Monday, June 18, 2012

A Father's Day Project

On Saturday, the boys and I made this garland/mobile thingy for C for Father's Day:

When we were at the Coastal Maine Botanic Gardens, they had a kids' art show going on, and one of the exhibitions included something like this, made by local school kids, and I knew right away that I wanted to recreate one with my kids. Do you know the trick of giving your spouse a gift that is actually something you want for yourself? I don't feel guilty imposing this trick on C, because he practically invented it (also, we gave him a flat screen TV--the first ever TV that we bought and did not inherit after its predecessor began smoking of its own accord). I added a sun, a leaf and a flower (which you can't see 'cause it's rotated sideways) for more color.

My friend Raina recently posed a question on her blog about whether her readers try to control the outcome when kids are creating an art project or whether they just let the kids go and have fun, whatever they create. I answered with an emphatic give the kids the materials and let them go at it. However, that does not mean that I don't require a period of adjustment when their results don't exactly meet my vision (see my post about the painted canvases for example). Anyway, I envisioned a lot more color, a lot less Pokemon, but I love the final project (though I might introduce this again, and provide some animal templates and a select color palette, while giving them more leeway with the scissors (I cut out E's and Z's for them because my fabric scissors are huge).

I had planned on having them sew around the shapes and stuff them, but then I realized that was way too much work/crazy for a last-minute (ahem) project, so I ended up just gluing the front of the animal to the back, with a piece of yarn sandwiched in-between, and threaded on big buttons between each felt animal/thing.

So, the garlandy things I saw in the art show were made up of owls and raccoons and birds and other woodland fauna cut out of brightly-colored felt. One of my kids (M) got on-board with the owl concept, only chose to go with brown, another (Z) made a black tiger with gold strips and big green eyes and the third (E) chose a Pokemon guy, also out of black.

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