18 December 2006

Cut wrapping paper scraps and seasonal catalogs into paper snowflakes

Sunny offers a new twist on a classic holiday hack: the paper snowflake. Great way to pass the blustery vacation days:

I've been cutting out snowflakes for the last week and a half. This has been a learning process in itself. At first I was folding paper 4x into rectangles and my snowflakes turned out boxy. Then I found this site that showed me some easy snowflake patterns.

I've been using some of Lucas's artwork, with his permission of course, as well as remnant wrapping paper and colorful Christmas catalogs, which we've been receiving daily. This makes for more colorful snowflakes, since it's so hard to color on them after they've been cut out.

Photos of the snowflakes can be found here.

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Another snowy afternoon catalog/magazine re-use hack, probably from the frugal Depression era.

My grandmother used to set out half-pages of newspaper, a pot of paste, and old magazines or catalogs. the idea was to "build a house." First you'd designate pages for each room of your house (sometimes you'd color them or draw walls and doors.

Then you'd search through catalogs finding and cutting out things you wanted to put in each room and glue them to the appropriate room page. We spent hours doing this, making and furnishing everything from simple row houses to fantasy mansions. Sometimes we'd do themes - an all blue house, a pet house, and so on.

My kids love to do the same thing, but I start them off with pages of construction paper rather than recycled newsprint (less smudging). Plus we use glue sticks (less mess).

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