For those of us that have children that like to craft, Autumn is a great time to utilize what nature has given us to work with. I know my son loves to make things and enjoys using nature to do it! I wanted to share a few of our favorite crafts with you so your family can also enjoy this beautiful season. These projects don’t cost much. Most everything can be found outside or around the house.
Fall Color String of Leaves
Usually around Halloween the leaves have come to be rich colors of red, gold, yellow and browns. Grab a basket and the kids and head outside on an adventure to find the prettiest ones. You will also need some yarn and craft glue. I personally like to use an orange or a green yarn, it blends in nicely. Collect as many leaves as possible because all will not make it to the final project. After you have collected your leaves, simply take them home and sort them by color removing any that are to damaged to use. Go ahead and begin tying your leave stems on to the yarn. I usually leave about a half inch between each leave body. Make sure to be careful during this process because these leaves are fragile. As you tie them on, leave the project stretched out on the floor or work place. After all the leaves are attached, go ahead with a craft glue and put a small drop on each knot. This will help minimize any slipping or falling out. Let it dry and your ready to hang it! This is a nice craft to keep around for Thanksgiving as well.
Apple Candle Holders
We all make that trip to the orchard for apples, donuts, and cider. Well here is a craft you can make from some of those apples. It is beautiful and easy. Simply go through that bag of apples and find a few that sit flat on a hard surface. Take an apple corer and make a hole about half way through the apple. Now insert a pillar candle and there it is. If by chance you do not have a nice snug fit with your candle simply wrap a rubber band or some waxed paper around the bottom till it fits. They only last about a week so if you are doing this for a special event then try and do it no more than a couple days before. For older kids you can also let them use the end of a vegetable peeler to carve some designs into the skin and then just apply a little lemon juice to the decoration to help preserve it. Put them on a plate or flat surface and display them proudly.
Nature Inspired Shirts
One of my favorites right here. We do this every year together and it makes for a great memory. You need to purchase some solid color tees in everyone that will participates size. Now for another collecting adventure. Go out to your favorite spot for collecting fall objects. Large leaves, flowers, or sticks that have some definition work best. After everyone has collected their favorite things take them home and lay them flat outside. Have everyone arrange the pieces they collected on the front of the shirt as they want them to appear. Take a spray bottle that you have filled with bleach and spray lightly the outline of each design. Let the bleach work for about one to two minutes and then remove the nature pieces. Thoroughly rinse each shirt in a bucket of water to stop the bleaching process and then wash and dry them. If this is something you would like to make in to a yearly keepsake, I suggest making a stencil from a garbage bag with the year, and placing that at the bottom of the shirt or wherever you would like it to appear. Put that in place before the objects and within a couple hours your family has a new shirt for the season.
We enjoy this craft every year from Halloween to Thanksgiving. Fun for the kids and they get to make a mess. Go and get some gourds, the strange shaped ones make for the most interesting designs. Gather all your craft paints and some brushes, sponge pieces, and anything that will make a texture in your paint. I like to use scrunched up plastic bags from the grocery store. Put down some newspaper and let the kids go nuts. There is no rules here, just be creative and paint away. If you are looking for it to be a little more structured than just crazy painting, maybe try having each family member try to paint the resemblance of another family member on their gourd. There is nothing sweeter than having your child paint your likeness.
Have fun with these and get crafty! Your kids will love you for it.