4 Traditional Henna Designs

Mehndi for the Inspired Artist teaches you to create modern and traditional mehndi designs and incorporate them into DIY art projects. Practice your technique with these 4 henna designs.

Henna, Mehndi for the Inspired Artist

When it comes to creating henna patterns, the options are infinite; however, there are some basic shapes and motifs that are essential to the art form. Once you learn the basics, feel free to experiment to create your own unique patterns and designs!

 

PAISLEY

The most basic pattern used regularly in traditional henna art is called paisley; some also refer to it as a mango-shaped leaf.

paisley 1, Mehndi for the Inspired Artist

STEP 1
Draw a reverse S shape. To flip the design, draw a forward-facing S shape.

paisley 2, Mehndi for the Inspired Artist

STEP 2
Connect the top to the bottom with a reverse C shape.

paisley 3, Mehndi for the Inspired Artist

STEP 3
Draw a close outline just inside the shape to create a border.

Paisley 4, Mehndi for the Inspired Artist

STEP 4
Add some details. Start with a big flower at the bottom, and move upward with smaller patterns.

Paisley 5, Mehndi for the Inspired Artist

STEP 5
Add small flowers, curved lines, and squiggly lines. This is just one style of filling; try to create your own!

 

FLOWER

Flowers are another basic pattern used regularly in traditional henna art; they are often used for fillings.

flower 1, Mehndi for the Inspired Artist

STEP 1
Draw a spiral; then add small petals—also called “humps”— around the outside.

flower 2, Mehndi for the Inspired Artist

STEP 2
Add more small petals to give the flower a more intricate look.

flower 3, Mehndi for the Inspired Artist

STEP 3
Add bigger petals.

flower 4, Mehndi for the Inspired Artist

STEP 4
Add a small dot inside each bigger petal.

 

SWIRLY VINE

This motif symbolizes lifelong love and fidelity in wedding henna designs. Vines grow together, and they become increasingly dependent upon each other for their structure and foundation as they grow higher. You will often see this light and flowing pattern trailing elegantly down fingers in an otherwise dense and intricate bridal design. It is essential to make your curves graceful and to draw other nearby lines to hug or otherwise complement their shape.

vine 1, Mehndi for the Inspired Artist

STEP 1
Start with a small, single swirl; then draw a second swirl facing the opposite direction that hugs the left edge of the first and extends higher.

vine 2, Mehndi for the Inspired Artist

STEP 2
Elongate your pattern by continuing to draw arc-hugging curves ending in swirls, in opposite directions. Be mindful of the magnitude of your curves.

vine 3, Mehndi for the Inspired Artist

STEP 3
Keep going! Make sure the overall flow is pointing in the direction you want the swirly vine to go. When this is trailing down a finger, as it so often is in traditional patterns, the vine tends to direct itself naturally.

vine 4, Mehndi for the Inspired Artist

STEP 4
Embellish the curved lines of the vine, adding teardrop petals, which henna artists create by squeezing the application cone with varying pressure. When using a pen or pencil, outline each shape first; then fill it in.

vine 5, Mehndi for the Inspired Artist

STEP 5
Add trails of dots, in descending sizes, as a beautiful finishing touch. For consistency and balance, draw the trails to follow the curve of the vines.

 

LOTUS FLOWER

The lotus is a prominent element of many traditional Indian mehndi designs, and it is a powerful symbol in both the Hindu and Buddhist religions. Though the lotus grows up through the muck of a pond, when it reaches the top, it blooms bright and pure. It symbolizes our journey through life and the spiritual enlightenment that we may one day be lucky enough to reach.

lotus 1, Mehndi for the Inspired Artist

STEP 1
Start by drawing the center petal of the lotus in two halves. First draw the side that is opposite your dominant hand. Start at the bottom curve of the petal and work your way up. Then draw the other side of the petal, also from the bottom up. Begin the second layer of petals by drawing the outer line of each petal from the bottom up, again drawing the non-dominant-hand side first.

lotus 2, Mehndi for the Inspired Artist

STEP 2
Add two more outer lines to create another layer of petals.

lotus 3, Mehndi for the Inspired Artist

STEP 3
Now complete the petals, moving up toward the points. Try to build a graceful curve in each line.

lotus 4, Mehndi for the Inspired Artist

STEP 4
Shade the petals with light lines, ascending from the base of each petal.

lotus 5, Mehndi for the Inspired Artist

STEP 5
Add accent vines. Again, draw the left side first if you’re right-handed (and vice versa).

lotus 6, Mehndi for the Inspired Artist

STEP 6
Add dots and teardrops in an eye- catching arrangement above and below the lotus, connecting it to where it grew from and where it is blooming toward.

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Mehndi For The Inspired ArtistCreate modern and traditional mehndi designs and incorporate them into DIY art projects with Mehndi for the Inspired Artist.

Mehndi for the Inspired Artist is your one stop resource for creating mehndi designs. Whether you’re familiar with the art form, or are coming to it with fresh eyes and eager anticipation, our four expert artists will give you the most rewarding experience possible.

You’ll be creating artwork on day one with this guide book’s step-by-step approach of creating a variety of traditional and modern mehndi designs. You will then learn to incorporate these elegant mehndi designs into DIY art projects you can place around the house, and have the pride of knowing each one has a unique, personal flair.

Customize candles and mason jars, jewelry and stationery, and anything else you can get your hands on. Mehndi for the Inspired Artist is sure to inspire endless DIY craft projects with contemporary mehndi patterns that will delight henna enthusiasts of all ages.