Kid’s Watercolor Art Project – Tree Monsters

When I walk the neighborhood, I can’t help but notice the faces that appear on trees where limbs have been removed. Observing the many and varied tree faces inspired me to create this kid’s watercolor art project.

Hey mom and dad, take the kids out for a walk to snap pictures of trees that have faces, and then at home use those pictures as inspiration for painting and drawing monsters.

“Of all the trees we could’ve hit, we had to get one that hits back.”
― J.K. Rowling, Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets

Tree Monsters

Painting and Drawing Monsters

This kid’s watercolor art project accomplishes three things: (1) it gets kids and parents outdoors for some exercise, (2) gives kid’s digital camera practice, and (3) the photos serve as the creative spark for painting and drawing monsters. Everyone in the family can do this project, but I think the kids will really like it!

What you’ll need for the project:

  • Digital camera
  • Paper
  • Watercolors, markers, and any other drawing tool liked

Take a walk with your kids today. Have fun finding tree faces and creating monsters. If you post pictures of monsters on your website, share a web link in comments. I want to see the work of your little artists!

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Beginner Knitting Blanket Pattern for Baby

babyblanketA To gain knitting mastery, it’s important to repeat basic knitting stitches over and over. This beginner knitting blanket pattern will help new knitters increase their dexterity with needles, and the repetition of foundation stitches will make the next project so much easier. Other good things about this pattern is gauge isn’t important and almost any yarn can be used. This is perfect for mothers who want to learn to knit for their first baby or want to give a hand-made gift to a friend who will be a new mother.

Knitting Stitches for Knitting Baby Blanket

Materials for Baby Blanket

  • Worsted Weight Yarn (5 sts=1 inch) – proportional (e.g., 3 skeins for increases and 3 skeins for decreases). Recommendation: Wool blend or Cotton blend
  • Size 8 knitting needles
  • Scissors
  • Needle for weaving in ends

I used 6 skeins of Trendsetter Scoubi Du yarn. Each skein equals 95 yards; therefore, total yardage used was 570 yards (final dimensions 24×24 inches). The yarn is 50% cotton and 50% acrylic. The acrylic fibers make the yarn a little stretchy – that makes me think this would be a great blanket for swaddling a baby.

Baby Blanket Pattern

Note: as you do the increases, you’ll notice the shape developing is a triangle. You’ll knit until you have the desired length and width of the blanket. The decrease side of the blanket is knitting a triangle in reverse. You must make sure you have the same amount of yarn for the increase side and for the decrease side.

Cast on 2 stitches using the long tail cast-on.
Row 1: K1, yo, K1.
Row 2: K2 (knit two individual stitches), yo, knit all stitches to end.
Repeat Row 2 until you have the desired height and width for your blanket.

When you’re happy with the height and width, it’s time to begin decreasing.

Row 1: K1, K2tog, yo, K2tog, knit to end.
Repeat row until 4 stitches remain.
K2tog twice. Turn.
K2tog to finish. Tie off yarn and weave in loose ends.

This pattern is often used to knit washcloths using 100% cotton yarn. You can use this pattern to knit any size square.

Once I finished my blanket, I washed and blocked it. I tied a bow through the eyelets in one corner to add a bit of decoration. If you crochet, you might want to add a picot edge around the blanket.

Good luck all beginner knitters!!

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Michaels Blogger Event – Preview before Grand Opening

I was fortunate to be asked to the preview before the Grand Opening of the new Michaels store in Frisco. It was an event for local area crafts bloggers. About twelve of us got to enjoy the preview and learn how to use the new Cricut Explore Air, an electronic cutting machine with wireless capability. Additionally, we participated in a scavenger hunt to learn the new store layout. The winner received a Cricut Explore Air.

The new store has several innovative features, including a Checkout Queue which saves time in the checkout line; updated lighting in the Bead Aisle which allows customers to see bead details and colors; larger signage which makes it easier to find products; a Custom Frame Visualizer that allows you to see how your artwork will look on your wall and how much it will cost to frame your artwork; and there are wider aisles so you don’t feel cramped while you shop! Additionally, there is a brand new product line of home décor and craft supplies that are trendy and include surfaces and textures such as chalk, denim, galvanized metal, burlap, and cork.

You’ll definitely want to check out the newest Michaels store near you!

Pictures from the Blogger Event

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Two local bloggers and a helpful Michaels crafts expert.

 

lemonade-bar
The lemonade bar had customized tags that looked like mini chalk boards.

 

Cricut-front-view
The Cricut Explore Air – front view.

 

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Cricut – View from the top.

 

Cricut-in-Action
The Cricut Explore Air is ready to cut a heart for my canvas bag.

 

Cricut Demo
Michaella gives a demo

 

Cricut-Projects
Here are a few examples of Cricut projects. You can even make paper flowers!

 

Cricut owl template
Detail of pillow

 

hearts on canvas bags
Cricut hearts on canvas bags

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