Thursday, May 24, 2012

What Did The Frog Say To The Skyscraper?

He said, "See you at the Family Clothesline Fine Art Show and Sale!"

If you stop by here regularly, you know from a previous post "Works in Progress" that we are stocking inventory for an art extravaganza of original work made by the grand kids to sell at ridiculously high prices to immediate family members! Sure, the fine print says "suggested retail only, please make an offer," but usually grandparents are so excited at the prospect of acquiring an original by "little precious" that they don't bother to read that far down! And sometimes grandpas show up without their bifocals, so that works in our favor too! The "adult children" -  mommy, daddy, aunties and uncles - are a bit more astute. They usually laugh at the $25 price tags and hand the kids a one dollar bill. That's okay too, because it's all in fun!

Most quality museums have gift shops for the convenience of their patrons so we are having one too! But unlike those purveyors of logo stamped imported plastic, our goodies are all going to be hand made by the little proprietors. Obviously we have lots of work to do, for amply stocked shelves = amply stocked wallets!

Last week we teamed up to make clay projects to sell. I bought a few packs of dollar store pencils and this Air-Dry Clay by Crayola. A 40% off coupon at JoAnn Fabrics brought the price of this $6 tub of pre-mixed, no-bake clay down to below $4, making it easy to abandon my plan to fuss with salt dough. I highly recommend this product. It came out of the package moist, smooth, and easy to manipulate. As promised, our projects were dry in 2-3 days, ready to be decorated! Here's what we made....

Nick, at left, and Sae were given a "blob" of the clay and told to push it on top of their pencils. Then they were to sculpt the blob into whatever they wanted to make. Nick chose a skyscraper and Sae chose a frog. Each of the boys made five of these. I tried to encourage making something else too, but they weren't buying it. Therefore, frogs and skyscrapers it is! We are at "grandma's fun house" after all, not penitentiary art therapy! Here are the boys laughing at the "joke" grandma just made while showing how to start this project!

And what about Brielle? Well, she had other plans for her blob! Never mind the pencils! She pushed and pulled the clay into a free form sculpture that we decided to name "Little Pink Thing" - which is another of her affectionate nicknames! However, I am going to convince Bree to make a second one just like the first. We don't want to initiate family discord if an argument breaks out between mommy and Nana over who gets to buy this one. Therefore,  "LPT #1" and "LPT #2" will both be available, but strictly on a first come-first served basis. And since there will be only two of these unique items for sale, the law of supply and demand regulates the price, so.....buyer beware! And come early!

Our skyscrapers and frogs all lined up to dry out.

Today we were ready to paint and decorate our frogs, skyscrapers and "Little Pink Things"!

"Paint on fingers, paint on toes, paint on Sae's cute little nose!" (Today I am Mrs. Dr. Suess!)
Once the basic shapes were painted, detailing needed to be added. Sae's frogs had spots dotted on with a darker shade of green. Most of the frogs and all of the skyscrapers were dipped in glitter for a truly fabulous effect! But we weren't done yet! Frogs need google eyes. I also offered them to Nick, thinking  he'd feel badly if he couldn't use them. He didn't hesitate for one one second to laugh and tell me, "Skyscrapers don't talk!" I stood corrected! If they don't talk, well, they obviously don't "see" either - duh!

"Glitter Bug"!
I had the boys paint watered down glue on their work, then gently sprinkle glitter all over. It wasn't the mess I thought it would be, although a few of my cats are still walking around with glittering eyebrows!

Painted and glittered pencils all lined up to dry.

Grandma took the pencils into her secret workshop to add paper accents.
Oops! Forgot the long red tongues!
We'll add them later!

Frogs now have lily pads with flowers to perch upon and skyscrapers poke their majestic heads amidst a fluffy cloud cover with a concrete patch far below. Each pencil will also come with a "certificate of authenticity." Attached tags will show a mini-picture of the artist working on each piece. I will get to those soon!

Brielle takes her artwork very seriously! Here she is, carefully painting her first-in-a-series-of-two "Little Pink Things!"

And here's "Little Pink Thing #1" all glittered up and ready for market!

Besides these pencils, our gift shop will stock notepads purchased with plain white covers and painted by the kids. We will sell hand stamped potholders too. In addition, on the day before our event, the kids will join me to make cookies and popcorn. That's so we'll have something for our hungry daddies, too! I am also working on designing "event posters" with the kids' photos on each one. Those will be auctioned to our art patrons after everything else is sold out! For the time being we are a busy bunch of artists over here, although the hardest part will probably be negotiating a convenient date and time for everyone attending our first annual Family Clothesline Fine Art Show, Sale and Auction! But I am working on that, too!


  1. Grandma J these are wonderful! And thanks for the recommendation on the clay! It is on my list for our next trip to Joann's. I'm betting Amara and I can have a blast with it, too!

  2. Love your enthusiasm! I'm sure it rubs off on the kids too :) Great project, I hadn't thought of having a family art sell, I've got my event playing wheels turning now! Thanks for linking up.

  3. Cute critters! I especially like the cute "Little Pink Thing #1."

    A family craft sale is a great idea! Far more fun for all than a lemonade stand. :) Will have to keep it in mind!

  4. Love the kids' masterpieces. You have such good ideas! I can't wait to pick up some of the notebooks with plain covers for the grands to decorate.

  5. I love the idea of a gift shop. When my children were younger we had gallery days where they also sold their artwork at inflated prices, but it was so much fun. Sounds like your grand-children have a blast when they visit you!

  6. Just looking at these pics from a year ago it is amazing how much the kids have grown !!!

  7. Good luck with the Art show! Happy Weekend!

  8. I remember when I read this the first time! Those smiles are just as cute as I remember them!

  9. Looks like such a fun kids crafts!! Thank you for linking up at SHOW-licious Craft Showcase! I hope you come back this weekend for another fun party!

  10. Thanks for stopping by and linking up one of your awesome projects! Stop by again this week and link up some more cool things!

    Have a great week!