• Autumn,  Nature

    Doodled & Decorative Autumn Leaves

    It’s been a while since I last used autumn leaves for a project – a few years ago I did a project here in which I laminated them to use as suncatchers, and since then I have seen people using leaves for drawing on, and always thought they looked beautiful. However I was never sure what you would do with them afterwards – it seemed the most ephemeral of activities. So this project basically combines the 2 ideas to create something a little more lasting: greetings cards and Christmas tree ornaments. I used gold marker pen to draw the designs onto the leaves – as you can see, the effect…

  • Halloween-shadow-box
    Autumn,  Projects

    The Dramatic Art of Shadows

    So October is here already, and it’s time to get ready for that festival of all things spooky – Halloween. I have to confess I am not a fan of the blood/gore/horror aspect of Halloween – I’m much too squeamish for that, I prefer the eerie/atmospheric/gothic approach. The kind of scariness that relies more on suggestion and imagination. Shadows are of course one of the simplest yet most evocative things you can use at Halloween to create atmosphere, so I thought I’d do a round-up of shadow themed creative activities to try with children: If you’re looking for some DIY spooky creativity, the Shadow Art Boxes we created a few years…

  • Autumn,  Projects

    Halloween Scanner Art

    As the days grow shorter and the weather gets colder, the shops start to fill up with Halloween related products. In the UK this is a relatively recent phenomenon – when I was a child, although we were aware of Halloween, it wasn’t much ‘celebrated’ as such – there were few parties, and no trick or treating to speak of. All the festivities were reserved more for Bonfire Night on the 5th November. For my Scottish husband though, trick and treating was very much a part of his childhood, so maybe it’s more of a Celtic thing in terms of origin? Who knows. Anyway, the range of products now available…

  • Autumn-Leaf-Suncatcher
    Autumn,  Nature,  Outdoor,  Projects,  Seasonal

    Last of the Autumn Leaves

    They say the Autumn colours have been better than ever this year.  I live in an area with lots of tree-lined avenues, and the sight of the gorgeous colours, particularly when the sun is on them, has found me collecting stacks of leaves with the kids.  Having got them all home I then had to decide what we were going to do with them all, so here’s what we did with some of them.  You do need a laminator for these activities I’m afraid, but if you don’t have one, they’re not expensive and come in very useful for all kinds of things – not to mention art and craft…

  • Autumn,  Freebies,  Projects,  Seasonal

    Halloween Shadow Art

    This is an idea which I first developed as a kids holiday workshop about 10 years ago or more now.  It was very popular at the time, so I thought I would resurrect it here.  You can make it as simple or as sophisticated as you like, depending on your inclination and the age of the kids.  For young children you will have to supply them with a range of cut-out shapes that they can arrange on the page themselves, and to help with this I have added a range of free halloween motifs of varying complexity below. Just click on the image itself to open it, then right click…