Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Making Medals out of Bag Tags

It's no secret that I recently posted about my hoarding tendencies and my take-away tubs of bits and pieces (including product tags that come off pencil cases).  After a morning of watching swimming highlights and medal ceremonies with the girls it was off to swimming lessons yesterday.  When Mimi got out of the pool she asked me whether she'd swum well.
"Really well," I said, "you deserve a medal."
"Yay! Where is it it?" she replied.
"Um," I stammered, "it's at home."

Hmmm... ok then... I thought about racing into the local Dollar Store for a packet of 'winner' medals, but that would be craft-cheating, so on the drive home I cast my mind back through my plastic storage tubs and remembered what other things I had stashed there and I came up with a crafty solution...

Believing a bit of tough love never goes astray, I told the girls when we got home that they could have a medal each for their great swimming; but they had to make it themselves.  Loving craft as they do, they were happy to oblige.

Here's what you'll need to make a medal out of bag tags:

  • Several round product tags - OR - round pieces of cardboard with a hole punched into them.
  • Several large pieces of foil saved from last Easter's eggs - OR - some foil from the kitchen draw.
  • Paper stars - OR - other embellishments.
  • Temporary tack - OR - glue.
  • Shiny curling ribbon - OR - any other type of ribbon or string.
  • A thin gently-pointy object, (such as broken paint brush!) that can safely poke small holes.


Here's how to make an Olympic Medal:

  • Wrap the foil around the bag tag.
  • Gently, tuck it around so that the shape is nice and round (you could tape it in place but we didn't).
  • Use the paint brush (or other object) to push a hole through the foil in line with the hole in the cardboard (you may have to unwrap the foil in part to find the hole if you can't feel it through the foil.)
  • Decorate the front of the medal (of course your definition of a 'small' blob of temporary tack may be different to Little Lotti's!)
  • String it onto the ribbon.
  • Put it on, stand on the podium and make your acceptance speech!


Mimi took her medal ceremony very seriously, and was slightly miffed to have to share the bedside-table-podium with her sister.  Little Lotti was content with her cherry-red medal for coming second (which she was in birth order), but was unimpressed when Mimi kept subtly, but determinedly, trying to elbow her off the podium.  Eventually she ran off to play with her toy pony (I'll blog his ribbon tomorrow!) and Mimi was content to conduct her interview with her invisible friends Bunny and Africa; "thanks for this medal... it means a lot to me... thanks to my mum... boohoo... sorry, I'm just so sad I didn't win two medals... I really wanted to do better... maybe next Olympics...  if I'm not too old...." and so on and on...

You never know what young minds are taking from the TV they watch, but when you do get something of an insight... sometimes you realise perhaps its better not to know.
Stay crafty people. x

Monday, July 30, 2012

Turn Several Bracelets Into One

It’s no secret that young girls seem to amass mountains of playtime jewelry; rings, beads, bracelets, bangles, hair clips and so much more.  They come in the form of gifts, love tokens, hand me downs, found treasures, even school craft experiments.  Each and every one is a special treasure, to be coveted and adored in its turn, and then replaced with a newer, later, more special version, at least for a while, until it in turn is replaced with something better, perhaps some long lost piece that miraculously resurfaces from the depths of the big-block box.


It's no surprise then, that instead of wearing one bracelet, your children can end up wearing several all at once, and when they do, they slip and slide all over the place.  Which is not a bad thing; it can be rather a spectacular and eye-catching event... just not when you're toilet training or feeding them spaghetti.

Little girls grow up, and when they do they still covet and hoard and accumulate and amass.  If you're like me, and blessed with stick thin wrists, for whatever reason, it means that as well as wearing you own collection you can also wear your preschoolers' jewelry... although of course, you can't support your body weight in a cartwheel... so embarrassing.

Constant talk of the Olympic Rings got me thinking about jewelry, and designing a solution to the many-bracelet-woes.  I call it - "the humble ribbon."  


Select 3 or 4 bracelets (or 5 if you're feeling Olympic)  that are a compatible colour (I went for a slightly patriotic feel), and then select a short piece of ribbon in a compatible or contrasting colour.  Tie the bracelets all together with a bow and slip them on your wrist.

Beautiful!  In world record time you can turn a jumble of rather cheap looking bracelets into an ensemble that's slightly more classy, more striking and defiantly easier to manage when you have to demonstrate a cartwheel!



Saturday, July 28, 2012

Hot Air Balloon Ball

It's no secret that the Olympic games are up, up and away - hooray!  Already you can feel the friendly rivalry in the air, even though only one sporting event has taken place so far.  As luck would have it, due to time difference between London and Australia, the girls were able to watch a very small part of the opening ceremony live.  Between breakfast and swimming they were able to see the countries I through S enter the stadium.  It was actually a really special thing to read the names of the countries out to them and listen to their running commentary about flags and uniforms, who looked happy or serious, which countries must be small or big based on the number of people representing each country and so on.

Yesterday to celebrate the start of the Olympics I researched some of the long lost events... one of the events I didn't write about from those wacky games in Paris, 1900, was hot air ballooning.  Another sport that didn't take off, so to speak, from those games, the French apparently won all the hot-air-ballooning events that year for height, distance and duration.  To honour the idea of trial rather than triumph, the girls and I did our best to replicate a hot air balloon in the back yard.

First we blew up 8 balloons of different colours, then tied them together (I'll include the full tutorial in the next newsletter), then we attached the "balloon-ball" to the tree-rope in the yard.  The girls then took turns 'flying' on their hot air balloon.

After the novelty of that had worn off, we took the balloon-ball off the rope and simply played toss-and-catch.  The great thing about a balloon-ball is that it takes only minutes to make.  The down-side is that it takes only minutes to break.  One by one, the balloons popped, and the ball disassembled itself.  Never mind, we also managed to play the world's shortest soccer match and make balloon-hats out of the remnants.

I love playing backyard games with the kids, parties or no parties, and balloon-balls are one of the fastest ways to initiate a load of them!


Friday, July 27, 2012

Deconstructed Olympic Spirit

It's no secret that not all of us are athletes.  Not all of us are into sport either.  Not all of us really get what all the fuss is about.  I mean I do.  And I don't.  I am amazed by the dedication, the super-human fitness, the intense training, the level of commitment, determination and effort that goes into competing, and I can't imagine what a great honour it must be to 'be the best' and to represent your nation... but at a time when people are struggling, how many gazillion dollars were spent building a venue for trampolining?

To be fair, London will be amazing, I have no doubt, there's no better way to bring the world together, and no nicer city.  Besides, the past Olympics have some way-out-there historical facts that will be pretty hard to beat.

Did you know that sports events the Olympics used to have included:

  • Tug of War - featured in five Olympics in the early 1900's, featuring 8 men versus 8... how cute to think we kept the Olympic spirit alive at Mimi's birthday party with Mermaids vs Pirates!
  • Obstacle race - like a modern game show, contestants had to swim in a river and navigate a number of items - it was only swum only once in 1900 at the Paris games.
  • Live pigeon shooting - once in 1900... yuk.
  • Firefighting - once in 1900... apparently...
  • Poodle clipping - again, only once in Paris 1900... could I make this stuff up?
  • Plunge Diving - took the plunge once in 1904 never to resurface.
  • Korfball - 1920 & 28.
  • Rope climbing - was only stopped in 1932.
  • Handball - 1936... but alive and well in schoolyards around the world. 
  • Water skiing - featured once in 1972.
  • Solo-synchronised swimming - played in three Olympics games (1988-92) before being discontinued for being paradoxical.
  • Then there's those funny walkers...
  • Curling...
  • And a few others, but I don't want to embarrass them... besides, who am I to talk?!

On a crafty note; since it's apparently illegal to craft the Olympic rings out of anything these days, be it sausages, bagels or baguettes, I won't.  Instead, Mimi and I bowed down to pressure and tied our 5 coloured bracelets side by side with ribbon and added some other decorations to make a deconstructed version of our deconstructed Olympic spirit; Go Australia - and good luck to the rest of you!


(If you want to get in a printpaper mood and craft up some Olympic table settings, go with the Super Hero package... or maybe the Circus ones... you be the judge!)


Thursday, July 26, 2012

Balloon Bowl Beret

It's no secret that in your crafting journey it's sometimes a good thing to bite off more than you can chew - it's how you grow... sometimes though - you gag and make a mess.  Gags aside.  On my daily inspiration board (facebook) I linked up two recent discoveries, both showing classy alternatives to covering balloons with paper mache.  One used fabric to make bowls, and the other used doilies to make a light cover.  Both were divine.  So I got to thinking, given both projects were way outside my 'sense of urgency' style of crafting (designed around crafting with toddlers and young children at parties), what if I used the same ideas, but simply went with some thin fabric-paper (that came wrapped around a bunch of flowers last mother's day) and a few paper doilies and made a bowl that way...

My craft project did not go entirely to plan.

  • Blow up balloon.  Tick.   
  • Weight balloon and place it in a big bowl.  Tick.
  • Start placing small shreds of paper and small and large pieces of doilies onto the 'end' of the balloon and use home-made-mod-podge to stick it all in place.  Tick.
  • Wait for it to dry overnight.  Tick
  • Apply another layer of paper, doilies and home-made-mod-podge. Tick.
  • Repeat, repeat. Tick.
  • Pop balloon and peel rubber off the inside.  Tick.
  • Admire your handy work.  Hmmm... sort of.


When it was finished the bowl looked ok, but was extremely fragile, and no amount of extra home-made-mod-podge (or store-bought for that matter) was going to stiffen it up.  It was pretty, but effectively useless.  While I was contemplating what to do with it, my daughter Mimi came into the kitchen, took one look at it and said; "what is it, a hat?"  Guess so.  Notch another craft fail up for mummy, and thanks darl for the oh-so-flattering photo up the nose... but I suppose that's what you get when a short person takes your photo!

On a brighter note; thanks to Marcie at the appropriately named blog "I Gotta Try That" for nominating me for the Liebster blog award for being a lovely blog with few followers.  As part of the joy of winning the award you're required to answer some questions and pass on the award to some other bloggers... what's intriguing, is that since I last won the award in January (read about it here) the number of questions you have to answer has risen from 7 to 11, the number of blogs you nominate has likewise multiplied from 5 to 11, and  it's also now a requirement to pass on additional questions to ask other prize recipients...   I can't help but feel the pressure that I did as a school child when faced with the dreaded chain-letter-envelope, which is why  I humbly accept my award from Marcie, highly recommend that you follow her blog as I do, and refer you back to my previous blog post where I answered questions about myself.  To try to stay in the blog-loving spirit, I will nominate some under-followed blogs I like and answer the questions asked of me, but I'm not keen to keep the chain going by devising more questions to send on.  Boo me all you like.  That's how I feel about it.

OK, so the questions I've been asked to answer:


1. What kind of people are attracted to your blog? From what I can tell, they are mostly crafty parents, but I'm happy to have everyone who stumbles my way. x
2. If you could live anywhere in the world, where would it be and why? With Happy-Husband and my children, wherever that may be.
3. Is blogging more of a job or a hobby for you? It's a daily obsession.
4. What's the one thing about yourself that you would love to change? No more migraines.
5. If you are a mom, how often do you enjoy alone time? Hmmm... how exactly do you define alone???
6. If it was going to be made public, which would you tell: your age, your weight, or your income?  Age - I'm past 40 - there, it's out - I'm old - and I'm ok with that...!
7. What personality trait bugs you the most? In me or in others?  Because let's be honest, obsessive-compulsive-perfectionism when it comes to over-planning things is ok in me but rather irritating in others!  LOL!
8. What's your favorite restaurant? Happy-Husband and the kids in the kitchen.
9. What are you best known for? Party-craft!
10. Finish this sentence: My favorite social networking site is ______. Children's birthday parties!!!
11. Pet names from strangers (sweetie, honey, etc.). Love it or hate it?  Coming from the Construction Industry (I was an Architect & Project Manager in my previous life), I got called a whole stack of names from strange blokes, many of which are not print-worthy, and no, I didn't really love them... but one thing I've learnt is that any of that 'lazy-language' is a reflection on them not me.  I still believe that today.  


Now then.  Almost there; here's a list of 5 blogs... I can't do 11, (sorry Marcie!) that I have only recently come across, and all with less than 200 followers like my humble blog-home:

http://rusticstardesigns.blogspot.co.uk/
http://briebrieblooms.blogspot.com.au/
http://www.drivenbydesign101.com/
http://michellesbelles.blogspot.com/
http://stuffachicken.blogspot.com/

So... a very differnt blog post today... and the Olympics tomorrow!
Wow... rest assured I'll be wearing my paper beret.
Stay crafty everyone.



Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Dawn of Delight

It's no secret that when you have a sick child no one gets much sleep.  Little Lotti has a case of the flu at the moment.  Whilst she seems to be able to sleep through her own coughing, sneezing and wheezing, the rest of us can't.  To give her sister Mimi half a chance, Lotti has been moved out of her room and onto a little couch in our room.  It makes it easier to look after Lotti during the night; but of course, it's noisy.  So, half way through the night when Mimi woke up and realised that her sister had gone and called out sorrowfully, "I'm all alone," I happily pulled the pillow off my head, ran to the rescue and jumped into Lotti's empty bed.  Sure, it was a single bed, cold, with a guard rail, and filled with dummies and dolls, but that small space was silent.

In the past I've blogged about how I've used my insomnia to invent crafty ideas; there's no doubt much of my inspiration comes in uninspiring moments.  Not last night.  Last night's sleeplessness was filled with a longing for the night to be over and for tomorrow to come.  When I was at my grumpiest however, I suddenly remembered our last summer holiday away.  

Sleep is often high on your to-do agenda when you're on holiday, however, I remembered the day when both girls were awake and restless and we convinced them to take a walk on the beach in their PJs to see the sun rise.  It was a magic moment.

So I guess today's blog post has nothing to do with parties or craft, but it is about sharing a secret; finding time to rest is important, we need it; it's vital to restore our souls, recharge our batteries, reinvent ourselves... but in those moments when it alludes us, perhaps rather than become bitter and twisted (as I am oh so want to do) perhaps it can't hurt to think outside the rectangle so to speak, leave our tired old ways behind us for a moment.  Perhaps by swapping old habits for new and mixing things up a little bit, we might just be gifted with unexpected delights. x


Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Easy Cirucs Party Garland


It's no secret that the circus is calling, calling, calling... ever if you've never been tempted to run off and join a troupe of hire-wire acrobats or put on a scary clown's costume for a laugh, there is something alluring about the very word 'circus'.  It remains one of the most popular party themes of all times, and rightly so; colour, movement, magic and mayhem, are themselves the very essence of youth and joyful imagination. 


While designing some circus party decorations for my upcoming themed party planning ebook, I stumbled across a pretty nifty garland, which I of course had to super-simplify even further.  So, feel free to use your sewing machine to sew six pretty paper discs together and then sew them onto a string, or...


Make a cupcake liner pom-pom garland:


1. Purchase coloured cupcake liners in the colours you desire.
2. Select 6 to 8 per pom-pom (they can be the same colour or you can choose 4 of each shade and alternate them for a 'beach ball' effect.)
3. Fold each of the cupcake liners in half (so that the colour is inside).
4. Glue them on top of each other, so that you have a stack (remember to alternate the colours if desired).
5. Leave overnight to dry under a book or other heavy, flat object.
6. The next day cut short lengths of fishing wire and fix them to the top of the door frame.  (You can adjust this decoration to make a sideways garland, you will however, require alot more pom-poms, and the effect will look less like thrown balls hovering in the air and more like bunting in a used-car yard.)
7. Using double sided tape, wrap each pom pom around the wire and close it on itself and the wire.


By adjusting the colours to suit your party theme, you could make this look turn into summer-party beach balls, planets in outer space, clouds for a baby shower, pastel bubbles for a mermaids party, and on and on... just use your imagination and as much time and energy as you have; the more you make, the more impressive the display will be.  As always however, be kind to yourself, and remember that having a go and getting something up for a party decoration is more important than achieving any form of perfection!



Don't forget there's a set of printpapers ready to go for a Super Circus party and the ebook is not far from completion!



Monday, July 23, 2012

DIY V.I.P. Backstage Pass for Kids

It's no secret that our children are very important people.  All children are.  They are, each and every one of them, special, precious, unique.  That's why it's no stretch of the imagination that they ought to be issued VIP backstage passes to wear around the house.

I'm a hoarder... a-hem... I mean collector, of anything that I think might have a crafty use down the track.  Sometimes, I think of a use straight away, and other times, if a use isn't obviously apparent, but I know that 'one-day' it will come to me, I pop the items into plastic take-away-dinner tubs and stack them 5-high on my craft shelves.  Last count, I had about 20 tubs filled with everything from water balloons and paper stars, to pink plastic pretend safety-pins and mini silver cups.

In one such tub was an assortment of tags, the sort that come with bar-codes, price tags, or brand names written all over them.  There were tags from clothes, toys, and even two large tags that came off pencil-cases (see picture).  The great thing about the tags, and why I've been collecting them, is that they are bright and colourful, and usually on extra-thick cardboard.  Some are sparkly, others have studs and sparkles, and some are made of metal.  Until today I wasn't sure what to do with them.  Then I read a blog post about an amazing rock-the-baby shower over at "While Wearing Heels" and as soon as I saw the 'backstage passes' (complete with ultrasound picture - so cute!) I knew what I could use some of those tags for!

Most office supply stores sell lanyards and the plastic sleeves into which you can insert printed VIP cards (a quick google search will find you free downloads and I'll pop a link on today's partycraft-facebook page), but if you're feeling like you want to upcycle one thing into another, then...

Here's how to make your own VIP backstage pass:

  1. Collect the tags that come off the products you buy.
  2. When you have a large collection pick out the best of the batch so that you have one per child.
  3. Using stickers and coloured paper, cover the prices and bar-codes (and brand names if you wish).
  4. Add strips of coloured paper onto the front or the back, and write "VIP" onto the panel (see if you can chose a colour that will suit all the tags, so they all look similar.)
  5. Use a paper clip to push through the hole at the top of the tag (if the tag is torn, repair it by sticking a strip of coloured paper across the top, then hold the tag up to a bright light to see (or feel) where the hole was and carefully push the paperclip through the paper and the torn tag-hole.)
  6. Use a shoe lace or strip of material (like you find on cargo pants) and tie both ends onto the paper clip.
  7. Slip the backstage pass over your head, pop on some of mum's sunglasses and rock on or chill out.


Our children are special, and so are those pretty tags that you pull off their purchases; so stash them, and upcycle them; use them as a themed-costume, a tween's party craft, or just for fun... and send me the pictures!

(Which reminds me; both the Silver Stars Movie & Baby Shower  Printable Party Stationary are out now - yay!)

Saturday, July 21, 2012

Big Block Photo Puzzles

It’s no secret that you often find one thing while looking for another.  That’s what happened to me recently.  Funnily enough, I can’t even remember what I went in search of, but what I found was a super-nifty, funny-family mix-n-match big-block-puzzle.  (Phew! How's that for a description!?!)  One of the two clever ladies over at ‘a couple of craft addicts’ took a series of photos of her family members, printed the photos out in similar proportions, sliced them up, then stuck them onto big plastic blocks.  The result was a fabulous mix-n-match puzzle where her child could put mum’s face on dad’s body and her daughter's legs; genius! 

Of course it takes a while to make, and being allergic to long-term commitments (outside the M-words of marriage, motherhood, mortgages and motor vehicles), I decided to make the cheat’s version of this clever craft project.

Here’s how to make a photo-block-puzzle, or at at least a much less sophisticated version (as always, you can click on the photo to enlarge it if you want to see the how-to details):
  • You will need 4 three-nib-wide / double-height blocks of various colours (go for chunky blocks because the skinny ones will require skinny strips of photos which might not last under the tug-a-war that will soon eventuate).
  • Lay the photo on top to check that it will be both wide and long enough (if not, choose blocks to suit).
  • Experiment with different photos and lay them under the blocks to see where they will be cut up (it may be a bit traumatic for your children if they have their faces sliced through the eyes, but perhaps having a large photo of their face cut up so that their eyes and nose and mouth are on separate pieces will be funny – you know best!)
  • You can then use a ruler and measure the blocks and draw the proportions properly on the back of the photo, or you can take a shortcut like I did and simply lay the blocks on top of the photo and mark out where the cuts need to go (first the left side, then the right, always making sure both the bottom of the blocks and the bottom of the photo line up).
  • Join the left and right marks up (again, be good and use a ruler, or be like me and use a block or another photo to make your line).
  • Now cut the photo into four panels.
  • I used temporary-tack to stick my photos down; I put the blocks in place and then wriggled everything around to get it where I wanted it, then trimmed the photo edges to suit.  If you don't mind losing the plain-block look forever, consider using glue instead of temporary-tac for a more permanent solution.
Of course, you’ll have to replicate the idea with another puzzle for each child (I didn’t have enough 4-nib blocks to make another puzzle, so I just chose a ‘thinner’ photo and went with a 3-nib variety for Little Lotti.)  The girls had lots of fun, using the puzzles as intended, piecing them together both correctly and in funny ways, and then they also, rather strangely, made their block-photo-selves go to school in their dolls house.

Since making this craft I've been thinking it could be turned into a fun Lego-party invitation idea (mixed up and they have to reassemble it to read what to do), a father's day present (with a daddy-daughter photo for example), or simply a great boredom buster for a wet weather weekend.

Next time you're looking for something on the internet, remember to keep an open mind, stay ready for alternate possibilities, and then raid your children's toy cupboard at every opportunity!

Enjoy the weekend people and stay crafty. x

Friday, July 20, 2012

The Tricky Pinata

It's no secret that the piñata is back in fashion.  Even my local dollar store was carrying them for awhile there but seems to be out of stock at the moment due to overwhelming demand.  If you're unfamiliar with the  piñata, you buy the hollow cardboard dinosaur (or other shape) which is covered in lovely crepe paper ruffles, fur or feathers, and then into the hole in the top you fill it with toys and sweets.  Next you hang it up at a child's party, blindfold the children, hand them big sticks and ask them to swing at the piñata and try to break it.

Sounds good.  And it is.  But.  Always a but.  They're tricky things.

Getting children blindfolded quickly so the action stays fast-paced is tricky.  Getting children to safely wield a big stick is tricky.  Getting children to swing a big stick at a swinging object hard enough to break it is tricky.  Getting children to wait patiently in a line for their turn, close enough to see what's happening, but far enough out of the way that they don't get clobbered by the swinging stick, is tricky.  Getting children to understand that the free-for-all that takes place when the piñata finally breaks still means they should be kind enough to share their giant scooped up hand full with the child next to them that only scored one trod-on yellow banana is tricky.  Lastly, getting children to understand back at home that belting the xxx out of something is only considered a funny-game in the most occasional of circumstances is tricky.

That said, Mimi went to a dinosaur-party recently and had her first ever go at a piñata, as pictured above, and she loved it.  She only managed to pick up three fully-formed lolly-bananas, but was content to have been part of the action, and admitted she felt sorry for the kids further back in the line that missed out on having a go.

She also let me in on a secret after the party; "I know for sure what happened to the dinosaurs mum and why they're gone now; they all got caught in a giant snowball and it rolled them all away."  It's a theory of extinction I haven't heard before.  It sounds good.  But tricky.


Thursday, July 19, 2012

Joke Table Setting

It's no secret that while doing mundane things you can come up with inspirational ideas.  Recently while chopping vegetables I realised you could make rose-stamps from bok-choy.  Last night while washing dishes I noticed that we had two different knife shapes; one was quite rounded, the other quite pointy and I thought; hmmm... that looks like a sharks' head.  Which got me thinking...

Hey!  Imagine making a joke table setting!  Instead of giving guests a knife and fork, give them two knives!  And make it look like a shark!

(All you have to do is make sure the top knife has it's serrated side showing and stick a googly eye on the top knife with a tiny ball of temporary-tac.)

Of course it's not practical, but so what?  All you have to do is wait until everyone has sat down to dinner and spied their hilarious cutlery, let the hysterical laughter die down and then whisk the top knife away and hand out forks and spoons.

I've wrapped my cutlery with a linen napkin and piece of printpaper form the Jungle Party Craft & Activity Ebook because I thought the shark-idea what suit a wild party theme, but of course, any watery theme would work; or any party involving teenagers for that matter!

So go on - get quirky in the kitchen, and hand out the wrong cutlery next time you serve up dinner at your place!

(And if you're looking for more ideas on how to use printpapers to dress up your table; pop across to www.partycraftsecrets.com and view the inspirational images in our picture gallery download the free printpaper package to experiment, or shop the party printpaper packages and make your meals memorable!)



Wednesday, July 18, 2012

DIY Mod Podge / Glue Recipes

It's no secret that you can go through a lot of glue when you craft with kids.  Recently I blogged about how I cut letters and faces out to recycle magazines for children's craft.  Little Lotti had a go last weekend using the letters to jazz up a painting she bought home from preschool last term.  The painting was not the most gorgeous example of her artistic skills, however, with the addition of the cutout letters, it became a rather fun piece of modern art!

Now - to glue.  There are lots of options when it comes to adhesive glue:

  • The hot glue gun - this is a grownup's tool and as I've always tried to advocate a 'keep it super simple' mantra with all that I do, I've never actually tried one!  I hear you groan - ah well - that's me.  I also hear they're pretty good; but again; not for children.  SO moving on.
  • The glue stick - dollar store ones are ok, but I find that the cheaper you go, the less tacky they are.  If the children have to drag too hard with the stick they can rip their craft and then there's tears.  The upside is you can buy several and everyone can have one so they're cheap and cheerful.  Downside; never leave the lid off overnight, or the next day it is unuseable; it can literaly turn to a big blob of weird rubber.
  • Clag glue paste - not sure what others call it, but this is glue in a pot, seen in preschools around the world.  You can use the paddle or brush that it comes with or use popsicle sticks.  I find it's a bit like crafting with porridge, and children almost always end up with enough glue to stick themselves to the page, as opposed to the feather they're actually trying to adhere.  I don't love it, but if you do; go for it.  Nuf said.
  • PVA glue - also known as 'school glue' or 'elmers glue'.  This runny white glue can also be found in your local dollar store.  I find the best way to work with it is to pour it into a cup or a platter and add a little water to thin it slightly and give everyone a paint brush.  I have seen craft teachers use popsicle sticks, but again, you end up with a messy application, and I like to teach children, even young children, to exercise a little control.  This is the glue I tend to use myself, but again, you can go through a lot fast.
  • Mod podge - if you surf the web this stuff is everywhere and seems to be able to do everything.  Call me crazy, and don't sue me for saying so, but as far as I can tell you can actually make mod podge yourself; it's essentially 50% water and 50% PVA glue, all mixed up in a bottle, cup or jar.  You can make it as you go, or pre-prepare it and save it in an airtight jar, simply shake to remix before you use.  I've used this concoction plenty of times, and my only warning is this; it can turn slightly yellow as the years pass.  But I'm talking about years.  If the craft you're making is special in an heirloomy kind of way; probably don't risk it.  If it's kids craft you're after; definitely keep your pennies in your pocket and try it out.
  • Gloopy Glue (or Flour & Water) - yep, you read right.  This is a little trick my mother taught me when I was a little girl.  It's not the prettiest glue you've ever seen, and it may not hold up over the years to come, but it does work.  In a cup or bowl, simply put a spoonful of flour (whatever type is on hand) and add a dribble of water.  Mix it in well.  When it looks like a not-too-runny but lump-free paste, start gluing.  It can dry a little flaky and turn an oatmeal colour, but again; for kids craft that might add to the effect!


If you're wondering what Little Lotti is using for her glue in the picture, it's a mixture; in her little saki-cup (tucked under her arm with a green paintbrush) I put in PVA and water, then realised she was going to need more than, so I added a sprinkle of flour and an extra dribble of water... sounds odd no doubt, but her letters all stuck, and are sticking still!


Got any glue recipes of your own?  Go to the comments section below and add a link to your own blog post, write the recipe down, or warn readers of your craft fails with home made glue - remember - sharing is caring! x 


Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Rocking Round Robin Paper Craft


It’s no secret that preschoolers love craft projects that do things.  Here’s a paper craft that I made with my girls and posted as a guest contributor over at Projects for Preschoolers, that I called the 'Rocking Round Robin'.  Made of two circles, the really do rock when you gently tap their tail!

Here’s what you’ll need:
  • Light weight colored card in at least two different shades.  (We used rainbow shades, but patterned card, all pastels, all bolds, even shades of grey will all work well for this project.)
  • Colored paper.
  • Two round things to trace (we used a toy bucket; the top gave us a big circle and the bottom was the smaller circle).
  • Pencil, scissors, and glue.
To make the craft:
  • Trace a large and a small circle onto two different colours of card.
  • Cut them out (the cut needs to be as neat as possible if you want your birds to rock).
  • Fold both circles neatly in half.
  • Glue the smaller circle over the bigger circle.
  • Cut a triangle and a rectangle out of the colored paper, and fold both in half.
  • Gently unfold the circle and lay it flat on the table.
  • Glue the folded triangle on the front of the bird as a beak, and the rectangle on the back as a tail, making sure that the folds all line up.
  • Use a marker to add any details you want, such as eyes.
We experimented with birds of different colors, sizes, and details.  A matching set of large and small ‘mother and baby’ birds were given to a preschool teacher as a farewell present for her maternity leave; she was thrilled.

These would be suitable as a party craft for older children, decorations for a Baby Sower, keepsakes for a Farmyard-themed party, or a rainy day project to chase the boredom away... so go on... get your paper out and rock on!

(If you want more boredom busters for children - don't forget to check out the free art printables on my other site www.partycraftsecrets.com as well as the themed craft and activity books that are ready to purchase and sent straight to your email ready to go!)


Monday, July 16, 2012

Button Necklace Activity

It's no secret that buttons are handy things; the help keep your jeans up for a start.  They're also a rather sneaky way of improving hand-eye co-ordination with youngsters.  Give them a bag of plastic buttons and some elastic and tell them to make themselves a necklace.

"Oh yes please," is the answer you'll get.  Then try not to laugh as you watch them work hard, really hard, to make the necklace.


To make a button necklace all you need is buttons and a piece of elastic, pre-cut so that it is long enough to make a loop that will slip on and off over their head.

When it comes to buttons, look for large craft ones, not 'real' ones which are often designed to be discrete and are therefore smaller and more fiddly.  I ended up with two bags, one with giant buttons, and another with coin-sized buttons, but both were bright and bold and an assortment of shapes and sizes.  I enjoyed watching the girls debate the fairest ways to divide the buttons between them.  They tried color sorting, shape shifting, and in the end they settled on first in first served and then inevitably both wanted the exact same yellow star and nothing else would do!  They experimented with different ways of threading too.  Going through one whole per button was definitely fastest, but they found that going through two holes, made the buttons turn sideways and this made a more interesting necklace end-effect.

I took a photo of Little Lotti's 'sad facce' but couldn't bring myself to include it on the blog... mainly because I felt bad for letting her get sad in the first place.... you see I didn't tell them to knot the elastic string, or use a button to tie it off.  It only took Mimi about three buttons to realise they were falling off the end and ask for help.  Little Lotti threaded a lot of buttons in her lap while I was out of the room, and when I came back in she held them up proudly to show me - and they all slipped straight off the other end - boo hoo.

I got close to 30 minutes peace out of this activity, maybe more... not bad really.  They wore there creations to dinner that night to show Daddy, and then agreed happily enough to un-thread them the next day and have another go.  Mimi's keen to try a rainbow-pattern next time, Lotti's just wants to watch TV!  Turns out letting her learn the hard way may have scarred her for life... hmmm...

Knot heartaches aside, this would be a fun party-craft activity for youngsters to do, provided they're old enough not to put the buttons in their mouth.  The black elastic looks great with the bright coloured buttons, and I can totally imagine the side-by-side button look for a girly superhero costume.  So go on - button up!


Saturday, July 14, 2012

Don't Forget to Read the Crash Manual

It's no secret that the school holidays are a holiday for all but the stay at home parent.  The holiday is the single greatest routine-wrecker ever invented.  I'm flat out exhausted.  We've had play-dates here and at the park, we've had sleepovers and slumber parties, drop-offs, pick-ups, beach excursions, movies, picnics, and craft, craft, and more craft!


Thankfully, we're on the home stretch.  Monday sees a return to normal; swim lessons, then the regular play-date on Tuesday, preschool returns on Wednesday-through-Friday.  Thank goodness.  Today is a little friend's fifth birthday party, then tomorrow if the sun shines we might go to the zoo to make the most of the last day of the 'break'.


Still.  I'm eternally grateful to have the opportunity to whine.  My girls are such a blessing to me, so sweet, so precious.  So, even when I hear the eldest saying; "pretend mum's dead and I have to look after you," while playing with her younger sister, I can't help but laugh.  Sort of.  At least I smirk.  What would she make for dinner I wonder?  


And then there's always those funny photos you find while searching for something else.   Like this moment on a rare plane trip, where Mimi used those long moments pre-take-off to read through the crash-landing manual while working on her lollipop, Spot the dog at her side.  Nice.  


Now I have to go wrap the present (reading & coloring books and pens), have a constitutional cuppa tea, and a quick rest, then head into the mayhem that is children's party planet.


Rest.  Parties.  Holidays.  Crafting.  Crash landings in Parenting-101.  It's all good.  x



Friday, July 13, 2012

Red Bubble Drinks

It's no secret that on Friday the 13th you get a little superstitious and your mind turns a little morbid... or maybe it's only me...  I'm feeling a tad tired and cranky at them moment; two weeks of school holidays has been a long time.  I love crafting with my kids, but sometimes too much of a good thing is no good for any one.  Imagine my surprise when I actually sighed when my daughter asked 'craft time?' after breakfast today.  Must be that Friday the 13th black mood that came over me - but I grumbled - declined - and turned on the TV.  What a monster I am! 


Speaking of creepy things; I love to experiment with photography, but especially if I can come up with a party-craft.  When holding a red drink up to the sun the other day I noticed the way the sediment slowly swirled through the bottle before dissolving.  I put the bottle down, stripped it of its label, which was thankfully easy to do, and waited for the sediment to settle.  

Once it had, I had my camera at the ready, tipped the bottle, and fired off a few shots.  With the help of an online photo editor (I use Picasa) you can zoom in on bubbles, crop, or collage to make a variety of ‘spacey’ almost bloodthirsty Halloweeny effects out of a pretty basic product.  You can now print it out, just as you would any other photograph, and use it in a variety of ways, such as:

  • Stick the photo onto a card and turn it into an invitation to a space party.
  • Cut it up and make it an oey-gooey gift-tag for a pirate party.
  • Fold them in half, add a white sticker and write someones name on it and use it as a place-setting for a Halloween party table setting.

Alternatively, do any of the above, but with pink lemonade, and then smother it with sprinkles and use it for a princess party.  Same again, but with green drink and a fairy or jungle party – truly, this is an easy peasy way to make any number of party craft accessories!


TOP TIPS:
  • slowly tip the bottle from side to side, so the fizz doesn’t go crazy. 
  • Photographs work better through glass, rather than plastic bottles. 
  • The cleaner the bottle, the better the pictures.

So go on – don’t drink your next bottle or pop; photograph it and turn it into arty party craft!


(And it would be remiss of me not to use this post to remind you that there are plenty of my designs on tshirts, baby suits, stickers and cards over at Red Bubble!)


Thursday, July 12, 2012

Magnetic Fruit

It's no secret that there's probably not many houses in the westernised world that don't own a refrigerator, and for those homes that have young families, there's probably not many of those refrigerators that don't have magnetic letters or numbers on their doors.  Somewhere, long, long ago, long before my children could even think of reading them, I purchased a big bucket of the things.  I even tried them in the kitchen for awhile but was driven slightly batty by the fact that the girls seemed to want to play with them only when I was preparing dinner, which meant that they were standing right where I didn't want them to be saying 'look at this' right when I didn't really want to be looking at anything other than the meal I was pushing around my saucepan...

So I took a trip to out local business store, and there I found some miniature magnetic boards, presumably for people who have tiny desks at work.  To be honest, they would hold one A4 sheet of paper and that's about it, so their usefulness in an office is debatable, but the little blue and pink boards are light weight and perfectly sized for my girls.

Sometimes we use them with magnetic dress-up dolls Grandma bought us and have fashion shows, other times we line up numbers or letters for a bit of home-schooling, generally though the girls enjoy making pictures with an assortment of other magnetic pictures they have.

This week's school holiday magnetic mayhem?  Fruit.  See it?  There's a banana, a strawberry and a carrot, of which I made with Mimi to 'show her how'.  She them went on to make the blueberries, orange, lemon and 'fruit salad' all by herself - so proud - (her and me!)

So don't forget; magnetic letters and numbers are fun for literacy and numeracy; but they're also good for colour sorting and matching, shape making, and well... just being a little bit silly!  It's probably not a school-teacher approved activity, and I'm sure you won't find it in any school curriculum, but I think magnetic fruit is fabulous; and so do my girls!


Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Nail Polish gets the Royal Seal Of Approval

It's no secret that even good crafts come to end.  They break.  They fall apart.  They go to craft heaven.  Sometimes they are loved to death, other times they were simply too ephemeral for this world, and some crafts are perhaps, let's be brutally honest here; were not that well made.  It's sad, but it's a fact of life we crafters must come to terms with... and the best way to chase those boo-hoos away?

Upcycle!

A while ago I posted about how to make playtime makeup for your children using dollar store nail polish.  My daughters have had a great time using theirs in their hair salon, especially when Daddy agrees to have his eyelids 'painted' blue.  Well, when I was packing the salon away the other day I picked up the tray of 'makeup' and noticed that one of the paint-disks had popped up.  When I investigated closer, I realised that a slight twist of the lightweight plastic tray popped all the disks out.  Hmmm.  One disk of nail polish broke almost instantly, it was amazingly brittle, but the others were quite strong, and although they would surely snap had I applied any real pressure, they were weirdly like taffy or toffee and had a nice silky feel to them.

Rather than bin them I laid them on the counter and asked myself; what do they look like?  You of course will probably look at the picture and scream a dozen different answers at your computer; and I hope you do - there's nothing more amusing for your children than to see their parents yelling (obscenity-free) things at their screens!  I however, decided they looked like wax seals fit for a princess party invitation.

As my eldest daughter Mimi has decided that she wants a 'fairytale' themed party for her fifth birthday at the end of the year ("the boys won't come if we call it a princess party" - that's my party-plannin' gal!) I reused the tray to make a whole batch of dark red 'seals'.  I made them slightly thicker this time, so they're going to take a while to set.  (Always be sure to place some kitchen towel under your plastic tray in case the chemicals in nail polish cause the plastic to fail and the nail polish pours out onto your table before it has a chance to set hard.)  The initial ones look as if they'll stick down to an envelope pretty easily with a sticky-dot, so all's good.

Here's three cheers for giving broken things the royal treatment and a new re-crafted life!

(And if you're loved ones want a fairytale party - look for inspiration in either of our fairy or princess themed party craft ebooks - I will be!)


Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Bumble Bee Balls

It's no secret that teaching the alphabet to preschoolers does weird things to your brain... A is for Anty Apples, A, A, A.  B is for Bouncy Balls, B, B, B.  Bouncing balls... b-balls... bee-balls!

When Mimi was tiny we bought one of those 100-ball bags thinking it sounded like a lot of balls.  And of course it was.  It was 100 balls to be precise.  Yet as large as the bag seemed while I was trying to get it from the store to the car, and then into the boot, the 100 balls, suddenly seemed to do a disappearing act when I emptied the bag out at home.  You know those clam shell swim-pool-sand-pits?  Well we didn't have one of those, we had a boat shaped one, but same idea, and whilst the 100 ball-bag had inspired me to think of a knee-deep Ikea styled ball-pit when I had seen it on sale in the shop, when the bag was emptied out at home, they would have rattled around in the boat, if that were possible of empty round balls!

Anyway.  We've had plenty of fun with the balls since, though they have slowly lost they're shape and colour, and strangely, their number seems to be ever-diminishing though everyone swears they've never thrown them in the bin or over the fence...  Regardless, there are still more balls than we need, so when I had my bee-ball moment I was flushed with happiness that we might have come up with a better use for them than throwing them at each other!


With some strips of black electrical tape (duct tape or washi tape might also work) some round sticky dots and those white ring dots that you're meant to stick on the holes you punch in paper (does anyone ever?!?) Little Lotti and I came up with a couple of buzzy bee balls.  We folded some paper to make some concertina wings, but then pulled these back off - balls don't bounce or roll with wings!

With enough balls, stickers and tape, this would be a fun party-crafty to make with toddlers or preschoolers.  It could work with a seasonal theme, for a baby-shower, or just to keep little people happy inside on a rainy day... And don't stop with bees; make funny three-eyed aliens, half-circles would make happy mouths for circus clowns, or any combination of spots for whatever creature takes their fancy.

Turns out that driving yourself mad with the ABC can pay off sometimes...!!


Monday, July 9, 2012

DIY Pirate Costume

It’s no secret that little kids need lots of stimulation.  I have two daughters, aged nearly-3 and 4, and I’m always having to dream up new activities to keep them busy and away from the dreaded television.  One of our most favourite things to do is dress-up.  The girls love getting into costume; as princesses, ballerinas or fairies, and I love helping them make things to add to the adventure.

While doing a photo shoot for my pirate party craft ebook, they put on paper hats, and I made them each a Captain-Hook styled hand to play with.  You can make them too.  Here’s how:

Materials you’ll need:
  • coloured plastic / paper cups
  • plastic forks (or spoons for little kids)
  • rubber bands
  • something sharp (like a compass or pin and nail scissors)
To make your own Captain Funny Hands hook:
  • Carefully, poke the compass or pin into the bottom of the coloured cup.
  • Now that you have a hole, use small scissors to cut a small ‘cross’ shape into the bottom of the cup.
  • Gently poke the plastic fork through the hole.
  • Use a rubber band on either the inside or outside of the cup if you feel the fork is moving up and down too much through the hole in the cup.
Now all you have to do is hand the cup to the kids.  They put their hand inside to hold the fork, and then off they go.  My daughters enjoyed eating a fruit salad lunch with their funny-hands, and then raided the lounge-chair and sailed it over the horizon.  I can’t tell you how much fun they had… but watch for stormy weather ahead, as plastic forks can be very dangerous when wielded during a temper-tantrum!


(For more fun pirate craft & the hat template - pop across for a sneak peek inside the pirate party craft ebook!)


Saturday, July 7, 2012

Secret Kaleidoscopic Fireworks

It's no secret that watching fireworks is a little like observing falling stars making their may to earth; the impulse to make a wish on all those bright sparks of colour is overwhelming... if only you could suppress the ohhs and ahhs long enough to silently make your wish.

While looking through my daughter's kaleidoscope (one of my all time favourite children's toys that gets my seal-of-approval as a great gift for any gender, age or occasion), I kept thinking to myself how much it looked like a night sky of fireworks.  I was so happy to stand there for long moments loving the magic contained therein... then I decided to photograph it.

It wasn't quite as easy as it sounds, as the eye-hole is rather small.  A conventional camera lens is too big, but a smart-phone has a small aperture, so it seemed to work ok.  The results were wonderful.  I thought so at least.  If you click on the image it will enlarge and you'll see that some of the clarity is incredible, some shots are blurry, but the colour is none the less effective - top tip - experiment!

In my mind I see stained glass rose windows in Gothic cathedrals, rich tapestries, gilded domes, mosaic floors, ancient treasure boxes, and of course a trillion exploding fireworks.

The best of the best could easily be printed out and turned into invitations for a Arabian Nights Slumber Party, a space party, a fireworks night, or any nighttime function...

I'll make another post one day to show you the actual child's toy, I may even have a go at making a kaleidoscope one day; it's truly the most garish object imaginable; that such beauty is inside just proves the old tale true; that you can't be too quick to judge something from the outside; for at least in this case; an infinite universe seemed to be waiting to be discovered by someone willing to look. x


Friday, July 6, 2012

Snow Bucket

It’s no secret that preschoolers love Chantelle.  That’s show-and-tell for the uninitiated.  My daughters love to take things to preschool with them.  Anything will do.  If they forget to take something to school, then we look for things as we walk there.  Two weeks ago Little Lotti said to me as she had her eyes fixed on the grass ahead; “you look out for dog poo Mum, I’ll look out for flowers.”

Typical.

Winter started recently in the southern hemisphere, so the girls and I got to discussing what can happen (in other parts of the world) when it gets really cold; things like snow.  To explore the idea further we created a snow-bucket and put together things that we thought looked like snow drifts, snow balls and snowflakes.  Given they’ve never seen the real thing, anything white essentially sufficed. 

The girls enjoyed the experience, I was happy to share a learning experience that kept the television off, and Chantelle, the teachers and the rest of the children at school were apparently sufficiently impressed.  Next trip to the craft store and I might just buy myself a whole stack of foam-balls so we can have a snow ball fight... ahh... winter... what fun!

Thursday, July 5, 2012

Sticky Dot Experiment


It's no secret that I recently blogged about an art installation where an artist let the public loose on a white room with batches of sticky dots, and filmed the results in stop-motion photography.  The results were great.  I wanted to try with my daughters to see what happened if they were given the same opportunity.  Obviously I wasn’t going to let them loose on a room, nor was I going to paint a piano or even a dining table and let them at it... instead I went for something much more modest, affordable, and which required just one sheet of sticky dots. 

I gave them each a white noodle box.  Doesn't sound very exciting I know, but by giving them a 3 dimensional object rather than a piece of paper they automatically had more surfaces to play with; more options.  As always I was fascinated to see what each child did. 

The eldest, who is four and half was quite methodical.  One side was all red.  Another all blue.  Then the other two sides were a mixture of green and yellow.  On the lid she placed one of each coloured dot.  She told me that inside her box she was going to look for four treasures; one of each colour.  Fabulous.

The youngest daughter, who is 3, simply stuck them on, here there and everywhere, but with great speed and efficiency.  She turned the box, made sure that no side was left blank, she even asked whether it was a good idea to put some inside the box, on the inner surfaces, and then decided herself not to as whatever treasure she put int her might pull them off.  Impressive.

Imagination.  Opportunity.  Wonderful things.  My experiment and their creations were no art gallery masterpieces, but we had fun, them and I both, and that’s what family craft is all about.  So next time you're wondering whether to craft with your kids, at a party, when guests are over, it's raining, or just because; do it.  Grab a sheet of coloured sticky dots; give them each a noodle box, or something similar and let them go.  It might seem lame to you, but you’ll be surprised, sticky dots have magical powers when they get to go where children want them to!

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Gotta Love those Quirky Kids

It's no secret that kids say quirky things sometimes, but they can also be extremely profound.  I'm not sure they always mean to be, but they are.  I'll give you three recent examples that came from my daughter, who's 4 and a half.  The first two examples come from our dinner time ritual of 'talking about our day' and the conversations went like this:

Dad: "Today was the best day of my life... well... aside from the day I got married... and the days you girls were born."
Mimi: "What about the day you were born?!?"

Dad: "Do you think you live in your own little world sometimes Mimi?"
Mimi: "You don't want to know the answer to that."

Then there was yesterday when I overheard her say "bloody owl" which I presume was her interpretation of a similarly sounding curse.
Me: "What!?  Why did you say that?"
Mimi: "I don't know."
Me: "Who said that?  Were did you hear it?"
Mimi: "No one did; I just made it up."
Me: "I don't believe you."
Mimi: "Why not?  I made up my invisible friends Africa and Bunny; I can make up words - no problem."

Yep.  You gotta love quirky kids.

As for today's 'blog-post-age-stamp' photo - it's a copy of a picture that Lotti brought home from school the other day; as a mother it's rather disturbing to see a normally happy child painting something so wild and manic, and densely black and blue... but when I looked in the corner and saw that the teacher had written "A watermelon" as the title, I was stupefied.

Yep.  You gotta love your quirky kids... they're yours after all.

PS - congrats to Heather D who won the Summer Ebook prize pack - enjoy!

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Streamer Hula-Hoop Canopy

It's no secret that magic happens.  All you have to do is be prepared to conjur some up.  When my daughter called to me from outside with the words "my hula hoop doesn't work any more" I assumed she meant her hips weren't swiveling today.  Outside, I saw what she meant; a square hula hoop.  Obviously it had been squashed in a door, pulled in a tug-of-war of territorial rights, or sat on with the misguided idea that it might be a wheel... whatever the reason, I confess my blood started to boil... but only for a moment.

Inspired by many extremely beautiful beribboned canopies on the internet, I suddenly remembered a bag full of streamer odds and ends that had been torn down from previous crafting experiments and left for a rainy day... or a sunny day as it turned out!

With nothing more than my 15-minutes, some wool to hang the hula-hoop, and a stapler to clip the streamer-bits in place we made magic.

The girls decided what we made was everything from a super-shower, a rainbow-waterfall, a giant sea monster, a princess palace, to a play-area for kids to have mini-parties.  They had a wonderful time climbing in and out of the streamers, laughing when they got tangled, watching the coloured lines sway in the breeze, and using their imagination to change games at will.

With a little more colour coordination (and a larger, rounder hula-hoop!) you could easily turn this decoration into:
  • a red and white 'big top' photo booth for a circus party.
  • a blue jelly fish that eats children at a sea-themed party.
  • add a white lantern with a face over the top and make a ghost for Halloween.
  • use pink, purple and yellow streamers in an ordered way and create a canopy over your cake stand for a princess party.
  • and so on and on...

You could of course use ribbons instead of streamers and pin them instead of staple them... but if your children are anything like mine, then the quick-and-easy method means you're (slightly) less likely to freak out when they trash your efforts!

Go on - make your next party you-nique with some classy craft. x

... and join in the last few hours of fun Summer Giveaway fun on the right hand side of the blog.

Monday, July 2, 2012

Left over Sticker Frames


It’s no secret that children love sticker books, and if your little ones are like mine, then you seem to end up with lots of left over pages of ‘frames’ from where all the stickers have been removed.  It’s easy to toss these, I often do, but I got to wondering if there might not be something else you could do with them.

My girls and experimented and came up with a few ideas but our favourite ones included:

  • sticking them onto photos for a framed-photo of a different sort.
  • sticking them onto coloured card and then letting the kids fill teh little frames with drawings of their choice for a mini picture gallery (see yesterday's post.)
  • Sticking them on top of a piece of preschool art and then writing on the back and turning it into a postcard.


If you've come up with a creative way to upcycle your leftover sticker book frames - let me know!

Until then... it's school holidays here; so that means I'm busy crafting rather than typing!! x

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