All Weather Baggie Wreath
From: Bonnie Sedore
Ages: Daisy(help with hanger), Brownie, Cadette (service project idea). Don't forget Cub Scouts.
- One box of plastic sandwich bags (not zip lock types) per child
- one wire clothes hanger per child
- assorted ribbons and sequins.
Open hanger, bend it into a full circle. Tie baggies in a knot around hanger. Keep tieing on baggies, pushing them close together, to make a fluffy wreath. Glue on sequins and a bow for decoration.
From: Magnolia / Heart of Florida Council
- miniature marshmallows
- orange slice candies
Any age can make apple turkeys, which are nice Thanksgiving crafts. Stem side backwards, toothpicks attach gumdrop heads and gummy orange slice wattles to the front, and colored miniature marshmallows impaled on toothpicks form the plumage in the back. The finished birds can rest on three toothpicks like a tripod base.
Button Snowmen Pattern
From: Kathy Franda
Ages: Any age with varying help with glue gun
- 2 large 1/12 inch two hole buttons
- Glue - I use hot glue (see note)
- 1/8-1/4 inch scrap of xmas fabric
- small piece of felt - black
- Pin back
Glue buttons together so that the top buttons holes look like eyes.. side ways to the other button. Wrap and glue fabric scrap where buttons overlap for scarf. I like to cross the ends in the front. Cut a hat shape out of black felt and glue to head. I cut a top hat shape but you can do any shape you like for a hat. Glue pin onto the back and its done.
Sometimes the buttons pop apart. This has happened no matter what glue I have tried and I just re-glue them. I usually let them harden over night before finishing them so I know they are not going to pop.
Candy Cane Reindeer
From: Beth Winger / Hemlock Girl Scout Council, Pennsylvania
Ages: Brownies and up
- 6- candy canes
- brown pipe cleaners
- -goggly- eyes
- small red pompoms
- pieces of ribbon (optional)
Glue two eyes on candy cane. Glue the red pompom for a nose. Twist the brown pipe cleaner around the bend of the candy cane to fashion antlers. If you like, tie a bow with ribbon.
The larger candy canes, and in turn larger eyes and pompoms, are easier for younger children to handle. The reindeer make nice tree decorations and they are nice to give out while caroling a nursing homes or hospitals.
From: Elisabeth England / Jr Leader, Western Mass Council
- 4 - 3" bump chenille
- 18mm wooden bead
- thick glue
- Cut the chenille into individual bumps
- Gently curve one bump to form the body. Insert into the bottom hole of the head, add glue. (oval shape)
- Gently form the wings by curving. Wrap around the body at the neck making the wings smaller, glue. (tighter, slightly smaller than body, ovals)
- Form the halo and insert into the hole in the top of the wooden bead, glue (circle with stem into head)
- Paint face on Bead.
Chenille Elf or Santa
From: Elisabeth England - Jr Leader / Western Mass Council
- 4 - 3" bump chenille
- 18 mm wooden head
- Cut 2 bumps for legs and glue into the bottom hole of the head. Bend bottom 1/4-1/2" for feet.
- Using 2 bump chenilles (not cut), wrap around the body into the arm position. Curve end for hands.
- Cut a hat from felt. Pattern is one quarter of a circle with a 2" radius. Roll into cone and glue. Then glue on bead. For elf you can cuff hat. For santa you can add a band of "fur" (white chenille or strip of material)
- Paint face on bead.
Christmas Candle Holder
From: Heather Minol / 2nd Scullin Girl Guides - Ginninderra District, Canberra, Australia
Ages: Any age
- 1 tall colored candle
- 1 low, wide empty can, eg a salmon can
- paint or Christmas gift wrapping paper
- brightly colored ribbon
- chicken wire
- green leaves, pine etc
- small nuts and cones painted gold or silver
- florist's wire may be useful to help secure ribbon and cones etc
Paint the can or glue paper tightly around it. Place the candle in the middle of the can, holding in place with plasticine. Fill the space in the can with rumpled chicken wire. Arrange leaves etc around the candle by sticking them in the chicken wire. Do not make them too high, no more than half the height of the candle. Add the gold/silver nuts and cones, tie ribbon in a bow and add to the arrangement. For extra effect, a few small colorful decorations can be added. If the can is painted or covered with plain colored paper, the outside can be decorated with cut-out paper or felt holly leaves etc.
A great craft for Christmas or a gift for the Christmas table. This would also be suitable to make as a table centerpiece on a Christmas camp. Each patrol or six could make their own with natural materials gathered around the campsite. Cones etc need not be painted.
From: Darlene Pitman, Brownie Leader / Rancho Rains Council (California)
Ages: Daisies can do, but probably won't finish in a meeting. Brownies can finish, barely... Juniors should be able to do fairly quickly
- Precut various strips of Red and Green fabric 3/4" wide.
- Wire Ribbon
- Circular Base size of finished wreath- can be cardboard or styrofoam
To make your own base with cardboard cut an 8" circle with a 6-1/2" circle cut out of the center, like a hollow 'O' This leaves a 1-1/2" wide 'wreath'. Tie a 6" x 3/4" strip around the wreath, use a 1/2 knot- the kind you use when you start a bow, NOT a full knot. It doesn't seem like it would stay tied, but it does. Alternate the red and green strips next to each other all around the wreath. Top with a length of Wire Ribbon tied in a bow.
If you use a styrofoam base tie a test strip of material around the base leaving 1" ends after its tied. Measure it and cut all your other strips this size. A rotary cutter is *very* helpful for this. You can also use little Christmas picks in a styrofoam wreath.
Works in a heart shape for Valentine's too!
Christmas Wreath Pins
From: Sue Moore-Vest
Ages: Brownies and up
- Round plastic canvas circles
- green chenille sticks
- gold or other festive fabric paint (doesn't take much)
- pin backs or safety pins
- red ribbon, 1/8 or 1/4 inch wide
- hot or low-melt glue gun
Cut the plasticized canvas into a donut shape 3 squares wide. Save the inner portion to make a smaller pin, which will be 2 squares wide. Wrap chenille stick around donut. Keep wraps close so plastic doesn't show. When you have to start a new stick, just hide the ends underneath another wrap. When you are finished, make small dots of fabric paint as decorations or leave plain. When paint is dry (overnight is best) glue backs and ribbon bows on. You may want to glue these before painting, depending on your preferences.
Cost: inexpensive, not sure of a cost-per item breakdown
Younger girls may not wrap neatly, but don't sweat it, parents and teachers love it just the same!
Countdown to Christmas Chain
From: Magnolia / Heart of Florida Council
Ages: younger children -- Daisy/Brownie
- gold, red, green construction paper
This is a very inexpensive craft and suited to small hands. Ahead of time, cut one gold star (3-4 inches), 12 red strips, and 12 green strips for each child. One the star, you can draw or stamp a picture or write a little poem if you like. Something along the lines of "Little star, shining bright, how many days 'til Santa's flight?" will do. Have the girls make a paper chain, alternating red and green paper strips. We used tape instead of glue, since it's less messy, but glue also works. Attach the chains to the stars. Tell the children to hang the star at home and remove one chain a day starting December 1.
Another alternative is to take a fabric ribbon in a Christmassy pattern about 18" long, trim the end like a ribbon, then hot glue wrapped mints, alternating red and green. A pop top from a beverage can glued on the back makes an easy hanger. It's a little riskier with younger children due to the hot glue, so older Brownies or Juniors are a better choice for this one. Similar to the other, they take it home and hang it up, then eat a mint a day until Christmas Eve.
Felt Hand Valentines or Wreath
From: Lisa A. Eichholtz
Ages: Daisys and up
A really easy craft for little folks....make a tracing of each child's hand on paper....pin the paper to felt (get lots of bright colors)...and cut out the shape....using craft glue, glue on an assortment of buttons, bows , bits of lace....(adults should use wire cutters to cut shanks off buttons if needed in advance)...
Total cost - if you have an ample supply of trims, about $.10 per girl (for the felt)...if you don't have trims, you would need to purchase 1-3 packs rickrack and/or lace, and a variety of buttons....
These hands can be used as valentines, with a greeting written on the back....a troopful of hands could be used to decorate a wreath.
Friendship/Thinking Day Snowflakes
From: Tracy Buckley
Ages: Brownies, Juniors, Cadettes, Seniors Those able to use scissors accurately.
- Paper cut into circles
- Markers to color with (if desired)
You can make these as traditional 6-sided snowflakes or have MORE friends when you make an 8-sided snowflake.
For 6-sided snowflakes: Fold circle in half, then fold one side in 1/3 of the way and the other side in the final 1/3 so you now have a pointed triangle with a curved top (you paper should be shaped like a cone now).
For 8-sided snowflakes: Fold circle in half, then in half again, lastly fold you 1/4 circle over to create the cone shape mentioned above (point of a triangle at the bottom with a curved top.)
Next take your scissors and cut through all the thicknesses of paper
1. near the top, curved part of your triangle: cut A STRAIGHT LINE, A CIRCLE AND A STRAIGHT LINE. This represents the top of arms and heads. They will be holding hands with the neighboring "paper doll".
2. About midway, but closer to the top (head), from each opposite side, nip a short straight line, (to make the bottom of the arms), and an angular cut from the "armpit" back out to the outer edge (like an up-side- down christmas tree cut). This will make the side of your paper doll's shirt.
3. Now down closer to the point of your triangle, again cut, from each opposite side a shorter straight line (to make the bottom of the skirt) and an angular cut back out to the side of your triangle (to make the legs sticking out the bottom.)
1. _____ * *_____
2. / \
3. / \
4. Unfold (& color) your friendship snowflake!
Fun Halloween Ghost
From: Sue Moore-Vest
- 1 regular ironing board
- 1 large white sheet
- black felt
- masking tape
- broom stick or long wodden dowel
Open legs of ironing board and set prop on the flat end of the board and one set of legs (pointy end up). Tape or tie stick in place for arms. Cover with sheet. Cut felt to make two eyes and a mouth of proper size for your ghost. Affix eyes & mouth with loops of tape.
Can make it silly or scary depending on type of eyes and mouth and accessories (such as a polka dot bowtie made out of felt or a silly top hat).
From: Sue Moore-Vest
- White gauze or other very thin white material cut into squares about 12"
- 2 cups sugar
- 1 cup water
- plastic glass - small
- round rubber ball (of a size to sit on glass)
- wire or pencils
MAKE MOLD: Set glass upright, and place ball in mouth of glass, making sure it sticks up to give the ghost a round head. Tape wire or pencils so they stick out the side of the cup, this will form the arms.
MAKE SUGAR STIFFENER SOLUTION: In heavy saucepan and stirring constantly, melt sugar in water over low heat until you can't see crystals. Let solution boil briefly then remove to cool.
FORMING GHOSTS: Make sure you cut your fabric large enough to drape well over mold. Fit fabric over mold to help decide how you want it to be formed. Dip fabric into cooled sugar solution, making certain the fabric is saturated. Squeeze excess solution back into pan. Drape fabric over mold, arranging folds as desired. Let set till hard.
OPTIONAL DECORATING: You can leave your ghost plain or decorate it with felt pieces, google eyes, markers, etc. You can vary the size by using larger molds (I once used a 2-liter bottle I had rounded off with a wad of paper taped down) and fabric. I once used cloth diapers, the unfolded kind. If you trim off the ends, you have a thin cloth with tight weave which I think works great for ghosts. Each of my diapers was made of 2 pieces of fabric, so they went a long way. For extra fun, get a chemical glow stick, break it and support it (such as in a small ball of play dough) and place the ghost over top.
From: Karen Moye-Kelly
Let's talk TOO easy .... you get that puzzle out of the back of your or one of your children's closet ... you put white paint in a metal pan ... do NOT use watercolors ... then you paint the puzzle pieces white ... (I'm not goin' too fast, am I) ... next, you put two (2) black dots on one of the corners of the puzzle piece (do this one puzzle piece at a time) ... you have yourself one easy-to-make ghost ... even 3 year olds can make these ... brownies/junior Girl Scouts attach pins to backs for swaps ... older girls make earrings with them ... too cute!!!
From: AnnieRap / Chicago Council
Ages: Daisies and Brownies
- macrame beads
- Square of white muslin or inexpensive fabric
- Orange and Black yarn, ribbon
- Black marker fine point
- Magnet Strip (adhesive kind works best)
The girl takes the square of muslin and puts bead in the center ties the muslin under the bead. The leader will have to help make a bow out of it. Fine point marker for eyes and and "O" shaped mouth. Attached magnet to back of bead. These can be made up very quickly.
Gingerbread House (foolproof recipe)
From: Vivian Fields / Seven Lakes
- cardboard to hold house
- aluminum foil to cover cardboard
- assorted candies, pretzels, etc for house decoration
- a good sized mixing bowl
- sauce pan(if you don't use a microwave)
- cookie sheets
- rectangle of brown paper from a paper bag
- icing spatula or knife.
Gingerbread Dough Recipe - Makes one house (approx. 8"X5"X7")
5 cups sifted all-purpose flour 3 teaspoons powdered ginger
1 tsp of Baking Soda 1 cup of sugar
1 tsp of nutmeg 1 cup Crisco (or similar product)
1 tsp salt 1 cup unsulphured molasses
Melt shortening in microwave or in saucepan. Add the sugar and molasses and mix well. Make sure the sugar is fully dissolved. Put wet ingredients into a large bowl and gradually add 4 cups of the dry ingredients. Mix in the remaining cup by hand. Roll out 1/4 of an inch thick and cut the pieces using a pattern drawn on paper. Extra dough may be used for gingerbread boys, trees, chimney, etc. Bake in preheated oven - 375 degrees for about 12 minutes or until lightly browned.
Royal Icing - to hold house together and to use for decoration.
3 egg whites
4 1/2 cups confectioners sugar
1 1/2 tsp cream of tartar
Beat egg white for a short time and gradually add other ingredients. Continue to beat until it becomes a smooth creamy texture. To delay the icing from setting too fast cover the bowl with a damp towel or plastic wrap
I can't include the diagrams here. To put the roof together, use a rectangle of brown paper (from a paper bag) and "glue" it over the two part of the roof set side to side. Let it set completely before putting it on the four walls.
You will have to make your own patterns. Try putting the paper patterns together with tape to make sure the proportions are correct.
I've been using this recipe for 6 years of gingerbread house making parties and have never had a failure.
Chris' Note - A good alternative is to use one of the molds that are commercially available from Williams & Sonoma, Pamper Chef and others. This makes things even more fool-proof especially when working with younger children.
From: Anne Wiebe / Lone Star Girl Scout Council
Ages: All: This is appropriate for even Daisies, very easy!
- Waxed paper (could use aluminum foil)
- White glue like Elmers
Have the girl draw on a piece of waxed paper using the glue -- perhaps a star, snowflake, happy face, anything.
You need to make sure all the lines connect -- adult can help here. Then put the piece of waxed paper into a box or
something to contain the glitter, then pour on the glitter -- could use multiple colors. Let it set awhile, then extract the
paper and shake off excess -- be careful if the glue picture has big globs, you might let such a picture dry more.
Let the whole thing dry for a good while, an hour or more depending on how thick the glue was.
Then peel off the waxed paper backing, and you have a glitter ornament. You can attach a loop of string, thread,
yarn for hanging.
From: Kathy Franda
- 2 - 9" x 12" red or pink construction paper
- white plastic trash bag
Cut out two identical large hearts from construction paper. Cut a strip from trash bag the width of the heart. Accordion fold the bag leaving 1" from top unfolded. Cut through plastic folds about 1/2" width leaving unfolded part uncut. Glue the top uncut portion to back of heart and glue the other heart on top (sandwich plastic between hearts). Decorate the hearts with paints, markers, and a valentine message and hang from ceiling.
I Love You Valentines
From: Barbara Van Dyke
Ages: Appropriate for younger children 5 - 8 years old or older
- colored construction paper, 2 sheets per girl -- red, pink and white are nice, but I like giving the kids the chance to pick their own
- pencils or markers
- You may also need doilies and stickers (see below)
Each girl should trace their hand with one of the pieces of paper and cut it out.
With the other paper -- a contrasting color -- they should make a heart -- larger than their hand -- prepare these ahead or make a stencil for the girls to use or use the heart shaped doilies you can buy at the store.
Then glue the hand onto the heart, folding down the middle two fingers; thumb index and pinky are pointing up. This is the sign language symbol for "I love you". Have them sign the back and address to mom, dad or whoever. The kids could also make cards with the hand on the outside and a message on the inside. Decorate with stickers, doilies, whatever. Use your imagination -- or better still -- let the girls use their imaginations.
Bend down the thumb and pinky to form the Girl Scout sign (three fingers up). This is a good scrap book craft or craft for Girl Scout Ways Try-It or quick craft for GS birthday, J.G. Low birthday, etc.
This came from Highlights magazine -- a nice source for younger children crafts.
From: Pat Becker
- coffee filters
- cotton balls
- gold pipe cleaner/round gold gift wrap cord (2" pieces)
- white ribbon, very thing (4" pieces)
Place 2 cotton balls in center of filter, fold coffee filter in half, and form the head of the angel by making a ball and using the ribbon to tie it up. You can place a small loop in the center of the ribbon to use as a hanger, then tie the bow in front. Split the coffee filter up the back and fold the "wings" in accordian pleats. Secure with a spot of glue as needed. The angel is finished by putting on the gold halo and a face if you want to. It looks good without the face. Cost is about $0.10 or less the ribbon is the most expensive part!
My friend also made a cute wreath using bow tie macaroni and small paper plates as a base. The noodles were sprayed green and "pointsettias" of red noodles with gold beed centers were added. The flowers used 3 broken noodles. Wreath diameter is about 5", cost $0.20."
Happy Holidays, YIGS
From: Tracy Buckley
- styrofoam balls cut in half (this has been done with various sizes but the tiny 1/2 or 1 inch balls make for actual size Kisses)
- aluminum foil
- computer printed strips or labels that say "Merry Kissmas"
1. Cut your styrofoam ball in half. Also cut your aluminum foil into small squares and cut ribbon into lengths of less than 3 inches. Place flat part of 1/2 ball on foil. Make a loop with your ribbon (fold in half). Place ends of ribbon along side of ball, dab in a bit of glue and gather the foil up around the top of the 1/2 ball to make a Hersheys Chocolate Kiss shape. Once the glue drys you can use the loop to hang your ornament. To finish, glue the Merry Kissmas label across the outside near the top of the Kiss! Done!
Here's one for December (perhaps a tree ornament)
Ornaments - Bells
From: Bonnie Sedore
Ages: Daisy, Brownie
- Egg cartons
- plastic needle with large eye
Use the base of an empty egg carton, cut around the 'bumps'. Cover with foil or silver wrapping paper. Knot the end of the Yarn. Using needle thread yarn though a bead ( depending on the size of the beads you might have to put the bead on before the needle) & then through the top of bump. Place another knot on the top of the bell & leave a long end to attach bell to tree.
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