Butterfly pair

Butterfly Canvas Craft

On a recent trip to the Smoky Mountains, I was lucky enough to capture this moment of two Pipevine Swallowtails sipping up a drink of Summer.  Their calm beauty inspired me to try a new craft with my little lady when we got home: a mixed-media canvas that is simple, Summery, and of course, butterfly-sweet.

Materials:

  • Patterned paper
  • Pencil
  • Scissors
  • Hot glue gun
  • Canvas panel (like these)
  • Kids craft paints
  • Small craft paint brushes

craft canvas

Directions:

  • Paint a setting onto your canvas panel. Set aside to dry.
  • Pick different pieces of patterned paper and cut into a few 3-inch strips. Fold strips in half crosswise.
  • Draw a half-butterfly shape onto the underside of the paper so that the middle of the butterfly will be on the paper’s fold. Cut out butterfly shapes.

Butterfly stencil paper

  • Check to see if paint is dry. Once it is, take your paper butterflies and test where you might want to place them.
  • Once you’re sure about placement, glue the butterflies to the canvas using the hot glue gun. Take care to only glue their centers so you can achieve a pleasing 3-D effect. (I let my little artist to all of the steps except for this one.)

hot glue butterfly

  • Remove any stray glue strings.
  • Hang and enjoy!

Butterfly canvas

Hope you enjoy this simple way to craft your way into Summer!

Painting egg stencil

Easter egg stencils

I love celebrating seasons through hand crafts – painting, decoupage, paper crafts, etc. There’s not a craft I won’t try. For this Easter, I settled on a mash-up of two of my favorite crafts: snowflake-making and painting.

My little lady and I love making paper snowflakes in the winter. But who says this lacy, lovely craft can only be made in the colder months?

egg snowflake stencil

So we gave the paper snowflake a Spring makeover, starting with a simple egg shape instead of the traditional snowflake circle or square. Then, we folded the paper to cut out shapes and lines. When we were finished, we had created the perfect egg stencil. Next, we chose the Springiest colors we could find to paint the cut-out patterns onto another paper egg. The result: pastel perfection. Egg-cellent! :)

Materials:

  • Solid card stock or construction paper in lighter colors or white (as many sheets as you want eggs)
  • White printer paper for stencils
  • Scissors
  • Scotch tape
  • Pastel craft paints
  • Small craft paint brushes

Directions:

  • Fold colored construction paper in half lengthwise and draw a semi-circle (semi-oval). When you open it back up, this will be your egg shape. I made mine a little wider at the bottom to give it that “egg” look.
  • Cut out “egg”.
  • Fold white printer paper in half lengthwise. Fit your cut-out egg over the white paper so you can trace the same egg shape for the white paper. Then cut out your white egg.

Egg template

  • Fold white egg several times as you would to make a snowflake. Cut desired shapes into the folds of your egg. When done, unfold.

cutting egg stencil

  • Gently tape your egg snowflake stencil over your colored-paper egg. You may need to tape it down in a couple of spots to get it to stay in place.
  • Paint the openings in your stencil. Let dry.
  • Remove stencil. Display as you like!

Happy Easter!

Finished Stencil Egg

Canvas valentine bag

Valentine Treat Bags

I’ve always been a crafter. From papier-mâché projects in Elementary School (that I took way too seriously), all the way to jewelry-making as an adult. But recently I’ve enjoyed the connection crafting can have to the season we’re in. It can help you be more present. And crafting with kids can teach them that same stillness, while instilling them with pride in accomplishment.

For February, I decided to celebrate the season by adding a new touch to an old favorite – Valentine’s Day cards. I wanted a cute way to package the candy and cards that my daughter will hand out in class – and I wanted it to be simple enough that she could get in on the act. I settled on mini cotton bags as the candy+card vessel, after looking through a lot of inspiration. The Valentine dressing is simple – an intricate heart stamp and ink pad color of your choice.

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I did a few samples first, and then let my daughter take over. We worked on the floor with craft paper over our hardwood to protect it. I think being lower to the ground gave her better leverage to stamp.

 

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It’s such a forgiving craft, too. With the natural fabric of the pouches, a little smudge or lightness here and there just adds to the look. But the best part? My little lady is thrilled to give her classmates a sweet keepsake that she helped create.

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The finished product – ready to be filled with goodies!

Materials:

  • 15-20 pouches (or however many you need for your class)
  • 1 stamp pad in red, or desired color
  • 1 heart stamp

Directions:

  • Flatten pouches. If too wrinkly, you may want to iron them briefly before stamping
  • Stamp each pouch with heart stamp
  • Fill with cards and goodies and gift away!

Happy Valentine’s Day!