Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Book Upcycle - Paper Bunting

I know some of you may be dead against cutting up Dr Seuss books but if you think you may be getting rid of a few or have multiple copies, this craft idea is a great way of recycling a childrens picture book.

A long piece of bias binding, an old picture book, scissors and a sewing machine is all you'll need. Cut out triangles of paper using the pages of your children's picture book, pin them in place and fold bias binding over (leave 1 or 2cm in between each triangle) and sew! 

The kids did this one on their own. I assisted them with the pinning and sewing. The kids love it because they get to sew and cut and when its done you can hang it in their room.


Monday, May 20, 2013

Berry Yummy Fruit Dip

This is a great recipe for the kids to make. My eldest (5) has been asking to make this nearly everyday since she first saw it on Playschool.

The recipe calls for a kiwifruit, 1 tablespoon of natural yoghurt, a handful of raspberries, 1 teaspoon of honey and fruit to dip.

Basically you blend all the ingredients together and slice the extra fruit into fingers to dip in the raspberry dip. No dramas.

The kids love using the blender, there is nothing more exciting than watching things get pulverised in a loud and dramatic fashion. It is a nice colourful and healthy snack idea. It's berry yummy too! Have fun! x

Friday, May 17, 2013

Friday Love

Today I am grateful for ...

*Crazy creative kids who love to get messy
*A beautiful sunny day that followed the coldest day in 11 years (or so my neighbour tells me)
*First days of football, I'm a proud Mama!
*A clean house! OMG! Yes, today it was apparently 'fun' to help mum clean the house.
*3 sleeping kiddos! still can't believe that one. Its rare these days.
*A happy and productive day, just the four of us. I have a lot to be thankful for.

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Kids Craft Idea - String Art

Here's a fun activity for young kids. All you need is a ball of string some nails and hammer and a peice of wood. It makes a great decoration for the home or kids bedroom and a great alternative to a hung canvas.

You can choose any shape you desire plus there are lots of fascinating patterns you can create which may suit an adult or an older child. Here are some free patterns For a younger child such as mine, it is best to keep things simple. My little sweety chose to do a heart shape. I simply drew the shape and hammered the nails in around an inch apart, tied the string in place and then let her go crazy weaving the string in and out of the nails and 'go crazy' is exactly what she did. She was so excited to create an intricate web out of string and nails and on a large scale it was quite a physically engaging activity. We used a multi coloured wool but any colour or fibre would be fine too.

I love the texture and pattern and have placed it in our living area for everyone to appreciate. The wool paired with the grainy wood brings a warmth to our home. It reminds me of the kind of art I grew up with from the 70s and 80s. I'm so glad this trend is back. Have a go. Get retro.

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Blackboard Paint Drawers

Chalkboard paint has changed my life. You won't believe me but its true. In my home, drawers can be a blessing and a curse. See, I figured some time ago that my habit of hiding my toys under my bed, when I was a child, in order to 'clean my room' has translated into putting random things in random drawers and cupboards in adulthood in order to 'clean my house'. The problem with this is when you go to find a toy or, in my case, a receipt or battery or screw driver... it could be anywhere! And God forbid if you opened a drawer anything could spring out at you. If the space I live in is unorganised and chaotic it spreads into every other area of my life. This is true for many people, I guess thats why the saying "a place for everything and everything in its place" is so catching. If you know where that place is just by reading it on the front, things get a little easier. 

Chalk board paint is a great solution to labelling things. You can paint it on just about anything and you can label things and relabel them just by writing with chalk and wiping clean.

This is my balinese style wall unit. It has plenty of drawers and I used to spend quite a while searching through every drawer to find something. I simply removed the handles, sanded the front of each drawer down and painted them with two coats of blackboard paint which can be found at most hardware stores and craft suppliers. It is quite cheap and dries quick. After I labelled all my drawers and cupboards with chalk, I was able to keep things in their place and find them so easily. It is a great way to organise your home and so easy, so I recommend giving it a go, it may change your life too...

Monday, May 13, 2013

Plaited Rag Headband

I always have off-cuts laying around of cute materials. I can't part with them but I can never find a use for them either. Until now.

Make a plaited headband out of scraps. Tear off three strips of fabric equal in length and width. My pieces were approximately 1cm in width and 35cm in length for a child's. Begin by knotting the three strips of material together with at least 5 cm overhanging. Plait as neatly as you can. To make this easier have someone hold the end for you while you plait or place the knotted end under a heavy object such as a chair or table leg. Tie a knot at the end. You will need to make sure that the plait is the right length on the subject. Ideally, it should measure from behind the lower ear and extend over to the other this is how to gage the length. Next you need to attach a length of elastic. I used white lacey elastic to match my fabrics. Attach one end of the fabric to the elastic by sewing it in place on the underside of your fabric plait just above the knot. Then cut two of the overhanging strips of fabric away. Use the remaining fabric to wrap around the knot and where the elastic is attached and hand sew at the back. This covers all the joinery and gives a more see less finish. Next measure the amount of elastic you need to reach around the back of the head with out stretch. This should be a good amount of stretch once you take into account the length lost in overlap. Cut and sew above the knot on the under side of the plait. Then repeat the process of covering the knot and joinery with matching material overhang.

You should now have a nice rustic looking headband and if you've used some of your favourite off cuts, you should be very happy with yourself! These make great gifts and would be great to coordinate with another handmade item in the same material.

Thursday, May 2, 2013

Hand Drawn Geometric Mug

This is my take on the hand drawn mug. This pattern is so simple to draw. Simple lines, fill in with zig zag and colour every second one. It doesn't matter if it is uneven. That just makes it more interesting to me. Have a go making your own.

Get a blank mug, a permanent marker and go crazy. Make sure you bake them in the oven at a high temperature for at least 10 minutes before attempting to wash them or you risk loosing your precious artwork! I would hand wash them to be on the safe side.

For a kids craft activity, get some coloured permanent markers and get creative...