Google+ House Revivals: How to Create a Henna Tattoo

Tuesday, August 30, 2016

How to Create a Henna Tattoo

My son's dear love, Aparna, is from India. A few weeks ago, at a weekend house party at our beach house, Aparna brought several henna cones and offered henna tattoos to all the ladies. We had so much fun designing and drawing our tattoos -- we all felt so special!


Aparna, who is a software engineer, is always saying that she hasn't a creative bone in her body, but I realize now that she is just being humble. She created beautiful art for everyone. When she asked each of us what we wanted, we searched the internet for inspiration, then described what we liked, while she sketched out the concept on scratch paper. Once a design was settled on, she transferred the pattern to skin, using a blue ballpoint pen, since any exposed blue ink will wash off easily later.



Always humble, Aparna was quick to acknowledge that the mehndi art pros in India would not need to trace the pattern onto skin with a pen, before drawing the pattern in henna. However, there's no shame in tracing, for those of us who are not pros!


After drawing the pattern onto skin (in my case, on the back of my hand), the henna was applied, using purchased tubes of henna. Authentically, cones similar to pastry cones, only smaller, are created to apply the henna, then a paste is created from ground henna powder, and added to the cones. Aparna says they did this sometimes when she was growing up, but the results were not always consistent. Today, she prefers to use purchased prepared cones.


Aparna and I were not able to find the exact product that she used at our house party (the link doesn't work anymore), but she says these products will work just fine (affiliate links):

12X CONE 100% PURE NATURAL KOKILA MEHNDI PASTE CONE BODY ART TATTOO+3 Surprise Bindi Free

Or try:

Buy 12 Neha Mehandi cone Henna Cone Nd Free 5 Surprise Indian Bindi

The henna goes on in a dimensional gel like bead, and is left to dry. Once it is fully dry, it will begin to flake away, leaving the henna stained design on your skin. The longer you leave the dried gel on, the darker the stain will be, according to Aparna.


I wanted a more traditional mehndi design, with a floral and a paisley. Interestingly, Aparna didn't know what I meant by paisley until I showed her a picture. Then she explained that they call that shape "mango".

One of our guests wanted a dragon -- didn't Aparna do a fantastic job?


If you decide to try doing your own henna tattoo, you can use this design, created by Aparna, or you can create your own design. You might even try transferring a design to your skin using a water based ink pad and a craft stamp. Then simply trace the design with the henna applicator.


I hope you are encouraged to try this lovely folk art technique. Wouldn't this be a great idea for a spa night with your girlfriends?


If you enjoyed this post, please subscribe to House Revivals in the sidebar, so you won't miss the fun projects we have planned. Find us on Facebook, too, so you can catch all the "in between" stuff, and see what I'm working on throughout week on Instagram. Feel free to link today's project to all your favorite social media sites.
~Amanda


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