Monday, December 31, 2007

Squeezing out a little more Christmas fun...

the Guerilla Art way!

Okay, I still haven't ordered my copy of Kerri Smith's Guerilla Art Kit but I will, I promise! Inspired by Ms. Hula's renegade adventures with her wee ones I have decided to come through with an idea I have been entertaining for almost a decade now. Be a renegade tree decorator and document it!

what you need:
*heavy paper/card stock
*markers, glitter,glue, etc.
*tape or a stapler
*digital or old skool film camera
*dry erase board (optional)
*foodie garlands from your holiday tree

scrumdilly-do it!

Set out your craft/art supplies and have your wee ones construct a most fabulous tree topper. The more outrageous the better! I did a GIANT star.Cut your shape, paint, decorate as you will and let dry. Once dry, make a loop-dee-loop out of a strip of scrap paper and close using a whole mess of tape ot a stapler.Affix to the back of your topper.

Next, gather up any "throw-away" garlands you and your kidlets may have constructed for your current tree. If you don't have any, gather up some cereal or pasta and thread and whip a garland up. I used a mini box of fruit loops for a three foot garland.Bundle up if it's cold, grab your camera(s) and go on a Christmas tree hunt! You know, all those sad and lonely kicked-to-the-curb Christmas trees that start appearing right around now? Those are the ones! Keep an eye out and when you find one, do a quick guerilla make-over, add a dry erase board with the date and location to the shot and snap a picture. Remove your decorations and move onto the next tree.**

You can even have your wee one's jazz up a shoe box to hold your Guerilla decoration kit. Keep it in the car for when a lonely tree calls your name. Keep your kit in a homemade bag and carry it with you on walks. The more your kidlets look for the trees, the more exciting it becomes! Believe me! I've been taking pictures of the trees since 2000 and I get all trigger happy on New Year's Eve. I have never decorated them before and can't wait to start! I'll post pictures as soon as I spot a tree! I had my kit with me yesterday but sadly didn't see nay trees.

I promise to post pictures soon and please, please, please if you do this, I would LOVE to see your pictures!

**Don't forget to remove your decorations after you take your pictures. Leaving them on would be a lovely and fabulous gesture methinks but it may also be too enticing for some types to steal away and litter the place up with. Keep our streets clean, right?

Have a Happy New Year! I wonder how long and far out we will see trees? I once snapped a shot of a tree in June!

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Happy Boxing Day!

Don't throw all that gift wrap out! Make a nifty gift wrap collage!

What you need:

*gift wrap scraps
*ribbon scraps
*gluestick, tape or kid friendly glue
*carboard, cereal boxes, paper plates, gift boxes
*glitter and other bits of fun
scrumdilly-do it!

Gather up all your gift wrapiness. You know, that pile of torn paper and ribbons and tags. Set out a selection of the goods for your wee ones to art it up with along with scissors and adhesive and something to glue it all onto.Have your wee ones cut or tear pieces of their favorite paper and arrange them onto their work surface for some collage fun. You can use broken-down gift boxes, paper plates, cardboard or heavy paper for your work surface.They can do random placement or make a torn picture. Cut, tear and glue away, add some glitter for fun and you will soon have a nifty memorable holiday collage! Don't forget to recycle the rest!
Other ideas:

**Collage onto a gift box and refold so that your wee one can have their own nifty treasure box for all those stocking-stuffers.

**Cut the scrap gift wrap into strips and make some more paper chains!

**Cut long strips of paper and have your wee ones collage onto a paper plate. Don't forget oodles of ribbon and you can make a paper plate hat not unlike the baby shower hats we so love to force new mamas to wear!

You may even want to save a box of scraps to keep around for when inspiration strikes. Kidlets can even art up the blank backs of the paper.Have fun!

Thursday, December 20, 2007

Festive fun with paper plates

I did this project last week with something else in mind (which I promptly forgot) and then this morning I thought of another way to do it but have no picture of the finished deal. Perhaps you will be inspired and send ME pictures!

Paper plate wreaths!

What you need:
*paper plates
*paint (tempera, acrylic or washable)
*glitter, sequins or tissue paper
*paper clip or hole punch and string
*white gluescrumdilly-do it!

Set out your supplies in a paint friendly area. Set evrything out on a splat mat or plastic tablecloth. Give each of your wee ones a paper plate and let them squirt 2 to 3 colors of paint onto it. You may want to water the paint down a tiny bit if it is super thick.Add a marble or two and have your kidlet(s) grasp the plate in both hands and wobble it just a smidge to get their marbles to roll around and mix up the paint. Add glitter and/or sequins if you like for some pizazz and sparkle.Set aside to dry.Once dry, help your wee one(s) cut out the center of the plate leaving a paint splattered ring. This will be your wreath. You can set out torn bits of tissue paper, pipe cleaners, cut up straws and more sequins so that they can decorate their wreaths even more. Glue or tape a paper clip to the back near the top and you have an instant hanger. Or, yo ucan use the hole punch to punch a hole for threading some yarn to use as a hanger. Have fun with the colors, do red and green for Christmas or jazz it up in silver and blue for a New Year's wreath. Add a clothespin to the back at the top so that you can clip a holiday card or photograph to hang in the center of the wreath. There are oodles of options, have fun and don't forget to take pictures! Send me your pics and I'll post them here with a link to your blog.

Have A Happy Holiday!

Monday, December 17, 2007

Sack it up!

Hop on over to Kids Craft Weekly for my newest scrumdilly-do project; Lunch Sack Holiday Cards. If you're not a subscriber to Kids Craft Weekly, make sure to sign-up! It is chock full of nifty, crafty, artful ideas (if I do say so myself!) This week's weekly includes four holiday projects along with some nifty gift ideas. Here's a sneek peek:

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Repurposed Art: Paper Chains

When I was 5 years old, I fell ill with pneumonia...twice! Amidst all the colorforms and coloring books, someone had given me a pad of gummed orange paper strips. I remember laying on our old scratchy brown couch wrapped up in a vintage silk quilt making link after link to form this tremendous paper chain. I thought these papers were the bees knees. What better way to make a paper chain than to repurpose your kidlet's own fabulous art? You can even make art for the sole purpose of chaining it up!

What you need:

*flat, colorful paper artwork
*glue stick, white glue or tape (kidlets LOVE tape!)scrumdilly-do it!

Take scissors to your kidlet's artwork cutting it into thin (no more than an inch and a half wide) strips at least six inches long. Place withing reach of your wee ones. If your kidlets are old enough to do this, allow them to do so. Scissor work is always fun for wee ones and it helps strengthen those wee finger muscles. Decorative edged scissors would work also but sometimes cutting with them can be frustrating.Once all the strips are cut, begin with the first link. Have your kidlet hold their strip in front of them, horizontally and artwork side up. They will need to add adhesive to one end of the strip. Once the glue is on the end, curl the ends under to form a loop, pressing together so that the glue holds.Next, take another strip and insert halfway through the completed loop. Add adhesive to one end and connect, making two complete loops or links, if you will.Continue on until your kidlets have a chain deemed worthy for the tree, their bedroom or wherever it is they wish to display it.You may want to have your wee ones complete a pile of unattached links to alternate with. Sometimes adding a new link to a loop can be frustrating so starting off with a bunch of links to join can ease that frustration. You can also use old holiday cards, gift wrap and/or magazines for this project. Have fun!

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Revisiting Tinfoil Festive

 Many thanks and homemade cookies to blogger bethany actually for repurposing tin foil festive into Holiday Cards! Check out her blog for some fabulous pictures. What a great idea, I wish I had thought of it! Anyone else doing something extra spiffy for the holidays?

More Holiday fun coming tomorrow! (I misplaced the book that jump started my circle frenzy so that will be coming in January. Sheesh, where has all the time gone?)

Wednesday, November 28, 2007


I'm in a round sort of mood what with all the cookie baking and glass balls floating about for the holidays. I've put together a list of books about circles and dots. You can find my newest listmania list here and stay tuned for some round worthy art fun coming up this week.

One thing you can start on is making your environment an all circles all the time kind of place. Get out your kidlet's balls and/or other round toys and play. Talk about their shape and ask your wee ones if they can think of other things that are round. Grab a stack of paper plates and some crayons or markers and set up a circle inspired art center. When you are in the car or out and about create a circle scavenger hunt. Once you open your eyes up to circles that's all you see!

Thursday, November 22, 2007

Arting it up for Thanksgiving...

the Old School way...

Come on, you remember doing this, don;t ya? Whether or not you like it, think it is art or just plain silly I tell ya, kidlets LOVE doing this. It's a nifty trick, turning your hand into a turkey. This project could probably give you some much needed kitchen/clean up time, just make sure your wee ones can handle scissors before leaving them alone!

What you need:
*yours and/or your kidlets hands
*markers, crayons, pencils, etc.
*kid friendly scissors
*construction paper, scrap paper, magazine pages
*tape and/or glue
*feathers, ribbon, fabric, tissue, etc.

scrumdilly-do it!

Set your wee ones down with all their materials. Really, the supply list you could use for this is endless. Help them or have them trace their hands. Cut out hand shapes. You may want to do this for younger wee ones and while you are at it, cut out enough hands as there are dinner guests, you can turn these turkeys into place holders or table decorations!

Next up, decoration time, color, glue, tape and bedazzle your turkeys. When you're done, give them a name and put on a show and tell. Most of all, have fun! Let your kidlets get creative, let them go wild with the masking tape. If they want a pink turkey, let them have a pink turkey, the goal for this is to give them all the freedom they want to turn their hand print into something else. Who knows what they will come up with!While you're at it, read them a fun book. I'm sorry I didn't get this up sooner but two of my favorite Turkey stories are Twas' the Night Before Thanksgiving by Dav Pilkey and Pete's Chicken by Harriet Ziefert with pictures by Laura Rader.Happy Turkey Day! Don't forget to ask your wee ones what they are most thankful for and while you are at it, don't forget to ask yourself!

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Not Made in China

I was working on a post with links and ideas and such for holiday gifts from the heart when I came across Amy of angry chicken's post. She has written it out so clearly all the thoughts in my head and so I urge you to wander over to her post for a looksie. You may also want to check out Etsy for other handmade options for your wee ones and of course, take a gander at my new fab matching game.Other links and shops and such:

Moolka Toys
Oompa Toys
Rosie Hippos
The Daily Green
Parent Dish
Family Fun Handmade Gift Ideas
The Toymaker's Paper Toys
DIY Kids

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Pine Cone Pizazz

More pine cone fun...use 'em as a paintbrush of sorts.

What you need:
*pine cones, all sorts and sizes
*paint such as acrylic, tempera or poster
*coffee filters or a light fabric like muslin
*paper bags sans bottoms & cut open, construction paper or large pieces of bark
*paint brushes or sponges
*white glue
*leaves and other natural elements if ya like

scrumdilly-do it!

You can take a nature walk first so that your kidlets can go adventuring. Don't forget the masking tape! I live in Los Angeles and gathered most of my materials in my backyard. If you live near a park, you can go there or of course hit the forest or beach if those are nearby. This is a perfectly adaptable project to use no matter your outside environment.

Gather your supplies and get ready to get a little messy. The first thing you will want to do after you set up is to have your wee ones paint their pine cones. Let them slop it all on, the more paint and colors the better.Once their first cone is smothered in paint, have them take up a coffee filter or piece of fabric in one hand while placing the pine cone smack dab in the middle of the fabric with the other. Have your kidlet(s) wrap, squeeze, fold and/or arrange their fabric/filter around their pine cone, release and set aside. Repeat with more swatches or more different painted pine cones.Set out the paper or bark and have your your wee ones arrange their filters, leaves and such for collage. Glue all pieces on and set aside to dry. There you have it, a nifty nature collage!What will your wee ones use?

This is a great activity to talk about nature and what is around you. Take time on your walk whether it is around the neighborhood, park or forest to talk about the critters you see everyday. You can talk about ground squirrels versus tree squirrels. Why do pigeons bob their heads? How many grasshoppers can you find? Even the most ordinary critter to us can be fascinating to a kidlet. Take sheets of thin paper with you along with unwrapped crayons to make impromptu tree rubbings. Stand still and listen to the noise around you. I live right off a busy street but when the traffic slows, around me I can hear a woodpecker, hummingbirds and angry squirrels. Don;t forget that nature is all around us as it should be. Take some time to enjoy it with your wee ones and make some nifty art while you are at it!

Friday, November 9, 2007

Nature's Canvas

Fun with pine cones!

I have found that most kidlets get a real kick out of painting things that they wouldn't ordinarily paint. One fun project for fall (or anytime) is to paint pine cones. We collect them year round here at the tiny casa. So, take your kidlet out for a walk and go pine cone gathering. Once you are back home and settled in, have your wee ones paint a pine cone masterpiece!

What you need:
*acrylic paint
*paint brushes
*clean, paint proof area to work in

scrumdilly-do it!

Set out your supplies and let your wee ones have a blast paint, paint, painting away. Add some glitter to the wet paint for flair...Set your pine cones somewhere to dry and wait.Once they are dry, Let your wee ones decorate the house with them or perhaps load 'em into a bowl for a centerpiece.You can also add string to them and string them along...Oodles of fun can be had and a bowlful of painted pinecones would make for a great homespun gift.

**To kick it up a notch, throw in a few other collagable supplies like feathers, ribbon, pipecleaners and glue and let your kidlets fancy up their pine cones even more. Have fun!