Category Archives: children’s crafts (recycled materials)

MYO Charming Mushroom Pincushions Made With Recycled Shirts and Wood

I designed these charming mushroom pincushions out of recycled materials and pieces of branches. If you change the design a bit, you could make a forest of trees in a similar way. –Another day perhaps. These pincushions could also be adapted into cupcake pincushions. Just scrape off the bark and paint the stump with lines like a cupcake bottom.

I know that mushroom pin cushions are old news but I’ve put my own spin on the idea (using wood for the stumps). The wood bottm makes them very stable.

Incites on how to make your own:

Gather supplies as seen in picture. –jar lid, wood stump, fabric, stuffing, plate for tracing. You will also need needle and thread and glue. Sometimes I use wool roving for the stuffing. The natural oils from the wool help to keep needles from rusting.

First, use a plate to trace a circle on a salvaged knit shirt. You want fabric that will stretch like a t-shirt.

The size of the plate will depend on the size of the jar lid you are using, which will depend on the stump size. The fabric will need to be bigger than the jar lid by about two inches extra all the way around. Smaller mushroom tops will require less, so test it out.

Using a straight stitch (put the needle up then down, up, then down through the fabric) to sew all the way around your circle. Sew near the edge. I like to use a metal jar lid to help shape the mushroom to have a flatter bottom.

Pull the thread to gather the fabric. Add the jar lid and the stuffing and gather some more.

Knot the thread to hold the gather.

Glue the mushroom top to your stump. I used a branch that I chopped with a miter saw. You could use a hand saw. Put something heavy on top until the glue dries.

I made the tall mushroom out of a second-hand infant hat. I like to use it to hold threaded needles for quick access.

4th Of July Centerpiece Made From Recycled Materials

Happy 4th of July everyone!

Looking for an easy craft to decorate for this patriotic holiday? Here is a super easy craft that is red, white and blue- and “green” too. The swirls make you think of fireworks.

Save the twist ties off lettuce or other vegetables. In this instance you will want to use the ones that are red, white and/ or blue. Make tight curly cues by winding around a pencil and make larger curls freehand. Twist one end to the top of a clean saved chopstick (saved from last year’s outings). You can glue in place. Arrange your sticks in something you already have: an interesting jar could be nice.

Box House For Pet Rat

Meet my daughter’s pet rat named Kitty.

Entertain your pet rat with a multi-story playhouse. Rats are curious little things and are very smart. Keep your pet rat busy with houses you can make yourself out of salvaged boxes.

To make:

Find boxes that will fit inside your enclosure. Use them to create the playhouse especially for your rat. Don’t be sad if it gets chewed up or soiled. Just make a new one. Changing up your rat’s environment will make your rat happy.

Don’t forget to hide food around for your rat to find.

Here is a very simple home for a rat made out of a tissue box.

Before Kitty had her own home, my daughter liked to share her doll house.

Here are a few shots I took. Hope you enjoy them!

Hope you enjoyed my little story about a rat.

It’s environmentally friendly to share your toys. Right!?

Make A Playhouse Box Tower For Your Cat

Make something fun for your cat and have fun doing it. My husband and kids made this box tower playhouse for our then young cat. It has many levels, two observation decks and plenty of interior places to explore.

To Make:

Gather boxes. Cut holes. Tape together. I could give you step by step instructions for making this box tower but that would take away half the fun of it. Be creative with your design.

Our box tower has holes at the base for the cat to enter. The stacked boxes have holes in the top of one box and through the bottom of the box above so our cat could climb higher. Windows were added. The most important part is the observation deck. Cats like to have a place to perch up high.

Tree Coin Necklaces: Beautiful All Natural Jewelry

I rubbed mineral oil on this one. As you can see it darkens the wood.

Tree coin necklaces are so pretty yet are very easy to make. I call them tree coin necklaces because they are disk shaped pieces of wood cut from tree branches. Children will need to have parents do the prep work on this project but will enjoy putting the necklaces together and decorating them.

How to:

Coin shaped pieces are cut from tree branches. I use a miter saw to do this job. If you want to make many coin pieces of the same thickness, clamp a piece of wood onto the saw leaving the desired distance from the cut.

A hole is drilled into the “coins”. Place a scrap board underneath your coin while drilling to protect the surface you are working on or place the “coin” in a vice while drilling.

Use string, yarn or ribbon to tie around the neck.

They are lovely plain (I love the circular wood grain) or you can decorate with stamps or personalize with a “green” message.