Easy Family Craft: Story Stones

Since we’re all stuck at home, I thought I’d share a fun, easy craft project that you can do with the kids. My friend asked me to come up with a family-friendly craft idea for a Facebook group, so I thought I’d share it here too. This cool thing about this project is that it allows for multiple activities. The projects consists of 3 steps: going for a hike to find your stones, creating pictures on your stones, and then telling a story using the pictures you have created. Here are the steps.

Head outside for a nature walk. Find between 10-12 stones. They can be different shapes and sizes, but flat ones tend to work the best for this project. When you get home, you will want to clean them so there is no dirt or debris on the surface. Give them a rinse with some warm soapy water and let dry.

Next, create a variety of images on the stones. You can use any of the following mediums on the stones:

  • Acrylic paint
  • Paint pens
  • Sharpie Markers
  • Colored pencils
  • Cut out pictures of objects from magazines and glue on the stones

Acrylic paint and paint pens are the best options, as they are thicker and have the best coverage. Create a bunch of different images; think animals, plants, people, hobbies, or anything that interests you!

Once dry, take turns telling a story using the pictures on your stones. Tell a funny story, a scary story, or create a theme for your stories. You can use just your own, or throw everyone’s in a pot and draw them randomly to tell your story! Go to Pinterest and search “story stones” for many links and variations on this project.

I hope everyone is staying safe and healthy. I’m taking advantage of down time to get creative and come up with some new projects. Thank for stopping by and happy crafting! 🙂

DIY Grapevine Wreath With Pinecone Flowers

Happy first day of Spring! In light of all the craziness in the world I thought I’d post a cheerful Spring-inspired project that is easy and fun! I found the grapevines and the pinecones on my property. If you can’t find them in nature, they can easily be obtained at any craft store or even Wally world!

Here are the grapevine “before.” I had the green floral wire on hand.

Using small pieces of the wire, go through and tie off your vines where they are coming apart, to create long bundles to work with.

You could use a wreath form if you’d like, which can be found virtually anywhere, including the dollar store. To get started, I just winged it and made a random circle with my longest vine.

Keep layering the vines and tying them down when needed. There’s no exact pattern, just tie the vines together where they are loose.

Looking nice and round!

Once you’re done with the wreath, start with the pinecones. You’ll be using the bottom part of the cone as the face of the “flowers.” Cut each pinecone in half, about 2/3 down towards bottom of the cone. You’ll have to use some big garden shears or heavy-duty pruning scissors.

Next hot-glue them onto the wreath, staggering them.

Add as many pinecone flowers as you’d like. You could go all the way around or do a couple small bunches; whatever looks good to you! Also, if you’re heavy handed with the glue gun like me, be sure to do it over a piece of cardboard or newspaper to protect from drips.

You can stop here and have an all-natural wreath, or you can continue on and paint the pinecones to add some color. It’s up to you and what kind of look you’re going for!

I chose bright, Springy colors. I painted them with my DecoArt multi-surface acrylic paint. I did 2 coats on each cone.

Choose your colors for the center of the flowers. I used yellow center for the blue, purple, green and pink flowers, and a brown/black for the center of the yellow flowers.

Once dry I will spray with a coat of clear sealer to help preserve them.

Hope everyone is staying safe and healthy. I have found it very therapeutic to use all this down time at home to get creative and work on all those craft projects I’ve been putting off. Happy crafting!

“Melted Snowman” Painted Stones

I live on Lake Ontario and have a stash of beach stones in my craft area for a few years now. They were smooth and round and I knew I wanted to paint them someday. After getting them out and stacking them I suddenly saw a glimpse of a little melted snowman! Stones, paint and super glue are really all you need. This is a super easy craft project and would make a great paper weight or a cute little shelf-sitter.

You can make the bodies and heads as big or small as you’d like based on your preference. The only recommendation I would have is make sure your stones are smooth and kinda flat.

I used some regular acrylic paint. Apply two coats so they are nice and bright white.

Stack them how you’d like and glue them in place. I used super glue and it worked really well.

Use a paint pen or fine tipped brush to paint eyes, mouths, buttons, arms, and a nose. Paint pens worked great for this project.

I used a small stencil brush to make subtle pink cheeks. I always like pink cheeks on my snowmen, but you don’t have to. Make the face however you’d like. 🙂

I tore some thin strips of homespun fabric for the scarves. You could also paint them on!

A small circle of fabric on the bottom will keep them from scratching whatever surface they’ll be sitting on.

You might notice I changed the large snowman’s mouth. Originally it was a squiggle but I decided I didn’t like it. Painting over it won’t work, as the white paint doesn’t cover the black without doing a millions coats. So instead, I sanded it off with a fine grit sandpaper. Then, I re-painted it white, and applied a new mouth with my black paint pen. I like the circle mouths because it gives them more of an “aww crap, I’m melting!” look…lol!

I also applied a coat sparkle mod podge to seal it and give them a sparkle. I am kinda obsessed with this sparkle mod podge incase you haven’t noticed. I think it gives a magical feel to a lot of Christmas and/or holiday crafts!

Dr. Seuss Inspired Star Tree Topper

Now that Thanksgiving is over, Christmas crafting is in full force! Recently my Mom was looking for the star tree topper that was in the Grinch movie (the Jim Carey version) and couldn’t find one anywhere. I decided to give it a whirl and make one. This is my attempt at the Dr. Seuss style tree topper and my first experience with paper mache in many years. It was a fun, messy project, and I love how whimsical and Seuss-ish it came out!

The biggest challenge was how I was going to create the swirly shape of the star. I planned on finding a normal star shape and using foil to mold the curled points. Instead, I got super lucky and stumbled upon this star at the At Home store. It was already the perfect shape! I had a coupon too. SCORE!

Paper mache calls for strips of newspaper so I cut some up ahead of time.

I added some foil around the points just to give the paper some more form to cling to, and to bulk up the star which was mostly hollow.

Most paper mache projects call for a watered down glue solution. I tried the watered down glue and it was just too runny. I ended up using straight glue with no dilution. I used some wood glue because I wanted to use up the bottle, and then just used regular Elmer’s glue.

Apply as many coats as you’d like, letting them dry completely in between. I did two full coats of the paper mache before painting. I used my trusty DecoArt multi-surface paint.

I mixed some red and black to paint the sides of the points in attempt to make it look more “3D.”

I got the small gold bells at the Dollar Tree.

A little piece of wire tied on the bells allowed me to shove them down into the small openings (some right through the paper that covered the tips of the points) and then used a dab of hot glue to hold them in place. You probably don’t even need the wire, but I did it just for extra security.

I applied one coat of sparkly Mod Podge to seal it and give it a bit of a shimmer! Also painted the base spiral black.

It’s a bit lumpy and bumpy but I think it looks pretty cute and whimsical! Mom loves it so that’s all that matters! 🙂

Grinch and Jack Skellington Peg Dolls

I’m back and in full craft mode!!! There are so many great little holiday projects out there this time of year that you can’e help but get inspired and motivated. I have always wanted to try to make peg dolls of some sort, and thought why not try two of my favorite holiday characters!

Initially I was going to use clothespins, but found these shorter, stumpier peg people at Michaels.

My go-to paint for pretty much everything these days is this multi-surface satin paint by DecoArt. It’s thin enough to go on super smooth, but the coverage is great! AND, is this not the PERFECT Grinch color???

Painted the heads and bodies first…

I will admit the Grinch face was hard. Harder than I thought. That’s why there’s only one Grinch…I have yet to tackle the other one. I drew it on with a pencil first, and it took a few times to get it right.

I used a tiny paint brush so that I could get the variation in thickness in the lines. I tried it first using a fine-point paint pen, but the lines were too blunt. The super tiny paint brush was way better for the details on this face.

The paint pen worked great for the Jack Skellington faces since they were less complex than the Grinch face.

For Jack, I cut out beards from some white felt.

The hats were made from red felt. I just rolled them over and hot glued them. Just kind of winged it.

Hot glue a little white pom-pom on the ends of the hats if you wish!

I used white pipe cleaners for the hat rims and for the edges of the Grinch’s coat. Bent around the paint bottle to get them smooth and round, and hot glued in place.

I love how they came out!!! A bit time consuming, but so worth it!

They make cute “shelf-sitters” but would also make great hanging ornaments!

Also, please note that you should probably not make these types of characters to sell, such as in an Etsy store. There are many legal issues with selling Disney characters without proper licensing. I plan on keeping and/or gifting these little guys.

Anyway, Happy crafting and Happy Turkey Day to all!

 

 

DIY Fall Carnival Game ~ Dollar Store Ring Toss

Once again I’m working on a craft project for my local scarecrow festival! Most of the supplies for this game were got at the Dollar Tree. The rest of the supplies I had on hand, however you really could get everything you need at the dollar store if you needed to!

I started out with a bunch of foam cones that are found in the faux flower/craft section of the Dollar Tree. My husband seems to thing these are going to break once the kids start playing, but I’m thinking it’s going to be fine after testing it and whipping the rings at them…lol. They are pretty secure and it’s a harder foam; not a soft foam that easily dents. You could also use the plastic orange cones found in the athletic section of Wally world.

I used acrylic paint I got from Lowes. These are sample jars that I like to get for crafts since they come in a huge variety of colors. Any acrylic would work fine.

Paint the centers orange and the bases yellow so they look like candy corns.

While those were drying I spray painted a big piece of scrap wood black. You also could use a heavy foam core board, or a big piece of cardboard. Wood is ideal because it is heavier but other materials could be used as long as you have a way of anchoring it down. 

I used some heavy duty glue to adhere the foam candy corns and a few small scarecrows, also got at the Dollar Tree, to the board. Use a very strong glue to ensure they stay attached to the board.

Next use stamps, stencils or free hand the “point” numbers below each cone or scarecrow.

Next I used stamps to write out “Ring Toss” along the bottom of the board. You can write whatever you want or write nothing…it’s up to you!

The rings are made from kids glowstick necklaces that come 4 in a package at the dollar store. I taped them to make sure they don’t come apart. They are lightweight and are the perfect sized rings for this game!

The game is pretty self-explanatory but I decided to make a small instruction sign using a chalkboard sign I already had, since the game is going to be at a festival. I made a line in the grass using orange duct tape.

That’s it! Easy and hopefully a fun little activity for kids to play while walking around the festival this year. Next on the agenda is a pumpkin tic tac toe game! Be back soon!

 

Thrift Store Mickey Mouse Dessert Stand

Hope everyone had a Happy 4th! Having some extra time off means extra time to get crafty! I have been wanting to make this Mickey dessert stand since I saw a similar version on Pinterest years ago. It was super easy and cheap. Would be great for a kids party or if you just plain love Disney like me! 🙂

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I found the red vase and black plate at Goodwill. You could use a shorter dish for the base, a smaller black plate, etc., to customize the size of your stand! The buttons and silicone adhesive I had on hand. Make sure to use a strong glue made for glass or ceramic.

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I applied a generous amount of the silicone adhesive to make sure it was nice and sturdy.

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Let dry completely.

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I could not find yellow buttons so I painted them!

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Once dry, glue on the buttons. Proceed to bake many desserts so you can use your new stand! 🙂

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Total cost was less than $5! Woohoo! 😀

Have a great weekend!

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