» Crafty Saturdays
October 15, 2017
I recently read an article about the importance of teaching children how to sew. The author of this article – and I cannot for the life of me remember where I read it – talked about the importance of keeping the craft going and how important it is to engage young people while they are young. I so agree with this philosophy and try to apply it in my own home – not just with sewing, but with as many creative pursuits as I have storage for.
Growing up, there was no end to the projects I wanted to try. I was lucky enough to have a family that encouraged and enabled my artistic endeavors, such as they were. I really try to foster this type of environment for my daughters. I also try to make it a regular occurrence. Thus the birth of Crafty Saturdays.
Most Saturdays, we do some type of art or craft project in between whatever is going on during the day (or, sometimes for the WHOLE day). Sometimes its just drawing or coloring, but sometimes its something bigger. Whatever the case, it’s always a lot of fun!
Here are a few of our favorites so far this year:
Rock painting definitely ranks high on the list of favorites around here and my daughters keep asking me when we are going to do it again. First there’s the fun of finding the rocks. Both of my daughters love foraging…in fact, we rarely come back from a walk without some sticks, leaves, dandelion heads and the like.
I used acrylic craft paint for our rock painting party. This activity is very freeing. Rocks are small and can be finished relatively quickly. Finished projects are the best inspiration! I didn’t seal ours in any way but they seem to be withstanding the stress of living with us just fine.
I keep a couple of bins of craft felt, sequins, embroidery thread and fiberfill on hand for making these dolls. I have found this to be a great activity for bad weather days when you are cooped up in the house and don’t have anywhere particular to be. We pull up a chair around our kitchen table and get to work. Sometimes my sister or mom joins us – this makes it extra fun.
I find felt sewing to be great for teaching kids a little about hand sewing. They can get used to holding the needle and the repetitive motion of straight stitching without the stress of following seam line that comes with sewing a regular patchwork block. Sewing with felt also provides them some bright color inspiration.
We used some patterns from The Cute Book by Aranzi Aronzo and then made some of our own. As an added bonus, the dolls are fun to play with when they are finished.
I mean, who wouldn’t want one of these little guys to keep you company on your desk??
Painting is still the ranking favorite at our house for my daughters and their friends when they are over. During the summer, my girls ask me to paint almost every day. I keep some watercolor sets and tempera paints on hand for whenever inspiration strikes us. I find these to be the most economical. Blick art supply has a great selection of both – and I like their brand of tempera paint. The colors are super vibrant! We started out with only the primaries – and Maggie learned to mix the colors that she wanted but we didn’t have.
And of course, painting can be a source of color inspiration for both children and adults alike.
I really hope for both of my daughters that they are active artists on some level when they are adults, whether it be as a hobby or a profession. I know from experience that just being exposed is not always enough. We were raised watching my mom sew, knit, stencil, embroider, and needlepoint. I have five sisters and I am the only one who does these things on a regular basis!
What are the favorite artistic activities in your house??