Friday, January 24, 2014

Marvel Superhero Lamp



The big boys share a room now, and they like to sleep with a night light. Theirs is a desk lamp, but it is old and the shade was getting beaten up. I had made some pencil holders from washed formula containers and wrapped them with a Marvel fabric that I ordered online. I found some other type of Marvel fabric at Jo-ann's a while back and used that to cover the lamp. I used basically the same technique for both projects. Cut fabric larger than you'll. Brush a thin coat of Mod Podge on top and let dry. The lamp was a little trickier, so I made a paper template first. After the fabric dries, it will have shrunk a little. Cut it to size and use Mod Podge to attach in to the surface. Smooth out the fabric. I trimmed the lamp with some trim remnants I had. "Never throw anything way!" she said climbing out from under her giant mound of fabric scraps.

Friday, January 17, 2014

Fabric Rag Heart Wreath



I wanted to put out a heart wreath for Valentine's Day, but didn't want to spend any money. I had a heart form I made from a wire hanger, but I'd taken off the boa trim wrapped around it for a another project. I've made rag wreaths before, but with limited success. This one is my favorite so far. I had lots of fabric scraps, so I got out my circular cutter and cut pink and red fabric in strips of 1 inch x 5 inches. I double knotted each strip to the frame. This took a while, but I was relaxing while I watching TV. Once I filled up the heart, I attached a white pipe cleaner hanger. I think the key to a successful rag wreath, as most things in life, is to adopt a "less is more" philosophy when it comes to pattern and color.

Monday, January 6, 2014

Favorite Things from Christmas: Reindeer Candy Cane

So, one of my New Year's resolutions is to dust off this blog and post more. I thought I'd start with some of the Christmas crafts I made this past year. Here is a simple one I made for the little ones in my Sunday school class. Hot glued google eyes and a red pom-pom for the nose and wrapped a brown pipe cleaner around the top of the candy cane for antlers.

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Pine cone critters


Tater's class had a Fall Festival party, so I thought it would be fun to make some pine cone critters. The boys and I collected the pine cones in our neighborhood. I supplemented my craft supply stash with a run to Michael's. I made several different examples to help inspire the kids: (clockwise from top left) turkeys - using pipe cleaners or feathers, an owl, spider, and mouse. Most of the kids chose one of these to do, but some created their own. Tater made a bee. It was a good activity, since the project was more open-ended, 3 dimensional and required trial and error manipulation of materials. 

Monday, August 12, 2013

Cobra Puppet

Tater loves reading about snakes, so I offered to make him a puppet of his favorite - a cobra! He picked out the camo fleece at the fabric store, and I used some tan I already had. This sock puppet-style pattern is really easy - especially if you don't need arms. The fangs are latex cosmetic sponges I cut down. I wish I could take credit for that idea! My only complaint is that they yellow over time, so next time I might paint them before attaching them to a puppet. The eyes are halved styrofoam balls wrapped in fleece with google eyes. The tongue is made of felt. 

Saturday, February 9, 2013

Train Shelf

































Wow, has it really been since August that I last posted?! Here's my latest craftiness. A train shelf for Hoot. The older boys loved trains, but have really moved on to other things. Hoot is getting to the age when he's beginning to take interest in Thomas and Co., and I'm so excited to introduce him to the world of trains. We have an insane about of trains, train tracks and track building components. I'm not exaggerating when I say that we have at least 200 trains. Some were bought, others gifts, and still more were passed along from friends.

We did some redecorating downstairs in the family room, and decided to move the giant train table to Hoot's room. We purchased a taller, smaller table for the older boys to use in the family room from IKEA (the SANSAD).

Any way, I've wanted to mount a train display on his wall, but two walls of his room are slanted (gotta love capes!), and the other two don't have space. I had an 8ft piece of lattice stripping and glued lengths of train track to it. I left enough room to glue a "stop" and "railroad crossing" sign to either end as bumpers. I mounted it to the wall using brackets placed ~18 inches apart. I put it high enough so he can't reach it... yet. Right now it's a nice display with the trains arranged in a rainbow pattern. Hoot enjoys looking at it. And we have plenty of trains to play with, until he figures out how to get them down.

Saturday, August 25, 2012

SonQuest Rainforest VBS -2012


This was my third year to help with crafts at VBS, and it was our best yet! It didn't hurt that we had a such a great theme: the Rainforest! Here's a list of the fun and inexpensive crafts we did this year. I tried these projects out on Monkey and Tater, and they were able to do them. So, I can recommend these for 4 and up, younger with a little help and supervision. Our VBS was K-6. Photos will be added shortly...




1. Rainforest/Jungle Noodle Necklace. Found the idea here, but I used craft foam leaves instead of card stock. Planned them for the kindergarteners, but even the teen helpers wanted to make them. Find instructions for dying noodles here. I used hemp to string the necklaces. Hemp's a natural material that's renewable and cheap!

2. Paper Bag Monkey. Print out here. Color, cut and glue monkey features on a regular brown paper bag. These were lots of fun for K-2nd graders.

3. Paper Tree Frog. I ended up just making these for decorations. We really didn't have time (20 minutes) to color, cut and paste a craft like this together at VBS. But my boys did this craft and drew a tree on some construction paper and glued their frogs to it. This requires some developed fine motor skills, or not, depending on your expectations. Have tape ready for repairs. Lots more printable paper crafts can be found at http://learncreatelove.com/, including this adorable jaguar/tiger cub craft. Love the googly eyes! It's another rainforest craft that we didn't have time for at VBS, but the boys enjoyed doing a few.

4. Rainsticks. Save those paper towel tubes! These were a huge hit with the older kids. http://www.enchantedlearning.com/ has a bunch of other craft ideas too.

5. Binoculars. A great idea for younger ones. I used colorful duct tape to put toilet paper tubes together beforehand and punched holes in them for the string. The kids added yarn to hang them from their necks and jungle stickers for decoration.

Pipecleaner Monkey Craft6. Pipe Cleaner Monkeys. I made these as thank you gifts for our teen helpers. I printed out Bible verses on green card stock, cut them out in the shapes of leaves, punched a hole in each and hung one from each monkey's arm. I'd recommend doing this with older kids (8 +) and allow for lots of time. Find other fun crafts at http://familyfun.go.com/crafts/.

7. Toucan Craft. This was by far the most popular craft, and it can be modified for any age.  For instance, I used construction paper strips and cut out the beak and head for the younger ones. The older kids used tissue paper and did most of the cutting themselves. I cut out some stuff to save time. I used fruit loops for the eyes.

Week 4 Jungle Toucan Craft
Check out my Rainforest VBS pinterest board for more fun rainforest/jungle ideas. And please remember, if you're planning on making jungle-themed animal crafts (and I hope you will!), lions do not live in the jungle. :)