By now you all know that I am a lover of cardboard (as professed in my latest book, Cardboard Creations), and am always thinking of new ways to re-use my collection of recycled boxes. These patterned cardboard animals were really fun to make both for me and my kids! They sit on our mantle currently and I love how they bring a pop of color and whimsy to our home.
Originally published in February, 2014 on the blog Small for Big:
We have sooo many boxes left over from our move last month. A sea of brown boxes. If any of you have moved recently, you know what a bummer it can be to have these boxes still sitting in the corners of all your rooms. The recycler in me had to make something out of them. These animals only took two boxes, unfortunately. But I have only just begun!
My daughter is studying French animal names at the moment so I took inspiration from her this time as I made the templates.
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Supply List to Make Patterned Cardboard Animals:
~ Cardboard boxes or cereal boxes
~ Pencil or marker for tracing
~ Tempera paints & brushes
Instruction for Making Patterned Cardboard Animals:
1. Print out the templates, trace onto the cardboard, then cut with the X-acto knife.
2. Paint animals with a base coat first. I always encourage my kids to mix their own colors instead of using straight out of the bottle. I tell them to at least add white to make it a little more opaque.
3. When the first coat is dry, they can make their patterns! I sometimes have the kids practice making patterns on a separate piece of paper. This way they have their pattern in mind before starting.
Of course if you have younger children, you can just let them explore with paint any way they want! I would leave the pattern-making to older kids and grown-ups.
These animals are from my book, Cardboard Creations, and they are geared much more towards younger children. Here, the kids created, cut, and painted their own animals. I love these even more because they are completely original!
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Did you like this post? Here are more animal art ideas for your kids: