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Honour the Child

Blog Archive

BTRT Patterns (on Etsy)

Thursday, 13 May 2010
In the process of planning out and preparing for our Fairy Garden we created some wooden mushrooms from drawer pulls and I thought I would share the process so you can scatter some magical little mushrooms around your home and garden, too!
 Sweet teacher's gifts and a simple way to bring a little wonder to any grey spot or grey day. Endless personalization options, too!

Age: Toddler - adult.
Materials:
  • Wooden drawer pulls, size and style of your choice (available at most hardware stores and as craft supplies where wooden craft parts/ cutouts are sold). We are using 1" hardwood knobs for this project.
  • Acrylic craft paint and suitable brushes (at least one large brush and one fine/ round brush)
  • Sealer of your choice (we used a non-toxic polyturethane based outdoor sealer with a satin/ shiny finish).  If you plan to put your mushrooms outdoors, this is highly recommended.
  • Palette, water, soft cloth for cleaning brushes between colours.


Instructions:
1)   Prepare your painting space as suits your painters (ie drop cloth for young children).
Choose your colours and prepare your palette and water.
2)    Begin by painting the stems of each toadstool in your chosen colour(s).
Turn them on their 'caps' to dry (will dry quickly if using acrylics).
Apply a second coat if desired.

3)   When the stem are dry, begin to paint the caps. Apply a second coat if desired. Let dry.
TIP: Use your finer brush.  Load it with paint.  Turn your mushroom on its cap.  Place the brush along the outer edge of the underside of the cap and spin the wooden piece (rather than trying to make a smooth, clean  edge by moving the brush) for a nice even edge.  This may take a bit of practice!  If you wobble along, just repeat, widening the band of colour to take in the flub.

4)   Using white (or colour of choice) and your fine brush, make dots on the top of the mushroom.
Vary the size and placement for one of a kind toadstools.
If you want a little grass at the base, use a green of your choice and paint tufts of grass on the stem.
Let dry completely (the dots may take a bit to dry through).
While waiting for the spots to dry, clean up palette and paints (and kids!).


5)    Repeating the steps above (coating stems and then caps), apply the sealer of your choice.
This is best done by an adult.
Apply one or two thin coats and set aside to dry.
Avoid sealing on humid days as they will be very slow to dry.
Rinse sealer brush with VERY hot water, very thoroughly (I have lost more brushes this way...)
Enjoy!

Variations & Ideas:
  • Paint to match a room (the brights pictured will match Rowan's bedroom)
  • Look up real toadstools and paint true-to-life as a learning project (older children, please~ we only use very 'unreal' mushrooms in play because we have a lot of real ones in our yard and woods that we do not want our child to touch for safety!)
  • Use crushed berries to colour the caps
  • Thin your paint to a wash, or use watercolours for the wood grain to show through.
  • Seal stained (as above) toadstools with flax oil or beeswax (will not work on the acrylic paint as the paint will already have sealed the pores and the oil will just slip off).
  • Spell out your child's name in personalized toadstools
  • Hot glue fairy jewels or dew drops, or a small piece of fabric for a hassock/ cushion.
  • Use your drawer pulls as.... drawer pulls!

6 comments:

CHILDHOOD MAGIC said...

I looove this. Thank you for sharing :)

Julie said...

Love!

Luisa @ Dance in my garden said...

Thank you so much for a simple, yet effective tutorial...my 2 & 1/2year old is keen to try this! Right NOW!
BTW; did you see your silks featured in my blog post?
http://danceinmygarden.blogspot.com/2010/05/my-special-selections-from-natural-kids.html

nova_j said...

what a lovely idea! thank you :)

Jenny said...

Just looking at these makes me happy. I have got to try it! The little gnomes we learned to make in our Waldorf playgroup would really think these are neat :-)

Seonaid said...

These are *beautiful*. I am happy just looking at them.

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