When Alice describes the imaginary "world of her own" to her kitten Dinah, she says it would be filled with new types of birds, all kinds of nice and friendly how-de-do birds. As it turns out, the birds in Wonderland are indeed a remarkable lot, resembling eyeglasses, umbrellas, shovels, and pencils. Here's a fun project that will tap into your child's imagination: transforming a couple of ordinary pencils into a pair of whimsical feathered friends. The birds' bodies are small candle cups, which are readily available in craft stores.
- Pencil Birds template
- Wooden candle cups (the ones shown here are 7/8 inch in size)
- Green craft paint and paintbrush
- 2 green pipe cleaners
- Orange craft foam
- Glue dots, 1/2-inch and mini sizes)
- 1 or 2 craft feathers
- Short pencil (the ones shown here are 3½ to 4 inches long)
- 2 small googly eyes
1. Paint the candle cup and then let it dry completely.
2. Next, bend a pipe cleaner in half and twist the ends together, leaving a loop near the bend for a pencil to fit through, as shown. This will be the bird's neck. Insert the pipe cleaner ends into the hole in the bottom of the cup (the neck should be about 2 1/2 inches long). Then bend the ends inside the cup to keep them from pulling back through.
3. Wrap a second pipe cleaner around the neck, as shown, to thicken it.
4. Print out the template and use it as a pattern to cut out a pair of orange craft foam feet. Glue a couple of feathers atop the feet, positioning them so that the plumes extend past the heels.
5. Glue the painted candle cup atop the feet, sandwiching the base of the feathers between them.
6. Slide a pencil through the pipe cleaner loop. Position the loop at the base of the eraser and give the pipe cleaner another twist, if needed, to tighten the loop.
7. For the finishing touch, use mini glue dots to stick a pair of googly eyes onto the pencil face.