Showing posts with label crafts. Show all posts
Showing posts with label crafts. Show all posts

Sunday, February 9, 2014

Waldorf Beeswax Resist Valentine Bunting {tutorial}


Sometime last week, the girls realized that Valentines day was rapidly approaching. They had grand plans of making very elaborate valentines but were short of time (especially for mailing them). We needed something that was full of love and pretty to look at, but simple to make. The girls wanted it to be something that we had never made before but we had to keep in mind that it had to be something that all three children could work on together. We decided to make a bunting using the beeswax resist method, similar to other projects we have done in the past. Here's how we did it!

Waldorf Beeswax Resist Valentine Bunting

Supplies needed:
a good quality beeswax crayon in a light color (we love our stockmar crayons)
a pencil
watercolor paper
yarn, string or ribbon
a needle with an eye big enough to thread your yarn through
watercolor paint
a paintbrush
a painting board

heart shaped cookie cutter
hole puncher

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First, use your pencil and cookie cutter to trace as many hearts as will fit onto your watercolor paper. Alternatively, you could draw the hearts freehand.

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Next, write the letters for whatever phrase you wish to say on the hearts using your beeswax crayon. Yellow or any light color will work. The resist doesn't work as well with dark colors.


Now soak your watercolor paper in a sink full of water for a few minutes. You want the paper to be nice and wet but not so wet that it will tear or fall apart as your child paints on it. I usually soak mine about 5 minutes at the most. Place the paper on your painting board (or kitchen counter - whatever you may be using.) Wipe excess water off paper with clean, damp sponge. Make sure there are no puddles of water on the paper, and wipe away any air bubbles.

Now paint your entire paper using whatever colors you choose. In our case, Little L did red, C did pink and K made purple by layering red and blue on her paper.

Leave your painting to dry.

Note: You can view a nice Waldorf wet-on-wet watercolor painting tutorial here.


Once the paper has fully dried, cut out each of your hearts. Place the hearts, in the order you desire, on your table. Thread your needles with yarn (cut at a length long enough to fit your hearts with extra length to hang it up.) Starting at one end of your bunting, poke a hole with your needle and pull it through one side of your heart at the top and then push the needle back through at the other side of the heart. Continue in this manner until you have all the hearts threaded onto the yarn. Take your needle off of the yarn and you are done!

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Doesn't this banner remind you of conversation hearts?


One thing we learned this time around with the resist is that darker paint shows the letters much better. K had a vision in her head of lavender, pink and red hearts. They came out really pretty but it's harder to see the letters on the pink and lavender ones.

Some other heartfelt crafts from the past that you might enjoy :
Heart acorn necklaces, pine needle hearts, beeswax hearts, tissue paper and beeswax flowers.

Okay, time for me to get back to my birthday knitting - I am falling behind!!

p.s. - There's still time to enter the Waldorf Homeschool Handbook giveaway here!

Sunday, December 22, 2013

Waldorf Wool Felt Angel {tutorial}

With the lack of rhythm going on around here from our unpacking and trying to settle, I have noticed that my girls are a bit more on edge and sensitive than usual. So, as busy as we are, I have been making a point to stop, drop everything and just sit and create with them. The boxes can wait. We will be settled soon enough, but my children need all of me. I think I need that connection and one on one time just as much as they do, even if it's just for a short while. What a difference it makes. It really gets us all through the day.
With that in mind, I thought I would share another little craft the girls and I made last week.


Supplies needed:
-wool felt in your choice of colors for the angel's body, wings and halo
-embroidery floss (or gold thread)
-a small amount of wool to stuff her with
-craft glue
-sewing needle
-wool roving (for the hair)
-white chenille stem (for neck and arms)
-1 20mm wood bead (for head)
-2 5mm wood beads (for hands)

and if you choose to make a star staff as we have you will also need yellow modeling beeswax and a small wooden dowel.

angel template

Cut out one of each piece in wool felt. You can really make the angel in any size you desire but our pieces measured the following sizes: halo - 1 1/2", wings - 6" wide, body a little over 7 1/2" (that is for the full cut out piece, not folded in half)

arms and neck pieces

{Create neck and arms}*Warning neck piece shown is too short! Please ignore it*
Cut chenille stem the length of the angel's arms plus an extra half inch. Then cut another piece of chenille about 1 1/2" long for the neck. Find the center of each piece by folding in half.

neck and arms

Open the pieces back up and place the center of the smaller neck piece in the center of the arms piece, with the points of the neck piece facing upwards. Twist the neck piece tightly around the arms piece to form the neck.

neck neck and arms

{Attaching head and arms}
Fold your wool felt body piece in half on the fold line. Using your scissors, make a tiny snip in the center for your angel's neck. Then push the neck through the tiny snip from the inside and pull through.

attach head

Glue the head bead onto the neck. Either fold over the excess chenille or trim it.

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{Sew up the body}
Separate your floss so you have three strands to work with and thread your needle with them. Start at one of the angel's hands and sew a blanket stitch down the length of her body. Repeat on the other side. You can also blanket stitch the bottom of her dress to embellish it more, if you like. Just make sure to only do piece at a time with that so you can still stuff her with wool at the end.

sewn body hands

To make the hands, glue the beads onto the chenille sticking out of the angel's sleeves. Trim any excess chenille.

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Sew the angels wings on by doing a simple running stitch down the center of the wing piece. After you have attached the wings, stuff a small amount of wool into the angel's upper body/chest area. This will help her to stand and hold her body up straight.


Cut a length of wool roving for the hair. You want the piece to be thick enough to cover her head but not so thick that it won't stick on with the glue. You can make it any length you want. I tend to cut mine long and then after it is attached to the head, I style and trim it. Apply glue around the top, back and sides of the angel's head, leaving the face open and then stick the roving hair on firmly. Add a small amount of glue to the roving on the center back of the head and attach the halo.


After we glued ours, we placed our angels on their backs and had them hold down their hair to help keep it in place while it dried. Let dry for a few hours and then come back and style your angel's hair. C trimmed hers and left it down, K did pigtails on hers and I did braided pigtails on mine.

angels! angels angels

Tah-dah! Your angel is done! Use them as a decoration on your tree, in your Nativity scene, as a puppet or just as a decoration. The girls have been playing with theirs every day while mine is in a window in our living room.
I should add -  The girls thought their angels needed a base to stand up so they sewed on a circle of wool to the bottom of theirs and then stuffed the whole angel but that ended up making it hard for them to stand so I wouldn't suggest doing that.

p.s - I apologize for the photos. I need to resize them to stop the annoying flickr slideshow and it appears that messes with the photo quality. Please bear with me as I still try to sort this out.

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Gray & Gold for Little L (and a last minute Jack o' Lantern craft)

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It seems that I am only knitting for Little L as of late but I promise that isn't the case. Toddler knits just seems to fly off the needles compared to child or adult knits.

The sun is still shining in our woods so I thought it best to photograph Little L in his gray and gold milo while I still could (and before it became well loved and worn through, as many of our knits do).
He got on his pony trike to zoom around our hills and crunch leaves but then decided he needed to clean up some of the leaves with his wheelbarrow instead. This little guy of mine loves to clean and can't handle anything out of place; very much unlike his sisters. I think he is trying to bring balance to the force our family.

I was a bit hesitant over my color choices as I was knitting this little vest but in the end I am very pleased with it. Kevin says it looks like chainmail but I think it looks like the gray skies and gold leaves we see in autumn. I modified the pattern with worsted weight yarn and bigger needles hoping for a size 3 and I believe it worked. My guy is 2 1/2 but he is small for his age so it's a bit big on him at the moment (mostly in the armhole area) but he'll get two autumns out of it, if not more! I didn't block it out of fear that it would grow bigger. The only other mod I made was knitting the whole thing in garter stitch. You can see my notes here.

And just in case you were looking for a last minute Jack o' Lantern craft, here's something C and I made today as we sat by the fire. Jack o' Lantern oranges We just used whole cloves and stuck them in the orange to make a face (the same way you do when you decorate oranges for Christmas). Then we made a tiny hole in the top of the orange and stuck a clove in wrong side up to make the pumpkin stem. Voila! Miniature Jack o' Lanterns.

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Not the decision I wanted to come to...

Two lost teeth! Tooth fairy doll (with pocket) Waldorf tooth fairy doll 099

Remember our tooth dilemma with K from a few weeks ago? Well, we finally came to a decision and on Monday she had them pulled. In all honesty, that was really not the decision I wanted to come to. Kevin and I talked it over again and again as well as K and I. She asked us to get them pulled. I tried in vain to help her teeth become wiggly but they just would not budge. In the end what it came down to was K complaining of pain where her adult teeth were coming in.

She was so excited for Monday she could barely sleep the night before. She told anyone that would listen she was getting them pulled and that the tooth fairy would be visiting her that night. She didn't show one bit of nervousness or anxiety. That helped to reassure me that we were doing what was right for her.  I quickly finished up her tooth fairy pillow/doll that had fallen to the bottom of my WIP basket and gave it to her when I picked her up from school. I think that was a sweet surprise for her. She was excited over the doll's cloud pocket for her teeth.

She asked if Daddy could be with her for the procedure while I watched C and Little L. Kevin cleared his schedule to make sure that could happen. I admit I was relieved that she wanted Daddy there. I had a lot of my teeth pulled as a child and have some not-so-fond memories of it all, mostly due to the first time I had to have it done. My dentist, back then, lacked patience and empathy and just didn't seem to like children very much. I don't remember how old I was but I do remember being scared, and as many children do when they are afraid - I cried. The dentist put his hand over my mouth and nose (causing me to be unable to breathe) and told me I could not cry because I would scare the other patients there. Of course that made matters even worse. Needless to say, my Mom found a new dentist after that. I can still smell his cheap cologne when I think about that ordeal...

But back to K. At the last minute she decided she wanted me with her instead. I pushed my own issues aside and agreed. When we got to the room that the procedure would be done in, she was still as happy as could be. They asked her if she wanted to watch a movie. K looked at me to see if it was okay and I nodded my head yes. I figured for something like this we could make that compromise.
K decided on one of their selections (I have no idea what it was, she just saw dogs on the cover and picked it) and they put it on and laid her chair back. They gave her some "happy gas" to try to relax her. About three minutes into the movie and gas she started crying hysterically. I jumped up and ran over to her. She was too upset to speak but she clung onto me like she would never let go. After a few moments she said the movie scared her (she later told me it was because they were sword fighting). The kind dental hygienist had her pick out a new one (this time I helped, and we chose a movie I had actually seen before, Finding Nemo) then set her up again with the gas. Again, poor K started crying. She didn't like the gas (and I can't say I blame her!), as it was having the opposite effect it was meant to have, so we convinced them to just not use it.

K was quite worked up by this point and I almost had us leave, but then the dentist came in. He gave her a soft blanket to cuddle with and then situated his equipment so that I could be with her on the chair and have her legs over my lap. Then he left and gave her a good half hour to relax. She watched her movie while I rubbed her legs. I got her tooth fairy doll from my bag and gave it to her. I told her that her special doll would calm her nerves and keep her safe. She held her tightly in her arms. When the dentist came back in K was ready. The procedure took ten minutes or less,and I got to hold my sweet girl the whole time. K barely blinked an eye during it all but smiled big when the dentist showed her her two teeth. He then showed me why they weren't falling out on their own - whatever it is that naturally dissolves the roots (I have now forgotten what it was called) missed her teeth and only hit a small portion of the back of them. They would have never come out on their own.

My not so little K came out of the dentist's office proudly showing Daddy and her siblings her lost teeth. I could clearly see that she knew just how brave and amazing she was. I'm so proud of her. She spent the rest of the night inspecting her lost teeth, talking about them and sharing her excitement over the tooth fairy visit to come.

But this story does not end here, not by far! I have a little bit more to share about the morning after in my next post. See you then!

Sunday, February 17, 2013

One fine February day

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Have you ever had one of those homeschooling days when your child (or even yourself!) just isn't that interested in the lesson? It happens in our home, for sure! One fine February day C and I found ourselves desiring something new and different. I scoured one of my Pinterest boards for a project we could do with what we already had on hand. I came across salt painting and it seemed like just the thing to clear away our homeschooling blahs.

C drew designs on paper with glue and then we covered the wet glue in salt. I didn't want salt in every nook and cranny of my kitchen so I had her do this on an old cookie tray to contain the mess a bit. Then she dipped her eye dropper in water dyed with food coloring and dropped a small droplet of colored water onto a spot of her glue covered salt. She watched the color expand and run the length of her design, just like magic! She didn't seem to tire of doing this. Each time the color expanded she would squeal and do some more. We ended up going through quite a few pieces of paper that day. *On a side note - I made the mistake of trying to use the cheaper quality newspaper-type paper again (you would think that I learned my lesson last time). It made the glue drawings have a ring of liquid around them. This went away when we switched over to different paper.*

I do have to say that this project is all about the process, though. As soon as the glue dried the salt started falling off the paper. That's okay though, I think a lot of children would agree that the process is the fun part!

Off to frantically knit some more. One more day until his birthday!!

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