December 2018 archive

Show & Tell #1

| Show & Tell

Ya know those moments when you read something or see something and you think, “Oh how clever/cool/sad/beautiful, I need to remember to tell so-and-so about that.”? I have them all the time, and so for that reason I thought I’d start a little weekly habit here on Project Kid called Show & Tell…a column to share discoveries with my like-minded people (that’s you).

Not quite sure if it will be the same number of items every week, but I do hope you’ll enjoy discovering these little Internet tidbits as much as I enjoy sharing them!

Show & Tell, issue no. 001…let’s do this!

  • After the the crazy gift-giving month of December, seeing these beautiful DIY toys made by South Sudanese refugee children both tugged at my heart strings and blew me away with their ingenuity.



  • USA Today gave us a handy little cheat-sheet of the best post-Christmas holiday sales.


  • Holiday party season ain’t over yet! For a little shake-up in the hostess gift category, consider one these clever little guys. (My personal fave is the knife that solves the butter that’s too cold to spread!)


  • If you haven’t gotten your fill of Santa beards, twinkle lights, and angels on high, check out this beautiful slideshow of Christmas pics from around the world.


  • Any resolutions about taking charge of your life and making changes? Thought so. Check out this list of nonfiction books compiled by some pretty big thinkers to start 2019 off right. (Anyone read this one?)



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Origami Ornament Craft

| Christmas, Decor, Everyday Crafts, Grown-Up, Holidays, Older Elementary, Paper, Tween to Teen

The first time you fold up a more complex origami project, you pat yourself on the back a few times and you can’t quite believe that all of those simple folds and bends and creases ended up looking so beautiful. But you imagine that mass producing origami would be painful. But actually, the more you make the more your hands just go go go and it becomes this sort of meditative, rote activity. That’s how I felt making these origami Christmas ornaments for Bluprint.

What you need

  • Origami paper
  • Glue
  • Scissors
  • String or thin yarn
  • Sewing needle

1. Initial folds

Start with a square piece of origami paper. Fold it in half and crease. 

Open it back up and fold it in half the other way. Then, open it up again. 

Fold the paper in half diagonally and open it back up. Then fold the remaining opposite corners together. This time, keep the paper folded into a triangle. 

2. Shrink the triangle

Take the top point and fold it down to the left as shown above.

Push the outer corner in on itself. You should now have a smaller triangle. 

3. Fold to the center

Take the right top corner of the triangle and fold it toward the center, as shown above. 

Repeat this step on the other side. 

Flip the paper over and trim off the two projecting tips. You’ll have yet another triangle shape.

4. Repeat

With your paper still flipped, repeat the previous step. 

Once again, trim off the excess.

5. Unfold

Unfold the flaps you just made so you have a wide diamond shape. 

Fold the right flap in toward the center and crease it flat, as shown above. 

Then, flip the left side of this flap over to the right and crease. 

Repeat this step on the opposite side. 

Then, flip the right flap over to the left at the center. 

Flip the whole thing over and repeat all these steps on this new side. 

Keep folding!

Once everything is folded, you’ll have a small triangle.

6. Fold the corners

Fold the top corners of the triangle down.

Then, flip over the right side twice, so you have the small triangle again. 

Fold down the corners here as well.

Turn the triangle to the opposite side and fold down these corners. 

Just as before, flip the right side over twice and fold down the corners. 

7. Open it up

Unfold the paper completely.

Fold each point down as shown.

It should now look like this.

8. String it up

Thread your string, make a knot and poke it through the very center of your origami. 

Repeat all of these steps on another piece of paper, add some dots of glue to your folds and stick ’em together!

Then hang them on your tree!

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DIY Felt Stockings

| Christmas, Decor, DIY Home, Grown-Up, Holidays, Tween to Teen, Yarn & Fabric

I agree, sometimes fabric projects are intimidating. What thread to use? How do I thread my bobbin again? What stitch do I use? All of these questions are why I love these two materials…felt and fabric glue. They are easy to work with and do not intimidate!

I made this project for Bluprint…here’s how you do it!

What you’ll need:

  • Chalk
  • Large felt pieces for the base
  • Multiple pieces of colored felt for the squares
  • Fabric glue
  • Scissors
  • Ruler

Make it!

1. Cut out and glue

Use chalk to draw a stocking outline on one of your large felt pieces, then cut it out. Use this as a template to cut a second, identical stocking-shaped piece.

Once the pieces are cut out, line the edges of one piece with fabric glue and stick the other piece on top. Be sure to leave the top of the stocking free of glue so you can stuff it later!

2. Make the triangles

Take your other felt colors and cut 3-by-3-inch squares. Then cut them in half to make triangles. While you’re at it, cut out one 1-by-4-inch strip of felt, and another strip that’s as long as the width of the stocking.

3. Add the strap

You’re going to need a way to hang this stocking up! Gently lift back the top right corner of the stocking and add glue. Then fold the 1-by-4-inch strip of felt in half and glue it inside the corner to find a loop.

4. Get fancy!

Before you go crazy with the triangles, add a line of glue across the top of the stocking’s front. Glue down the felt strip you cut out for this purpose.

Once the triangles are placed and the glue is dry, flip the stocking over and trim off any excess fabric that’s poking over the edges.

Now arrange the triangles on your stocking and glue ‘em down. (This doesn’t have to be perfect; you’ll trim the edges later.)

Hang it up and bring on the reindeer!

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Easy Yarn Ornaments

| Christmas, Early Elementary, Holidays, Older Elementary, Preschool, Yarn & Fabric

Yarn and cardboard…cardboard and yarn—2 things that you should hoard if you have little crafters around. These sweet star and gift ornaments are so easy to make, you can craft a tree-full while watching Elf on DVD.

Here’s what you do…

Cut 3” stars or 2” squares from cardboard. Stick glue dots to both sides of the points and corners, and begin wrapping yarn, making sure to cross the glue dots when turning corners. Wrap until the shape is fully covered and knot the end of the yarn when finished. Tie a yarn bow around the square to make a present. Make a hanger by tying on a piece of string to the back.

Play around with other shapes and fill up that tree!

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Scandinavia-Inspired Ornaments

| Activities, Christmas, Decor, DIY Home, Early Elementary, Family Bonding, Grown-Up, Holidays, Older Elementary, Preschool, Toddler, Tween to Teen, Uncategorized

After our month in Denmark, Norway, and Sweden this summer, craft inspiration was coming out of my pores. My husband and I chose this European adventure for a few reasons, and one of the main ones was because we are big-time lovers of Scandinavian design. 

When Gina of Willowday asked if I wanted to join her Scandinavian Holiday Creative Collective I was both flattered and intimated. I had to pare down the thousands of mental images I had of all of the beautiful things and places we had seen? I took a very long but amazing trip down iPhoto lane and looked back at pics of modern design, beautiful landscapes, and delicious pastries. I made a list of ideas with little drawings, but when I came to the one single photo I took that month that had to do with Christmas, I couldn’t help but be inspired by something more traditional and straightforward…ornaments!

These sweet little bead-and-pom-pom ornaments are super-easy, but they have a very modern, clean, yet soft feel to them. The combo of raw wood and beautiful yarn feel so Scandinavia to me! 

If you want to make some yourself, here’s what you’ll need:

  • Wood beads
  • Yarn
  • Thin wire
  • Wire cutters
  • Scissors

Make it!

  1. Make a 1-to-2-inch pom-pom. (I just use my hand as my pom-pom form, wrapping the yarn around 3 fingers.) Trim it down so it’s nice and even. Make sure to leave one long string attached.
  2. Cut an 8-inch piece of wire and string beads onto it. Bend it into a circle so that it leaves the right amount of space for your pom-pom. 
  3. Trim the ends of the wire and twist to seal. Wrap the long string from the pom-pom around this joint, and tie a loop to hang. 


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Sound of Music Marionette Craft

| Activities, ad, Age, Animals, Christmas, Early Elementary, Everyday Crafts, Family Bonding, Grown-Up, Holidays, Older Elementary, Preschool, Toys, Unplugged Time, Wood, Yarn & Fabric

marionette sound of music craft diy kids

If you ask ten people what their favorite moment of the The Sound of Music is, you’ll get ten different answers, full of hundreds of details and childhood memories. For some it’s the clever choreography of “So Long, Farewell,” or Julie Andrews twirling on a mountaintop, or perhaps something as specific as the dress that Liesl was wearing when she rendezvoused with Rolfe in the gazebo. But everyone has a distinct memory of what it was like to watch these scenes as a child—wishing to be a part of a family with seven kids with a magical nanny who can make a wardrobe out of curtains.

If you ask me, I’m partial to the puppet show scene. There is something about the magic of crafting characters and putting on show that stays with me. So you can only imagine my excitement when I partnered with The Rogers & Hammerstein Organization to create a Sound of Music puppet craft video. Obviously we don’t see these marionettes being built in the movie, but I can only imagine Maria organizing the children in an assembly line of production, crafting clothes, ears, noses, and strings.

So here is a version that you can make with your kids, while drinking hot cocoa, watching The Sound of Music.

What you’ll need:

sound of music puppet craft materials

  • Green felt
  • Scissors
  • Glue
  • 2 tongue depressors
  • White straw
  • Paint pens: black, red, blue, white, yellow
  • One 1″ wooden bead
  • Two 1/2″ wooden beads
  • Seven 3/8″ wooden beads
  • String
  • 1″ tall wooden spool
  • Needle for threading
  1. Cut a 2″ circle from the green felt, and cut out a wide pie slice.
  2. sound of music puppet diyFold the two cut edges over one another and glue to form a small cone.
  3. lonely goatherd craft diy kids sound of musicUse the paint pens to create a face on the 1″ bead, and a torso on the wooden spool.
  4. sound of music goatherd craftThread a double-strand of string up through the painted body, a 3/8″ bead, the head, and the hat, making sure the 2 strands are hanging out the bottom.
  5. lonely goatherd craft sound of musicPaint about 2 inches of a straw yellow.
  6. puppet marionette craft sound of musicCut the straw into two 1″ segments.
  7. sound of music lonely goatherd craftThread the 2 yellow straw pieces onto the two strings, followed by a 3/8″ bead and another 1 1/4″ piece of white straw.
  8. make a lonely goatherd puppet sound of music movie julie andrewsFlatten the ends of the white straw pieces and fold up to make feet.
  9. lonely goatherd marionette craftTie the strings into double-knots and trim off the excess.
  10. craft for kids sound of music puppetCut a 20″ long piece of string and knot just under the head/neck. On either end, string on a 1″ piece of white straw followed by a small bead, another 1″ piece of white straw, and then the 1/2″ bead.
  11. julie andrews sound of music craft projectDouble-knot the strings at the hands to secure the arms.
  12. make a diy marionette wood beadsGlue the tongue depressors in a “+” shape and tie the hands to either end of one stick and the head string to the center.
  13. lonely goatherd sound of music puppet show craft project kids diyTo make a stage for your goatherd, cut a 1.5″ slit in the top of a shoebox. Paint a mountain backdrop and add yellow curtains with fabric, felt or paper.

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