I’ve always loved looking at butterflies and insect collections in the Natural History Museums. The patterns and colors are mind-boggling, and a great source of inspiration. I particularly like the moths and beetles collection,but that's a different project.
This spring we have decided to make our own family collection, pinned up in a display box.
We spent some time studying Zoe’s butterfly poster, looking carefully at the different wing shapes and patterns. We tried picking one favorite, but we have miserably failed to do so. Mostly, we enjoyed working side by side, drawing butterflies from our imagination.
Following is a simple tutorial for making your own family/class or private butterfly collection.
Making the butterflies
You will need:
- Sharpies (of course)
- White Card stock (we have used water color Bristol paper because I like the thickness as well as the texture, and also that was all I had)
- Small scissors
- Any kind of butterfly reference (web, books, posters, etc..)
- Spend some time looking at pictures of butterflies, study their patterns, their shapes etc.
- Draw half a butterfly on your board, fold it in the middle.
- Cut out your butterfly (younger kids may need some help with cutting)
- Open your butterfly, and color your butterfly creating different patterns
- This is a great project for all age groups. Each will demonstrate different skills and ability, you might need to help the kids accordingly. Zoe really enjoyed making up the butterfly shapes - she became our expert butterfly ‘shaper’.
- The more you study your references, the more you will stay away form the symbolic butterfly (2 back to back B’s).
- We didn’t really plan our box in advance, we drew many different butterflies (it was hard to stop). We didn’t use all of the butterflies for the display box. Having a variety of sizes was effective.
To cover the box I have followed a tutorial I found via Creative Jewish Mom at Litchi7.
This is the first box I have ever covered with fabric, and I have to admit…it wasn’t as hard as I thought it would be. If you are a little intimidated with the process, you may paint the box, or cover it with paper. I am sure you will think of a creative alternative.
You will need:
- A sturdy shallow box such as a shoe box cover
- a piece of corrugated cardboard, foam, or cork in the size of the back of your box.
- Craft glue
- Sewing pins
- Hot glue
- Glue the corrugated cardboard, cork or foam inside the back of your box. Weight it down and set aside to dry. This is so the back of the box is cushioned enough to accept the pins.
- Cover the box following this tutorial
- Lay down your butterflies, planning the display composition
- Place 2 pins through the center of the butterflies. ( I used 2 so the butterflies wont swivel) do it directly on the box, this way you will have all the butterflies pinned down, before you start to glue them one by one.
- Start with the first one, place some hot glue in the pinhole markings, push butterfly all the way to the head of the pins, and poke pins into the back of the box, through the hot glue. The butterflies end up pinned away from the box.
- Repeat with the rest of the butterflies.
linked on Craft Schooling Sunday