No eclipse glasses? Head to the kitchen for alternative ways to indirectly observe the solar eclipse

This is an archived article and the information in the article may be outdated. Please look at the time stamp on the story to see when it was last updated.

With the recent demand for eclipse glasses greatly outweighing the supplies, many of us are finding ourselves in a situation of waking up Monday morning without any eclipse glasses.

(Photo: Getty Images)

But as long as you have a few kitchen supplies, you too will be able to enjoy watching the Great American Eclipse — indirectly, that is.

It’s important to stress that you cannot look up directly at the sun without eye protection. However, it is possible to experience the eclipse, even by looking down.

Alternative #1: Use your kitchenware!

Any kitchen utensil with holes in it will work nicely to project the shadow of the moon as it moves in front of the sun onto the ground (or any other surface).

A popular utensil of choice is the colander, due to the numerous holes around the basin:

Courtesy: NASA

Other kitchen utensils that work include cheese graters and slotted spoons. In the animation above, notice that the woman is wearing a woven hat; enough space is available in the hat to allow the eclipsed light/crescent moon shadows to show through.

Another ingenious object that would double as both an eclipse viewer and a snack would be a Ritz cracker — or any other cracker with large enough holes.

Courtesy: National Astronomical Observatory of Japan

Alternative #2: Use your hands!

Literally, you can use your hands to view the eclipse. Again, it is stressed that this is to view the moon’s shadow as it eclipses the sun while looking at the ground.

Take your hands and lattice your fingers over each other, similar to the NASA scientist below:

Courtesy: NASA

The result: Numerous crescent moons shining through your fingers!

Alternative #3: Get crafty!

NASA has numerous instructions for creating eclipse projectors, but our own Ben Smith demonstrates how to make one from cereal boxes below:

Alternative #4: Take a look at the leaves through the trees!

Similar to the pinhole projections seen through kitchen gadgets and snack crackers, numerous eclipse crescents will be visible through the leaves within trees and other plants. Check out an example below snapped by E. Israel as published by NASA on their Astronomy Picture of the Day gallery:

Courtesy: E. Israel/NASA

No matter how you choose to view the eclipse, we hope that you do so safely and enjoyably. If you would like to share your eclipse pictures with us, be sure to click on the “Submit Your Photo” button below!

Notice: you are using an outdated browser. Microsoft does not recommend using IE as your default browser. Some features on this website, like video and images, might not work properly. For the best experience, please upgrade your browser.