Turn Your Child’s Artwork Into Something Wearable!

Turn Your Child's Artwork Into Something They Can Wear! | http://www.thesoutherninstitute.com

 Kids love to create, don’t they?  Drawing is the thing around our home right now.  We have artwork for days and I don’t quite know what to do with all of it!  Do you have that problem at your house?

Lately my boys have been going through our printer paper like it’s water!  If only I could get them to put the caps back on their markers.  Luke is the king of the ninjas, pay no attention to the pirate patch… that’s covering a corneal abrasion.  The poor guy has had a tough month.  He draws tiny ninjas every day, cuts them out, and creates little ninja battles with his paper creations.  I love that he’s using his imagination!  However, I keep finding scraps of paper All. Over. The. House.  I confess it drives me crazy!  I needed to find a way to immortalize his awesome creativity, and I thought making wearable art out of it might be a fun idea.  He thought so too!

I had Luke draw one of his famous ninjas on a piece of freezer paper for me, which he was more than happy to do.  I cut it out with my trusty exacto knife to create a freezer paper stencil and proceeded to create the shirt that you see him wearing in the photo.  HE LOVES IT!  

What do you think?  Would your kids like something like this?  Would they be into wearing their own artwork?

If you’re not familiar with how to create and use freezer paper stencils, I have a step by step tutorial here that will walk you through it.  Follow steps 1-5 for the stencil and step 6 to attach it if you’re putting it on a patch like I did.  It’s perfectly acceptable to put it straight on a t-shirt!  It’s so simple and fun… you’re going to love it!


Don’t forget to use the hashtag #makeyousomethin when you post a photo or blog about something that you’ve made!  Let’s share our creativity!

Round Up Some Snowflakes with Jeanette from Artchoo!

Today’s guest is a new bloggy friend of mine, Jeanette from Artchoo!  When I met Jeanette at Bloggy Boot Camp, the thing that I first noticed about Jeanette was her extremely cute haircut, then I found out that she hails from my hometown of Chicago and also writes a creative blog…  her blog is geared towards kids and is a true delight!  It’s bright, fun, and inspiring.  I hope you’ll take a minute to visit it and say “Hello”!


We haven’t had any significant snow yet in the Chicago area, but I know it’s a-comin’. This is the first year my 3 year old will really appreciate it, and I’m so excited for the photo ops with him bundled up like a marshmallow. In the meantime, we’ll anticipate the snow with a bunch of art projects, and create our own snowflakes!

1. I love the snowflakes in this first photo from Lila was Here. You could make a similar one with your kids by spray painting a large branch white, hanging it from the ceiling with screw-hooks, then stringing paper snowflakes on fishing line hanging down from the branch. Maybe hot glue them to some thread.

snowflake branch


2. This project from Country Living requires some twisting of wire and hot gluing, so it’s probably well-suited to kids 7 and up. Have your kids make zillions of these snowflakes and string them up all over the place for a magical wonderland. They also make great gift toppers.

wire flakes


3. Oh my goodness, what a brilliant idea! Noodle snowflakes are one more way young kids can make something cool out of macaroni shapes! You’ll need noodles, wax paper, strong glue, craft glue, glitter and white spray paint. We’re definitely doing this this year. By Stephanie from Even Cleveland, featured on the Katy Elliot site.

noodle flakes


4. Snowflake mosaic project! These are a very clever way to use cut paper snowflakes. They’re mounted and embellished with pieces from old cd’s. I’m sure they’d look lovely with all sorts of glittery, sparkly bits glued all over them. They look great hanging in groups. From the Riverside Elementary blog.

flake mosaics

5. This painting project is a simple way to get a great-looking finished product from a preschooler. They’ll be so proud, and they get to get super painty. From Inner Child Fun.

snowflake painting


6. This watercolor resist snowflake project is simple but graphic and colorful – my favorite type of project. It’s from Art Projects for Kids.

snowflake watercolor resist project

Well that was fun, but now I’m freezing- time to go slurp some hot cocoa!

Mmmm… hot cocoa!  Sounds great!  Thank you for sharing with us today, Jeanette!  Have a great day everyone.  Go forth and make snow!


Creating Constellations with Our Babbabox.

I have something fun to share with you today!  As readers of this blog, you all know that I love simple.  The simpler the better, in my book.  What could be simpler than having a box show up on your doorstep containing everything you need for hours of quality time with your children?  Last week Levi and I found a Babbabox on our front porch and the suspense was almost too much for Levi to bear.  Here’s a video of Levi opening his Babbabox.

Just incase you didn’t catch all of that (there were a few things that weren’t shown in the video) here’s a photo of the contents of the box…

There was so much here that we had a hard time deciding which to start with!  We went for the Constellation Frame project, which was really cool.  This project uses light-sensitive paper, which is actually one of the earliest forms of photography… a really cool little fact for a photography lover like me.

It creates images using three things:

  1. Light-sensitive paper
  2. water
  3. sunlight

I had never tried this technique before (the prints are called cyanotypes) so I was really excited about it, and so was Levi.  We got to work on Levi’s print.

First Levi placed star stickers on the light-sensitive paper, creating his own constellation.  It was important to do this out of the way of bright light or direct sunlight.

Next we took his design outside, into the direct sunlight, for just a couple of minutes, to let the sunlight do its work.  In just a couple of minutes the paper started to fade.

We quickly took the paper out of the sunlight before it became overexposed.  The next step was to immerse the paper in water and carefully peel the stickers off while the paper was under water.

When the paper came out of the paper we set it on a rack to dry.  I noticed that it was looking really splotchy and wondered if this was normal.  Like I said, I’ve never used light sensitive paper before.  The more it dried the worse it got.

Welllllllll, guess what.  I’m a dork and didn’t notice that there was more than one piece of light-sensitive paper in our Babbabox.  I had stuck them all in the water together, so they were not turning out the way they were supposed to (obviously).  OOPS!  Even with my huge mistake I think that Levi’s constellation turned out really well.  He was so proud of his creation!  That made it beautiful to me, splotches and all.   Can you guess what his constellation might be?


He calls it Baby Levi, ha ha ha!  I love it!  The cluster of stars is his head and the other four are his hands and feet.  He came up with that all by himself, and I’m really impressed.  I would never have thought to ask Levi to create a constellation, but Babbabox did!  How fun!  The project came with it’s own cardboard frame, but I opted to put it in a spare frame that we had so that I can hang it if I choose to.

Babbabox is so much fun and so reasonable for what you will get in your box every month.  Besides all the supplies we needed for two craft projects, plus a binoculars and a chart for recording the phases of the moon, we received a book, a free app download, and a gift for me (a cute wine stopper)… all based on the Sun, Moon & Stars theme.  Totally fun and enough to supply you with several hours of fun with your children.  Right now you can get 50% off too!  See the details below.

I was so impressed with every aspect of this box.  You can try it out yourself for one month (no commitment) using the code below and see for yourself how great it is!  Have fun!