Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Fall Nature Crafts and a Tutorial

Today over at Year Round Homeschooling, I've shared a roundup of some terribly cute crafts I found while searching the internet for what on earth to do with my son's immense collection of pinecones. We also can't seem to help picking up pretty fall leaves, and of course, I love finding different types of acorns. We end up with piles of each, which drives my poor husband a bit batty, and they tend to get pitched out into the yard. That's fine, but I was hoping to find something we could do with some of them, at least. My son LOVES to do crafts!

When you read my post over at YRH, you will see that one of the crafts involves making snowy owls from pine cones. I got the idea from this post at Open-Ended Art For Children, but she didn't give a lot of detail - the words "self-explanatory" are involved. I...don't really do self-explanatory. Heh. I also found these instructions, which are better, but not what I did (of course). When I started making them, I decided to share my own little tutorial, just in case you are craft-challenged like I am. If you're not, carry on! Nothing to see here!

These things are blessedly simple to make, really. You need a few basic things:

  • Pine cones (If you really want to make these and somehow don't have pine cones, you can find them at any craft store)
  • Cotton balls, shredded into bits of fluff (kids love to do this)
  • Pipe cleaners or felt
  • Googly eyes
  • Glue (regular white glue is fine)
For the beak and wings, I used pipe cleaners, so I'm sharing instructions for that. 

Wrap a half a brown pipe cleaner around your pine cone so that the extra ends are in front. (I cut my pipe cleaner with craft scissors. Any scissors will work, just don't use your fabric scissors.)

Twist the pipe cleaner together once so it will stay in place, and fold the ends in so they form the beak.

Next, wrap a full white pipe cleaner around the middle of the pine cone, starting at the front and going all the way around the back, so that the white ends stick out at the side. 

Fold the ends in to look like wings. The pine cone I used was a larger than I thought, so this owl's wings are a bit short. We will call him an owlet.

Now, add your fluff. It didn't take me very long to decide I wanted to use a pencil to push the fluff into the spaces. Pine cones are prickly. Make sure you put lots of cotton in the places where you'd like your eyes to go. That will give you a somewhat solid surface to glue them.

Once your owl is fluffed add the eyes. I put the glue directly onto the owl rather than trying to put it on the back of the little googly eyes.

Once your eyes are on, you're finished!

You can make your owls look however you like. We chose some different colors and styles of googly eyes, for example. Did you know that a group of owls is called a parliament?