Easter Bilby

In Australia, we are encouraged to celebrate bilbies not bunnies for Easter.  So I’ve made an Easter Bilby craft this year instead of an Easter Bunny.

What’s it all about?  A Bilby is an Australian native animal that is sadly one of our most threatened species. The Save The Bilby Fund uses Easter to raise awareness and funds for bilby conservation.  As they are threatened by the introduced species, Rabbits, Aussies are encouraged to celebrate the Easter Bilby instead of the Easter Bunny.

So that’s why I made this guy from a paper plate and some cardboard.  If you’d like to make one, download the pattern here: LOTTA easter bilby pattern

THINGS YOU NEED

Paper plates, thin cardboard, black, white and pink paint, paint brush, paint tray, scissors, masking tape, glue, googly eye, coloured paper, circle punch (optional)

HOW TO MAKE

  1. Paint the paper plate and a sheet of cardboard grey.  I added a little texture to mine to make him appear furry not flat.
  2. Paint a small piece of cardboard pink for the ears, nose and cheeks.
  3. Print out the template. Tape the pieces on top of the plate/cardboard and use the template to cut out all the pieces.
  4. To turn the basic bilby into an Easter Bilby, add some strips of coloured paper inspired by the patterns on Easter eggs. If you have a circle punch it’s an easy way to make patterns. Glue them onto your bilby pieces with a glue stick.
  5. Assemble all the pieces and glue them into position and hello Easter Bilby!

Lotta easter fun kids crafts

Art history printables for kids

Studying the art and lives of famous artists helps kids understand art, connect with history and learn big lessons about life. It’s important, but can be a little dry. That’s why I’ve been working on some kid-friendly resources to make famous artists accessible and fun.  My aim was FAMOUS ARTIST FUN! I hope I lived up to it.

All these resources are available in my website store and in my TPT store .  I’m creating new resources all the time so follow my TPT store if you don’t want to miss new products.

Lotta famous artist paper dolls

Gustav Klimt colouring pages for kids

Get your kids some famous artist fun here or at my TPT store.

If you use these resources in the classroom I would love to see. If you are sharing on social media, please use the hashtags #lottatpt or #famousartistfun so I can see them.

Lotta famous artist paper dolls

Famous artist colouring pages

Paper plate koalas

Lotta paper plate koalas

Inspired by all the native mothers and babies  I have seen around my house this Spring, I made this koala craft for Australia Day.  This cute koala and her joey are made from paper plates. It’s a fun little craft that you can use for Australia Day decorations too. Why not replace your Christmas wreath with these guys?  Here’s how to make them…

Things you need

Two or three large paper plates, one small paper plate, grey, pink, black and white paint, paint tray, paint brush, craft glue, four googly eyes (two small, two larger), scissors, masking tape, printout of template (Lotta paper plate koala temp).

How to make them

  1.  Print out the template which shows you how to cut your paper plates. Tape them onto the plates and cut out all the pieces. You can cut out the ears, noses and arms from the leftovers of the koala body plates. You will also need a whole small paper plate for the mother koala’s head.
  2. Paint all the pieces and plates and allow them to dry.
  3. Assemble your koalas with craft glue.
  4. Decorate them as desired.  I added some gum leafs and added a pattern to one of the koalas to differentiate them. You could add indigenous dot patterns, sponged textures or a Happy Australia Day banner.

Now you have the paper plates out, what else could you make?  You could whip up a Bleeding Crepe Paper Unicorn or a No Drama Llama puppet.

Looking for more Australia Day crafts?  We also have a Jumping Kangaroo and some beautiful Australian Paper Flowers.

Lotta magazine | Magazine for kids

Lotta Fun With Puppets eBook

Lotta fun with puppets ebook for kids

Puppets are a great way to entertain the kids — get crafty making your puppets then get imaginative telling stories and putting on shows. My new eBook, Lotta Fun With Puppets includes 16 puppet projects, over 100 pages including detailed instructions with photos, templates and materials lists for each project. This eBook features the best puppet projects from Lotta Magazine with brand new puppet crafts. There’s finger puppets, hand puppets, shadow puppets, pop up puppets, marionettes, glove puppets and more. There’s even a no-sew doorway puppet theatre so you can put on a real show.

Lotta fun with Puppets gives you clear, step-by-step instructions, templates and material lists for each project. These crafts are doable (even for the least crafty parent) and mostly made from recycled items and stuff around the house. Some are designed to be made with your kids and some are so simple they can do it themselves.  Some of the projects would make brilliant handmade gifts for kids.

Lotta fun with puppets has over 40 different puppets to makeincluding crocodiles, dragons, giraffes, a fantastic fox, no drama llamas, a scarecrow, tinman, lion, dorothy and a witch, a bear, tiger, hippo, dog, a chicken, dinosaurs, unicorns, the three little pigs and a big bad wolf, monsters, rabbits, Santa, elves, nutcracker, leprechaun, werewolf, vampire, Frankenstein, robots, a dancing Christmas tree and a haunted house filled with ghosts.

There’s projects for Christmas, Easter, Halloween, Book Week and St Patrick’s Day.  A puppet for all seasons.

Lotta halloween and christmas puppets

Why an ebook?

  1. Everything you need is all in one place — one download from your inbox and you’re good to go.
  2. It’s perfectly formatted for you to print it at home. All the instructions are on one or two pages — not 22 like a blog post.  It’s more convenient and saves printer ink (just skip the big photo pages). I’ve even designed it so you can even print it as thumbnails (two pages one one) and it can still be read.
  3. Unlike the A5 sized magazine, there’s lots of room to give very detailed instructions with photos.  I can also include all the templates right there without need for extra visits to the website and further downloads.
  4. Sure… you could figure out how to make them from the pictures but I have already done all the trial and error and for the price of a coffee, you can save yourself a lot of time and hassle.

You can buy a copy right now for just AU$5 (that’s just US$3). Click here or the cover pic below to go to my store and purchase a copy.

This is a digital product. You will receive a PDF file that you can download straight from your email inbox.  It couldn’t be easier!

Lotta Fun With Puppets ebook cover

Lotta fun with puppets pin

Bleeding crepe paper unicorn

I know that unicorns are supposed to be white, but I thought a little process art would make this paper plate unicorn more fun and magical.  You may have heard of bleeding crepe paper art  — that’s what I’ve used to create some beautiful patterns on this project. This craft is very easy but turns out so good you might need to find a place for him on the wall.

THINGS YOU NEED

Paper plate, brightly coloured crepe paper, spray bottle with water, paper towel, scissors, glue, tape, glittery gold cardboard, thin gold cord, iridescent foil backdrop or shredded paper (from Kmart Australia), Lotta’s template

You don’t need the special bleeding crepe paper for this project.  I just used to cheapest dollar store variety, in nice bright colours, and it worked brilliantly.  There isn’t enough ink to leach out of pastel colours so don’t bother with those.

HOW TO MAKE

1.  Put some paper towel down on the table and place a paper plate, white side up, on top.

2.  Cut small pieces of crepe paper and place them all over the paper plate. Spray the crepe paper with water until it’s quite damp, but not soggy.  The crepe paper may move when you spray it. If you need to move it or press it down flat against the plate, use another piece of paper towel or wear gloves. If you touch it, you will dye your hands too.

3.  Remove the crepe paper to reveal the printed paper plate underneath.  You can create different effects by adding more or less crepe paper and the time they are in contact (i.e. removing when damp or waiting until it dries). Experiment a little until you get the perfect unicorn texture or make a whole blessing (that’s the collective noun) of paper plate unicorns.

Bleeding crepe paper on plate

4.  Print out our template and use it to cut the paper plate into a unicorn shape. From the unused half of the plate cut some more details like ears, nose and even eyelashes. (See the photo below).  Roughly cut out the eye and glue it onto a scrap of paper plate. Once dry, carefully cut it out.

5.   Cut a horn from some glittery gold cardboard. I wrapped some thin gold cord around to add some detail. Just glue one end on the back, wrap the cord around the notches then secure the other end on the back. (See the photo below.)

6.  I had an Iridescent Foil Backdrop from Kmart leftover from a party. It made a magnificent unicorn main. I held some together with masking tape and trimmed it off above the tape. You can repeat the process to create a thicker mane.

Of course, you can use some shredded paper or coloured wool to create a mane.

7.  Put everything together, using glue and/or tape, and you have a magnificent unicorn.

Looking for more art and craft projects for kids, check out my magazine.

Lotta magazine | Magazine for kids

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Flower pencils

A bunch of flowers that lasts forever — these flower pencils are a beautiful and useful gift for Mother’s Day.  They are blooming easy to make… here’s how.

THINGS YOU NEED

Lead pencils (we found some green ones at the dollar store), crepe paper (two colours — one for centre and one for petals), PVA or craft glue, scissors

HOW TO MAKE THEM

1. Add some craft glue to the end of your pencil and cover it with a square of crepe paper (fold it so it is three layers thick and won’t break).

2.  Cut a strip of crepe paper and fold in over so there are three layers and it is long enough to wrap twice around your pencil. Snip it about 3/4 of the way down, all the way along to create a fringed effect.

3.  Using this template — Lotta flower petals.pdf — cut the petals out of of crepe paper. Starting with the smaller petals, glue them onto the pencil, working your way around, overlapping the petals slightly.

4.  Continue adding the larger petals with a daub of glue until your flower is complete.

5.  Repeat steps 1-4 to make some more pencils in other colours.  Place them into your vase (ours was a milk bottle from the dollar store).

Lotta Magazine | Magazine for kids

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Jumping easter bunny

Here’s a free sneak peek at the easy Easter fun in our new ebook Lotta Easter Fun — a jumping Easter bunny. Two party cups, two elastic bands and a little Lotta make this easter bunny jump. You won’t believe how high he goes!

THINGS YOU NEED

Two white plastic or paper cups, template printed on A4 cardboard (Download here: Lotta jumping bunny) , two elastic bands, bamboo skewer, scissors, craft glue

HOW TO MAKE

  1.  Poke four holes in your cup, at opposite points (like a cross). An adult can use the pointy end of your scissors to get the holes started, then the kids can open them up with a bamboo skewer.

2. Cut your rubber bands (so they aren’t circles anymore). Feed one rubber band through the opposite holes, allowing a little slack, then tie a knot in both ends. You can use your bamboo skewer to help poke the rubber band through the holes. Repeat with the other rubber band.

3.  Print the template onto cardboard. Cut the face and feet out and glue them onto the cup with the elastic bands.

4.  To make your bunny hop, you need to place the bunny cup on top of another cup. Pull down and when you release, the bunny will jump.

If you like this project you will love our ebook. It’s packed with more easy Easter fun for kids! Click the pic to find out more. 

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A Lotta Easter Fun

Looking for easy easter fun for kids? For less than the price of a chocolate bunny, we’ve got you covered with this 35 page digital eBook. Inside are Easter gifts, puppets, games, toys, Easter bonnets and decorations — fun for kids of all ages (and their grown ups).

Lotta Easter Fun gives you clear, step-by-step instructions, templates and material lists for each project. These crafts are doable (even for the least crafty parent) and mostly made from recycled items and stuff around the house.

Why an ebook?

  1. Everything you need is all in one place — one download from your inbox and you’re good to go.
  2. It’s perfectly formatted for you to print it at home. All the instructions are on one or two pages — not 22 like a blog post.  It’s more convenient and saves printer ink (just skip the big photo pages).
  3. I can pack the pages choc full of cute, colourful Easter fun.
    Make & Play: Bunny popper games, Jumping Easter Bunnies and Easter Chick Puppets
    Make & Wear: Easy Easter Bonnets
    Make & Decorate: Egg Decorations, wreaths and garlands
    Make & Give: Recycled Bunny Pinatas and Bunny Baskets
  4. I can make it  look great — blog posts just don’t look that good when you print them but this little beauty is pretty and practical.

You can buy a copy right now for just AU$3.50 (that’s just US$2.50). Click here or the cover pic below to go to our store and purchase a copy.

This is a digital product. You will receive a PDF file that you can download straight from your email inbox.  It couldn’t be easier!

Leprechaun puppet

This amazing little leprechaun is made from a paper cup! He talks, he walks, he dances. Sure he doesn’t have arms… but he’s an Irish dancer so that doesn’t stop him having some mighty craic. Make your own leprechaun puppet for some St Patrick’s Day fun.

THINGS YOU NEED

Paper cup, A4 coloured paper (green, pink, orange, black), scrap of gold cardboard, scissors, glue stick, two plastic bottle tops, pair of googly eyes, cord (I used rainbow paracord from the dollar store), sticky tape, Lotta leprechaun template

HOW TO MAKE

1.  Cut your paper cup down evenly down the sides and fold the bottom in half.

2.  Now it’s time to turn this base into a leprechaun by decorating him with coloured paper.  Paper cups come in different sizes so we can’t give you a complete template.  Instead, use this template (Lotta leprechaun template) to help you get your paper to wrap nicely around the cup. Measure your cup and either add or subtract from the template so it fits your cup.  To start with, he needs a pink face, a green hat and clothes.

3.  Cut strips from the orange paper.  Glue one end onto the cup to create hair and a beard. Once the glue is dry, curl the ends with a pencil so they sit up nicely.

4.  Add the finishing touches — googly eyes with orange eyebrows, a golden buckled belt and a four leaf clover on his hat.

5.  Poke a hole in the middle of your bottle caps. Thread a piece of cord through the holes, tying a knot in each end to secure it.  Find the middle of your cord and tape it onto the back of your puppet.

Now your puppet is ready. To operate him, just place your hand on the ‘mouth’ at the back of the cup.

Love this guy and want to make more puppets? Check out my ebook Lotta Fun With Puppets for heaps of puppet projects (with complete templates and photo instructions).

Lotta fun with puppets ebook

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Chinese zodiac printable

It’s almost Luna New Year so I’ve made some printables to help you celebrate.  These colouring pages feature the 12 animals of the Chinese Zodiac along with a little checklist of each zodiac’s character traits.

Download them right here:  Lotta Chinese Zodiac

If you print them on cardboard, you could also turn them into some quick crafts. Use them as a good luck charm. After you clean your room for the new year, hang up your animal to bring you good luck all year. I simply added a red wool loop to the top and a tassel to the bottom.

Or you could add a paddle pop stick to the back and turn them into simple puppets. Perhaps you could re-enact the race that decided their order.

You’ll find more fun for kids in my magazine.
Lotta magazine | Magazine for kids

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