Get Crafty: DIY Toys From Trees
While working behind the scenes at GLTC's photo shoot, I, Rachel, spotted some cute little stick arrows that the stylist, Kerry, had made for one of the room set ups. With the summer holidays fast approaching, I thought they'd be a great craft to share with you as they're quick and easy to make and great for imaginative play outdoors. And because Swallows and Amazons is one of my favourite films, I couldn't resist having a go at a bow and a botanical headdress, too.
1. Measure the circumference of your child's head and cut a strip of cardstock approximately 10cm longer, and 3cm wide.
2. Cut out around 20 leaves of varying shapes - tall, small, narrow, wide. If your child is keen to practise their cutting skills, you can have them help with this part. Or if cutting is not their thing, they could add colour and embellishments to the leaves, instead.
3. On the floor or a table, arrange the leaves how you want them to be positioned along the band. You could have the taller leaves in the middle or, like I've done, on either side. You could also position them just at the front or around the entirety of the band (remember that you have a 10cm overlap).
4. To keep your leaves perfectly positioned, glue them on one by one with the band the wrong way round and upside down (it's best to look at the picture above if this doesn't quite make sense).
5. Wait for the glue to dry and then pop the headdress on your child using two paperclips to secure it in place.
The secret to a good bow is nothing more than a slightly curvy stick and a length of string. It might not fire all that well but when you have two children who don't always see eye to eye, believe me, that's no bad thing.
1. Find or cut a stick(s) to approximately 30cm in length.
2. Cut two targets and two fletchings (the arrow tail) from fabric or cardstock.
3. Glue them together on either side of the stick.
The hardest part is waiting for the headdress and arrows to dry. I'd suggest making them during a morning when you have plans to go out somewhere for the afternoon. That way, when you return, the glue will have set and your children can play with them.
READY FOR AN ADVENTURE
There really is nothing nicer that playing outdoors with toys that you've made yourself. And with six weeks of holidays to fill, it's a thrifty but fun way to spend a day during a potentially expensive time.
If your little Swallow or Amazon is in need of a den, have a look at GLTC's teepees and play tents. They're beautifully made and make gorgeous hideaways for children. The teepee design also makes them a doddle to set up, either out in the garden or inside.
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