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Kas Winters

"Mother of Family Ideas"





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Pinecone Ornaments




Collect your own pinecones if possible or purchase some at a craft supply store. Supply paint, ribbons, silk flowers, jingle bells, beads, small craft birds, dried floral materials, and just about any other small decorator items and have fun! You can leave them natural, paint them by dipping the entire pinecone into a container of paint or just dab a little paint on the tips. (Keep in mind that pinecones have sharp points. Handle with care.)



Salt Dough Ornaments




For salt dough mix 1 cup of salt with 2 cups of flour, 1 tablespoon of oil and about 1 cup of water. Mix it and knead it until it is easy to work with. If necessary add a little more water or a little more flour to get a good consistency.



Fashion ornaments by rolling balls of dough, making coils, rolling it out with a rolling pin and using cookie cutters, pressing it through a garlic press (for straw, hair or a lion's mane), pinching it or pressing shapes into it. It can be cut with a butter knife. If you are pressing two pieces together, sometimes a little water will help seal the connection. If you will be hanging the ornaments, press a metal paperclip into the top of each one before the dough hardens. You can press dough into empty walnut shell halves to make ornaments too.



Items can air dry over several days or be baked in a slow (250) oven until they are hard. If you want to make something that is fairly bulky and will be heavy if made completely from salt dough, make a center or base of crumpled aluminum foil and build the clay around it. When the ornaments are hard they can be painted with acrylic paints and sprayed with a gloss finish that can make them look like they are ceramic pieces. You can also put food coloring into the dough itself before modeling pieces and use colored pieces of dough. (If you put some dough into a plastic bag with a zip closure along with a couple of drops of food coloring, you can mix the color in without getting it all over your hands.) Once pieces are finished, you can add bits of ribbon, lace or other trims to them.

Glue and Glitter Ornaments

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Materials: white glue, glitter, waxed paper, heavy thread, paper, pencil

Use paper and pencil to draw an ornament shape such as a star, bell or candy cane. Place a piece of waxed paper over the shape. Use the white glue to trace over the shape. This should leave your shape in a thick bead of glue on top of the waxed paper. Sprinkle glitter over the glue. Allow the glue to dry thoroughly. Shake the excess glitter onto a piece of paper and pour it back into the original container. Gently peel the glitter ornament off the waxed paper. Run a piece of thread through the ornament for hanging.

Sock and Mitten Snowman

This cute little character is made from a baby mitten or one of those miniature mittens that are available in some craft shops. Sew some random buttons to the front of the mitten and stuff it with a tiny amount of fiberfill, or even a few cotton balls. Tie the top shut. Take a baby sock and fold the opening to create a winter hat. Tie a piece of yarn or string at the top of the hat and again near the toe. At the toe, glue a pom pom to the tip of the hat. Place a face inside of the sock hat. This one used a small round wooden disk, but a pom pom, Styrofoam ball, a white button, or even some white felt would also work. Glue the head inside the hat. Glue o sew the head/hat to the mitten body. Tie a scarf around the neck. This example uses a piece of knitted binding material, but a ribbon, yarn and other scrap pieces can also be used. Make a face on your snowman using a black marker and you're done.

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Mother Lode

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Kids' Craft of the Month

Beaded Pipe Cleaner Ornaments




Provide children with beads and pipe cleaners and amazing things can happen. (This activity is not appropriate for children under three because of the swallowing hazard of the small beads.) You can use "pony" beads, tri-beads or any others you might have available or find on sale. String beads onto pipe cleaners, wire, heavy thread, string, yarn or dental floss. The addition of pieces of ribbon, eyelet lace, small silk flowers or use of glitter pipe cleaners or plain jewelry wire can make some delightful ornaments.



Candy Cane Mouse



Cut a piece of gray felt in a pear shape and another that is shaped like two ears joined together at the base. Then cut a piece of pink felt in the same shape at the ears, just slightly smaller. Make two vertical slits in the pear-shaped piece just about where the pear begins to widen. Place the pink ears on top of the gray ears and thread them through both slits, centering the pieces to look like mouse ears. In the space between the ears, on the back side of the mouse, slide a candy cane between the pieces of felt. Position it so that it looks like a tail for the mouse. Glue some jiggle eyes or buttons in place along with a pom pom nose.













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