Friday, October 9, 2009

Paper Mache and Foam Sheet Fish

This craft is inspired from a session I attended with my 19 month old daughter at a public library. Public library in our area usually has some sessions for kids every Saturday. Although this craft project was for a little older kids my daughter enjoyed it a lot. With a little help from parents toddlers can have fun doing this too.
My daughter is very fond of Fish and Aquarium so I tried to take the inspiration to a whole new level. She loves it and keeps playing with it all the time. It contains small parts so needs adult supervision at all times.

To make this Fish I used the following supplies:
- Cardboard
- Paper
- Pencil
- Scissors
- Masking Tape
- Old newspaper
- Tissue papers (Pink, yellow and orange)
- Foam Brush
- Decoupage Glue
- Container to keep glue
- Sticky back foam sheets (yellow,orange and pink)
- Dime (10 cents coin)
- Glue
- Clay block
- Rounded wooden stick of the size of a normal pencil

The basic technique of making paper-mache is utilized very beautifully in this art. Simply cut out the shape of any fish you want on a cardboard.Make small balls using old newspaper of such a size that will make the body of the fish. Using masking tape fix the newspaper balls on the cardboard cutout. Also fix the wooden pencil like stick using masking tape.Insert the pencil in the clay block such that it becomes a stand.

Now using the foam brush take some decoupage glue and start pasting 1 inch fragments of the tissue paper so that the cardboard and the newspaper is covered fully. Use glue over the tissue paper for layering. Great thing about decoupage glue is that it is transparent and leaves a shine when it dries. Continue till you feel the fish is properly covered. I did not have my camera with me at the library so have no intermediate pictures :(.

Paint the clay and the stem of the stand with color of your choice.
Now let it dry overnight. Meanwhile, cut out circles of the size of a dime from the sticky back foam sheets. I used orange and yellow color sheets. You can use whichever color you prefer. The quantity will depend on your design and size of the fish.

Next day when the paper-mache fish is completely dry, stick the already cut foam sheet scales. Start from the tail end of the fish. That way you will have neater overlapped fish scales. Using the pink foam sheet cut out thin lines to make fins. Also make lips out of pink foam sheet. You can paint them if you prefer that.

To finish this craft stick wiggle eyes. Once done, decorate your kids room with that and let them enjoy it. Just be careful with younger kids. Here is a picture of the completed project with stand.

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