Thursday, December 13, 2007

Repurposed Art: Paper Chains

When I was 5 years old, I fell ill with pneumonia...twice! Amidst all the colorforms and coloring books, someone had given me a pad of gummed orange paper strips. I remember laying on our old scratchy brown couch wrapped up in a vintage silk quilt making link after link to form this tremendous paper chain. I thought these papers were the bees knees. What better way to make a paper chain than to repurpose your kidlet's own fabulous art? You can even make art for the sole purpose of chaining it up!

What you need:

*flat, colorful paper artwork
*glue stick, white glue or tape (kidlets LOVE tape!)scrumdilly-do it!

Take scissors to your kidlet's artwork cutting it into thin (no more than an inch and a half wide) strips at least six inches long. Place withing reach of your wee ones. If your kidlets are old enough to do this, allow them to do so. Scissor work is always fun for wee ones and it helps strengthen those wee finger muscles. Decorative edged scissors would work also but sometimes cutting with them can be frustrating.Once all the strips are cut, begin with the first link. Have your kidlet hold their strip in front of them, horizontally and artwork side up. They will need to add adhesive to one end of the strip. Once the glue is on the end, curl the ends under to form a loop, pressing together so that the glue holds.Next, take another strip and insert halfway through the completed loop. Add adhesive to one end and connect, making two complete loops or links, if you will.Continue on until your kidlets have a chain deemed worthy for the tree, their bedroom or wherever it is they wish to display it.You may want to have your wee ones complete a pile of unattached links to alternate with. Sometimes adding a new link to a loop can be frustrating so starting off with a bunch of links to join can ease that frustration. You can also use old holiday cards, gift wrap and/or magazines for this project. Have fun!


  1. I remember these, nice new spin on a traditional craft, thanks! Here are some more paper chain ideas: