Garland, bunting, banner, pennant. I am smitten with anything I can hang on a string.
I am always on the lookout for crafts all the kids can do together. They are 12, 10, 8, 6, and four. Garlands fit this bill most of the time, plus the display is always wonderful.
Today’s craft is a leaf garland.
I purchased color diffusing leaf cutouts, but the same results can be achieved with coffee filters and a steady scissorhand.
Begin by preparing the color medium you will be using. I diluted a variety of food coloring in water. The less water, the more vibrant the color. I used about one-quarter cup water and 10-15 drops of food coloring. We also used a watercolor paint palette with a variety of colors for a subdued color effect and Faber-Castell watercolor crayons for bright and bold leaves.
Place a paper towel underneath each leaf or coffee filter. Use a paint brush to apply food coloring or watercolor to the leaf and watch the colors spread and blend. If using watercolor crayons, draw the design on the leaf or filter first, then apply water and spread the crayon.
Lay aside each leaf, including the paper towel, and allow to dry completely. To hang on a garland, use a hole punch and run a string through each leaf then hang using thumb tacks.
The leaves came together quite quickly, even for my youngest artist, and because the paper diffuses and blends the colors, it is very forgiving and difficult to differentiate artistic level.
One of the kids would find a cool new technique and the rest would copy for a similar effect. The oldest in our group is 12 and she created some very intricate designs. My husband even got in on the action and created a leaf accentuating his favorite football team’s colors.
Any art that brings together the entire family is the best kind of art.