Can you feel it? Can you feel that energy? No, I’m not talking about the guilty remnants left over from Thanksgiving dinner when you and gran Gran got into a charged political discussion. Nope, this is a happy, excited feeling—because the holidays are finally here!
What does it mean for a crafter like you when the holidays roll around? New projects—and not just new projects for you, but fun crafting activities for the whole family! Have you had an itch to paint but didn’t know where to start or what surface to work on? Here are two holiday sign projects that’ll get you and the kiddos outdoors, sipping hot chocolate and writing messages of love and hope. Just a heads-up: these projects will need to be set up before the children can play.
“Merry and Bright”
Project inspired by the Danya Banya blog.
- 5×7 Canvas (one per child)
- Acrylic paint, assorted colors
- Plastic tarp
- Stencils, optional
- Glitter, optional
- Paint pallet
- Plastic tarp
PRO TIP: Before the paint dries, have the kids sprinkle glitter over the thumbprints. This will give the prints the “twinkle” we see in twinkle lights!
- Spray the surface of each canvas outside with gesso. The gesso acts as a primer and will lightly texture the canvas. Set aside and let dry.
- Dole out the paint on the paint pallet and set in the middle of the working area.
- On a flat, covered surface, have the kids by paint (by freehand or using the stencils) the message “Merry and Bright” in the center of their canvas.
- Next, paint thin squiggle lines around the border of the canvas. Set aside and let dry.
- After the squiggle lines have dried, here’s where it’s gets fun—have the kids dip their thumb in a paint color of their choice and press firmly down next to the squiggle line. Have them repeat this step multiple times using different colors. Soon you and the kids will see that the squiggle-lined border is actually the string for Christmas lights! Set aside and let dry.
- Display the finished pieces on the mantel, the kids’ room or give as gifts to grandma and grandpa, they’ll love it!
“Let it Snow!”
Inspired by Ana White.
- Chalkboard panel
- 3 1×2 boards
- Cordless LED twinkle lights
- Wood glue
- Acrylic paint, red and white
- Blue painters tape
- Paint brushes
- Power saw
- Electric drill
- Plastic tarp
- Masking tape
- Using your power saw, cut the chalkboard panel to your desired size.
- On a large flat surface, measure and cut your boards to frame the chalkboard panel.
- After you have measured and cut the boards, arrange the boards to make a square frame. Apply wood glue to the edges of the boards and stick together. Hold them down with your clamps to make sure the wood glue adhesive sticks. Leave to dry.
- Once the wood glue has dried, drill the nails into the ends of the frame.
- Take the painters tape and section off diagonal lines all along the frame. It should look like so:
- Paint every other section red and white, like so. The frame will look like a candy cane. Set aside and let dry.
- Apply wood glue all along the inside of the frame. Gently fit the chalkboard into the frame. Set aside and let dry.
- Bust out the chalk and have the kids write their favorite holiday messages.
- Drill holes in the chalkboard from the front.
- Turn the chalkboard over. Insert the twinkle lights into the new holes. Tape the loose wire flush with the back of the chalkboard. Set the chalkboard on top of your mantel. Take a step back and admire yours and the kids’ handiwork!