Sunday, 29 July 2012

Flower Fairy Crowns

One of the activities we did at Shoeshine's 2nd Birthday Party was making flower fairy crowns, inspired by my recent reading of the original flower fairies book by Cicely Mary Barker.  So with some double sided sticky tape, lots of petals, sparkles, stickers and decorations, these proved to be very popular - I think most of them ended up making 2 or 3 crowns!

The Heliotrope fairy with her flower crown, by Cicely Mary Barker.

To prepare I cut up some strips of silver card, giving one side a wavy edge, I just made sure they were long enough to easily go round their heads.  I then placed a strip of double sided sticky tape (bought from one of the pound shops) along the length of the crown.

I also put out some trays of garden stickers, bugs and flowers, some sequins and some pink and purple fabric petals.  The stickers were from Yellow Moon and the fabric petals were really cheap on ebay.  They are often used as wedding decorations or confetti, but are perfect for crafting too.

I also added a pot of pens so they could decorate them to their hearts content.  They all got stuck in straight away.  (I found the trays in a skip outside a school, I've got about 10 and they are so useful for things - hence the 'homework' label I haven't yet got around to removing - oh how I wish homework was as exciting as making fairy crowns!) 

Shoeshine loved the bug stickers!  At just turned 2 I usually find she struggles with getting the backing off stickers and gets frustrated, so having the double sided sticky tape meant that she could just stick them straight away onto the tape, so she could do it all by herself.

It was also good because the older ones (Little Chick is 4) could stick things to the tape or they could peel the backing off the stickers and stick them elsewhere.  The double sided tape worked a treat as they were ready to wear straight away, no waiting for the glue to dry. The small sequins and fabric petals stuck pretty well too.

The Birthday girl with her finished crown.  When they were done I just stapled the two ends together with the folded bits of the staple facing outwards to stop it getting caught in hair or scratching their heads.

Big sis with one of the many crowns she made

and busy making the next one!

The fairy crowns were still proving popular the day after the party as I caught this photo of the 'fairy' in full costume and crown - riding round the garden on her bike!

Monday, 23 July 2012

Fairy Garden Birthday Cake

I know it's been a little while since I last posted, the last few weeks have raced by, having 3 little ones is definitely keeping me busy.  I just never seem to get time in the evenings to catch up on anything!  Baby Boo is now 10 weeks old - where has the time gone? And we've had a lovely week away on holiday so hopefully things may settle down a bit and I'll get some things done.  But I just had to post this - as last week Shoeshine turned 2!  It was on big sis's suggestion that we should have a fairy celebration so she had a few friends over from some girlie fairy fun - a couple of posts of our activities to follow - but I thought I'd start by sharing the fairy garden cake I made for her.

This was really simple to make and went down a storm with all the little girls.  For the cake I made a 23in round banana and pineapple cake - The Hummingbird Cake from the Hummingbird Bakery Cookbook.  I'm not a huge fan of Madeira cake and if I'm going to ice a cake I like to make one with fruit or veg in it so at least some of the sugar rush is natural sugar!  I then chopped off the middle top bit to made a flat surface and placed the two semi-circles I had cut off on top of each other as one side to form the raised area - apologies there are no pictures of how it came together, as usual I left everything to the last minute and was a little pushed for time.

I then made up double quantity of the vanilla frosting, also from the Hummingbird Bakery Cookbook, and coloured some pale green and some blue.  The frosting is basically butter icing that has been beaten with an electric whisk to give it a bit more air.  The green was quite pale and to be honest as I was putting on the icing I was worried it was going to turn out a disaster, but ones the decorations were on it looked fine.

Finally I added white chocolate rainbow buttons for a path and stepping stones across the river and some pink mushroom sweets and some coconut toadstool sweets.  I'm sure an expert cake maker would have made all the flowers and leaves out of icing but these are just small silk flowers.  The fairies are from a lovely little play set Little Chick was given for her birthday and they just finish it off nice.

Happy 2nd Birthday Shoeshine!

Monday, 9 July 2012

Contact Paper Toddler Art Collage

Earlier in the year we had a go at contact paper art collage.  This is a super simple, no mess, fun way to create beautiful art, perfect for a busy toddler (and enjoyed by older ones too) and great if the weather isn't too great for outdoor play.  I think Shoeshine was about 18 months when we did this, so it was little while ago now, just didn't seem to get around to posting it.

I laid out a tray of bits and pieces from our sparkle box.  These are all the offcuts and left over bits from previous craft projects or just colourful bits of waste wrappings or packaging I've added.  There are various shapes of craft foam, felt, coloured card, sweetie wrappers, some sequins and butterfly shapes.

I put a piece of contact paper (it's basically sticky book covering film on a roll I think I got my from The Range) sticky side up onto our patio doors at a easy height for Shoeshine to reach and secured the corners with sticky tape.  To be honest this is the hardest bit as it just wants to stick to everything and itself until you have it in place!

I then spread out the materials on a tray next to the window and just let Shoeshine pick and choose what she wanted and where she wanted to put it.

There was much concentration as the picture started to be created.

More things were added...

more and more things were added. 

Until finally she said it was finished. 

It was lovely to see her enjoying herself so much and so proud of her art too.  When Daddy came home she just kept saying "Dadda, look, my aaarrt!"  I think this is going to be stuck to our patio doors for quite a while it looks so lovely (and I don't think I'll be allowed to take it down either!)

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