It’s graduation season and time to make leis! Graduates love money leis, so this fluffy money lei is the perfect graduate gift.

how to make a fluffy money lei

I can’t believe my youngest son is graduating from high school this year! I can’t tell you how many leis I’ve made for my kids and their friends…it’s a lot. Supplies for leis can get costly, so this year, I wanted to make a money lei with inexpensive supplies (not counting the actual money). Lucky for me, Pinterest didn’t let me down and I found the perfect money lei pin for inspiration

Fluffy Money Lei

The original instructions didn’t really show much on the ‘how to’ part, so I used fake printed money to test out how the lei would look. This is my prototype and the instructions on how to make this fluffy money lei.

How to make a one hundred dollar fluffy money lei. Click to Tweet

Fluffy Money Lei Supplies

Ribbon colors will vary depending on the school colors, so choose the colors you need.

  • 100 – crispy one dollar bills (some banks may require you to put in an order for crispy one dollar bills, so request this early)
  • 65″ cut of 7/8″ organza ribbon (base of lei and what everything will be attached onto)
  • 3 colors of curling ribbon cut into 12″ pieces (I used 73 blue,74 green, and 72 silver)
  • scissors
  • ruler
  • 25 – 3/8″ beads (optional)

How to Make a Fluffy Money Lei

For those that are visual learners, I made a Fluffy Money Lei video. Scroll down to view.

Prep work for fluffy money lei

Step 1. The most time consuming part of this lei is the prep work. Before assembly, cut all the ribbon to length. For this lei, I cut the curling ribbon into 12″ length pieces. I used 74 green pieces, 73 blue pieces, and 72 silver pieces.

Fluffy money lei lower petals

Step 2. Next, put together the money flowers using the green curling ribbon. A total of 4 bills will make one flower – two bills for the bottom petals and 2 bills for the upper petals. To make the lower petals, pinch the bottom of two dollar bills to make a bow shape. Stack the bills together and tie a green ribbon around the center (don’t knot it yet). Twist the bills to make an x-shape and make a tight knot with the ribbon. Not shown in the picture, but also tie a blue ribbon onto the petal. Continue until 25 lower petals are assembled.

Fluffy money lei upper petals

Step 3. To make the upper dollar petals, place a wood bead (optional) onto the green curling ribbon. Repeat the steps above to make the x-shape for the petals, but tie the knot in the back of the petal. Make 25 upper petals.

Fluffy Money Flower Flowers

Step 4. Stack the petals with the bead petal on top of the lower dollar bill petal. Then, using the upper petal green ribbon, tie the upper petal to the lower petal.

Fluffy money lei assembly
This is a sample of the back of the lei. The money flowers should be facing up during assembly and the ribbons and flowers should be push up against each other.


Step 5. Make a knot about 12″ from one end of the organza ribbon. Tie one of the money flowers onto the ribbon and slide it up to the knot. Next, tie on three silver curling ribbons, two blue curling ribbons, and one green ribbon. Slide them all up against the the money flower and tie on another money flower. The money flowers will naturally start to lay in a zig-zag pattern to create a full lei. Repeat these steps until all the money flowers are attached to the organza ribbon. To end the lei, tie a knot after the last money flower to prevent everything from sliding around. Trim any excess organza ribbon to length.

Note: Do not tie the curling ribbon knots so tight that you cannot slide them on the organza ribbon. Also, make sure the organza ribbon doesn’t get twisted when adding on the money flowers and ribbons.

Fluffy money lei completed

When all the money flowers and ribbon are added to the organza ribbon base, it will produce a fluffy money lei!

I hope you enjoyed the tutorial and put your own twist on it. I can see adding candy to the inside of the flowers, between the flowers, using different ribbons, using colored papers, and so much more!

Fluffy Money Lei

 Now, let’s see what the other Pinterest Challenge hosts have created ⇓⇓


More Lei Ideas…

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  1. That is such a cool graduation gift. One of these days, I’m going to make a gift for someone with dollars. I need to make one that reflects the SC Lowcountry.

  2. I’ve seen a few of these in graduation photos of the last week or two. Now I know how to make them! I’ll pin it for when my daughter graduates in a few years – since $100 isn’t something I’d give just anyone for graduation. 😉 Though I do like some of the suggested comments about ways to create them using less money.
    Thanks for hosting the Pinterest Challenge again this month!

  3. What a fun gift for a graduate. They would love this and it’s a fun and cute way to give money. Congratulations to your son!

  4. This looks like such a fabulous gift!
    Sadly we don’t have a note here in the UK that would be suitable, our smallest note is £5 so this would be pretty costly, Maybe one flower could be real money and the rest printed like you’ve done here. You’d just have to make sure the recipient knew which was the real one!!