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First off, the files you will need to print the project:  sweetilings_bw_pdf



What is contained:  4 different fairy bodies, fronts and backs, for you to color and decorate; several styles of wings to choose from, assorted wands to make a star fairy, tooth fairy, heart fairy or flower fairy.

What you’ll need:  markers and crayons or paint, glue (scrapbooker’s fast-drying is best), toothpicks, bits and pieces of ribbon, string or popsickle sticks to hang the faires with or use as handles, scissors, 8.5′ x 11″ card stock, and, although not necessary, sparkly glitter, stickers or the like is highly recommended.


1. Pick your fairy and pick your wing pair. Color ‘em in. We used crayons and markers because they were on hand. Add glitter, sequins and bits of what not. Depending on your inclination, you may choose to make each component a mirror image of it’s partner or you may go for the daring separate size look. Coloring mirror images is a good, challenging task for young children in particular. Choosing to make separate sides different is quite daring for most older people.

2. Cut the components out, leaving a generous outer perimeter around tight areas such as feet and hands. This is rather tricky cutting for the very young but should be managble for adults and older children. 

3. Glue the blank sides of your fairy bodies together, matching them together as closely as possible. Hold the two pieces up to a light or window to help align the dark lines. Our fairies wanted to bend a bit as they dried, so we pressed them between a stack of heavy books as they dried. I used a higher quality scrapbooker’s glue stick and it worked great.  School glue was a bit too gloppy and “wet.”

4. Take a look at your wings and think a bit about how you want them positioned on the fairie’s body. For instance, if you want the fairy to be attached to a string and flying above you, you’ll probably want the colored side of the wings to face towards the ground. Color both sides of the wings for extra panache.  Fold the tabs of the wings at the dotted line and then again higher towards the wing tip, angling to get the tilt you desire.  

5. When the fairy body is dry, attach the wings by glueing/taping the wing tab in place. For our needs (we tend to really play with our toys) both glue and tape were necessary.

6. Attach  string, wire, snazzy straws, popsickle sticks, pipe cleaners…’ll want some sort of handle or cord so that you can play with the fairy or display her. 

7.  About the wands (optional, of course.):  On one of the wing pages, you’ll fine a few wand tip options, i.e. heart, teeth, star and flower.  I used a toothpick as the wand handle, rolled in glue and sandwiched between the reverse sides of a matched pair of wand tips.   Adding a scrap of ribbon as a tail makes for a charming addition.  I think you could also use straws or leftover sucker sticks as a wand handle if you don’t want to deal with pointy toothpicks?  Also, I had the idea that these fairies would look super nifty done in a fruit and veg theme… cute would a strawberry wand be with a little matching red dress and striped tights? 


P.S. These fairies are based on the fairies in a wonderful book from our library:  Easy To Read! Easy To Draw! Magical Creatures (Easy-to-Read! Easy-to-Draw!)   This is a very simple, basic how-to-draw book…no frills and not at all intimidating.


sowena_netherlands_hatFirst off, the free pdf files for these paper doll garments (prints in full color or black and white to fit and 8.5″ x 11″ paper:

boarace_netherlands  sowena_netherlands

 For the scantily-clad dolls that this clothing fits and assorted pertinent info, please see this post:

Have fun!  -LSW

New Paper Dolls!  Yeah!  And aren’t they a pip?  Presenting Mr. Boarace and Mrs.  Sowena Piggums:  boarace_pdf        sowena_pdf

These free pdf files offer both a black and white version of the paper dolls for you to color and a full-color version to print out.   Each file prints onto an 8.5 x 11 sheet of paper.  Because the dolls are large, I recommend card stock or something similarly substantial.

Boarace and Sowena are based on piggies from Dover Clipart’s Whimsical Animals collection.  I enlarged and re-sketched the original images (they were quite small).   Border decorations on the black and white images are also from a dover clipart collection.  Border decorations on the colored images are from a collection of ArtRage stencils offered on the ArtRage 2 forums.   Speaking of ArtRage2, that is the program that I used to color the images as well.   

Black and white images of these dolls can easily be converted into your own ArtRage stencils.  I’ll offer the border files as well when I get around to it.

So what will Mr. and Mrs. Piggums wear?   Well…..Mr. and Mrs. Piggums travel quite a bit and love to shop little local markets wherever they go.  You see, Mr. and Mrs. Piggums collect folk costumes.  They always return home with bulging suitcases.  More often than not, they BOTH have to jump repeatedly on a suitcase to get it to even close, much to the distress of hotel owners across the globe.  Thank heavens that neither Sowena or Boarace where shoes;  wooden clogs, leather boots, velvet slippers… oh my, they’d take up way too much space in a suitcase!


P.S.  Mr.  Boarace is very fond of hats….to make his hats fit, you will need to gently cut a slit along his ear that faces you.  Have fun!  -LSW


finch_thumbnailConsulting several internet resources, namely Cornell University’s All About Birds and these stunning photos at All Songbirds, my daughter Lily and I colored in a few birds based on actual factual birdies.  We used my original black and white graphics as ArtRage 2 stencils and opted for a pen and ink look, with a bit of  pastel here and there (check out the post with the b&w graphics for more info on constructing the collage).  I’ll post a picture of a finished color collage once I get to the library to print out the full color pages. 


The free pdf’s for the full-color collage you can make:  PDf files for the color perching bird collage

And a peek at what the color pdf file contains (these are small versions of the actual files): 

This is a wonderful project to do with young children….as we colored in the birds, Lily and I chatted for quite a while about each bird’s appearance, camoflage, whether or not it’s a bird we see around our home….I plan to expand the project to include different types of nests to add to our collage and would like to do birdhouses as well.  I also want to make a few pages featuring plants for the birds to perch on.  If you really want to make the most out of this project, here’s a set of links that ought to give you and yours plenty to do and learn about regarding birds:

Perching Bird Collage (Crayon-version from b&w files)Lily adds lots of little eggs to her bird nest.

Hello Spring!  Lily and I worked on this project all morning today and I definitely want to share it so that others can have as much fun as we did.  The version above is our first try with it and I think it turned out very well given our ages and the fact that we only used paper, scissors, glue, crayons and a hot pink ink pen. 

This is how we assembled ours:

Printed out the pdf files on copy/printer paper.

Sat around the kitchen, chatting and coloring.  Notice the pink bird.  Lily loves pink.  The other birds are loosely based on the real thing.

Picked out a piece of cardstock for the background.  Lily wanted pink, but I explained that if she used a pink background, the pink blossoms and pink bird wouldn’t show up well.

The, we began to cut out shapes.  The branches were too twisty and thin for Lily, so I did those.  The leaves and birds were easy for her to cut out.

I glued the branches down while Lily finished up the leaves and birds.  Next, we glued the leaves on.  Blossoms and birds followed.  (It’s important to keep this order in mind so that you have a somewhat dimensional look. )

Note:  What I’d do different:  Color/outline some items with markers to make them fancier.  Print out an extra sheet of leaves and blossoms so that we can put a few on the top layer of the collage.  Round up a few scraps of yarn to add to the bird’s nest.  Encourage my kiddo to draw a few bugs and such for food for the birds.  Find a good source of bird illustrations so that we could color our birds more similar to actual factual birds.

The files you need to make this (simple black and white to color and cut):  perchingbird_collage_pdf

Examples of the files included (as I get time, I’ll release one or more full-color versions):