Crafts for Kids: Painted Stick Mobiles
Monique of Green Acorns is with us today to share a lovely craft that puts all of the cool sticks we find on our nature expeditions to good use!
Today I thought I would share a craft that my kids and I recently enjoyed: painting sticks and stringing them into a mobile. I think I have mentioned before that my children love to collect things, especially bits of nature found during our walks and hikes. Well, that includes twigs and sticks. For whatever reason they find some attractive and must bring them home. I do try to respect their collections but must balance that with some guidelines. Some items get displayed on our nature table. Others, like their sticks, get used in a craft that they can proudly display and enjoy.
Here’s what you’ll need for supplies if your children also have a collection of sticks that need a purpose (or if you would just like to make a lovely mobile from bits of nature with your children).
We chose to paint our sticks “as is” but you can also give them a brief sanding before painting. Each child painted three, which is a good amount for young ones, and we found that acrylic paints worked well.
Since there has been a lot of talk about patterns found in nature around our house lately, my children wanted to paint representations of some of those patterns on their sticks. It turned out to be a wonderful activity for looking at patterns in more detail and inspired some interesting observations. This post provided some lovely inspiration. Of course, you can just enjoy the process of painting on some pretty colors. Aren’t these lovely?
Once the painting is done and dry, it’s time to string them together. Lay out your sticks in an order that you find attractive and space them as you like. You can then estimate how much yarn or string you’ll need, making sure to have extra for tying around each stick. We used yarn and embellished with beads so I added a piece of tape at the ends to make threading beads easy and to prevent fraying as we did so (this is a great fine-motor activity for little ones). The process looks something like this:
At this point you have a finished mobile but feel free to hang decorations off the lowest stick like pressed leaves, dried flowers, tassels, etc. Now you can hang and enjoy your lovely mobile!