Picture a fairy. Is it a girl? Does she look like Disney’s Tinkerbell? I had a feeling… In our highly commercial and consumerist society even figments of our imagination often look like they came from the art department of a major multinational corporation! Thanks especially to coloring books and product-oriented (rather than process-oriented) craft projects, so many kids art projects end up looking identical too.
Because of all this, it was a bit of a challenge designing a craft project for Little Girls’ birthday party. I did not want to buy a kit that would provide all the materials to make identical fairies nor did I want to buy premade figurines. I wanted to have each of them make their own fairy and I wanted them to be enchanted with their fairies. I did not want them to feel disappointed that their fairies looked imperfect or homemade. So I decided to make a bunch of my own to give them some ideas of how very differently fairies could turn out from one another.
This little fairy above has a bead for a head, another for a body, pipe cleaner legs and a ribbon bow for wings. The one below is made from 2 iridescent paperclips and a bead.
This third one uses the materials I set out for the kids to use. Wings are made from pipe cleaners, the head and body are a wooden peg doll, the dress is made from cut pieces of crepe paper, the hat is a pre-purchased paper flower and the yard hair was made by loosely knotting a dozen pieces of yard in the center and then securing at the center with a glue-dot. (If I were a poet, I would write a sonnet to glue-dots!)
Creating fairies was the big activity for the first part of the party. I set up all the materials on a blanket in the living room and invited each of the girls to come in and make one.
I showed them some different ideas for bodies, wings and clothes and then helped by offering to attach glue dots or cut tape. The rest was up to them.
I purchased the paper flowers and the wooden doll bodies. I dug out the glue dots, yarn, markers, crepe paper and pipe cleaners. The shimmery wings were from an old butterfly mobile someone had given Big Girl for her 4th birthday. We took the butterflies apart and re-purposed the wings.
It was a great success!
It wasn’t free but I listed the purchased materials in the first post of this series so I need not account for them again just yet. The final reckoning is to come…