Monthly Archives: October 2017

Indigenous Crafts: Mexican Bark Paintings

Indigenous Crafts: Mexican Bark Paintings
Mexican Bark Painting

Mexican Bark Painting

Latin American bark paintings depict birds, fish, sea horses, alpaca, armadillo, and flowers like marigolds, roses, hibiscus and sunflowers. Consider combinations of these objects when creating your design for the bark painting.

MATERIALS:

White drawing paper

Tracing paper

Pencil

Permanent black fine-line felt-tipped marker

Acrylic paints – bright colors of choice

Paint brushes

Shellac

Large paint brush

1/4 inch thick piece of plywood 8” x 10”

PROJECT:

  1. Draw your design on a piece of white paper. Then place the tracing paper on the drawing. Trace your design on to the tracing paper.
  2. Blacken the back side of the tracing paper and place it blackened side down on the plywood. Tape it down.
  3. Go over the design on the tracing paper with a pencil by pressing down hard. Remove the tracing paper and go over the lines on the plywood with the black marker. (They should show up on the plywood. Take a peek under one corner of the papers first to see if an impression was made.)
  4. Color the designs with the paints. Make it colorful like real Mexican bark paintings. Allow to dry.
  5. Layer a coat of shellac over the painting to make it shine and to protect it. Mexican bark paintings are colorful. Hang it up in a prominent place.
Mexican Banana Bark Painting

Mexican Banana Bark Painting

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Indigenous Crafts: Dream-catchers

Indigenous Crafts: Dream-catchers
Dream-catchers

Dream-catchers

The Lakota hang dream-catchers where they sleep or over the cradles of babies. Good dreams go through the hole in the center of the dream-catcher while bad dreams are caught in the webbing like flies in a spider web.

MATERIALS:

6 inch embroidery hoop or large metal ring

2 yards of string or yarn

Beads, wood, feathers

Scissors

Glue

PROJECT:

  1. With a pencil make 8 equidistant marks around the embroidery hoop. If using a metal ring, make the marks with the black marker.
  2. Knot one end of the string or yarn on one of the marks. Leave about 3 inches hanging.
  3. Tie the yarn to the next mark and so on until there is yarn looped to each mark.
  4. Tie and loop the string from the middle of one loop to the middle of the next. Do not pull the string or yarn tightly. Continue to loop in this way making three or four rows of loops while occasionally stringing a bead. This is optional.
  5. When only a small “hole” is left in the center, pull the string tightly and knot the end of the string to the previous row. Tie a second knot to prevent unraveling. Trim excess string. A bit of glue will reinforce the knot. This is optional.
  6. Take the original 3 inch piece of string and tie it to the inside of the web. Tie a second knot and trim any excess. A bit of glue will reinforce the second knot.
  7. Tie a piece of string about 5 inches or more to the bottom of the dream-catcher. Toward the bottom half of the string loop two or three (or more) beads and tie a knot. Leave enough string to tie around the tip of a feather. You can make as many as two or three of these but vary the lengths to make a more interesting design.
  8. Reinforce the knots if necessary with glue. Insert feathers into the web of the dream-catcher. This is optional.
  9. Tie a loop of the string or yarn at the top of the dream-catcher so you can hang it up.

NATIVE AMERICAN ART – A BRIEF INTRODUCTION

Native Americans imbued art into everyday objects: baskets, textiles/weaving and pottery. They placed all their hopes and fears into their art. Colors, patterns and symbols reflected their views of the creator and the inner spirit of people and animals.  These colors, shapes and symbols held different meanings for different tribes but some general meanings apply.

Colors:

Blue: female, moon, sky, water, thunder, sadness

Black: male, cold, night, disease, death, underworld

Green: earth, summer, rain, plants

Red: war, day, bold, wounds, sunset

White: winter, death, snow

Yellow: day, dawn, sunshine

Shapes:

Curves and spirals

Parallel lines

Flowing lines, i.e. plants and flowers

Birds, fish and human faces

Triangles, rectangles, squares and other geometric shapes

Bibliography

Haslam, Andrew. Make It Work! Native Americans. Minnetonka, MN: Two Can Publishing, 1995.

Gooch, Randall and Temko, Florence. Traditional Crafts from Native North America. Minneapolis, MN: Lerner Publications, 1996.

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Quilling Project: Caterpillar and Caterpillar Note Card

Quilling Project: Caterpillar and Caterpillar Note Card

FIRST MAKE THE QUILLED CATERPILLAR

MATERIALS:

(4) 24” quilling papers of different colors

(2) 12” quilling papers of two of the colors used for the body of the caterpillar or choose contrasting colors

Glue

Scissors

Ruler

Glue the tips of the four quilling papers at one end. Curl slightly.  Leaving 1 ½” begin to fold the rest of the papers like an accordion. Fold tightly as you go along.

Leaving another 1 12” use your finger to make the antennae of the caterpillar.  Curl the tips.

Take the two 12” strips different colors and glue the tips. Curl into a tight coil. Use the one color first and then add the other or wind them together. When finished winding, glue the tips and glue below the antennae. Glue the caterpillar to cardboard or cardstock.

THEN MAKE THE QUILLED CATERPILLAR NOTE CARD

MATERIALS:

Cardstock of various colors

Scissors

Pencil/ruler

Glue stick

  1. Trim mounted caterpillar to an even length and width. The sample shown is 8” x 2 ½”.
  2. Measure and cut a piece of cardstock to 8” x 4 ½” doubling the height of the cardstock but keeping the width to 8”. (Cardstock used for scrapbooking is ideal.) Choose a color that picks up one of the colors of the caterpillar. Fold in half.
  3. Cut and measure a piece of cardstock of another color to 8” x 2 ¼”. Glue the three pieces together, trimming where necessary.
  4. Select a fourth sheet of cardstock. This piece of cardstock and compliment or contrast the other colors. Measure an area 6 ½” x 8 ½”. Then subdivide an area 8 ½” x 2 ½” and mark it lightly with a pencil.
  5. Above that measure an area 2 ½” x 8 ½” and mark it with a pencil.
  6. Above that measure an area 1” x 8 ½” with pencil, too. Fold the marked areas forming an envelope. Glue the three sides at the edges.
  7. Insert the quilled card in the envelope. You have a blank card to write a thank you or a thinking of you note.
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Quilling Project: Quilled Heart and Heart Note Card

Quilling Project: Quilled Heart and Heart Note Card

FIRST MAKE THE QUILLED HEART

MATERIALS:

(2) 24” pink strips of quilling paper

(2) 24” white strips of quilling paper

(2) 24” strips of red, orange, cream, dark pink quilling paper each

Additional strips of paper in different colors

Scissors

Ruler

Glue

Cut two strips of 24” pink quilling paper in half. Cut two strips of white quilling paper in half. Alternate the colors.

Make a big loop and glue the four tips together. Let dry. Fold the loop so that it comes to a point, forming two loops. You now have a heart shape. Glue this center so that the heart shape holds.

Take two 24” strips of coordinating or contrasting quilling paper and coil tightly, first one color and then the other. Glue the tips.

Make 3 – 5 closed coils of various sizes. Begin by alternating two strips of different colors and coiling them tightly. Glue the tips. Then coil three strips of different colors tightly. Glue the tips. Make big and small coils by adding more quilling strips if necessary to alternate the size of the coils.

Push through the center of the larger coils by to form a pyramid shape. Keep the other coils flat to add variety to the heart.

Glue the heart to card stock or cardboard of contrasting or coordinating color.

THEN MAKE THE QUILLED HEART NOTE CARD:

MATERIALS:

Card stock of various colors

Glue stick

Scissors

Pencil/eraser

  1. Trim the quilled heart to an even length and width. The sample shown measures 4” x 4 ¾”.
  2. Measure and cut a piece of cardstock to 8” x 4 ½” doubling the width of the cardstock but keeping the height of the original. (Cardstock used in scrapbooking is ideal.) Choose a color that compliments or contrasts with the colors of the quilled heart. Fold in half.
  3. Measure and cut a second piece of cardstock of another color and cut it to 8”x 4 ½”. Glue the pieces together and trim where necessary.
  4. Select a fourth sheet of cardstock in a contrasting complimentary color. Mark an area 10 ¾” x 4 ¾” with pencil. Cut. This will be the envelope.
  5. Measure an area 4 ¾” x 5” at the bottom of the first area with pencil.
  6. Measure a second area above that 4 ¾” x 5”.
  7. Measure and mark with pencil a third area above the second 1” x by 4 ¾ “. Fold at the creases and glue at the edges.
  8. Insert the quilled card in the envelope. You have a blank card to write a thank you or a thinking of you note.
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