Craft Foam Art Frame

This is another craft that we did after my son watched an episode of Artzooka!.  The episode showed how you can change the look of the same picture by adding different backgrounds and different frames.  My son just picked up the idea of making a frame for his picture, so we didn’t photocopy his drawing to make multiple frames/backgrounds.  The instructions for this particular craft can be found here, but it doesn’t give instructions on how to make a frame, it just gives suggestions on what to use and how to decorate.

Here’s what we did:

  1. Draw a  picture.
  2. Add a background (Danny chose to do those with purple marker).
  3. Tape your picture to cardboard.  I used a cheerios box that I cut out a little bigger than the drawing.
  4. Cut out pieces of craft foam to cover the cardboard border.  This is what made our frame.
  5. Glue the craft foam to the cardboard using a good tacky glue.  I have found that Aleene’s Super Thick Tacky Glue works really well for hard to hold items (craft foam, pipe cleaners, pom-pom’s etc.)
  6. Cut off the excess card board.
  7. Next came the part where this project went off the rails.  But, hey, that’s the fun when you do crafts with preschoolers.  We were now supposed to decorate the frame.  Danny asked for paints, so I got out the paints, and he proceeded to paint over his drawing…Then he asked to decorate the frame with foam flowers.  I pieced together the flower using three thin strips of craft foam and a lot of scotch tape.  I would put the tutorial up, but lets just say my way of making that flower wasn’t exactly an elegant solution.

I thought it was a shame that Danny painted over his cute self portrait, but my husband still gave it a place of honour on the office wall.  It was a fun project although I ended up doing more if it than I would have liked.  If Danny is still into crafts, we’ll try it again in a few years when he can help with the design and cutting.

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Egg Carton Insects

I remember as a kid making caterpillars out of egg cartons, so last year I decided to do a little twist and make some ants.  They turned out well, but I did most of the work.  I think Danny painted his, but he got me to do the face legs and antennae.  This year I thought little lady bugs might be cute, so I set up the stuff and got ready to make some lady bugs.  The thing is, as Danny gets older he has more ideas of his own, so when I presented the idea of making egg carton insects, he immediately suggested making butterflies.  I wasn’t prepared for that, but decided to go with the flow.  Anna on the other hand wanted to make a caterpillar, which actually worked out well because she only wanted to do the painting part.  She was able to occupy herself longer with a 6 egg caterpillar than she would have with a one egg lady bug.   So, I didn’t have any enlightened ideas in the heat of the moment for the butterfly wings, so we just cut some out of construction paper and glued the is to the egg carton butterfly body.  Danny had a great idea though to decorate his wings.  He used the left over “spike” that gets cut out from between the egg holders, dipped it in paint and used it as a stamp.  I’ve displayed the part on the bottom right corner of this photo, although you can’t really tell what it is.  It just made a cute square stamp that added a little extra fun to the decorating process.  We used pipe cleaner for the antennae, which Danny then painted to make them extra special.

This was a fun and easy craft that didn’t require anything that we didn’t already have in our craft box.