted the inside of the letters with the coastal paint. Once the first layer dried, we went over it again.

We waited a few hours for the paint to dry and went over it with glitter paint, just to add a little bit of sparkle.

Now our basket was done.

We placed it on the kitchen counter and have already added a few cans inside. we hope to take a photo of our complete basket on Facebook, so please stop by for an update.

If you enjoy crafts that show gratitude, please stop by these other activities

Alhamdulillah Rocks {Tutorial}

End Everything with Alhamdulillah {Printable}


Visit A Crafty Arab on Pinterst to see more DIY activities

Ramadan Flip Card Calendar {Tutorial}

Day two of our 8th annual Ramadan crafts 30 day challenge has us making a countdown calendar to keep track of the days. I have been trying to incorporate even more Arabic numbers into our daily lives and this easy Ikea Tolsby frame project is the perfect solution.


Our Ramadan calendars in the past have been rather large, made of fence material, or spice holders, so this smaller version is also ideal for people with littler space.


We left a lot of room on the date sheets so that we can write on them. We hope to include what we had for dinner, what chapter (called a surah in Arabic) we studied in the Quran, the holy book, good deeds, or any other information we wanted to save about our day. I gave my daughters different color pens and told them to write on the front. Once the pages are done, I’ll put them in a mini album to save so that I look back on 2018 (1439 in the Islamic calendar).



Cardstock pad
Tolsby Frame
Hole punch
Book Rings
Double sided tape
30 number print out

First my daughter cut out the 30 Arabic numbers into small squares.  You can make yours as large as you’d like on Word, but we made ours to fit small into the corner.

Next we measured the inside of our Ikea frame and cut 30 sheets of color paper to fit.  We hole punched two holes on one end of each sheet.

We used double sided tape to the back of the numbers and added them to the bottom corner of each sheet.

The last step is to put the frame together. Screw on the base to the top and remove the plastic insert. Add the flip cards to the frame with the book rings.

The calendar is now ready to go.  Before you flip over the next card, you could easily remove that date to write a memory on it, add stickers or decorate it any way you’d like.

If you enjoyed making this Arabic calendar, stop by these other tutorials

Repurposed Arabic Perpetual Calendar {Tutorial}

Arabic Numbers Toss {Tutorial}


Visit A Crafty Arab on Pinterest to see more of our Ramadan DIY crafts


Arabic Initial Papier-Mâché {Tutorial}

A form of papier-mâché, a French word that means “chewed paper,” existed in ancient Egypt, in a technique called cartonnage. It is made when layers of linen or papyrus was covered with plaster over an object.


The Persians took this technique and manufactured small painted boxes, trays, étagères and cases. Then, around 1725, people in Europe started to use gilded papier-mâché as a low-cost alternative to carved wood or plaster in architectural details.


My daughters and I have enjoyed crafting with letters in English that have already come pre-made, when we decorated them for Eid, or covered them with yarn to hid imperfections.


Today I thought my youngest should learn how to make our very own letter from papier-mâché, starting with a cereal box.


We picked the letter د, pronounced as dāl, the eighth letter of the Arabic alphabet. We picked an easy letter that had no dots, but I think next time we try this, we are going to make the tutorial a little more challenging.



Cereal box
Arabic letter printout
Form brush
Paint brush
Mod Podge

My daughter started by cutting out the Arabic letter and outlined it twice on the cereal box.

She then cut out both letter outlines from the cereal box.

She also cut out three strips of the side of the box, making sure they are very even since they will be the letter walls.

My daughter used the tape to secure the walls to the letter. She found it easier to tape when she bent and played with a side before she tried to add it.

Once all the sides were secured, she added the second letter cut out to the top.

Now it was time to cut the newspaper into stripes of paper that were similar in size.

My daughter added the newspaper with Mod Podge, being careful to keep the paper tight and wrinkle free by gently rubbing out the bubbles with her fingers.

She waited a few hours for the first layer to dry and added a second layer of newspaper.

The final step is painting and she picked this color shift paint that changes tints and is fun to watch in the sun shine.

Now our letter was ready to be placed on a shelf or gifted. If you enjoyed making this letter, visit these other Arabic letter tutorials:

Arabic Initial Lunchbox {Tutorial}

Arabic Initial String Art {Tutorial}

Be sure to stop by A Crafty Arab on Pinterest to see more activities that teach about the Arab world.