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Artful A-Frame with Kids

Get cozy, creative, and cardboard constructive from your casita with our architecturally trending DIY ~ ARTFUL A-FRAME WITH KIDS! Take a peek at our {hands on + mixed-media} process creating with crafty kids in Carbondale, Colorado in our downtown art studio at 449 Main Street and be sure to follow our artful adventure on Instagram!

An A-frame is an architectural house style known for its steep-angled roofline that generally begins at the foundation and meets at the top in the shape of the letter A. They became quite popular around the world in the mid-50s through the 1970s, but they’re totally trending today!

SUPPLIES FOR ~ ARTFUL A-FRAME FOR KIDS:

  • Paper and pencil
  • A-frame online inspiration, included below.
  • Utility knife (adult-use)
  • Straightedge and geometric shape stencils
  • Wooden sticks and a tool for cutting (optional)
  • Glue
  • Scissors
  • Paints, brush, water & container
  • Embellishments (optional)

PROCESS FOR ~ ARTFUL A-FRAME FOR KIDS:

ONE Collect cardboard upcycled from a large pizza box top.

TWO Take a peek at trending #aframe inspiration on Instagram. We’ve included a lovely list below!

THREE Start with a few simple triangles, pre-drawn onto sketch paper, for mini open-ended sketches. Young artists can work towards their vision, sketching within these triangles, to then create their favorite design to construct. Focus on sketching the main elements which might include doors, windows, sliders, decks, and more. A-frames are most often two-stories and symmetrical, but the sky is the limit! Just be sure to set your sights high and soar!

FOUR Use simple sketch ideas to begin construction. Here are some simple sample layouts for visual reference to artfully inspire.

FIVE  Precut a large cardboard piece into a triangular base using a utility knife (adult-use) at a 45° angle.  Then measure a 1 1/4″ border around all the three sides using a pencil. Midway, mark the second story with a horizontal line or keep it open for a single story with a vaulted interior. The inside of your A-frame is a completely open canvas to artfully design.

SIX Pick a favorite color. Using acrylic paint, cover all three sides with a solid coat. You can also use painter’s tape to get a crisp edge.

SEVEN Precut cardboard pieces into smaller, more manageable pieces for younger artists to explore. This makes cutting cardboard much easier for smaller hands. We usually have a bowl full of squares and rectangles in a variety of sizes. From these basic cardboard shapes, children can use a ruler or geometric stencils to create their own unique shapes for doors, windows, and additional parts.

EIGHT Select three main colors to complete your color pallet. On a separate work surface, paint individual elements, such as doors and windows using a medium-sized brush and acrylic paint. Dry all pieces separately. Keep interior pieces moveable so artists can rearrange and make changes to their layouts before finalizing piece placement by gluing down.

NINE Tiny cardboard pieces can be added to personalize. Take a peek at the divided lites in the windows in this A-frame. Many artists focused on symmetry for their A-frame but asymmetry is also a wonderful possibility. Young artists will love exploring this process and everything in between.

Love the circular and triangular windows on this blue A-frame with pom pom ribbon to compliment the archway entry!

TEN As a favorite “optional element” artists can add wooden pieces to make this project more real-world in construction. Kids LOVE working with wood! We collected cattails in the fall and most importantly pre-dried these sticks in the sun for several weeks so they wouldn’t shrink and pop off the cardboard when glued down. Cattails are an amazing and abundant resource in the great outdoors. They simply grow around wetlands and are easy to cut with heavier weight scissors. My daughter and I cut over 200 for this project. The best part about cattails you’re wondering? Cattails are smooth, straight, and simple to cut. Older children can cut cattails independently using small (6″) diagonal cutters or dikes, of course with adult supervision, to specific lengths. Younger artists can mark the length with a pencil and have an adult assist with the cutting. In the springtime, cattails have been drying out all winter so they’re ready to go without dry time. Collect, remove the top fluff, peel the outer layers to get to the center stick, and simply cut to any length! This element in nature is brilliant!

Additional wood pieces to artfully add might include, craft sticks, popsicle sticks, skinny sticks, mini craft sticks, natural mini wooden craft sticks, jumbo craft sticks (great for decks and porches), tiny dowels, wooden skewers, toothpicks, flat rounds, and more!

Most wooden pieces can be glued down with a generous application of white glue and dried overnight. A popout deck or balcony might need a little hot glue reinforcement. Doesn’t this A-frame have a wondrous in the woods or lovely log cabin feel?

Artists LOVED working with real wood as a “real world” architectural element for diversifying their siding in directions including vertical, horizontal, and artfully angled. The natural cardboard also remained as a natural compliment to spaces not covered in wood. Artists got clever and crafty adding window boxes, circular windows, stairways, railings around balconies and decks, entry archways, tv antennas, and more! Kids are just oh so clever and always so very crafty!

Dreamy + Darling #aframes on Instagram:

Tag us on Instagram with your creations.  We’d absolutely LOVE to see what you’re making and creating!  As always, thank you for following our artful adventure on Main Street in the heART of the Carbondale Creative District!  Send us a note anytime!  We’d love to hear what you’re thinking, dreaming, envisioning, and of course, our favorite ~ CREATING!

Much love and happiness creating in this creative + colorful world filled with collaboration + connection + community + arts & crafting! Happy Springtime from our studio to your cozy, crafty, and creative cozy casita!

Ami

DIY Vespa Venture in Venice

Meet and mingle with our ~ DIY Vespa Venture in Venice created by young makers! If you’re connected with us on Instagram, you’ve seen young artists creating these precious popped out pieces in an after school workshop just before Valentine’s Day, hence the love lock addition! The vision was to create a colorful creature, possibly a vivacious vole, venturing and vrooming through the streets of Venice on a vibrant Vespa, full of Valentine’s gifts galore…that’s a whole lot of V’s, right!?! Of course, you could design any type of pretty packages for transport or choose any cute creature to be captain. Take a peek at our {hands on + mixed-media} process creating with crafty kids in Carbondale, Colorado in our downtown art studio at 449 Main Street.

Have you ever wanted your very own Vespa scooter!?! They come in SO many beautiful colors under the sun! They’re simply so easy to spot on a summery street in all sorts of savory shades. How could you ever choose from seafoam green, luscious lime, savory sky blue, amazing aqua, sunshine yellow, outrageous orange, just to name a few of the “scoops of sorbet”! Someday I’ll own my very own but for now, these vrooming Vespas completely fill my heart. Children LOVE creating things that are cute, crafty, creative, connected, contoured, centered on cardboard, all with a clever catch! This project took a splash into artsy architecture, a love lock tradition on-trend, and added a speedy story to showcase. Then there was the venturing vole (you could create any creature or even a humanized character) making a vrooming Valentine’s Day special delivery by Vespa!

YES!!! Our SUMMER ART CAMPS just opened for early enrollment! We also have our last SCHOOL YEAR ART WORKSHOP coming up with just a few spaces ~ a TOUCAN’S TRIP TO TAHITI in TIE-DYE starting the week of April 13th! Take a feathery flight this spring and join us in the studio!

SUPPLIES FOR ~ DIY VESPA VENTURE IN VENICE:

  • Vespa images for reference
  • Sketch paper
  • Cardboard- thin and regular weight
  • Glue- white glue and cool temp hot glue
  • Foil
  • Paper-mâché
  • Newsprint
  • Paint
  • Embellishments- specialty papers + sticky foam + pom poms + more
  • Heavy-weight watercolor paper
  • Ruler or straight edge
  • Watercolors
  • Permanent marker
  • Little lock and key for love locks (optional)

PROCESS FOR ~ DIY VESPA VENTURE IN VENICE:

DESIGNING A DREAMY VESPA

ONE Sketch a variety of Vespas using photos for reference. Select your favorite and get started on some exciting designing and color planning.

TWO Create the full body of your Vespa by sketching it out on light-weight cardboard. Cutout. Decide which components you’d like to pop out to create added dimension. Most of our artists popped their fenders, seats, racks, lights, and more! Smaller pieces take on more “pop” with traditional cardboard. We had an easy to cut, yet “thick cardboard” to create “spacers” between pieces to pop-out even more dimension. These pieces were simply glued between.

THREE Glue parts and pieces in place using white glue or a “cool temp” hot glue. Foil was a very moldable material for added detail but it needed to be hot glued. Some artists covered their foil with paper-mâché, while others used foil as a metal accent and left it artfully exposed.

Waa-laa! Here you have a finished Vespa ready for a Venice venture. Did you know Vespa is an Italian brand of scooter? The name means wasp in Italian. The Vespa has evolved from a single model motor scooter manufactured in 1946, to a full line of scooters. To think it all started in Italy.

FOUR Paper-mâché is optional. Our older artists had time to add a light layer of paper-mâché. Paper-mâché creates strength and unifies but it’s an optional step if you don’t have enough time, especially since the finished Vespa will be connected to another element for added strength.

Most artists love adding a little paper-mâché to their life! Extra small pieces of newsprint enabled the contours to still show the dimension and detail. If you do mâché your Vespa, fully dry before moving onto paint.

FIVE Paint your Vespa one solid color. Dry. Then move into smaller detail painting until your heart’s content.

SIX Embellish using specialty papers, sticky foams, foil, pom poms, and more. Secure in place with glue.

SEVEN Working on heavy-weight watercolor paper, sketch out a humanized creature with a whole lot of character to drive your Vespa (possibly a vole, pig, hedgehog, or maybe even a panda) and sketch out a stack of packages for your Vespa to transport! Define with permenent marker. Paint using watercolors or additional supplies at hand. Artists love adding watercolor pencils and watercolor crayons for artful accents. Dry pieces and cutout. Add thick cardboard pieces to the backs to pop out pieces before adding to the background element coming up next!

DRAWING + PAINTING A VENETIAN CITYSCAPE

Take a splash into creating a Venetian cityscape for your Vespa!

ONE Working on 18 x 24″ heavy-weight watercolor paper, we created a simple stencil for the center bridge placement to give young artists a starting point which had the curve line bottom, top line, and both side-lines, similar to the image above but less detailed. From this point, artists individualized their bridges by incorporating additional curves, lines, and details. The bridge, above the canal waterway, was then painted using a warm “golden pallet” of warm liquid watercolors.

TWO Create buildings using vertical lines with a ruler or yardstick. It seemed best to have 6 – 7 buildings. We discussed how building further away will appear smaller. We also discussed how the buildings were in the distance and how they could appear more “washed or sketch-like or loose” as this wasn’t the most important detail to this piece. Buildings were painted using a wash of warm watercolors.

THREE Move into painting the waterway, aka the canal, using cool watercolors for a colorful contast. We used a combination of traditional pallet watercolors and liquid watercolors. Travel up to painting your sky using cool colors which may entail clouds. Explore a variety of wet on wet techniques and washes. Dry.

FOUR Use a pencil to create the horizontal “3 – 4 levels or stories” on each building and add windows. Look at windows on old Venetian buildings and how they’re different than windows on skyscrapers of today. Compare architecture of today to historic architecture in Venice.

A bird’s eye view of painted pieces just before windows were added.

FIVE Use a black permanent marker to finalize windows and additional details. Most artists colored their windows in black to create a pop of color and contrast.

Love the additional waterlines-n-waves + bridge detail this artist added to her piece to personalize using a permanent marker!

SIX Assemble your entire piece and glue down all the clever + creative + crafty components which include a Vespa, creature aka driver, and packages all on top of your bridge above the lovely canal in Venice. Learn about the love lock tradition and add a mini metal lock to the bridge and toss keys into the canal to celebrate the completion of your colorful creation!

Take an upclose peek at all the clever additions on this piece.

Celebrate childhood + creativity + coming together as a community before taking a trip to Venice inspired by your very own clever creation!

Absolutely love this precious piece that was created by one of our youngest artists and immediately framed by her lovely mama in a sweet shadowbox for showcase, sweetness, and safekeeping!

This is my current scooter of travel, but you’ll be the first to know if I take the leap to get my very own Vespa for vrooming & venturing the downtown streets of our little mountain town of Carbondale, Colorado!

Tag us on Instagram with your creations.  We’d absolutely LOVE to see them!  As always, thank you for following our artful adventure on Main Street in the heART of the Carbondale Creative District!  Send us a note anytime!  We’d love to hear what you’re thinking, dreaming, envisioning, and of course, our favorite ~ CREATING!

Much love and happiness creating in this creative + colorful world filled with collaboration + connection + community + arts & crafting! Happy Springtime from our studio!

Ami

Ruckus in the Radiant + Rare Rainforest

Happy forever fall! October days in Colorado have been most beautiful, filled with sweet sunshine and warm weather! Our studio just wrapped up our first six weeks of a fresh + new school year and we’re excited to announce SESSION II STARTS THIS WEEK! We have just a few spaces in our art workshops offered on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, or Thursdays! Jump in and join us if you’re in the Roaring Fork Valley!

We’d love for you to peek at the most recent project dreamed up + designed + created by creative children in our workshop ~ Ruckus in the Radiant + Rare Rainforest! You might just be inspired to make your own! Tag your creations @handmakery on Instagram!

SUPPLIES FOR ~ RUCKS IN THE RADIANT + RARE RAINFOREST:

  • black & white imagery for inspiration
  • heavy-weight white paper
  • India ink
  • paintbrushes
  • scissors
  • pencil & eraser
  • tempera paint
  • permanent marker
  • cardboard
  • white school glue
  • pattern & solid papers
  • foam core
  • posterboard
  • egg carton
  • hot glue
  • embellishments: pom poms, buttons, glitter sticky foam, stickers
  • drill
  • twine

A SIMPLE PROCESS FOR ~ RUCKS IN THE RADIANT + RARE RAINFOREST:

ONE Read The Great Kapok Tree: A Tale of the Amazon Rain Forest as a fantastic introduction to rainforests. Get inspired using simple black & white imagery for discovery, inspiration, and reference. Imagery may include rainforest plants, flowers, leaves, and trees. Use a thin brush and black India ink to “draw” on a large scale, filling a large paper with a variety of observed + organic habitat. Illustrations should remain separate so they can eventually be cut apart. Dry.

TWO Using tempera cake paints in neons and fluorescents to bring color into the rainforest habitat. This semi-transparent paint will allow the black lines to still shine through. Dry. Cut plantlife apart, leaving the exterior black line.

ART WORKSHOPS FOR KIDS!

ENROLLING: SESSION II ~ FALL

WORKSHOPS + CLASSES + CAMPS + EVENTS

Early online enrollment at HANDMAKERY is highly encouraged as seating is limited!  Start making + creating + connecting in a colorful community focused on a creative + collaborative childhood!

STAY CONNECTED @handmakery ON INSTAGRAM!

THREE Use pencil to lightly sketch rainforest creatures. Start with simple shapes like circles and ovals, eventually moving to smaller shapes and detail. Use simple black & white imagery for animal inspiration. Move to a permanent black marker to outline, detail, texture, and to bold each creature. Cut out each animal with scissors keeping the exterior black line. We did most of the cutting so young artists would have more time drawing and painting.

Each artist selected their own creature combinations to incorporate into their rainforest. Creatures included poison dart frogs, snakes, exotic birds, sloths, leopards, monkeys, and more! It was exciting to see the different combinations of animals each artist selected to personalize their piece.

FOUR Explore lightweight cardboard and white glue construction for additional plantlife popouts and to add additional dimension. Paint cardboard pieces using solid body tempera paints in neons and accent with tempera paint pens.

Detail dry painted cardboard pieces with glitter sticky foam or smaller mixed-media components such as pom poms, circle stickers, buttons, oil pastels, washi tapes, patterned papers, and more.

FIVE Layout the cutout “creative collection” of rainforest plants, black & white creatures, and dimensional habitat on a horizontal, pre-painted, black cardboard, backed with a smaller piece of foam core for strength and stiffness. Arrange pieces considering foreground, middle-ground, and background. Pieces can flow off the black cardboard to allow more space and to add dimension.

A beautiful rainforest flower painted in paint pen to pop out.

A birds-eye-view of rainforest animals accented with eye catching patterns. Creatures remained in a black + white color scheme for a brilliant + bold + contrasting statement.

SIX Use three to five, precut egg carton pieces to pop out selected pieces. Use white glue to attach a low profile egg carton piece to add height and a bit of pop.

SEVEN Arrange finished pieces on the pre-painted black cardboard, again, that has been backed with foam core for added durability, flatness, and strength. Use a light amount of white school glue to tack down pieces so they’re not fully glued down, so pieces still have a flex & flow. Use a neon poster board to create a vibrant frame to finish off and showcase. Drill holes in the top two corners and add a piece of twine to display.

A peek at a few pretty pieces in progress as artists were planning and popping with a unique perspective, point of view, and of course a powerful punch, all part of the process and on point. Now say this three times!!!

Having a project with “several separate pieces” allowed artists to move around pieces to the puzzle, to build, and to layer their one-of-a-kind ~ Ruckus in the Radiant + Rare Rainforest so it was unique to each artist. Keeping all animals black & white created a wonderful contrast to the colorful habitat.

Every artist walked away with a one-of-a-kind creation with a collection of creatures they were proud of creating!

A little hand-stamped + black & white saying we printed for each artist to frame using materials of their choice. Little wooden clothespins were used to clip onto the twine of their projects. We discussed how this piece was truly an artist statement to ~ RISE + RALLY + RESECT + RADIATE YOUR HEARTS for the RUCKUS in the RADIANT + RARE RAINFOREST to remind humans to protect and preserve this special land!

The week wrapped up with our traditional recognition ceremony + mini art show as makers took home ~ a most marvelous mini-masterpiece on Main Street in the majestic mountains!

Tag us @handmakery with your creations on Instagram!  Follow our blog for more inspiring process-based art projects!  As always, thank you for following our artful adventure on Main Street in the heART of the Carbondale Creative District!  Send us a note anytime!  We’d love to hear what you’re thinking, dreaming, and envisioning!  Much love and happiness creating in this creative + colorful world filled with collaboration + connection + community + arts & crafting!  Ami

You + Me + a Teepee Alpaca My Bags

HAPPY NEW YEAR!  We’re onto 2019, hip hip hurray!  Excited to share with you our latest workshop ~ You + Me + a Teepee ~ Alpaca My Bags ~ DIY Artful Adventure a project dreamed up in the studio and created with children, ages 5 – 13, over an 8-week session!  The best part of this project you ask?  It’s multi-layered, dimensional, full of exploration + experience, completely artful + action-packed, personalized, and even A-G-L-O-W to light up a stargazing night!  Take a peek!

NEW ART WORKSHOPS BEGIN JANUARY 8TH!

JUMP IN AS WORKSHOPS ARE QUICKLY FILLING!

SIMPLY ENROLL:   WORKSHOPS + CLASSES + CAMPS

Early online enrollment is highly encouraged as seating is limited!  Start a new year making + creating + connecting in a colorful community focused on a creative + collaborative childhood!

STAY CONNECTED @handmakery ON INSTAGRAM!

A proud + confident artist feeling aglow and over the moon with a stargazing smile!

Mini-exhibits were truly aglow.  It was our first show with gallery mood lighting, definitely the best ambiance of the year!  Artists were anxious and animated to show off their colorful creations to family and friends.

On a little side note:  Be sure to find us all around the Roaring Fork Valley in The Scout Guide Aspen, Volume 6!  A beautiful + NEW publication just launched!  THANK YOU for featuring HANDMAKERY in ~ Ones To Watch Aspen, via Amy Groom & Erin Jones | Owners/Editors of The Scout Guide Aspen!  Pick up your very own copy of this beautiful guide in our art studio, around the Roaring Fork Valley, or even read online!

SUPPLIES FOR ~ You + Me + a Teepee Alpaca My Bags DIY Artful Adventure:

  • Pencil + eraser
  • Canvas- stretched/framed
  • Watercolor pallet
  • Liquid watercolors + brush + sponge + water container
  • Salt
  • Tempera paint + brush + pallet
  • India ink
  • Glitter + metallic confetti flakes, metallic circles & stars + metallic sticker stars + snowflakes
  • White school glue
  • Gluestick
  • Modge Podge
  • 1″ utility paint brush
  • Black construction paper
  • Scissors
  • Wooden skewers and tiny wooden dowels
  • Masking tape
  • Papier-mâché + white light-weight paper + plastic cloth
  • Tealight candle (battery/non-flame)
  • Heavy-weight watercolor paper
  • Fine-point permanent marker
  • Gel pens- shimmer, metallic, brights
  • Faux alpaca fur
  • Googly eye
  • Peel + stick glitter foam sheets
  • Hot glue (adult use)
  • Embellishments- pom-poms, pom-pom ribbon, felt, tissue circle confetti, and more!

PROCESS FOR ~ You + Me + a Teepee Alpaca My Bags DIY Artful Adventure:

ONE  Begin with a galaxy sky on a stretched framed canvas.  Focus on using cool colors to stain the bright white canvas.  Work light to dark. Experiment with staining, dripping, splattering, movement, and layering techniques using a paintbrush, a watercolor pallet, liquid watercolors, and even build up to adding a tempera paint layer.  Use salt for additional experimentation and effects.  Dry.  Relayer to go darker.  Eventually, even incorporate some black.  Dry.  Splatter using metallic liquid watercolor and dip a tiny wooden stick with white tempera to stamp for distant stars in the galaxy sky.

TWO  Fully dry canvas.  Draw mountains using a pencil in the lower half.  Paint in mountains using India ink.  Dry.  Embellish sky with glitter, metallic confetti flakes, metallic circles and stars, metallic sticker stars, and even tiny snowflakes. Attach using gluestick and/or white school glue.  Use matt Modge Podge to lightly seal embellishments with a 1″ utility brush.

THREE  Draw and cut a small + simple paper silhouette which will become the “you + me” of this piece.  The silhouettes may include people, animals, trees, or even the combination.  Attach silhouette and seal with Modge Podge.

FOUR  Use wooden skewers to form a simple teepee frame with a flat back.  Assemble using masking tape and partners.

A peek at teepee armatures ready for a doorway and then a single layer of papier-mâché.

FIVE  Move onto adding a doorway that is front-facing with a horizontal crossbar and two lower sticks running verticle made out of tiny wooden dowels.  The doorway is a great addition to personalize the teepee but be sure it’s large enough for a battery tealight candle to be placed inside.  Doorways can be triangular, square, or even arched!

SIX  Papier-mâché the teepee armature using light-weight paper similar to copy or butcher paper, so the finished teepee will glow when the tealight candle is inside.

Dry teepee overnight.

A completed teepee just before being embellished.  Add a tealight candle for a lovely nighttime glow.

SEVEN  Sketch out bags for travel on watercolor paper.  Did you get the workshop title?  Alpaca my bags… I’ll pack my bags!  Gear for travel may include suitcases, stuffies, plants, firewood, gifts, coolers, and more!  Once sketched, outline with a fine point permanent marker and color using sparkle gel pens.  Carefully cut out.

EIGHT  The much-loved alpaca is smaller than a llama.  Simply sketch and cut an alpaca from faux alpaca fur.  The alpaca is best drawn from a side-view and embellished with a bag using fabric felt, pom-poms, and any other exciting decor.  The fabric alpaca can be attached to the canvas using white school glue or hot glue.

If you like alpacas, you’ll also love our DIY Llamas in Pajamas!

NINE  Attach the teepee to the canvas using hot glue or Gorilla Glue (adult use).  Dry.  Artists can then embellish their attached teepees using glitter sticky foam pieces, pom-poms, pom-pom ribbon, large tissue paper confetti circles, felt, yarn tassels, and more!  Repeat a design around the three sides of the teepee sculpture to create a little radial symmetry.

An alpaca artist at our mini-exhibit!  Love at “furry” sight!

Oh là là”… the nighttime glow just before the mini-exhibit + recognition ceremony.  All lights were on deck.

Probably one of our favorite exhibits with an amber glow and all-round ambiance into the night.

Galaxy skies aglow…

… a night to celebrate and remember!

THANK YOU to everyone for joining us in the studio for an artful evening to celebrate!

Are you yet following @handmakery on Instagram?

Tag us @handmakery with your creations on Instagram!  Follow our blog for more inspiring process-based art projects!  As always, thank you for following this artful adventure!  Send us a note anytime!  We’d love to hear what you’re thinking and dreaming!  Much love and happiness creating in this creative + colorful world full of collaboration + connection + community + arts & crafting!  Happy New Year!

xo Ami



DIY Cardboard “Candy” Cottage + First Friday Crafting

Happy December + Happy Holidays!  Save yourself long hours in the kitchen spent mixing, rolling, cutting and baking gingerbread dough – use cardboard instead for a ~ DIY CARDBOARD “CANDY” COTTAGE!

This fantastic upcycled material is abundant and easy to use.  Plus, you can avoid a sugar melt-down by skipping the temptation (and expense) of supplying bags of candy, sprinkles and royal icing – and sculpt your own candy cane columns and gumdrop windows using modeling dough.

This open-ended, creative process is fun for ages 5-12 (or, say, age 35+, if Mama is so inclined).  These cottages can be used as holiday ornaments, wall hangings, or added as a 3D element to a canvas painting, as shown here.  You can even make a village; a timeless, long-lasting heirloom, completely made by – hand from the heART!

Traditionalists who want a classic edible gingerbread house (complete with candies galore) can skip the inevitable sticky cleanup at home, and instead, deliver their children to December’s FIRST FRIDAY ~ CANDY COTTAGE WORKSHOP at HANDMAKERY, where crumble-proof walls and every sweet adornment will be provided.

See the full CARDBOARD “CANDY” COTTAGE article in Winter Edition | Issue 10 of the MOUNTAIN PARENT magazine offered FREE throughout the Roaring Fork Valley in print (oh SO beautiful) and/or online throughout the world!

SUPPLIES FOR CARDBOARD “CANDY” COTTAGE:

  • Printable download
  • Pencil + eraser
  • Cardboard
  • Scissors
  • White school glue
  • Hot glue (adult use)
  • Clear wrap
  • Masking tape
  • Modeling dough: Crayola Model Magic (white)
  • Tempera paint + brush
  • Glitter (fine white)
  • Chalk markers (optional)
  • Embellishments- white pom-poms, red & white paper straws, striped cupcake papers, wire stars, & white string.

PROCESS FOR CARDBOARD “CANDY” COTTAGE:

ONE  Download a FREE printable template on handmakery.com/blog.  Prepare a cardboard cottage cut-out ahead of time by cutting out two shapes:  one will be the cottage, the other will be the roof. Using white glue, attach the cardboard cottage to the cardboard roof by overlapping just a bit and gluing in place.  Dry.

TWO  Have a mixture of smaller pieces of cardboard scraps available that can be cut and used for pop out details.  Lighter weight cardboard is ideal as it’s easier to cut. Corrugated cardboard adds a wonderful texture and is also easy to cut.  Architectural pieces can be drawn and cut to create doors, windows, porches, fences, shed roofs, steps, a chimney, and more. Draw, cut, arrange, and glue down detail pieces using white glue.  Dry. Cottages will become one-of-a-kind mini-relief sculptures!

THREE  Cover completed cardboard cottage with clear wrap and use masking tape on the back of the cottage to temporarily secure.  This protected surface will allow modeling dough pieces to be placed on the house to dry without attaching to the cardboard cottage and will keep the cardboard protected from paint.

FOUR  Keep cottage covered with clear wrap.  Move into making accents using Crayola Model Magic which is a fantastic product for use, flexibility, and simple drying.  Start by rolling coils to imply snow and icicles. These pieces will take on the look of white icing. These snowy details can run along the edges of the roof, cottage, above the door + windows, and atop the chimney.  Use modeling dough to also make candies such as gumdrops, mints, candy canes, and other savory + sugary treats. Wreaths, snowballs, and snow piles can also be fun additions. Allow pieces to air dry in place, on top of the clear wrapped house.

FIVE  Paint dry modeling dough candies using paint and a small brush.  Allow painted pieces to dry on top of the clear wrapped cottage.  Pieces that are to remain white are beautifully painted with white glue and sprinkled with fine white glitter for added sparkle.  Dry.

SIX  Carefully set all modeling dough piece aside and remove the clear wrap.  Arrange pieces in place for gluing down onto cardboard. Most dough pieces can be glued with white glue.  It can be helpful for an adult to hot glue fragile icing pieces for strength and a quicker dry time.  Use chalk marker to add small details of color on the cardboard cottage.  White chalk marker can imply small areas of icing and colored chalk marker can add vivid details to the cardboard pieces.  Now, you can add your embellishments including,  white pom-poms, red & white paper straws and striped cupcake papers, wire stars, and white string for lights.  Most embellishments can simply be glued in place onto the cardboard. 

Be sure to tag @handmakery on Instagram with your Cardboard “Candy” Cottage creations as we’ll be featuring your work on our feed! #candycottage

A peek inside the studio at a mini-exhibit + recognition ceremony for our Winter-IE Wonderland Workshop as family and friends gathered to celebrate Cardboard “Candy” Cottages atop a wintery landscape!

JOIN US IN THE STUDIO ~ FIRST FRIDAY, DECEMBER 7TH:

>>>>> RESERVE TICKETS for DECEMBER 7TH!

Happy Holidays! Tag us @handmakery with your creations on Instagram!  Follow our blog for more inspiring process-based art projects!  As always, thank you for following along on this artful adventure!  Send us a note anytime!  We’d love to hear what you’re thinking and dreaming!  Much love and happiness creating in this creative + colorful world full of collaboration + connection + community!  

xo Ami

DIY Pet Portraits with Personality

My fabulous art students created a project personally dreamed-up and designed called ~ Pet Portraits with Personality.  With moving our studio to Main Street last summer, life got a little beyond busy so thank you for your patience with just getting this project out!  With fall in the air and back to school really here, thought it would be the perfect time of year to share this fun favorite with you!

Pet Portraits with Personality was a huge project created with children ages 10 – 14!  The artwork, 120 finished pieces, were then used for a local circulator bus (yes, a REAL BUS!!!) and a collection of 35+ community “bear-proof” cans.  Both the bus and can projects were designed to bring more art to the heART of our historic downtown!  So proud of each artist and their unique creation, contributed to both of these colorful community projects!  So happy to see our community come together to support both kid-friendly + child-focused art projects!  The artwork has brought a great deal of humor, color, and a whole lot of creativity to our community of Carbondale | Colorado at the heART of the Carbondale Creative District!  Don’t you just love how childhood and creativity completely collide, to completely capture community and collaboration!?!  Take a peek!

ENROLLING at HANDMAKERY.COM!  

FALL ART WORKSHOPS START IN 7 DAYS!!!  

WORKSHOPS + CLASSES + CAMPS

COMMUNITY BUS COLLABORATION:  Project Details

HIGHLIGHTS:  Unveiling Ceremony

COMMUNITY CAN COLLABORATION:

Read a fantastic article highlighting all the details about these upcycled Bear-Proof Cans wrapped with student artwork located throughout downtown!  Would you believe there are over 35+ cans throughout our community!?!  A huge thank you to the Town of Carbondale for taking on this project.  This particular can is located right across from our studio at 449 Main Street!  The day the install happened was just beyond exciting to watch out our windows!

SUPPLIES:

  • Pencil + eraser
  • Scissors
  • Gluestick
  • Realistic animal face photos for inspiration
  • Sketch paper + final paper + tracing paper + watercolor paper cut to size
  • India Ink
  • Watercolors including both liquid and traditional pallets
  • Watercolor brushes + water container
  • Lightbox or window
  • Colored pencils, permanent markers, acrylic paint, colored paper for additional details!

PROCESS:

ONE  Select a realistic animal and dream up your animal’s expressive personality.  Create several mini sketches focusing on the face, head, and shoulders.

TWO  Finalize your favorite sketch selection into a drawing, again with a focus on the face or upper body. Humanize your animal by adding human-like features, ex. eyes, mouths, shoulders, costuming and fun accessories, yet keeping a bit simplified, as individually drawn pieces will need to be drawn and cut out.

THREE  Finalized your favorite animal drawing to a specific vertical paper size, fill the space by going big and focused in.

FOUR  Trace each section of your drawing onto tracing paper at a window or lightbox.  Separate out each layer.  For example, the glasses would be a separate “drawn and cutout piece” from the face, to then overlay on top of the face.  Start with the largest shapes first, such as the face, neck, and shoulders.  It is very helpful to create bigger shapes to smaller shapes, working background to foreground.

FIVE  Place the tracing paper shapes behind the final watercolor paper at the window or lightbox.  Trace images onto heavy-weight watercolor paper in pencil.  Again, all individual pieces that make up the complete animal, will be all drawn as separate pieces.  The photos, above and below, should help with the visual understanding.

SIX  Before cutting apart, use India Ink and a small brush to outline all the separate pieces.  Remember to vary the line quality to keep your pieces more painterly so they capture both thick and thin for a more handcrafted flair.  Dry.

SEVEN  Plan out a color scheme- complementary, analogous, warm or cool, intermediate, triad, or monochromatic for the overall piece.  The color scheme should include the background.

EIGHT  Using watercolors, which could be liquid or traditional pallets style, paint each piece remembering to dry between colors.  Dry all pieces.  Cut apart all individual pieces following the outer edge ink so the varied edge lines are preserved.  Use a heavier weight watercolor paper to create a vibrant wash for the background.  Dry.

NINE  Assemble all the separate cutout/painted pieces using a heavy duty glue stick.

TEN  Onto delightful details!  Add highlights in eyes using white acrylic paint.  Add swirls using colored pencil or permanent marker by using a similar color.  Add texture and additional delightful detail.  Use cut paper shapes, ex. stripes or polka dots to create a contrasting background to pop the creature!  Most importantly, create a pet with personality and humor that comes to life with color, contrast, and human-like features!

A PEEK:  Into the Planning Process of the Bus

BUS

bus-color

A HUGE THANK YOU!!!

CPAC Carbondale Public Arts Commission

RFTA Roaring Fork Transportation Authority

Town of Carbondale

Carbondale Middle School

… for making these two community projects, completely focused on kid art, come together for our community!

Tag us @handmakery with your creations on Instagram!  Would love to see your ~ Pet Portraits with Personality!  Follow our BLOG for more inspiring process-based art projects!  As always, thank you for following along on this artful adventure in beautiful Carbondale | CO at 449 Main Street!  Send us a note or contact us anytime at hello@handmakery.com!  Much love and happiness creating!  xo Ami

Llamas in Pajamas

Happy Summertime + July 1st!  Excited to announce we’re partnering with Deep Space Sparkle as an art presenter in their Draw, Paint, Make online workshop this Saturday, July 7th!  Learn more about this incredible art workshop, the art teachers involved (pictured below), and all the amazing techniques, processes, and projects featured!  In this artfully amazing workshop, we’ll be demonstrating all the steps + secrets + special techniques used to create our recent ~ Lil’ Llamas in Pajamas Party Project!  Designed, dreamed up, and created with mini-makers in our very own downtown studio!  Within the workshop, we’ll also be giving a tour of our NEW art studio (click for a sneak peek) and its organization for creating with children!  Join HANDMAKERY + six other art teachers to jazz up art projects with inspiring, yet easy, processes, plans & techniques this Saturday!

Our Lil’ Lamas in Pajamas Project focuses on painted pillows, poufs, ottomans, and wallpaper as interior design elements.  It also highlights lovely lil’ llamas, a pajama party a-poppin’, the artist as a photographer peeking into the party, a masterpiece mix of techniques using sketching, drawing, painting, collaging, photography, interior design, expressive color, a unique + exquisite color scheme, patterns, layering, humor, a fun storyline based on the letter P, and more!  Did we mention, in our six-week workshop creating with children, we topped it off with our very own pajama party plus mini-exhibit for our mini makers!?!  Would love for you to join us this Saturday for Draw, Paint, Make!  We’ll definitely be there chatting and chiming in!  See below, photos highlighting one of our favorite projects we’ve designed for kids!  Be sure you’re following us @handmakery on Instagram for the latest and greatest creative happenings!

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DIY Painted Paper Lantern

May’s First Friday always brings our entire community out for the annual ~ Family Block Party!  Friday evening we hosted ~ DIY Painted Paper Lanterns in our outdoor art studio from 4 – 8 PM.  Take a peek at a quick video clip to music!  Cheers to a wide-open canvas for all ages to explore!  A huge thank you to everyone for joining this festive event in downtown Carbondale | CO!  Take a peek at all the magic in our outdoor studio!  By the end of the night, all 130 paper lanterns were out of sight, heading home for colorful + creative delight!  Connect with us @handmakery on IG for the next creative + community + colorful happening!

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DIY Delightful Dragonfly

The art studio was filled with mini maker exhibits and recognition ceremonies as ALL six-week workshops wrapped up last week!  We celebrated our fifth exhibit, an end of the week highlight, hosting a FIRST FRIDAY “kid at heART exhibit” showcasing my 88-year-old grandfather, Bob Fadely aka Papa Bob, and his very first art exhibit ~ COLORING IN COLORFUL COLORADO!  Megan Tackett, an incredibly talented and enthusiastic writer, captured my grandfather in both a delightful article in The Sopris Sun and live interview on KDNK!  After it was all said and done, my most genuine Grandfather shared with me, “Last week was one of the BEST weeks of my life!”  “Art  (without a doubt) washes away from the soul the dust of everyday life.”  – Pablo Picasso

As springtime unfolds the outdoors become artfully alive!  Dragonflies always mesmerize with their stealthy speed, shimmery color, intricate detail, and pattern on point.  They lead us to our favorite outdoor places and spaces, including rivers, ponds, and lakes. Spring into a simple process upcycling household goods to create a bountiful + beautiful ~ DIY Delightful Dragonfly dreamed up in the HANDMAKERY art studio!  Simply take a peek!

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Forever Fishbowl

Excited to share with you a project recently dreamed up, designed, created, and of course, constructed in our very own downtown art studio!  Take a BIG splash into our ~ DIY Forever Fishbowls!  This project was created, carried out, and creatively constructed in several of our mixed age, six-week, after school, hands-on + mixed media, art workshops creating with young artists!

Beyond excited to also announce hands on + mixed media + NEW ART WORKSHOPS START NEXT WEEK for a wide array of ages!  Hop on over to ENROLL AT HANDMAKERY.COM as spaces are quickly filling!  While visiting, peek at new photos on our site and IG feed!

As you can clearly see, artists used a wide array of mixed media to bring their vision to life!  Below, you’ll discover all you need to create your very own ~ DIY Forever Fishbowl.  The big + beautiful bonus, you’ll never send a fish into fishy heaven, EVER EVER EVER again.  YES, this fishy will truly live F-O-R-E-V-E-R and children LOVE this fact!  Like, XOXOXO times a million or LOVE for a lifetime!

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