May 25, 2008

Doily Princess Hat

Filed under: Kids Projects,Paper Craft — sarah @ 3:36 pm

finished princess hat

I made this princess hat with my two year old for a Prince and Princesses week they were having at her nursery, mainly because I had left the little princess/fairy dress she’d been given for Christmas at my parents’ house and therefore had nothing to make her into a princess. The idea behind the hat was that it was one of those big pointy jobs with the material train coming out of it.

We used one paper doily, PVA craft glue, and little carousel horses and hearts I had stamped out of wrapping paper from presents and coloured envelopes from Christmas and birthday cards we’d been sent. We also used masking tape; scissors; purple, gold, iridescent blue, pink and silver glitter paint pens; gold and red twisted cord; and pink silky fabric offcuts from a dress my mother had made about five years previously!

doily with hole

I the started off by folding the doily in half and half again so that I ended up with it divided into four equal quarters. Whilst folded up it looked like a ‘pizza slice’, which I cut the tip off. Once unfolded the doily now had a hole in the very middle of it.


I then cut a slit up to the hole from the frilly edge, and slipped one side of the doily underneath the other and moved it all around until it made a cone. I used a strip of masking tape to secure it in place (I put one strip on the inside of the cone as well to make it more secure).

stuff to decorate

I then gave the hat, drizzled in PVA white craft glue, to my two year old daughter along with the paper shapes and some offcuts of the red and gold twisted cord. She proceeded to put the shapes on the hat or to give me some specific ones to stick on for her.

pretty hat


hearts and horses

glitter mummy

Once bored of this she picked out the colours she wanted from our glitter pen collection and proceeded to squeeze glitter all over it. I did have to help her with some of the glitter pens as they need to be squeezed harder than she was capable of.

pink and silky

For the train I selected the pink silky material offcuts I had, and presented them to Jean for her to pick her favourite. I then cut out a rough isosceles triangle.


Once the glitter and glue were dry enough I pushed the point of the triangle of material through the hole in the top of the cone.

finished princess hat

I then cut two lengths of red and gold cord and tied them to the sides of the hat as a strap to tie under her chin.

May 18, 2008

Painting A Tissue Mâché Castle


I made this castle with my two year old for her nursery’s “Prince and Princesses” week. I have split how we did it over three posts; this is the last one of the posts. In order they are:

*Making a skeleton castle *Making a tissue mâché castle *Painting a tissue mâché castle

We used a silver craft/poster paint and pots of yellow, orange and black paint we had picked up in Tesco’s. We also had a mixing pot, a water pot, one large children’s paint brush and one small children’s paint brush, plus some tissue to blot spills up! We also had a plastic mat on the floor to work on and a painting apron on the two year old. 🙂

paint ready to paint? mixing colours

We mixed the paint, which was mostly the silver paint with a little bit of black in it, as well as varying amounts of the yellow and orange in it.

mix it

We didn’t completely mix it up as we wanted a nice stony, mottled texture. We then painted the castle.

painting a bit patchy finished!

Obviously, with the uneven texture of the tissue castle, I had to go over it at the end, making sure all of it was covered in the paint. I also attempted to make sure the inside of the towers were painted.

washing brushes

Whilst I was doing this, Jean was washing the brushes out rather militantaly.


We then left it to dry.

ready to glaze

Once it had dried I made up a 3:1 PVA glue to water mix, which I painted onto the castle to seal it. This did, however, make the paint run slightly which didn’t really matter with the texture we were hoping for. But it still makes me wonder if I should have mixed the PVA glue with the paint in the first place and reduced the amount of drying time that we had.


May 11, 2008

Making a Tissue Mâché Castle

Filed under: Kids Projects,Paper Craft — sarah @ 3:59 pm


I made this castle with my two year old daughter for her nursery’s “Prince and Princesses” week. For ease, I have split up how we did it over three posts – this being the middle one, they are:

*Making a skeleton castle *Making a tissue mâché castle *Painting a tissue mâché castle

masking tape castle

I started off with the above masking tape and cardboard castle and then used watered down PVA white craft glue, tissue or loo roll, a baking tray, tin foil and an oven.


Jean helped unravel and rip up the toliet paper, a task which she enjoyed greatly. This resulted in some frustration at the end when I said we’d finished making the castle. She asked to make another and I stupidly said we didn’t have any more loo roll innards etc. To make another one she then promptly unravelled the last of the toilet paper to make an ‘all gone’ that we could use to make another castle!

tissue in PVA

The PVA water mix was about 4 parts water:1 part of PVA and stirred thoroughly. We then dipped the toilet paper into the mix and literally slapped it onto the castle. I found that I had to use a square of tissue paper for each of the turrets, or as they were at the time, sticking-up lolly sticks.

ready to be baked

Once the castle was completely covered in the PVA-soaked tissue I covered a baking tray in foil and carefully moved the castle onto it. I realised that the thickness of tissue would mean it would not dry in time for Jean to take it to nursery and I had read a book that said you could bake paper mâché in the oven. So I put the castle in the oven on 120 degrees C setting.

fresh out of the oven

This, it turned out, was a bit too hot so it got turned down to 100 degrees C for a second cooking. I left it on for about 45 minutes, and the next morning I put it on again for about 2 hours at 80 degrees C. It had got slightly singed but seemed ok.

the base

What I hadn’t planned for was that it had become glued to the tin foil, so I cut a panel out of the back of one of the boxes that Jean’s Christmas presents had come in and simply transplanted both castle and foil to the cardboard once it had cooled sufficiently. I then turned the castle upside down to neaten up the tin foil on the underside and to fasten it with brown parcel tape.

May 4, 2008

Making the Skeleton of a Castle

Filed under: Bead Work,Kids Projects,Paper Craft,Polymer Clay — sarah @ 2:00 pm


Me and my two year old made this castle for her nursery’s “Prince and Princesses” week. I have split how I did this into three posts called:

  • Making the skeleton of a castle
  • Making a tissue mâché castle
  • Painting a tissue mâché castle

This is how I made the ‘skeleton’ or framework of the castle:


We used one small box (about 15cm across) that electronic components had been delivered in, four loo roll innards or tubes, masking tape, scissors and wooden lolly sticks.

stuff mummy!

We cut strips of masking tape and then taped the lolly sticks around the loo roll innards but with the lolly sticks slightly proud of the top of the tube, to make the turrets of the castle. The loo roll tubes were going to be the towers. Jean helped a lot with the taping.

tape it

Once all the lolly sticks were in place I wrapped the whole thing in masking tape to get rid of all the tatty ends – which, as a two year old was helping, there were a lot of.

Jean's tower my tower

We repeated the process with the other three loo roll innards until we had four towers ready and waiting.

four towers

I then attached the towers to the corners of the box using the masking tape – this was actually quite fiddly and they still moved a bit precariously after I had fixed them to the box.

first tower attached towers in place

To try and make it more secure and because at this point I hadn’t yet thought about doing the paper mâché, I covered the entire structure in masking tape as I thought it would make a better surface to paint.

masking tape castle

I ended up with a masking tape tower.