18th May 2020

How to make your own Malas (flower garlands)


Across Nepal, garlands, or Malas, are handmade using in-season flowers. The vibrant and easy growing nature of the marigold makes them a popular choice. Once made, Malas are often found adorning the necks of guests at welcome ceremonies, celebrations or festivals. They even get used to decorate dogs during the celebration of Kukur Tihar!

Make your own Malas

You’ll need:

• A selection of flower heads – cut with permission!

• Some string, wool or twine, cut to around a meter or so

• A knitting needle or similar to make a small hole for threading


1. Once you have your selection of chosen flowers, remove the heads from the stems.

2. Using the knitting needle, carefully make a small hole in the back of the flower head.

3. Gently push through the end of your string through the back of the flower head. Continue threading flower heads, before tying the string ends together to complete the loop.

It’s possible to use smaller number of flowers. By tying a knot just after you thread a flower, and then a little further along before you thread the next, you can space the flowers out more.

Growing marigolds at our Residential Homes

Gardening is a favourite pastime for many of the pensioners at our two Residential Homes in Nepal. You’ll often find marigolds growing at the Homes, along with a variety of fruit and vegetables.

Working on the gardens gives staff and pensioners a chance to unwind and relax, and also gives them a sense of purpose and achievement.

“Gardening helps to create a healthier environment, from producing oxygen to creating more greenery. Spending time outside can help reduce stress.”

– Residential Home Nurse Ujwala Maharjan‎

A hero’s welcome for Rob Abernethy

Former Gurkha officer Rob Abernethy cycled 2,200km across Nepal raising over £100,000 to build a school there. We were delighted to give him a warm welcome at the school when he visited the site along the way.

Rob was moved by the reception:

“It was amazing. It was actually very emotional. With the entire school lined up to give me a Mala (flower garland). I have never seen so many Mala.”

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