With Mother’s Day skipping happily towards us, it’s time to start thinking about gifts. And while store-bought presents may be on the wish list, nothing says ‘I love you’ quite as sweetly as a handmade gift.
If the idea of making something leaves you feeling a little nervous, we’ve come up with two simple gift ideas which any Dad can make alongside their child. Our lovely natural string of beads are perfect for a mum who loves accessories, or our colour-dipped wooden spoons will star in the kitchen of a food-loving mum.
Simple and very wearable, the beauty of this necklace lies in the lovely materials. We’ve used a soft leather cord and threaded naturally coloured wooden beads. It’s simple and quick to make, so take your time at your local Spotlight, Lincraft or other craft store finding some beautiful beads and cord.
You will need:
- 90cm leather cord, approximately 3mm wide (too much wider and it will be hard to thread through the bead holes)
- 6-15 wooden beads of varying size and colour (make sure the holes are big enough to thread your cord through)
What to do:
- Lay your beads on a flat surface and line them up in the pattern you would like. Try mixing or grouping size and colours, and remember a symmetrical pattern works best. Decide on your favourite pattern.
- Use the scissors to snip a small triangle off each end of the leather cord to create a point. This will help you thread the cord through your beads.
- Select the bead which is in the middle of your design. Thread this bead onto the cord and make sure it’s in the middle.
- Add the beads on each side of this center bead until all beads are on the cord, and check the remaining cords are the same length.
- Tie a basic overhand knot in one end of the cord so the knot sits next to the last bead in your design. Do this for the other end as well. These knots help secure the beads to make sure they don’t move too much on the cord. Make sure you still give the beads a bit of movement so they can curve easily as the necklace hangs.
- Take the two ends of the cord and use an overhand knot to tie them together.
Colour-dipped Wooden Spoons
Painting without brushes! This is a super easy gift to make, and the on-trend colour-dipping is sure to upgrade an ordinary wooden spoon from the utensil drawer to the bench-top for display! Plain and uncoated wooden spoons are available from supermarkets, cheap shops, homewares stores and kitchen shops. We’ve used wooden spoons, but you could also use any timber kitchen implement such as salad servers and spatulas.
You will need:
- Wooden spoons, or other uncoated wooden kitchen implements
- 2 spice jars or other jars which are tall and skinny (for your paint)
- Approximately 200ml of water-based acrylic paint in two colours of your choice (we used white and charcoal). Note: You will need more paint if your jars are a larger diameter than spice jars.
- Drying rack (see Step 3 below for details)
- Newspaper or old paper (to catch the drips)
What to do:
- Gather your materials and check a few things before you start: Make sure your spoon handle fits in the mouth of your jar. Stand your spoon in your jar and check you are happy with the amount of handle which will be covered in paint once the jar is full. Make sure your wooden spoons are clean, dry and free of any sticker residue.
- Cover your table or work surface with newspaper or old paper.
- Set up your drying rack. You will need something which allows your spoons to hang without anything touching the paint while they dry. We used a wire cake cooler set on top of two large jars. Make this part of the fun with your child and work out the best drying rack solution from what you can find around your home.
- Fill your jars with paint, one colour for each jar. The consistency of your paint is important – too runny and it won’t give a good even coat of colour, or too thick and it will glob and won’t dry properly. If your paint is too thick, thin it by adding water a little at a time.
- Carefully dip the handle of your wooden spoon into the paint, keeping it as vertical as possible and ensuring it does not touch the sides of the jar. You can turn it around slowly in the jar to make sure the top line of paint is straight all the way around. Carefully remove your spoon and allow any drips to fall off the end.
- Hang the spoon on your drying rack, again being careful not to touch the paint or scraping any onto your drying rack.
- Allow at least 12 hours for your spoon to dry. You can then redip your spoons if you want to add another layer of colour (like our charcoal and white combo)
PLEASE NOTE: When using these spoons, don’t allow food to come into contact with the paint on the spoon handle. Wash carefully by hand with a soft cloth to prevent the paint from rubbing off.
Have fun making these Mother’s Day gifts, and if you want more creative ideas, take a look at www.weaveandwonder.com.