Tag Archives: recycled crafts

Grown Up Party Favors

A few of our local friends have a friendly competition loosely based on Iron Chef. The secret ingredient is announced by the host (and judge) the week before and the contestants have to come up with a recipe highlighting the ingredient. Judging is “arbitrary and capricious,” and the winner is given an honorary chef hat to hold onto until the next competition, and the honor of  being the next host.

Helping to make sesame nori. #chefintraining

The Super Designer family won the last competition (Battle Sesame) so we were in charge of choosing a new ingredient and hosting the next battle.  In addition to providing salad and few other basic food items, the host is responsible for party favors, usually cooking and theme related. We chose oats! We had no idea what we could hand out…

Given all the cork keychains I have made, I was thinking that maybe I could make a horse out of corks (because Mares eat oats of course!), but my mom suggested Quaker Oat canisters. They are the perfect shape for corks! I struggled for a bit how to create the design because I wanted it to be a classic cover, but finally realized it is teeny tiny and doesn’t have to be perfect. I found a flat image I could use for the wrap, and copied the recipe from the web. The recipe on the back is real, but might be too small to read, so here is the link I grabbed it from, edited slightly for space.

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I used modge podge to glue the printed paper onto the corks and painted the tops white before attaching the eye screws and keychain rings. I used an inkjet printer, so the colors bled a little, but I found a rhythm and managed to keep the bleed to a minimum. If I make something similar again I would love to find a simple water proof finish, but the reviews I have read about outdoor modge podge say it dries tacky.  I will have to post a review once I try it. Check out my Cork Keychains post for more information on the other components.

Readers, if you have done something similar I would love to hear about it!

Cork Keychains (or a good excuse for drinking a lot of wine!)

I have to tell you, I can’t stop making these little keychains!

Can't stop making these #corkkeychain people! #recycledcraft #recycledart

A few months ago, I had a table at the Boston Jewish Food Conference marketplace and wanted to have an easy craft made from recycled materials that would appeal to adults and kids. I saw some cork minions over at A Creative Princess. Minion keychains! Of course I had to try them out myself and I had a 6yo, LittleDesigner (LD), home sick with me, so he needed to try them as well. We moved from minions to Harry Potter, Star Wars, and Dr. Who and I haven’t stopped since.

My 4yo has been humming the Imperial March. He REALLY wants #darthvader I think I might be ready to move on from #starwars #stormtrooper #yoda #lukeskywalker #r2d2 #corkkeychain #partyfavors

LD decided to teach his kindergarten class how to make them, and I wanted to share what he said with you.

“First I had them each choose a cork. Then they decided if we should put designs on them or some of the corks already have pretty designs so they can use those. Then I had them paint the cork white. I showed them the examples that you made and the ones that I made, and they drew on the corks. Then we made puppet shows.”

kindergarten corks

Those are the keychains that the kindergarteners made. Amazing, right?!

Ok, so you want to make your own? I have a secret. Shhh… don’t tell anyone… but I didn’t drink all those bottles of wine. Whole Foods has cork recycling bins in many of their stores, and if you ask nicely, they will let you take as many from the bin as you want. Crazy, right?! So many projects to make with those corks!

I used  acrylic paint from Blick for the base on the corks I painted. You can draw right on the cork, but the colors are much less vibrant and you have to work around the lettering and designs already there.

After much searching I found these eye screws at Home Depot, and I bought 100 Pack Keychain Rings on Amazon.

The markers are a combination of Bic Metallic Permanent Markers and Sharpie Colored Markers (these are the ones that I bought, but there were a few listings, so I would check and see which are cheapest at the time of your purchase). The Bic markers went on a lot smoother, but the sharpies have a finer point.

Have fun! I hope you will post photos of your finished projects.