Sunday, 16 October 2011

Art & Craft Tutorial for Kids - How to Make a Halloween Spider

I write an art and craft column for the fabulous family oriented magazine, NI4Kids. Be sure to visit their website to see all of the step-by-step photos of this project, as lots of other fun crafts to try out!

There is nothing like a good old fashioned scare on Halloween and this creepy-crawly spider is sure to get a few hearts racing! It’s so quick and easy to make, that you can create tons of them.

Supplies needed: black craft foam, masking tape, double-sided tape, pencil, string, scissors, 4 black pipe cleaners and googly eyes.

1. Place the masking tape on top of the black craft foam. Trace around the centre of it to create a circle. Repeat this step on another area of the foam, so that you end up with two circles.
2. Cut the circles out and set aside.
3. Gather the 4 pipe cleaners together, with the ends as even as possible. Wrap a piece of masking tape around them.
4. Tape the pipe cleaners on to one of the circles.
5. Cut a long piece of string and tape it to the same circle.
6. Apply double-sided tape around the edges of the circle. It helps to tear it into small pieces.
7. Remove the backing paper from the tape and apply the second circle on top. Press firmly to make sure the circles are well stuck together.
8. Apply double-sided tape to the back of googly eyes and attach toward the top of the circle.
9. Spread the pipe cleaners apart. Bend and curve them until they resemble spider legs.
10. Hang your spider from the ceiling or a doorway and watch your friends jump! For an extra creepy-crawly effect, get some stretchable spider web decoration for the spider to live in.

Top tip: If you don’t have double sided tape, just fold a regular piece of tape and overlap the edges, so that it’s sticky all the way around.

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Tuesday, 4 October 2011

Art & Craft Tutorial for Kids - Autumn Tree Picture

I write an art and craft column for the fabulous family oriented magazine, NI4Kids. This article was featured in their recent autumn edition. Be sure to visit the NI4Kids website to see step-by-step photos of this project, as well as lots of other fun crafts to try!

1. Cover your work area with an old tablecloth or newspaper.
2. To create a picture frame, place a piece of A4 paper on the centre of a piece of white card. The card should be several centimetres larger than the paper. Carefully trace around the paper with a crayon.
3. Starting from the centre of the card, cut toward the edge and stop at about a centimeter before the crayon line. Turn the scissors and cut out a rectangle, using the crayon line as a guide. Make sure you always stay about a centimetre inside the crayon line, rather than cutting directly on it, as this will make the frame fit the page better.
4. Starting at the edge of the card, cut a wavy line all the way around. Use the crayon line as a guide again, but this time cut on the outside of the line.
5. Randomly cover two A4 pages with autumn colours, such as red, orange and yellow. Using the sides of the crayons will help to cover a lot of area quickly, as well as create a smoother application. Go over the pages several times, letting the colours overlap.
6. Crunch the pages into a tight ball to create lots of wrinkles.
7. Flatten the pages out and rub the side of a brown crayon all over them. 
8. On another A4 page, draw a brown tree with lots of branches.
9. To create leaves, tear one of the autumn coloured pages into loads of small pieces and place them in a tray. 
10. Use a glue stick to apply the leaves to the tree. Overlap them, just like on a real tree.
11. Tear the second page into large pieces and cover the entire frame, using the glue stick to attach them. 
12. Turn the frame over, fold the excess paper and glue it to the back of the frame. You could do this on both the inner and outer edge of the frame if you like. I left the outside edge alone because I liked the way it looked rough and leafy.
13. Set the picture face down on top of the frame and attach it with masking tape. 
14. For a little extra pizazz, you could use the tip of your finger to rub a tiny bit of gold paint all over the frame. This is optional and your picture will look great with or without it!

Top tip: If you would like a detailed background, colour it in before you add the leaves. Originally, I thought I wanted just the autumn colours of the tree and later decided I would like a blue sky. It would have been much easier if I didn’t have to colour between all the leaves!

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