Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Tuesday Tutorial -- Paper Mache Birds

Here is the tutorial on making paper mache birds. I cannot wait to try these. I simply love birds and I don't know why. These look like they are simple and fun to make. If you try these, let me see how yours turn out, okay?

This is from that artist woman. I hope you enjoy the tutorial!! Please click over to her blog and leave her a nice comment, won't you.  Her blog is very interesting and fun.


I guess I have a bird theme going here.

These are some cute paper mache birds we made recently.

They have wire feet which allow you to clamp them on an edge like a flowerpot or piece of driftwood or have them free standing.

- newspaper
- tape
- paper towel
-  reg. white school and tacky glue
- water and recycled container
- thin cardboard from a cereal box
- wax paper
- acrylic or tempera paint
- fine markers
- sealer like Mod Podge (optional)
- med. gauge wire
- embroidery thread or yarn

Take a quarter sheet of newspaper and crush into a pear shape.

Tape into place.  You can twist out a beak shape, click on this photo to enlarge to see this.

Cut some paper towel into strips about 1/2 an inch wide or so.  Pour some white school glue into a recycled container and add water in a 1 to 1 ratio. Mix well. Dip the strips into the glue mixture and start covering your bird.

With paper mache you want to overlap your strips for strength and smooth them down as you go.  Use a few dry strips to soak up excess glue.  That way your bird will take less time to dry you just want it moist not sopping.

Leave to dry in a warm place overnight...turn once to ensure even drying.

Out of thin cardboard from a cereal or cracker box cut out a wing shape...I used a teardrop shape.  Cut out a tail shape as well.

Take the cardboard shapes and cover in a coat of paper mache.

Leave to dry.

Paint with acrylic or tempera.

We used a basecoat first and then added additional color on top.

For the feather and eye detail you can either paint it in with a fine paintbrush or use fine sharpies after the paint has dried.

Younger kids to better with the markers.

If you want a shiny coat you can add a coat of mod podge but you might want to wait until after you add the legs.  This way it can stand up while drying.

To make the feet take piece of wire about 16 inches or so.  I don't what gauge this wire is as the label was missing but it's soft enough to bend with your fingers but firm enough to hold the shape without collapsing.

Make a foot shape with 4 toes and then twist the 2 ends of the wire together to form the leg.

Trim them down and bend in the knees.  Remember a bird's knee bends backwards.

I like the look of the silver foot but I wanted to add some color to the legs so we wrapped them with embroidery thread.  You could also use yarn.  Take the end of the thread and loosely wrap from the top of the leg down, double back and wrap tightly now.

When you reach the top knot off.

Using an awl or a knitting needle punch holes for the legs.

Put some tacky glue on them.

Push the leg thru the glue into the hole (remember the knees are backwards).

Add some more glue if needed.

Let dry. 

Here is the one my 7yr old made.

That's it.They look pretty realistic once the legs are on.

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