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How to make Ganesh idols at home?

If you are looking to be creative and eco-friendly this Ganesh Chaturthi, then you can make Ganesh idols at home. Ganesh idols can be made at home using clay, paper, wood, flowers and vegetables. If you are buying a Ganesh idol, please opt for an environment friendly Ganesha.

How to make clay Ganesha?
Materials needed: Clay, paints, coil, aluminum foil, paint brushes, sandpaper, putty or glue and clothes.
  • Mix the clay. You can get clay from riverbeds or buy it from stationary stores.
  • While mixing the clay and using it, make sure that your hand is slightly wet.
  • Make a skeleton – round face, hands, body and leg – using the coil or copper wire.
  • Next create Ganesha by adding clay to each body part on the coil skeleton.
  • First create the body and large stomach by filling that part of the coil with clay.
  • Next create the head.
  • Next create the trunk and stick it at the center of the head.
  • Next fill the coil ears with clay. Create small balls of clay and flatten them like ears.
  • Next fill the coil hands with clay, flatten the clay near palm.
  • Next fill the coil legs with clay. Flatten the clay near feet or create separate feet.
  • Now you will have a figure of Ganesha. If you want to be more creative, you can opt for four hands and other additions found in Ganesh Pictures. (Never expect your Ganesh to match those available in markets as they are created by professionals. But with trial and error you mind even end up creating better ones).
  • Using a brush smoothen the exterior. Make sure that you don’t damage the structure.
  • Now leave the Ganesha to dry but not in direct sunlight as cracks may appear.
  • When the idol is dry, use sandpaper or brush to smoothen the exterior.
  • If there are cracks use glue or putty. Use putty or glue at joints and brush it make it smooth.
  • You can draw eyes and other aspects like ‘tilak’, eyebrows etc
  • Make the idol dust free and smooth before painting.
  • You can use chemical acrylic paints to beauty Ganesha but please don’t immerse such Ganesha’s in rivers, seas and ponds.
  • You can also try out other natural methods to color but this is a difficult task as it is hard to prepare natural colors. But still you can look around for readymade natural colors.
  • Now you can make crown and other items found on Ganesh idol using aluminum foil.
  • You can also stitch small dress for Ganesha and decorate the idol with flowers.
If you are living in Mumbai or Pune you will get Ganesha mould in the market or from idol makers. Using this you can create Ganesha from paper.

A Video on Making Clay Ganesha

How to make paper Ganesha?
Materials needed for Paper Ganesha: Paper, ghati gum, whitening powder, flour, aluminum foil or clay.
  • Depending on the size of your idol, tear waste paper and soak it in water. Once soaked create fine pulp out it by grinding it.
  • Take 150 grams of ghati gum and dilute it in water and mix it with paper pulp.
  • Leave the pulp for a day and on the next day, the pulp will be like chutney. Add some whitening powder to it.
  • Now the pulp will be like chappati atta. Make chappatis out of the atta. And stick them to the Ganesha mould.
  • Now create a flour paste. Cover the mould with two to three layers of flour paste and finally cover it will paper and leave it to dry.
  • Once dried, pull off the protective layer of flour. Use a brush or sandpaper to smoothen the idol.
  • Use water colors to paint them.
  • Draw eyes, eyebrows, tilak and other aspects.
  • Make ornaments, crown and other items using aluminum foil or clay.
If you are interested in carving, you can create Ganesh from vegetables like pumpkin. The choice of the vegetables depends on the size and style of the Ganesha you intend to create.
You can also use flowers or rangolis to create Ganesha on the ground or on boards.