Saturday, December 11, 2010

A Simple Craft Idea for Kids: Make a Venetian Mask

Last week, I made these Venetian masks with a group of thirteen 3 year old kids!    Yes, you read that right... 13 of them!!!! 

Ok, I'll confess that I didn't do it alone (my son's two preschool teachers were there helping me work with the kids) and, yes, there were a few moments where I found myself saying things like...

"Sweetheart, don't put the stickers in your hair"
"Let's not throw the tissue paper on the floor"
.. and... 
"Ok, who took the glue?"

BUT... on the whole this craft project was a big hit with my son and his school buddies!
It does require a little prep beforehand.   You will have to handle the cutting and preparing of the basic outline of the mask, before you let your kids have at it, but after that they will be fully responsible for the decorating.

Ok, so here's what you will need to get started... 

  • 1 large paper plate (if it's big enough you can make two masks out of it)
  • A pencil
  • Non-toxic glue (the liquid variety)
  • Tape
  • 1 wooden stick
  • Scissors or a cutting knife
  • Materials to decorate (you can use whatever you like but I've listed suggestions below too)
 Take your paper plate and cut it in half.   
Take one half of the plate.  Using your scissors, cut off the sharp outer pointed edges at the corners so that they are rounded off (for safety reasons).

Now draw a curved shape in the center, along the straight edge (for your child's nose to fit in the mask). I roughly worked out how large to make this "nose curve" by holding the plate up to my son's face and eyeballing it.   Then I cut the shape out (away from him) and then tested it again to see if it fit.   Be  sure to round off any sharp edges around the nose area of the mask.
Next cut out two eye holes. 
Again, I roughly eyeballed where these holes would go by getting my son to wear the mask. 
Mark off where you want the holes and then (away from your child) carefully cut out two eye slots in the mask.    

Tip: if you have a  compass knife (see below) it would work great for this part, if not, no problem, scissors will do just fine.  
Remember that the eye holes don't have to be circular.  They can be oval, or zigzagged, or whatever shape you would like them to be.  It's entirely up to you.

Finally, you need to take a wooden stick and some tape and attach the stick to the inside of the plate.  
If your child is right handed, attach the stick to the right side of the mask.  If they are left handed, attach it to the left.

That's it!  Easy. You've finished your part... now it's up to the kids! 

Your child can jazz it up any way they like.  Pour a little glue on the outside of the mask and they can go to town on it.

In my son's class they used tissue paper squares, feathers (which looked amazing!), scraps of material, newspaper clippings and foam stickers.   But you could also use....

Pom poms. Leaves. String. Glitter. Pipe-cleaners. Sequins. Small buttons. Googly eyes. Fabric flowers. Dried Flowers.  Pretty much whatever you can think of that will stick down. 
Why not try making some festive masks for the Holiday season?  

If you do try this project out, then do please let me know.  I'd get a kick out of hearing about how your kids customized their own masks.

I love to read your comments and hear what you think about the things posted here.  It makes this crafty mumma's day!  So please feel free to drop me a note or leave me a comment below. 

Happy creative ventures

My Submarine To The Future

1 comment:

  1. Hello Jackie,

    I seemed to have missed viewing my sub in Dec and Jan. and was delighted to see the neat stuff on it. Love the Venetian masks. And congratulations for pulling it off with 13 three year olds.

    Puneet Singh Gupta


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