Posts Tagged ‘acorns’

a foresty fifth birthday party

over the weekend, we had the absolute pleasure of celebrating N’s fifth birthday with a bunch of woodland creatures! our little fox/owl/deer/bunny/bear-lover requested a “forest animal” birthday party this year, so i did my best to interpret N’s request and had an awesomely artful time doing so!

you know how we’re big on birthday themes over here. first we decided to ask my friend, meredyth hite, the one-woman show behind the amazing vegan bakery in the bay area, bliss bakery, to create nut-free, gluten-free, vegan cupcakes (to accommodate all of the dietary restrictions among N’s friends and ourselves!) after i perused pinterest for ideas, i asked meredyth to create fly agaric mushroom cupcakes, displayed in a rustic wood setting — and WOW! she sooo beautifully and deliciously delivered!

mushrooms are foresty, sure. but now i had to figure out how to incorporate the forest animals into the party, since that’s what N had specifically requested. i asked my talented friend, chris willow, of the mamaroots shop on etsy and of the inspiring mamaroots blog, to create five candle holders for my five year old — each a different woodland creature. i order her sweet candle holders as birthday gifts all the time for friends, so it was time that N got her own.

forest friends enjoying the party

our custom set of cute candle holders by mamaroots

and for some more forest animal action, i decided to make 36 (yes, thirty-six) felt animal masks to give to the children at the party. instead of sewing them all, like my mom and i did for N’s halloween owl costume, i used craft glue to afix the features onto the felt, and just sewed the elastic bands onto each one. muuuch easier for a bulk order like this. (reminder: you can click any of the photos on my blog to see them enlarged.)

the bday girl selected these for momma to make: bear, owl, deer, fox, raccoon, bunny

mask basket at the party

the masks were a hit — what a fun party favor!

in addition to the mask party favor, i decided to create some magical acorn necklaces with allll of these acorn caps N collected at the park one day. i just hot glued felted wool balls (here’s a nice video tutorial on how to make them) into the caps. next, i hot glued baker’s twine to the tip of each cap to make them into necklaces. in hindsight, i should have drilled a hole into each cap before putting the wool ball into it so i could thread the string through, but this worked out just fine and was (i imagine) easier to execute.

they looked so cute pinned to a giant redwood tree for the kids to see and select.

there's even a creek babbling by this woodsy park - perfect setting!

for decor, i wanted to keep it earthy, and decided to sew some fabric scrap garland to string between the trees. i used scraps of fabric i had leftover from my bean bag project, and cut them into circles. then i just fed them through the machine, double-sided (right sides facing out.)

strung between the redwoods

the party was basically a playdate in the park from 2-4pm, so being so brief and in between meals, we just served hot apple cider, water, popcorn, fruit, and of course, those adorable cupcakes. to keep things simple and eco-chic, i used compostable hot beverage cups, cloth napkins from my fav cloth napkin etsy seller – love for earth, and no plates. (who needs plates with this light fare?)

i even used our rustic rock picture holders for display signs around the party.

despite the chilly day and the muddy park, the birthday girl and her friends had a blast! N barely stopped chasing her friends around the playground for a sip of apple cider – but she did brake for cupcakes! also, can you tell i had a good time pulling this one off?

we created such beautiful memories of N’s fifth birthday — and now we get to celebrate again on january 26th, when she actually turns FIVE! i know people always say, “where does the time go?” but i feel lucky (and friggin’ tired!) because it seems like i’ve been there for every minute of it all. happiest of birthdays to the sweetest and most energetic woodland creature i know!


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handmade tokens

my husband and i are in the process of creating teeny handmade tokens to serve as prizes in the game room at N’s waldorf school holiday faire in a couple of weeks.

creating handmade treats for little ones is right up my alley. because i have a bunch of random materials overflowing out of our art cabinet, i decided to donate not only our time, but also the materials to create some prizes.

mostly, we created pom pom/felted wool acorns, painted and wax-sealed wooden toys of all shapes, and some mini-pinecone fairies. we had a great time this weekend, as a family, making all sorts of fun little things together from the mish-mash of stuff that was bursting (avalanche style) out of our art stash.

i wasn’t sure if these little tokens would be “big enough” prizes until N confirmed that she’d LOVE to win a wooden heart and a wooden apple if she played a game. and she LOVED these weird looking gnomes i designed from the wooden shape that’s supposed to be a carrot. whew! kids are easy to please…

N even helped to paint a few gnomes

one of my favorite adaptations of the weekend was how we morphed our pinecone fairies from 2009 — this time instead of garlic peel wings (one of my fav art materials!) we used these wooden mustache shapes from our collection of odd wooden doodads for more durable wings. they turned out to be pretty cute with their acorn hats.

i love how each of us got in on the action and created these teeny treats for the kids at school. i spent much of the weekend creating holiday gifts for friends and family, too. i’m launching into total handmade holiday elf mode over here, and it’s not even thanksgiving!



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acorn cap jewels

we are definitely feeling the fall spirit over here! where we live, the leaves are slow to change, but now that it’s november, we are seeing more reds, oranges, and yellows brightening up the landscape. N and i went for a little leaf-hunting walk around the neighborhood the other day, and found a bounty of beauty!

what would you make with these fiery treasures?

also, we recently had a great time creating acorn cap jewels and blogged about them over on kiwi crate. go check out our process… it’s super easy. you can turn this:

into this:

happy fall!!!

now, what to make with those gorgeous leaves…???


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acorn cap candles

autumn just might be my favorite season for nature-inspired art-making! i’ve been wanting to make teeny acorn cap candles for a long while, and it’s so easy i’m not sure why we’ve not gotten around to them before now.

as for supplies: we scored a little bag of 10 short candle wicks from N’s waldorf school store (my new favorite art supply and toy store!) for just $1. i already had some wax around the house from the last time we made candles, and we’ve got acorn caps stored up over here like nobody’s business. we even added in a few shells from our summer OBX trip, just to mix it up.

N and i picked through the acorn caps to find ones that would lay relatively flat, or ones that would lay flat after we picked off the stem. if you can’t find ones that are flat enough on top (candle bottom) that’s okay — one fun way to display these are as floating candles in a pretty bowl with lovely autumn leaves!

the N put the wicks into each cap and shell…

…while i melted the wax in our double boiler.

good thing i had everything on top of wax paper on my counter because pouring the melted wax into such tiny nature containers was tricky — but made us smile 🙂

now we’ve got a sweet collection of tiny candles for our autumn nature table and to gift to friends. (and i’m gonna go grab some more $1 packs of wicks this week at kindergarten pick up time!)


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autumnal art

with the autumn equinox just behind us, my thoughts are turning to colorful leaves and acorn hunts! i thought it might be a nice time to revisit the artistic endeavors that last fall brought in our home. click on the names below to see the complete tutorial for each:

windblown trees

leaf rubbings

some felted wool acorn cuties

a leaf mask

yarn pumpkins

and one of my favorites… autumn leaf garland!

we did a lot of fun halloween crafts last year, too… but let’s not get ahead of ourselves. for now, enjoy the refreshing air, pinecones, bright leaves, and acorn treasures the season brings! crisp, fresh autumn art coming soon! stay tuned!

happy autumn!


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