Friday, 2 October 2015

Autumn Leaf Projects // Kid Crafts


Woohoo, it's October! We are totally in autumn mode here in Dublin and are feeling inspired by the crisp air, colourful foliage and the return to comfy sweaters. To celebrate the beginning of fall, we spent this week working on several seasonal projects, and this post will show you how to create all of them!

On your next trip outdoors, gather leaves for some crafting. Make a game of who can collect the biggest, most colorful, or perhaps the strangest looking leaves. Talk about which trees produce certain leaf varieties or explain where the acorns and conkers come from. Or just get outside and enjoy the weather while it's still bearable to be out without your winter layers on!

The discovery is as great as the final results! 

Nature Crowns 
Make these while out on your next outdoor walk! Just bring a strip of paper (cut to size of the child's head) and some Zots (or glue or tape) in your bag for the project. 
- Collect items in nature as you explore- leaves, seeds, flowers and small sticks all work well
- Attach the items to the paper with Zots glue dots
- Once all items are attached, tape the crown together 
Want More? Check out the Nature Crowns by Maya Made where she cleverly uses reversed duct tape to attach the leaves. 

Carefully adding all the pretty bits to make her crown
Queen of the Forest in her Nature Crown

Leaf Puppets 
Super simple craft that is perfect for a simple game of peek-a-boo or a bit of puppetry. 
- Find some big, colorful leaves and press overnight to prevent them from curling
- Using a marker, draw different faces on the leaves 
- Attach the leaves to some sticks with tape
Want More? Take a look at this All Things With Purpose blog post where they use contact paper to create an adorable longer-lasting version.

He picked out the sticks and showed me exactly where the tape should go
A strip of Scotch Tape on the backside holds the stick in place
The finished project
Peek-a-boo has never been so hilarious
Too much fun with Leaves!

A Forest in the Fall  
Cardboard paper towel rolls are transformed into trees by adding real leaves.
- Cut slits at the top of the tubes for branches and smaller cuts at the bottom for roots 
- Mix blue, yellow & red paint to make brown paint (Optional step if you find yourself out of brown paint like we were!)
- Paint the cardboard with the brown paint, allow to dry 
- Use Zots to affix leaves to the branch pieces 
- Group the trees together for an imaginative setup
Want More? I first saw this simple idea on FamilyFun Magazine's Facebook Page. They have so many fantastic projects!

Some serious concentration here!
The kids loved mixing the colours to make brown paint
Before we added the leaves
Bear cub and rabbit wandering in the woodlands

Leaf Crowns  
Your kings of the forest deserve to wear these crowns on their next adventure!
- Using scissors, remove the leaf stems 
- Press the leaves overnight to keep the leaves from curling
- Fold your leaves a 1/4" from the bottom of each leaf, to create a straight edge
- Using Zots, gently place one glue dot on a leaf and stick the next leaf to it, repeat 
- Continue building your crown to fit the child's head
Want More? Here's a gorgeous leaf crown tutorial at Clickin Moms that uses a cool weaving technique.

Love the detail and colors that the Maples produce
Little poser in his crown of leaves
Vibrant yellow poplar leaves all lined up 
A view of the front and back of the crown 
Pretty poplar leaves circle her head in a crown 
Conker Soldiers
You can always tell the fall season is upon us when conkers become the sought after outdoor collectible! Every walk ends with pockets overflowing with conkers. So as much as autumn = leaves, it also means conkers! This craft was inspired by the natural spikiness of the conker shell capsules. When we looked closely at them my son declared they were like a viking's helmet.
- Collect conkers and their outer shells
- Determine which conker shells fit which nuts (we did not manipulate the shells or break them open, the squirrels broke them into pieces for us!)
- Poke a hole in the conker with a toothpick
- Using tacky glue, attach the shells to the nuts to create the helmets
- Paint on faces, attach googly eyes
- Add leaves for the bodies with a Zots dot
Want more? Here's a super cute chestnut worm craft by Artsy Ants that I know my kids would love!

Not very threatening, is he?!
Having fun with faces on conkers
Conker shells, nuts, toothpicks, leaves and googly eyes 
Guarding her collection from her brother 

I referred to Zots a few times in this post. If you aren't familiar with Zots products, they are clear adhesive dots. Basically, they're glue, without the mess!  I find Zots easy for the kids to use- you simply separate the plastic liner, pull the sticky dot off and place the dot onto the paper. They come in an assortment of sizes and are also available on rolls. If you're interested, here's an Amazon link where you can find a similar option.  (Note: This is not a sponsored link, I just really love this handy craft item and wanted to share!)

Zots are a great kid friendly craft item

For more leaf craft inspiration, check out Red Ted Art's sensational roundup. Loads of awesome autumn ideas to keep you going until winter! 

Do you have any great seasonal crafts you'd like to share in the comments section below? I hope you get a chance to get outside and go for a walk soon! Even if you don't find any spectacular leaves, you might just discover a sweet little moment between siblings... ;) Happy Fall to you all! 


6 comments:

  1. Another good reading luv this

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    Replies
    1. Thanks for the love and for reading along!!

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  2. Love the post, and the lovely fall colors and ideas! How about ironing the leaves in wax paper, cutting around them and hanging in the window? Always loved those!

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    Replies
    1. Oh yes!! And adding crayon shavings too! Love that idea. Thank you!

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