Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Recycled Paper Cup Gnome Houses (or Faerie, if you prefer)

I was trying to figure out how to keep two young boys busy this afternoon and decided to drag out my odds and ends craft box and let them get creative.  I am a hoarder of small things; beads, buttons, broken jewelry, glass shards, craft leftovers. I have a dedicated shelf in my garage to put things like this. You never can tell when you are going to need a broken piece of mirror to complete an art project. And you know once you throw it away, next week you will wish you hadn't. So I just don't.

My intention was to hand over the stuff and see what they came up with. Somehow when we began digging through the stuff, one of them suggested he wanted to make a faerie house, but we really didn't have a structure to build around. I had some clay pots I thought would work, only the boys wanted doors because, well, the magical creatures had to have a way to get in. That's when I remembered the left over paper coffee cups I had under the counter. So I showed them how to cut out doors, then turned them loose.

Amadeo's has a sort of a tee-pee effect going on with the feather coming up off of it. I love the little basket hanging at the door. He also has a nice little sand path and, of course, a flag.

Ben really likes Sharpy marker, as you can see. The tree on the roof gives it a winter holiday feel. There is also a little key hanging by the door, but since the door doesn't lock I'm not sure what it goes to. Secret treasure, perhaps?

Mine has a gypsy/boho feel to it with the soft feathers, bright gems, and lavender buds. I love that look. I want to turn my whole bedroom into a boho escape.

The glass beads and heavier pieces had to be glued on with a hot glue gun, which I manned. They glued their finished cups to a recycled CD base, but I left mine free standing. When they were all finished I took them outside and sprayed them with a glossy clear acrylic to add some protection and hopefully adhere everything together. When they dried the boys put them in the potted plants on my patio. I think they add a wonderful splash of color, but I'm going to have to be extra careful when watering the plants tonight. I'm not sure how water proof they really are, even with the acrylic coating.

Oh, and if you are wondering what the difference between a gnome or faerie home is, well, according to Amadeo it depends on where you place it. Since faeries are creatures of the air and can fly, a faerie home needs to be hung like a bird house. Gnomes are ground creatures, so by placing the little house on the ground it becomes a gnome house. So, by default, since all of ours are in flower pots on the ground, we made gnome houses, not faerie houses. But the important thing is it kept one five year old and one six year old busy for most of the afternoon and the results were dazzling.

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