Tuesday, January 19, 2016

What a Hoot! Owl Valentine Craft for Kids and Families

I signed up to "host" the Valentine's Day party for my youngest son's class. Now I knew this would mean that I needed to get a fun and easy craft pulled together for this. I also had some fall back ideas from things I've done in the past, but I really wanted to try and bring in something fun and new for everyone. Off to Pinterest I went and found a really cute pin of animals made up from different sized heart. A fish, a puppy, a lady bugs...oh such great options! Of course the mind begins to come up with ideas just from that. You have to see what is there by going here to see the adorable animals from housingaforest.com.

Oh but wait...14 4-5 year olds and lots of animals to choose from really wouldn't be the greatest combination. First of all, trying to prep to make sure I had enough hearts for all variations would land me in the funny farm. Secondly, you know that a few will suddenly want to do a different animal once they see a friend making one they didn't select.

Ok...regroup...the owl. For some reason, these kiddos really like owls this year. Perfect! There was an owl option. Taking a look at the photo gave me an idea of where to start. I wanted to turn this into a cute valentine for the kids to give to their parents. So, the doily concept came about along with a cute little phrase to add to the back to function as the message of the card. I came up with the phrase myself with the help of the other mom working with me. The cute little owl on the message is a nice clip art pic absolutely perfect for this project. Very easy to recreate, I promise. But if you want to get a downloadable version, use the contact me feature on the page and let me know. I'll happily share the file with you!

There was also the other issue of making sure the hearts all worked out size and symmetry wise. I'm good, but not THAT good where various sized hearts would not only be perfectly balanced but also the same variety of shape regardless of size. Ok, google me this..."heart templates"....and kid you not, heart templates abound in the image options! Woohoo! Or is it woohoot? Anyways, for a great pair of printable templates you will want to check out these two from activityvillage.co.uk. For the first one click here and for the other go here.

Looking at the 1st template from "click here," the 1st large heart will act as your head heart, the heart next to that will be your tummy 2 heart, and the one next to that will be your tummy 1 heart. Moving down on the same template, the largest heart is your body heart and the one flipped upside down will be your wings heart. Now for the "go here" heart template, you will want to use the smallest heart for your nose and two feet hearts, and the second smallest one will be your ears heart.

supplies visual for color and count of hearts
Medium wise for the owl, I went with sticky back foam paper. It's easier for kids to work with and helps to cut down on the amount of glue stick needs. Plus, it comes in some really fun colors! You're going to want to choose 4 colors and a sheet of white for all the parts of your owl.

Here's how the count will break down for each owl you want to make:
Color 1 needs to have 1 head heart, 1 body heart, 1 ear heart but split lengthwise (though the ear heart can be made from color 2 if you'd like).
Color 2 needs 1 wing heart split lengthwise, 1 tummy 1 heart
Color 3 needs 1 tummy 2 heart
Color 4 needs 3 nose/feet hearts

You will also need a small round object to trace for your eye whites, a paper lace doily of at least 10" or larger, red/pink construction paper, a glue stick, scissors, and small heart stickers for the pupils of the eyes, which is so much easier than trying to snip out itty-bitty hearts.

Now I'll move onto a visual step by step to help you get going on this...

1. Once you cut out everything, gather all your owl parts first to make sure you have everything you need cut out. Put to one side and move onto prepping the doily. (The yellow hearts are still a three count but stacked on top of each other.)

2. You will want to glue your construction paper heart onto the back of the doily so that the spaces of the doily will show off the color from the front. Set to the side to dry for a bit and move back to your owl pieces. (To get the right shape and size, I simply marked the outer edge of the cutout detail and then traced the marks into a heart shape. Works well to get a better fit.)

3. Get your body heart, your tummy 1 heart and your tummy 2 heart. Remove the backing to tummy 1 and place onto the body heart. Remove the backing to tummy 2 and place on top of tummy 1 heart.

3a. Completed view of Step 3

4. Now you will need your head heart, your two eye rounds and the two small heart stickers. Remove the backing from the eye rounds and place the rounds at the top of the heart in the curve. Then stick the small heart stickers on for the pupils. 

5. Get the body heart and turn it face down so you see the backing. Remove the backing to the body heart and then position the head heart onto the sticky back, keeping the arches about and putting the point of the head heart down a little bit onto the body heart. 

6. You now will need your wing heart pieces and the ear heart pieces. Remove the backing to your head heart at this point as well. First stick on your wings onto the body heart and then the ears onto the head, Make sure the wings have the curves facing out and the ears have the curves facing up and in to the center of the owl.

7. Now you will need to remove the backing to both the wings and the ears and then turn the owl to face right side up and place onto the front of the paper doily.

8. The feet and nose hearts will be added at this point. You can remove the baking to the nose and careful pinch the middle of the heart to make it more beak like. Or you can just leave as is and place between the two eyes. Then stick the feet on at the bottom of the body heart but have the hearts of the feet turned upside down.

9. Finally, turn the doily over and using a glue stick paste the message onto the back of the doily and fill out accordingly. 

And there you have it! A very cute, sweet, and lovingly made valentine!