Posts Tagged ‘Crafty Stuff’

A Few Good Hats and some other stuff

Well, I just burnt up about two hours on The Daily What and Whatever The Geek Site Associated With It Is Called, both of which were entertaining albeit a waste of time. I should be ashamed of myself, but I found these awesome posts and I like them too much to feel the shame.

I’ve mentioned a couple times a certain knit viking girl hat that I want, and since I feel like I should be able to make one instead of paying for it, I am thus far a hatless woman. But then today I saw this!

It’s a deer and antlers hat! Oh, YEAH BABY! The pattern can be bought and downloaded for a mere five dollars! Yay! “Are you tired of trying to grow antlers with no luck?” Oh this is good. I’m getting one as soon as the bills are paid.

There was also this guy that they found… oh, who knows where Reddit or somewhere, and it’s probably even cooler than the antler hat:

Or at least as cool as. Yeah, it was on reddit.

And in closing, here are a few more random things I saw there that I liked. A superhero optical illusion:

and a clip of cute duckies trying to get up a set of stairs.

Snowman Made from a Sock

Every year I do this project with my preschoolers, always to roaringly positive critical acclaim. The kids love this (and it’s relatively easy).

Here’s how you do it!

The supply list consists of ten items:

  • plain white socks (any size will do, but I use ankle sized or smaller)
  • rubber bands (three per snowman)
  • a few orange pipe cleaners cut to 3/4″ lengths
  • glue gun
  • white bottled glue (I like to put it in a little cup with a craft stick, but that’s not necessary)
  • round sequins for eyes (black fish tank pebbles also work well)
  • flat buttons (the ones pictured are star-shaped, in case you’re wondering)
  • pom poms
  • dried pinto beans (I use two lbs for a class of twenty)
  • cotton balls

And the process is as follows:

Gather your supplies.
Have the child put about ten handfuls of beans into the sock. Supervise closely! I have them keep the sock over the beans in a large hat box.
The first segment should be a little smaller than a tennis ball. Wrap a rubber band tightly around the sock above the beans and have the child repeat the process to make two round segments.

After you’ve rubber banded the second segment, have the child put about five cotton balls in the top. Wrap a third rubber band around that, leaving as much of the neck of the sock free as possible.
It should look like this now. Fold the open top of the sock down to look like a knit cap, and have the child glue on the eyes, buttons, nose and pom pom with white glue. Remember to glop a lot of glue on if you’re using heavier buttons and things.

Put some hot glue around the rubber bands that connect the body segments. Done!

My colleagues have done this many different ways, with different levels of student involvement. Some like to put all the beans in for the kids, some use rice, some do all the gluing with a hot glue gun, etc. The point is, the process is easy to vary, depending on what your kids can handle and how much you’re willing to do for them. I can do three or four kids at a time like this, at an average of fifteen minutes per group, and I like this method because it involves them doing most of it themselves. Whatever floats your boat.

Hope you have fun!
PS- Leave a comment below and tell me what you think. I know there are a lot of different ways to make this project, and I’d love to see what different people out there are doing.

Secret Message Crafty Thing for Kids

I found this cool craft idea today and thought my kids would like it. As it is, you can download the templates for the little glasses and the Valentine’s Day cards, and they’re printable and super easy, but I thought it would be cool if you could use them for more than just this one holiday. I made a little hexagonal patterned page of my own that you can download and print by clicking here and also I made some non-heart-shaped glasses, since I have a lotta little boys in my class who would probably consider them less than manly.

Giuseppi made his name. It took forever.

Here's Giuseppi holding the red cellophane over his name.

It’s pretty easy to do- I had to practice coloring in a few grids before I could make it look like anything, but here is Giuseppi with his name. He was a lot more patient than I was. We used Prismacolor colored pencils: first blues, greens, purples and some shades of brown for the letters, and than oranges, pinks, yellows and reds for the camouflage area to be colored around it.

Some things I picked up from doing this are:

  • Practice with the colors and cellophane first- see what the colors look like with the red over them and which will stand out best or disappear best. This doesn’t take too long.
  • Decide on a simple image first- heart, star, first letter of your child’s name, and map it out by making light blue or green dots on the patterned paper. You might want to make one by yourself first so that you know that it will work.

  • Do the shape first, then color the camouflage part around it. This step takes a while and is a little bit of a pain in the butt, but I found that if the shape is okay, the camo part doesn’t have to be perfect.
  • Use as much of a variety of colors as you can. Having different colors makes it easier for your eyes to get distracted, which enhances the whole “hidden message” idea.

Stitched Words

This was posted a little bit ago on the Blog/Flikr Group “Feeling Stitchy.” I do not always like stitched words… home and hearth type proverbs surrounded by embroidered flowers don’t call me at all, but sometimes I see a thing like this and it’s awesome. A pillow cover that looks like notebook paper. Trust the universe. Well, okay. I guess I’ll do that, then. Not quite sure what that means- it has kind of a zen ring to it. Isn’t it cool?

What I don’t need is another project to start and not finish, but this is seriously making me want to make a hand-stitched… um… something… that looks like a sheet of lined notebook paper with words of some kind on it. I am open to suggestions as to what the words should be.

Plush Birdie



Finished this today! Yay for me (us- this was a joint project). The girl who made this with me is going to keep it, and now I’m thinking I wanna make another one… This was fun. Challenging, but fun, and now I think I know a little better what it should look like and organized it a little better. You can download a PDF of the instructions and patterns by CLICKING HERE.

I just noticed that random question mark on the disclaimer. Don't ask me what it means. It's late right now.

I just realized something I forgot in the directions- you gotta weight this guy’s butt down- his head is too heavy otherwise. I used a couple stainless steel bolts packed into the tail.

Clothesline Collage

Made this today- I’ve had this thing for little clotheslines lately- so cute; I can’t stop doodling them and cutting paper clothes out. I just finished this a minute ago, and, though I had initially planned on putting some birds on the line and creatures on the ground, I think it’s good like this. Whoever was hanging her stuff out got bored of doing the laundry and went to take a break, apparently. Or maybe the clothes are dry now and she’s taking them in.

I started cutting this with scissors, and having been unable to locate my exacto-knives, had employed a steak knife from a kitchen drawer to do the holes in the basket.

The Cupcake Thingies are DONE!

A match made in paper...

I’m so delighted to say that this project is coming to a conclusion. The graphics for my cupcake thingmajigs are done at last, and now all I have left to do is construct them. Yay! This has been fun, but I did use several different pieces of software (a total of four different programs to do this) which means, it finally ended with them being slightly grainier than I’d like. It also means that my interest has waned considerably and I no longer wish to tweak them. As they are, I am happy with the finished product. You can download and print your own by CLICKING HERE.

I put them together by cutting them out in two’s, folding them horizontally until the images lined up, and then attaching the toothpick with a non-toxic glue stick. My husband had the brilliant idea to fold a small piece of cardstock over the toothpick first to reduce the bulge in the middle of the cupcake topper, and I must say he is a smartie for this.

Also: you hafta see the “Awesome of the Day” from Paste. Michael Bolton having a good laugh at himself. Very funny!

Aviary and Cupcakes

Open source (and otherwise free-to-use software) is both a blessing and a curse. I have been gnashing my teeth, and simultaneously really enjoying learning Aviary, a web-based suite of free graphic design software. Specifically, I’m trying to use its vector editor, called Raven. This is my first project, and it was made to be a cupcake topper for a class party next week. Now I need to make a little pirate one- I’m so excited. I’ve completely finished this, and although the graphic still needs a little cleaning up, I am ready to bring it into the cupcake world. Here’s the pic:

Thank You Notes

I have a lotta thank you notes to write after my birthday, and thought I’d post about them today. A while back I found this funky little box-set of cards at Target and had the idea that they would be fun to play with. I used water colors, stickers and a set of ribbons and am rather happy with how they look. Unnecessary, as the cards are pretty cool by themselves, but it was fun to do. My favorite is the one with the bow tie- I believe I will mass-produce those.

A small collage of my favorite cards.

Paper Art

I’d like to get this book. We made a little run to Barnes this evening to look for it, but they didn’t have one in stock. Oh well; I picked up a collection of Banksy Graffiti instead and a couple boxes of vintagey-looking Valentine cards. Also I found a book about the science of music appreciation and a book about traveling through the Bible lands and I almost got a vegetarian cookbook and a couple magazines and a journal (like I really need another journal). Barnes and Nobles is a dangerous place for me. I think I’ll just get it on Amazon… I found it the other day when I was looking at Upon a Fold, a paper art blog/website from Australia, and really want it.

At the risk of reblogging, I wanna say that some the finds on this site are really worth sharing. (The carrier pigeon card… I’m seriously gonna make one.) The other day they talked about the work of architect Miyamoto- you should go check out the post– I won’t repeat it all, but here is a link to some of his other work, and these two pictures are favorites of mine.

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