Thursday, December 29, 2016

Winter Holiday Felt Crafts with Toddlers

I love doing craft projects with Lucky.  We've had a lot of success with $1 kids from craft stores and using glue and stickers to put things together.  It would be a lot cheaper if I designed my own crafts, so I wanted to see what simple crafts I could come up with that involved minimal cutting and giving him a lot of chance to glue.

The green felt I'm using is left over from the Dinosaur Hooded Sweatshirts I sewed for the boys.  The blue and white felt is left over from their R2D2 and BB8 Halloween Costumes (which isn't on the blog yet but you can check it out on my Instagram account.)

These projects are very simple, but I still wanted to provide step by step instructions to remove any guesswork so you can do it, too.  I highly recommend using a craft felt glue versus standard white glue because that doesn't sink into the felt as fast so things have a better chance at staying glued the first time.

Christmas Trees

  1. Cut out 3 triangles and one little rectangle.  
  2. Glue the rectangle to the bottom back of one of the triangles.
  3. Glue the remaining two triangles on top of the first triangle.  Voila!  You have a tree
  4. Decorate the tree with sequins or glitter glue.  (With an older child you could decorate right away, with a toddler I'd recommend waiting for the tree to dry before decorating.)

Star of David

  1. Cut out two triangles. (I held two pieces of felt together while cutting so they would be the same size)
  2. Flip one triangle over and glue on top of the second triangle as shown.
  3. Decorate with sequins or glitter.  
I completed one of each of the projects by myself while Lucky was taking his nap.  This way I could make some that fit the vision in my head before I allow Lucky to have complete creative control.  I find that it helps stop me from "correcting" him.  

When I was waiting for my projects to dry, Lucky saw them and got really excited.  He couldn't wait to make his very own Christmas trees!  We glued the pieces together and then waited for them to dry before decorating.

It was hard for him to pick up the sequins, so it might be easier to (gasp) use glitter with a 3 year old than sequins, but nevertheless he had a blast.  

While Lucky was busy gluing, I was inspired to attempt a more complicated felt project.  

Menorah (or chanukiah as Lucky likes to "correct" me.)

  1. For the Menorah itself, cut out a semi-circle,  a small triangle, a small rectangle, and then a rectangle large enough to fit all of the pieces.  
  2. Cut 9 skinny rectangles for the candles (try to make sure they are thin enough so they can all fit on the menorah.)  
  3. Cut 9 little orange diamonds to be the flames.  
  4. Glue the pieces together.  
  5. If desired, use some glitter glue (I used glitter puffy paint) to make the flames sparkle.
  6. Decorate your menorah with sequins.  
  7. (Optional) Cut a second rectangle large rectangle and glue it to the back of the entire project to reinforce it.  I glued my whole project onto some scrap felt and then cut it out after it had dried.
At the time I was writing this post, I hadn't had a chance to do the Menorah with Lucky. Since this one has so many more pieces I know that it will be harder.  However, since I've decorated a window ledge with our bedazzled holiday items Lucky has been asking to make his own Chanukiah every day.  I now need to wait for a Rowdy nap so we have some uninterrupted gluing time.

There are so many pieces this time but I plan to let Lucky take it step by step.  I'll show him my version and ask him how he thinks the pieces should go together.  I'll give him the menorah pieces first, then the candles and finally the flames.  I can't wait to see what he comes up with!  

This was a two-for-one project for me.  I added some more holiday cheer (especially some Jewish symbols since our tree sort of dominates a lot of the decorating process) AND had a lot of fun crafting with Lucky.