3 Easy DIY Fancy Dress Costumes.

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3 Easy DIY Fancy Dress Costumes.

It’s that time of year again mums and dads!  The painful time when your kids want to dress up as something that you can’t possibly find at a costume shop.  AKA Book Week!  This year was made extra painful by the fact I only realised at lunch time the day before, that I TOO had to dress up for work!  So I needed something we could whip up in one evening – these are the results. 

I wanted Mr9 to go as Mr Bump, but apparently he is too old for that.  So he wanted to be an MnM, even though that has nothing to do with book week… 

I needed to be able to sit and write in my costume, so a cardboard front was not going to work.  As poorly demonstrated in the photo, the body took its square shape while I held my hands up, which is all I needed for the parade part of the day. So it worked well.  I simply worked out the length I wanted it, doubled it over then brought one corner across to make a right angle triangle. Cut away the excess and the hard part is done! 

Then it was simply a case of drawing on the face and cutting a slit for the head hole. My ‘weights’ are old rope reals that we happened to have in the garage (for storing Christmas lights) and the hat was $2 from a junk shop.  

Little Miss Sunshine and the MnM are just variations of the same.  Trace a circle (work out how big you can go for the size of the costume wearer) We made a compass with ribbon and 2 pens.  Rather than painting, you could just use the correct colour card and maybe back it with some firmer cardboard, but we left this too last minute so had to paint.  The yellow craft paint required a layer of white under it as it was too transparent alone to give you that very ‘bright’ yellow that LMS required.  

We hand drew LMS facial features with pencil then went over them again with black marker.  The hair was cut from felt, but if you didn’t have any felt you could just draw the lines on for her hair (that’s all she has in the books anyway).  The plaits are 3 pieces of felt, hot glued to the back of the card.  

The MnM is much the same, but we used some templates for the facial features from this blog.  Which made life much easier.  I cut away the eye lids however and traced them back on so they were a consistent red.   Then it was just a case of fixing some straps to the back so they could be worn hands free. For this I simply attached some ribbon to the back with ample sticky tape.  Leaving a piece of ribbon hanging out the bottom, which was then stuck over the top in the opposite direction to avoid the ribbon sliding out of the tape.  The ribbons were still firmly secured at the end of the day.  

I think given more time some white gloves for each of these costumes would have finished them off nicely.  Other than that, not a bad outcome for a few hours work the night before. 🙂 

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Egg Carton Daffodils – School Holidays Craft

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School holidays!  Woot! First cab off the rank, these simple little daffodils made from egg cartons.

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All you need is an egg carton, paint, pipe cleaners or skewers, glue.  I used split pins to attach the centres to the petals, but you could just glue them too.  One carton makes 5 flowers.

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Cut the centres first, as shown above.  Then cut out 5 of the cups to make neat little flowers.  Daffodils technically have more than 4 petals, but I just worked with 4  as the egg cups have a squarish shape and it was easier to cut that way.

Paint the middle sections inside and out.  We used orange, but you could use any colour you like.  Then paint the outers a lighter colour.

Once dry, I poked some holes through the centre of each piece and using pliers inserted a gold split pin (my fingers wouldn’t fit in there, so had to use pliers).

For the stems, pipe cleaners would have been easier, but I decided to use some skewers wrapped in green raffia.  It gave them a more natural texture.  I secured the raffia at each end with some sticky tape.

Then it was simply a case of attaching the stems to the flowers.  I used hot glue for this.

 

Wax and Water Colour Painting.

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The motivation and creativity has been lacking majorly around here lately due to a heavy work load, but I set myself a challenge to blog at least once a month when I started this. So as June rapidly drawers to an end, here it is!  Most people probably remember doing this at school, magic painting, hidden pictures, secret messages, all the same thing under different names.
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All you need is some plain white candles, paper and water colour paints. We used the really cheap kids water pallet ones.  Rather than just doing some random paintings or drawings, I figured we’d turn them into something at the end.  So we printed out some sea animal colouring pages, stuck them to card and got decorating.

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You really can’t see where you have been with the wax, but I encourage the kids to try to create patterns or shapes as best they could.  Once they were finished with the candles, they went over each shape with some water colour paint.  As you wash over the whole picture, the paint will not attach to the areas covered in wax, leaving you with an interesting effect.

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Once dry, I cut out the shapes.  Ms5 helped put holes in them with the punch and we strung them up on a mobile frame with some streamers to make an under water mobile.

In hind sight we should have painted both sides of the shapes, but Ms5 is more than happy with it.  She’s trying to convince me to put a screw in the ceiling near the fish tank so we can hang it there.  lol.

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DIY Hidden Object Game

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DIY Hidden Object Game

I saw one of these in a game shop last Christmas, I thought it was very cool but not “I’m happy to spend $40 on this” cool.  It just looked far too easy to make myself.  Turns out I was right. You could make these in any shape or size, and fill them with just about anything.  We had all these things in the house already, so it was fairly inexpensive.

 

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There is several methods for colouring rice on the net, but I was looking for quick and simple.  The blue and red we made with just food colouring and a dash of water, mixed well then laid flat to dry.  The yellow we used vinegar in place of the water (some recipes asked for rubbing alcohol but we don’t have any of that).  The yellow dried about 3 times faster than the other 2, so that is the way to go.  Instead of placing the trays in the sun, I just put them in the oven at 50C with the door open.  The red took about an hour to fully dry (it took the longest).  I did stir it around occasionally to prevent any sticking and distribute the wetter rice.

Mixing the colour and spreading out to dry.

While that way drying we hunted around the house for appropriate goodies to put inside.  We came up with 20 items.  The amount of items you want to use will depend on your container size.  I think we could have easily used twice as many, but it was still a good ratio.  The items varied in weight and texture.

It would have been easier to mix all the rice colours together prior to filling the container, but the kids enjoyed layering the different colours with a few objects between, then shaking to mix at the end.

The container we used was an old straw holder. You can buy them full of straws at the grocery store for around $4.  It did have a hole in the top, but this actually came in handy as a place to insert a ribbon and attach the key to what is inside.

I took a photo of all 20 items, shrunk it, then printed and covered in clear contact.  Attached to the ribbon on top.  If you were to just use a clear water bottle or similar, you could just tie something to the neck of the bottle.

The key

The key

Once everything was put in and we were happy with the level of rice, I taped it up nice and tight.  And that’s it.  Some of the lighter items are easy to find and often pop up to the top, but theres several things we have not managed to find again, like the smily badge and dinosaur!

The kids really enjoyed this project and were able to be involved every step of the way.  It was a bit messy, but over all a success.

The Craft Cupboard Overhaul

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The Craft Cupboard Overhaul

I’ll be honest, I rarely walk past a discount shop without picking up a little something for my craft stash.  The only problem with this, is finding somewhere to keep it all.  The side board I keep everything in was at breaking point, it had been for weeks actually. So it was time to dive in and sort everything out.  It was a painful 3 hour job, but worth it!

 

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4 small bins worth of rubbish and a few hours later…

 

That all fits nicely now, but it did mean my supplies have to start taking over another room.

Craft cupboard.

Sewing kit, ribbon box, wool and twine box, tule, felt and glue stash.

Ohhh, looky, there is even some extra space!  What ever will I fill it with?  Mwahahaha!

Easter Biscuits – Kids in the Kitchen.

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Easter Biscuits – Kids in the Kitchen.

Much to my children’s disappointment, I am not much of a sweet tooth.  So I struggle to be inspired to make sweet treats.  But I figured we should do some ‘cooking’ for Easter, and this seemed simple enough for my likings.  🙂

They kids had lots of fun making mess with the icing and creating patterns on the Arrowroot biscuits.   I just bought ready made icing – because yes, I am that lazy.  🙂  Mini M&Ms and snakes for the stripes.

 

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DIY Bingo Craft Ideas

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Bingo’s rich history can be traced all the way back to Italy, where a game known as Lotto D’Italia spread in the 1500s. In the late 1770s, the game spread to France, and later, in the 1800s, Germany picked up the format of the Lotto game and turned it into an educational tool, assisting students in learning spelling, history, and maths.

Years later, bingo became a hit in the United States, with hundreds of people regularly attending bingo halls in the 1960s. Today, bingo has become a multi-million industry. In the U.K. alone, the online bingo industry enjoys revenues of $557 million annually, prompting even British supermarket chain Iceland Bingo to launch Bingoiceland.com

Today’s bingo games are a far cry from the games held in Italy and Germany in the 1800s, but they can still be used as a tool to teach children.

If you still have old bingo sites lying around in your house, you can certainly use them to create great arts and crafts that you can use to teach your children different concepts. Here are some ways to make full use of those old bingo sets:

Glittered Wooden Bingo Chips

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Image credit http://igottacreate.blogspot.com

This glitter project for bingo chips that can turn them into push pins for your children’s cork boards. The craft is fairly simple too: Collect all your used wooden bingo chips and apply clear nail polish to the edges. Roll the bingo chips onto the glitter and allow them to dry. Once the glitter and nail polish are no longer sticky to touch, finish the chips off with another coat of nail polish.

Bingo Dauber Easter Bunnies

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Image credit http://kidsactivitiesblog.com

This Easter bunny art craft is an easy project that your kids can make. Give your kids a dauber each and give them a piece of paper to daub. Let them go crazy and daub wherever they like, but make sure they stop before the sheet of paper becomes too crowded. Next, grab some smaller markers and draw the ears, eyes, nose, mouth and limbs to your bunnies. You can use these Easter bunnies themed papers as a gift wrapper or as an Easter card.

Wooden Bingo Chip Charms

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Image credit: April San Pedro

Create a one-of-a-kind charm with bingo chips. For this project, you will need bingo chips, eye hooks, alcohol ink, and jewellery charms. Pre-drill the wooden chips with a 1/32” drill bit. Apply alcohol ink to create a vintage look, then screw the eye hook on the pre-drilled hole. Add jewellery charms like a jade turtle, or a four-leaf clover.

Learning the Alphabet with Bingo Daubers

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Incorporate lessons into playtime with this bingo dauber dot art from DLTK’s Crafts for Kids  The site offers free printable bingo dauber projects. Print out these blank alphabets and let your child unleash their creativity using bingo daubers.