This week while we were celebrating all things green and rainbows, I happened to glance at the calendar and realized that Easter was just around the corner. That meant that Gv and I spent all our free time creating new decorations so we could get them up in time to enjoy around the house.
After having so much fun with so many of our Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas, Valentine's and St. Patrick's creations, I decided to repeat many of the art techniques we'd used before, as well as introducing a few new ones to the mix.
I came up with the idea to create an egg garland to highlight many of the different design techniques. I also wanted some faith‐related projects (since that is the whole point of Easter for us, after all!) and managed to throw in a couple of cutesy animal elements, as well.
Since we've now had quite a bit of experience working with some more, uh, messier drawing media, I opened myself up to whatever ideas popped into my head.
Here are all sorts of ideas for you to incorporate into your own Easter decorations this year:
Egg GarlandI wanted Gv to have the chance to explore a bunch of different decorating techniques and realized that an egg was the perfect choice for most all of them. The problem was, I didn't really want to display fifty bajillion eggs all over the place, so I was rethinking this idea until I figured out that if I displayed them all in one long garland, it would turn all those individual projects into one big project to be displayed, which made way more sense to me!
Here are more details about the different egg styles we created:
CrayonThe first art supply Gv ever used and it's still one of her favorites:
|I pretty much let Gv use whatever colors she wanted for all of these crafts. I figured anything would make sense for decorating eggs!|
PenIf I'd realized Gv was going to get so excited about covering an egg with pen strokes, I would have gathered some in different colors (or at least a purple one) for her to use instead of the blah blue that I'd been holding in my hand. But, hey, she was really excited about this one and even though it was unplanned, who am I to stand in the way of a great artist:
|This is one of those pieces that would have mysteriously made its way to the recycle bin if I hadn't come up with the egg garland idea...|
StickersGv is still very into stickers (thankfully I still have a robust stash of them from my classroom), so this egg was one of the projects that held her attention for a long time:
|I didn't think I had any Easter‐y stickers, but then I figured flowers would do.|
MarkerI think what gets Gv most excited about making these crafts is that it's her only chance to use the markers! She loves trying out all the different colors, and I'm happy because she has gotten to the point where she always replaces the cap (and even presses it down against the floor until she hears the "click" letting her know it's on tightly enough) before moving on to the next color:
|Gv has been very deliberately "writing" lately ‐ see the zig‐zaggy marks?|
Torn Paper PiecesAlthough Gv's been all jazzed about tearing the paper into little pieces in the past, this time she was more excited about rubbing the glue stick across the egg and then covering it with the torn paper:
|I wonder when she'll start discriminating between the placement of the different pieces instead of just randomly pressing them down wherever they land?|
Pom PomsGv had such a blast making the pom pom rainbow, I knew I had to dig them back out for her to play with again. This time was much easier, since I just pulled out the pastel colors and it didn't matter what order they were glued down in:
|I'd set this egg up by squirting out two thick lines of liquid glue for her to place the pom poms on. These worked great, but then Gv insisted on placing two little puffs between them, so my gluing skills were once again needed.|
GlitterAh, yes, another month of finding sparkles everywhere. I knew it would be totally worth it after how beautiful the glitter rainbow turned out, and actually, I think the egg was even prettier:
StampsGv discovered the stamp drawer, which had me in a panic until I realized there was no reason not to let her use the stamps (of course, this thought came before she'd peeled off all the stickers showing each stamps' design...). I hunted up a bunny stamp and an ink pad, and let her go at it:
|I was surprised that she took to the stamps so easily, since when we tried stamping with the toilet paper roll heart, she just wanted to smear the thing across the page. Maybe it's because she was using ink pads instead of paint?|
Colored PencilsWhy on earth do I always forget about colored pencils? Oh, simple little messy‐less sticks of color, how I love thee! I am so happy these caught my eye, because now I'll be keeping a box of them out and available to Gv at her little drawing table all the time.
|I just love how subdued and calming the hues of colored pencils can be.|
Water ColorsI dug out the water color tray to use for another of these eggs, then realized I might as well give it to Gv to just paint with:
|Gv began by employing a stippling technique with the paint. The last time I brought out the water colors for her to play with, she wasn't interested. It's fascinating to see what a difference a couple months can make!|
Wet ChalkThis was another of those things that I'm glad I tried out, as I think Gv will enjoy using chalk more often now. I dipped each piece in water so it would work better on the paper and added a tape resist element to it, just for fun:
|I was happy to have this fancy schmancy chalk holder ‐ less mess!|
|I loved all the pretty pastel hues of this polka dotted chalk!|
|I thought it was so intriguing to see that Gv was able to cover the whole egg best using the chalk. This worked out perfectly for the tape‐resist side of things!|
Paper StripsThe idea was to stack these strips horizontally down the egg (I'd seen a similar idea using yarn, but we don't have any yarn since I left a two‐ton bag of the stuff with my teammates at my old school), but Gv had other plans:
|Just because something doesn't go as you've planned, it doesn't mean it won't turn out cute!|
Salt PaintingI'd seen the idea to drip watercolors onto salt and thought it would be fun to try out, especially after seeing Gv enjoy "shake shake shaking" the glitter onto the glue for the egg above. So I squeezed out the glue design (doing a much better job this time ‐ no globs!) and let her shake out the salt on top of it all. Then I added watercolor paint to 3 containers of water and gave her the eye dropper:
But the colors weren't as vivid as I wanted (I was too
|The salt provided such an interesting texture to paint on. I really liked this one and will definitely be using it often in the future!|
|Gv couldn't resist running her fingers through the rough lines, but I felt that extra bit of exploration just added to the experience!|
Cotton Ball PaintingNow it was time to bring out the paint. I first clamped a piece of cotton (from a vitamin bottle) in the mouth of a clothespin, dipped it in some paint, and handed it over:
|Gv seemed to know the best way to paint with this tool was to dab.|
|I might trying using this idea for a tape resist piece in the future ‐ it seemed to help Gv really cover the whole egg.|
Potato Masher PaintingFor the final egg, I handed Gv a potato masher and a little paint in a container and watched as she mash‐painted this egg:
Are you egged out yet? I sure am, but we've got just a few more left...
These last four eggs did not join the others on the garland, but were taped onto our sidelight window as sun catchers.
Coffee FilterThis method of drawing on a coffee filter with marker, then using an eye dropper to add water and watching it all swirl and run has produced such lovely results, I think we'll do it every time we make some crafts:
|I'm intrigued by how some colors (like the yellow, pink and orange) remain bold, but when the blue and purple dry, they become much more subdued.|
Paper TowelGv already enjoys playing with a squirt bottle full of water, so this activity was right up her alley. I cut out an egg from a strip of paper towel, she colored on it with marker, and then we sprayed it up:
Gv was doing a fine job of this all by herself, but I decided to make a game out of it and began spraying the paper towel (and Gv!) myself:
|Oh, the giggles that this produced!|
|I just loved the vibrant tie‐dyed effect this resulted in!|
Qtip Oil PaintingI showed Gv how to paint a construction paper egg with some oil on a Qtip:
|You can clearly see that she shares my love of pointillism...|
Stained Glass EggsWe tried the idea again, only this time I wanted to see what would happen if we used white paper and colored a design on the egg in marker:
|Continuing to channel her inner Seurat..|
|I'm thinking that next year, I can just draw the black outlines and have Gv color them in herself.|
|I felt this turned out quite spectacular!|
But we did do several really cool cross crafts...
Tissue PaperWe'd tried working with tissue paper before, but I'd used wet glue and the results were a giant mess. This time I was smart and used a glue stick, which led to much better results:
Tape ResistI improved this project by using card stock with the painter's tape, but it still wasn't ideal. It worked way better than the construction paper we'd tried previously, though. And although Gv is beginning to cover more surface area with these tape resist projects, I still needed to go around the edges a bit myself in order for the cross shape to stand out:
|I just love that little sticker stuck to the bottom of her left foot!|
FingerprintsI ended up using the tray of water colors for this instead of craft paint like I'd originally intended. I'm so glad I did, because the colors were still vivid and it was way easier. I suppose stamp pads would work well for this, too.
Hand SunriseI liked how this idea was a bit different, and created more of a scene rather than just decorating an object. It also gave us another chance to do "hands" (Gv loves to have her hand traced and see it displayed around the house).
Paper Plate CalvaryAnother scene and chance to work some paper plate fun into the day. I think this one might work better next year (I had to help add some sunset colors so that the whole plate would be filled), but she enjoyed coloring the plate and this way, I won't forget the idea in a year's time.
The final crafts had more of an Easter animal focus...
Hand & Foot CarrotHow much fun is it to create a carrot out of not just a tracing of a hand, but a foot, as well? The answer is loads of fun, according to Gv.
Cotton Hand SheepAnd this may just be my favorite thing we did ‐ how adorable is this sheep made from a tracing of Gv's hand, then covered in cotton (from a vitamin bottle)?
Somebunny Loves YouHmmm...actually this one might be my favorite. I painted Gv's pointer and ring fingers as well as her palm and I think she finally has the hang of this hand print thing, because she didn't drag her paint‐covered hand across the paper this time!
Critter CardsThese cute little critters and carrots were made using a combination of my thumbs and hers. I made one card for G and one for Grammy and Grandpa:
|The black details and carrot leaves are just plain old marker|
Besides these cute crafts, you might want to include some great Easter books like those mentioned here in your fun. I also came across this video (love this Bible's simple illustrations) and I've had this recipe in my file for probably twenty years, but I have yet to make it. I think Gv's still too young for these cookies just yet, but you can be sure I'll be whipping up a batch next Easter Eve!
I'm amazed to see Gv's skill progression with many of these artsy techniques that we've been using the past few months! Which project do you like best? I'd love to hear - leave a comment or email me at lisahealy (at) outlook (dot) com.
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