Recycled

Paper Bag Crowns


Paper Bag Crowns

I love the way these crowns turned out. I don’t know what my vision was exactly…probably something more refined – ha! But since this was an open-ended project, I just gave the 4-yr olds their plain crowns and their art supplies and they made each their very own. I don’t think I could have imagined them any more beautiful!

make beautiful crowns from recycled paper bags

make beautiful crowns from recycled paper bags

The post contains affiliate links. Thank you for your support!

Here’s what you’ll need:

Paper bag

Watercolors (we used these which are inexpensive and work great in a class setting, but if you want to invest in something nicer buy these!)

Brushes

Glue (any white school glue, and i put some in a bowl with a brush for them to use as well)

Pom-poms (this bag will last you forever and it’s inexpensive)

Glitter

Sequins

Masking tape

make beautiful crowns from recycled paper bags

make beautiful crowns from recycled paper bags

Here’s how we made them:

First, cut your paper bag down the side and cut off the bottom. Lay it flat and zig-zag cut all across the top. Use the whole bag, but trim it down before painting. Do this by just placing the crown around the child’s head, then adding an extra inch.

Next, lay out your watercolors. Paint the crown and let it dry before moving on to the gluing step. I used a hairdryer to dry them quickly.

When they are dry, put out the glue and the rest of the supplies and let them add to their heart’s content! These crowns should dry overnight, flat. You can place them around their heads with a piece of masking take the next day when they are dry. Oh, but don’t forget to shake off the excess glitter!

make beautiful crowns from recycled paper bags

make beautiful crowns from recycled paper bags

make beautiful crowns from recycled paper bags

They wore their crowns all day the next day after they were dry. I was so impressed by their concentration with these, and by how magical they turned out to be. I think i might have to do these again with the next group of campers!

xo, Bar

 

Princess Castles from Shoeboxes


Princess Castles from Shoeboxes

Last week in art camp the 4-yr olds made these beautiful castles. They were totally into it! We made them over a period of three days, with drying time. When they finally took them home, they were completely sturdy and ready for imaginary play!

make these castles from recycled materials

This post contains affiliate links. Thank you for your support!

Here’s what you’ll need:

Two shoeboxes of different sizes (or small shipping boxes)

Scissors and exacto knife (optional, but helps cut windows)

Elmer’s glue

TP rolls, corks, popsicle sticks, other recycled materials

Tempera paints + brushes

String + colored tapes (you can get these from Amazon or Etsy)

use shoeboxes to build a princess castle

Step 1: Take the lids off the boxes and turn them upside down. Cut doors and windows. Glue the smaller box on top of the bigger box. Let dry overnight.

make princess castles from recycled materials

make princess castles from recycled materials

Step 2: Give them each 4 toilet paper rolls to glue on top. Put out recycled materials in baskets or bowls. I put out corks, popsicle sticks and cut little “bricks” from cardboard. You could also use bottle caps, wooden spools, or anything that is small that they can glue. Let the castles dry overnight before painting.

make princess castles from recycled materials

Step 3: (optional) When the glue is dry, or mostly dry, put a coat of white or light gray paint over the boxes. I did this because some of the shoeboxes were orange or black. But if you have cardboard boxes then you can skip this step.

make beautiful princess castles from recycled materials

make beautiful princess castles from recycled materials

make beautiful princess castles from recycled materials

make beautiful princess castles from recycled materials

Step 4: Put out some paints! My campers love, I mean LOVE, pink and purple. So we went with some pastel-ish colors. I like mixing the colors with a little white to make them more opaque. After they’ve finished covering their castles with delicious colors, let them dry overnight.

Step 5: Make the flags. I forgot to photograph this part. But basically, just take a piece of string and fold over little pieces of tape. I stuck the ends in the tubes and used masking tape to tape them down.

make beautiful princess castles from recycled materials

Aren’t they fabulous? I am so proud of all of their hard work.

Have a great week!

xo, Bar

 

A Quilt // In Loving Memory of Grace


A Quilt // In Loving Memory of Grace

Many of you know I have a daughter named Grace. This post is not about her. This story is about another Grace. I was never able to meet this Grace, a beautiful and creative ten year old who was wise and brave beyond her years, but I did get to know her in a very different way…through her clothes.

patchwork memory quilt

I made this quilt for Grace’s mom and dad. They wanted to be able to wrap themselves up with her essence. It was a humbling experience, but so rewarding for me to be able to help (just a little bit) in the healing of a broken heart.

patchwork memory quilt

Here’s what I learned about Grace from her clothes: She had style, she loved American Girl dolls, she had a thing for the color purple, she loved peace signs, she was a cool kid with her striped leggings and her “just peachy” shirt, she loved the beach, she was a Girl Scout, she was loved by many.

Grace Evanko

I reached out to Grace’s mom to see if it was ok for me to write a post about Grace and the quilt. Although we have not met in person (yet), she is one of my heroes. Here is what she wrote about her daughter:

“Our daughter, Grace Marie Evanko, “Amazing Grace”, passed away at the age of 10 on March 2, 2013. She battled an inoperable DIPG brain tumor for two and a half years. She possessed strength, determination and an ability to overcome physical challenges, all with a smile on her face and never a complaint. And she had a lot to complain about…many surgeries, 6 weeks of radiation, a year of chemo, lost her hair and in the end the ability to walk or talk. Our daughter showed a zest for life and a will to live in her short 10 years that most people will spend a lifetime searching for; she inspired so many in such a short time. Grace loved playing with her friends, laughing, dancing, being creative and anything chocolate. She was obsessed with American Girl dolls! She could play school or tea party for hours! Grace adored her older brother Riley and truly looked up to him. As a family we were blessed to have her in our lives and have created many memories that will last a lifetime!”

The Evanko Family

patchwork memory quilt

I believe that children like Grace, the ones that leave us too soon, should be remembered and honored every single day. Whether it’s through prayer, planting a tree, walking for charity, writing a thank-you note, helping a friend in need, or more simply by lighting a candle and paying attention to how lucky we are to be alive. Celebrating those brave and beautiful souls is like sending a balloon up to heaven!

xo, Bar

PS: To reach out to Grace’s mom and dad, Denise and Fred, you can email them at fdevanko@optonline.net.

 

Art for Littles


Art for Littles

Good morning! Today I am sharing yet another killer collection of simple art & play ideas for your little ones.

From top left: Spin art sun catchers from Meri Cherry // Rainbow color mixing from Simple as That // Credit card art from Housing a Forest // Hole punch art by Learn with Play at Home // Monster blow paintings from Raising Sparks // Styrofoam sculptures from The Artful Parent // Play with fabric scraps from Paint on the Ceiling // Easy weave bracelets by Willow Day // Clothespin caterpillars from Scattered Thoughts of a Crafty Mom // Scrap paper collage from Art Bar // Watercolor art from Blog Me Mom // Kandinsky egg carton art from Whatever

Have a great week! xo, Bar

 

Make: Bird Nests


Make: Bird Nests

This week I wanted to continue with our theme of birds and share with you this totally cool bird nest craft. OMG, they were so fun!! The best part being the last step which is so satisfying and beautiful that we all gasped (I wish I knew how to type a gasp…anyone?). There are bird nest tutorials all over the internet. I researched a ton about whether to use paper maché or glue, whether I wanted a full nest or a more delicate nest, and lastly….the nest materials. It was hard to make all of these decisions! After a rough start, we finally got the hang of it. make bird nests from recycled paper | art bar

Materials: ~ Chopped paper (construction paper, newspaper, catalogs, magazines) / paper cutter or scissors (or a shredder would be best!) / Elmer’s glue + thick paint brush / One bowl of the size that you want your bird’s nest to be / Plastic wrap

make bird nests from recycled paper | art bar

How to: Most of the tutorials online said to soak the paper strips in the glue or paper maché first, then spread them around the bowl. We tried this, but it became a goopy mess and the paper started ripping. So this is the technique we came up with. First, we cut our paper into strips about 1/4″ in thickness. The strips varied in length from 6″ to 12″. Next, we put plastic wrap on the inside of the bowl. We mixed glue with water (half and half), and brushed glue all on the inside of the bowl on top of the plastic wrap. We then took individual strips and arranged them criss-crossing around the bowl. After a while, we would paint on more glue which helped keep the layers down. We then added more paper strips, until about four layers were formed. Sometimes we would put the strips around, like a real nest. Other times just across so the pieces would stick out. When our fingers got too sticky, we wiped them on a wet paper towel. We let the bowls dry overnight. Then….drumroll, please….we lifted the nests out of the bowl and pealed off the plastic. Voila! We had the most beautiful and delicate nests!

make bird nests from recycled paper | art bar

We played around with color, but loved the blues and browns most (with a hint of pink). I used a Paper Source catalog which is made from a really nice matte paper, and their use of color is muted and perfect. (If you don’t know about this catalog click here to get one for free! And definitely visit their online store.)

Have a crafty weekend!

xo, Bar

{nests inspired by this post}