So, I've never really thought of myself as a creative person. This idea was mainly based on the fact that I am not so into cutesy, crafty things (not counting kid's crafts), and never felt particularly artistic. However, in many of my education classes (including an amazing art class), in classroom experience, by decorating a home, and through church service, I have had many opportunities to try my hand at it. It's been fun. Lately I have been working on some projects that have me feeling pretty creative.
First of all, the kid's crafts. 1) Anna and I made some paper plate masks the other day, something we've done before. We made a lion and a bird, as you can tell from the picture. And yeah, they aren't perfect, but that's the point - we made them together. I loved how they turned out. Then at story time at the library, we heard a story about a lion and a mouse. So, when we got home, Anna had the brilliant idea to change the story to be about a lion and a bird so we could act it out. What a creative idea. 2) This other idea isn't really a craft, but it is imaginative. We were playing with a Topple game, and I decided to make little people on our fingers, with the topple pieces being the hats. Anna loved it; she insisted on having a whole family. Benjamin loved it even more; just watching us sing and talk to him with our finger people was enough to crack him up. Fun, fun.
This week we had an enrichment activity at church, and I was asked to give a lesson on home decorating on a budget. I thought I wasn't so qualified at first, but then realized this is something I really love. When we sold our home last year, we had numerous comments from potential buyers that they loved not just the home, but what we'd done with it - our colors and decorating style. I've always been into great deals...garage sales, clearance isles, thrift stores, etc, but I'm pretty picky about what I get. I think the creativity comes in by deciding how and where to use the item, whether to paint, or change it, etc. (Right now, living in a small, two bedroom apartment, and having a non-existent budget for this kind of thing, I'm currently not really doing much. :) For the class, I had many past ideas of my own to bring in and share, and filled in the gaps by searching a few articles on-line. I loved that my first main ideas involved three FREE things: de-cluttering, cleaning, and rearranging. Seriously, none of that costs anything and can make the biggest difference in a home. We also discussed many other ideas concerning themes, art, painting, accents, etc. Okay, I'll stop, but this was so much fun, and the class went great!
So, a description of one project I just recently completed: I had two black, square frames that I purchased forever ago for $3 each. I thought they'd look great on either side of our clock to fill up that wall a little more. The problem was, I didn't want to put in pictures of people because we already have plenty of family pictures displayed. They hung empty for a long time. Sooooo, I came up with the idea to take pictures of doors around our area to use. Artistic, right? (I later learned that there is an artist that is known for photographs of windows and doors, BUT I bet he hasn't done any from Clio or Frankenmuth.) Maybe not an original idea after all, but I thought it was, and I've already had so many compliments and inquiries about it. There are two doors I want to switch out, but this is it for now. I love that once we move away from this area, it will serve as a reminder of our time here.
When we have a home again, I also want to try this project: buy art canvases, but instead of painting on them (unless you're good at that kind of thing :), buy fabric that goes with your room/theme/colors to pull tightly over, and glue behind. A friend of mine did this, and it looked so good. And it's potentially inexpensive, depending on the size and quality of fabric. (Fabric stores and art stores often have great deals and coupon opportunities.) Something I am in the middle of for Anna's and Ben's room: hanging a twine "clothes line" on the wall, Anna is colorfully decorating the wood clothes pins, and then we'll use that to display her art work. I'll get a picture of it when we're finished. (I also like the idea of painting old frames matching colors, and putting the artwork in there...Maybe someday when we have a house and I want to decorate a wall in a family/play room.) Anyone have any creative, artistic ideas they'd like to share? Feel free to leave a comment.