Seasonal Crafts: Make a Chili Strand

By The Old Farmer's Almanac
Chili Strand
Margo Letourneau

Create a colorful strand of red and green chili peppers for a unique holiday decoration. Here's how:

Traditionally made in Mexico at harvesttime, chile strands can be made with chiles from your supermarket.

  • Cut a piece of fine wire about 14 inches long.
  • Wrap one end of the wire tightly around a whole head of garlic.
  • Carefully use a large needle to poke a hole through the base of the pepper stems and string them onto the wire starting from the bottom so that they fan out, forming a spiral.
  • Twist the top of the wire into a loop for hanging, and tie on a bright red or green bow.

The strand will dry and remain colorful for months. It’s very festive and refreshingly different at the holidays!

chile strands

Illustration by Margo Letourneau

Reader Comments

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Chili Strand

I would love to know how many chili's it takes to make one of these. It does not say in the article. It would be nice if that was added so people who want to make one would know how many of each color to buy.

I have made some of these,

I have made some of these, but used twine instead of wire. I started with at least 4 or 5 feet of twine, and tied knots around each chili stem. They form straight out, but with time, gravity takes over and they fall and have a layered look about them. If you use green chilis, with time and left outside in the elements, they turn red and dry. Very pretty.