Plaited Foot Keepsake & Holder

When I was little and went over summer to visit my grandma, my favourite time pass was making plaited with lace foot/shoe holders. In the original method you must use laced ribbon and needle and a thread to stitch everything together. 

So today I want to share with you a variation of my childhood gifts that I made for everyone in the family: Plaited Foot Keepsake & Holder. 

You will need:

– cardboard or cereal box

– marker

– scissors

– gift wrapping ribbons 

– double-sided tape

– hole puncher

How to make your keepsake:

1. Trace your child’s foot on the cardboard. For older children (over 2) you can let them trace by themselves. Cut it out. 

2. Make the top for the keepsake – similar cresent shape. Cut it out. 

3. Now use double sides tape to secure few vertical pieces of ribbon across the foot. Do the same for the horizontal pieces. 

4. Now following the collage, plait them over each other. Repeat with the cresent shaped top.

5. Using double-sided tape, tape some more ribbon on the other side of the sole. 

6. To connect both parts and make a shoes, use the stapler. Or you can stitch them together, too. 

7. Using a hole puncher, punch a hole at the top and put a thread through. 


Your keepsake is ready! And you can use it as a candy holder, too. For Christmas you can use it instead of a stocking! And it will make a lovely gift as well. 

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Please join us for making lovely Kid-Made gift Ideas. Every year several bloggers join together for this amazing project hosted by Teach Me Mommy! Hop over to  Landing Page to see what you have missed and what is coming up!

ABC Herbarium

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This is last of the 5 days series Fun Ways to Play with ABC’s – Natural Materials – hosted by Something 2 Offer.

I chose making a herbarium as my theme as we often pick up leaves and flowers and make craft with them or preserve them in various ways.

Our recent herbarium was intended for practicing letters of the alphabet. It can be complicated to practice writing words and  sentences. And, as a great gift idea – birthday or anniversary  wishes.

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Materials needed:

Almost dry leaves or fresh fallen leaves
Scotch tape
Scissors
Cereal box
Marker
Color contact paper (green here)
Transparent contact paper (optional)

Process:

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Contact paper and leaves ABC’s
1. Cut out squares or rectangles out of the cereal boxes and stick the leaves on them with the scotch tape.
2. Draw letters on contact paper and cut them out.
3. Stick the letters on the leaves. These will make pretty ABC cards. You can use clear contact paper to preserve them for longer period of time.

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Leaf ABC’s
1. Draw your letters on leaves with a marker.
2. Cut the letters out and cut out squares from cereal box.
3. Stick the letters to the cardboard with scotch tape.

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Writing on leaves
1. Secure leaves to cardboard as mentioned above.
2. Write with a marker on top.
To preserve, use transparent contact paper.

Voilà, you just upcycled and recycled your cereal boxes and natural materials!

Please visit the landing page for Natural Materials to get more  ideas!
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ABC Mobile

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Summer is almost over and in many countries children are starting going back to school. For us school starts on September 1st so we are spending the rest of the summer enjoying various activities.

I am happy to participate in 5 days series called Fun Ways to Play with ABC’s hosted by Something 2 Offer. In this series for the next 5 days we will introduce various ways to plays with ABC’s, each day for a different age group.

For the first day, I am introducing an ABC mobile I made for infants, in a category of Homemade Ideas. At the end of my post I will suggest easier ways of making this mobile.
Mobile toys are one of the first interactive toys babies may see. There are so many on the market: with or without music; wind up ones and battery operated ones; ones that move and once that don’t. You can also make your own mobiles and it is super easy.

For this ABC’s mobile I used the following materials:
Upcycle fabric (mine is leftovers from the fabric I used to make a dress for my daughter; you can use an old pillow case, sheet or dress)
Scissors
Craft ribbon
Double sided tape
Isolation tape
Wire hanger
Threads
Needles
Sewing machine
Old teddy bear (or pillow) for stuffing

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Method:
1. To make the base for the mobile:
– You can use an old hanger made from thinnest wire. Bend it into a circle, triangle or square.
– To secure and make it look better, tape over with an isolation tape. Mine is of a pretty red color! Set it aside.

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2. To make the letters:
– Decide on the size and trace the letter on a piece of folded fabric so you have 2 sides which you need to stitch together.
– Stitch the sides by hand or using sewing machine, leaving space to put the stuffing through.
– Stuff it and stitch the opening. Repeat with the rest of the letters

Easier version: use felt or thick carton to cut out your letters. In the case with carton you can use sticky craft paper to decorate over.
– Using craft ribbon, cut out stripes. In my case to make it thicker, I used double sided tape and folded the ribbon into 3 and secured it. Then stitched by hand to the letters.

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3. Assembling the mobile:
– Using double sided tape, stick a piece of it to the other end of the craft ribbon you just stitched to the letter.
– Fold the ribbon over the mobile, securing the edge with tape on it so it is tightly wrapped around the circle. Secure all the letters.
– Using a larger piece of craft ribbon, repeat the same process with double sided tape in order to make a “handle” which you will use to hang the mobile (see the very first picture at the beginning of the post for reference.)

I would suggest not to put more than 3-4 letters at a time. You can change them weekly and hang above the baby’s crib during his awake time. While talking to the baby you can also name the letters to him.

One great thing about the letters I made, once child is older they can be given to.him to play with – simply detach and cut off the ribbon.

Some ideas for stuffing: to make it much safer and completely allergy-free, use pieces of fabric for stuffing.
To ensure better sensory experience once the child is able to  hold the toy, you can add some beans inside with the stuffing.
Supervision is required, especially if you stuff beans inside.

Please visit our Landing Page for Homemade Ideas to read more posts from other participating blogs!

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Creative Tuesday: Pencil Holder

pencil holder
We had an absolute blast making these pencil holders in my English class! They are easy and made from upcycle and left-over materials.
What you need:
TP roll
a piece of cardboard paper
a piece of construction paper
glue
a CD
scissors
markers, crayons or paints
How to make it:
1. Take TP roll and cut one side into 8 pieces, about 1 inch long. Fold them up to resemble octopus legs so the roll can “stand”.
2. Using a CD, trace 1 circle on cardboard paper and 1 circle on construction paper. Cut them out.
3. Using the other side of TP roll, trace the circle right in the middle of the construction paper circle. Cut it out.
4. Fit the construction paper circle over the TP roll all the way down to the “octopus legs”.
5. Apply A LOT of glue on the cardboard circle and the “octopus legs”. Press both circles together tightly. Use clothes pegs to secure the circles in order for glue and paper to blend better.
6. Using markers, crayons or paints decorate the TP roll body.
pencil holder1
You pencil holder is ready as soon as the circles are stuck well together!
This activity takes between 25 to 60 minutes depending on child’s skills of cutting, glueing and decorating!

One fish… two fish…

“One fish, Two fish, Red fish, Blue fish,

Black fish, Blue fish, Old fish, New fish..”

Sounds familiar? Of course! This is the line from one of our daughter’s favorite books by Dr. SeussOne Fish Two Fish Red Fish Blue Fish“.

March 2nd happens to be the birthday of Dr. Seuss, otherwise known as Theodor Seuss Geisel, – an american writer, poet and cartoonist who won the hearts of hundreds of children around the world with his humorous rhymes and strange characters.

Today we made an activity “Under the Sea” dedicated to Dr. Seuss and his book “One Fish Two Fish Red Fish Blue Fish”.


This activity came to me spontaneously. I originally planned on making just play dough fishes over the  construction paper. But it seems the shopkeeper sold me the wrong type of flour and when I made the play dough (which I’ve made a few times already!) it came out too sticky and too soft. I tried to fix it but it was a play dough failure! 

It suddenly struck me that I could use the play dough to make more than just fishes. And this sticky and gooey play dough was in fact a great way for the following activity. Otherwise, ANY type of play dough will do!

You will need:

A piece of construction paper (blue or green)

Glue

Scissors

White paper

How to do it:

1. Cut out seaweed, rocks and other sea plants out of the white paper.

2. Glue them onto the construction paper.

3. Now, take small amounts of play dough and smudge them over the white paper, filling up the shapes!

4. Make fishes: take small balls of play dough, press them against the construction paper and then shape out the tales. Make eyes out of tiny pieces of play dough.

5. Read the book (or the part of it, depending on your child’s age) and have the children point at their fishes and the fishes of their friends!


It helps to wet the hands a bit with wet wipes for the play dough to spread out better!

Got any activities dedicated to Dr. Seuss’s birthday? Share them with me! I’d like to read about them!

Creative Tuesday: Paper Cup Turtle

Welcome to my Creative Tuesday series! Today I will share with you how to make a Paper Cup Turtle. I came up with this activity while fiddling with cut-up pieces of paper cup while my daughter was making something else (which I will share with you in another post). 

There is not much science to it. It is a fun activity, aimed at children who can hold scissors and cut with them.

Here’s how you make it:

1. Take 1 or 2 paper cups (I took 2 as I wanted the shell part to be higher and bigger). Make 6 cuts on the sides of the cup, as long as you need.

2. Now to “model” the cut up parts: shape one in as a small triangular tail; the exactly opposite – as a head; and 4 legs. Bend them slightly up, so your turtle is “standing”.

3. Take a marker and draw eyes, nose and mouth.

4. We used green marker to draw the design on the shell part.

5. If you are using 2 cups: cut the 2nd cup into half. It will be the shell. Draw the designs. Put it on top of the first cup. You can either glue it to the lower cup or let it be removable (like ours).

You can make a whole family of turtles for a fun play!

Do you make animals out of paper cups? If so, please share with me – I’d love to know!