Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Basket Making 101







































We need 14 baskets for Easter Sunday. I suppose we could have brought some home from the dollar store, or hooked pipe cleaners to the sides of margarine tubs. That would have worked. But those methods would not have satisfied a goal of guiding my three oldest grandchildren toward creating together as a team of cousins to build something nice from the ground up. They are ready to work side by side, enjoying the process, patiently waiting to complete the next step, anticipating the excitement of delivery day. On Easter morning, my little crew of eager bunnies will assemble to fill the baskets they made with paper grass, candy and small gifts. Once dinner is complete, they will distribute their own works of art, surprising and delighting everyone ranging from good old patriarch grandpa down to one-year-plus-one-day old Kaylee. I can't wait either!

We built our baskets in a familiar way, relying on paper mache to deliver the basic forms we needed: Turn generous sized soup bowls upside down, cover with aluminum foil and then three layers of newspaper strips dipped into a hand mixed flour and water paste. Allow them to dry for a day or two, then separate baskets from bowls.




Next, we paint. Each child chose family members and selected appropriate colors for inside and outside surfaces. Mixing white with any color makes a "tint," the pastel version of any primary or secondary choice - there's always a way to sneak in some art vocab learnin' when grandma's in charge of the show!















My favorite part was decorating. I cleaned out the aisles of three craft stores to present a dizzying array of cute self-adhesive goodies, and the kids were on their own, carefully matching their choices to the personalities of the recipients.

After decorations have been applied, punch two holes on each basket side near the top and thread 18" narrow ribbon lengths. These will knot around and hold ends of wide wired ribbon handles. Tie the narrow ribbon into bows to complete.













You are correct. The "less is more" trend has not caught on yet at grandma's crafty table!





















Bree carefully made and decorated this one for her smallest cousin. Kaylee will find a bunny finger puppet, a toy duckie and a cute little pair of socks inside - along with some baby crackers that Grandma Bunny hasn't hopped out to purchase yet!















Nick, at left, puts finishing touches on mommy's basket. Sae is finishing up his own.

From the chatter I overheard at the crafting table, I know the cousins are more excited about giving, rather than receiving baskets. It was so sweet to watch the boys tenderly decorate for mommy and baby sisters, making sure each sported plenty of jewels, flowers, and pink paint!

14 comments:

  1. They are so good! And they are so much better than what you would get at the dollar store, so much thought and love has gone into each design! I am really hoping to do some crafting with my little ones this Easter. I love how they are making these baskets for other family members too, such a great idea, as always!

    ReplyDelete
  2. Oh the lovely memories - cousins are the greatest fun. And the baskets are darling. I always say - more is better when decorating with bling.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Oh Joyce those are so cute -- the baskets, too but I was talking about the grands! They just look like they are having so much fun! Not to tempting your crafting skills -- but do they do May baskets? Does anybody do those anymore? Great job -- those are some lucky children to have a talented and loving Grandmother like you. PLUS they have the joy of so many cousins. Cousins really are the best, especially when you are young.

    ReplyDelete
  4. Joyce-Those are absolutely DARLING!!!!! T?he baskets AND the kids. lol I love how you get your kids involved in making things and crafting. It is soo good fro them. Cousins are just the best, aren't they? Hope you have a great week- xo Diana

    ReplyDelete
  5. Adorable!!! I can't wait to see them pass them out! And how the little girls will react to their first Easter basket they are aware of :)

    ReplyDelete
  6. What a lovely idea to present all the guests with a basket. Your grand-children will be so proud of their amazing work, and feel warm and fuzzy sharing it with others! So much better than going to the dollar store.

    ReplyDelete
  7. Joyce, you are amazing. I am always stunned and entertained with your great blog. Sure miss you. Once I get a grandchild I will be trying to emulate your magic, but we may try the "less is more" philosophy since I don't have your energy!! Love you.

    ReplyDelete
  8. It's good that you made those kids do all of the work this time while you just sat around and sewed, ha ha ha. Seriously this is oh-so-cute and while most kids just expect a basket from the easter bunny in the morning, yours are busy creating gift baskets, thus Easter becomes as much about the giving AND receiving of gifts as Christmas.They look so intent on their work...especially little Bree...oh so darn cute! : )

    ReplyDelete
  9. oh what a fun craft!! I am going to try this with my grandbabies :)

    ReplyDelete
  10. we have so many baskets but they don't mean much-but these?! goodness i'd keep these forever! your grandkids will pass this on to their grandkids knowing YOU, their awesome grandma, started it all! :)

    ReplyDelete
  11. These are so precious. You always do the little extras and your grandkids will always remember and appreciate it all. It sure makes me long for an Easter basket filled with goodies...and toys! lol Have a fun week my friend! Hugs!

    ReplyDelete
  12. You really are going to have a wonderful Easter and the kids will never forget it! Good Job Grandma J.

    ReplyDelete
  13. Love the customized baskets and the teamwork involved to make sure everyone has a great celebration. I know you are going to have a GREAT weekend. :-)

    ReplyDelete
  14. This is such a wonderful idea -- one that I'll do with my grandkids! Thanks for sharing it at my link party!!!

    ReplyDelete