There is nothing quite like a string of long cloudy days to make you adore the 5 minute sunbreaks we get here in the early Spring. I think it is because of this deep appreciate for the shy February sun that a lot of our crafts have been sun-related lately. The other day while StarBear was out with Michael, I had some quality time with SpaceFox to try out a new (suncatcher) project. Tutorial ahead!
- Round Coffee Filters
- Washable Markers
- Water Spray Bottle
- Scrap Paper
- Contact Paper
- (optional) Child
We only use unbleached coffee filters, which worked just fine, but I think white ones would show the colours a little better. We just used what we had though (making this another free project!)
Take a coffee filter and smooth it out into a flat-ish circle. You could iron them if you are super motivated, we were not. Then take your markers and colour however you please all over one side of the filter.
Put your filter marker-side-up on a piece of scrap paper and carefully spray them with water. This is kind of a trial and error process, you don’t want to make them too wet or else it washes out all the markers, nor too dry elsewise the markers don’t bleed into the filter enough. Wet but not dripping I suppose would be the best way to describe the moisture content you are looking for. My son loved doing this part most of all, so a few of ours were a little washed out.
Now if you are nice and patient, just wait for them to try. If you are like us, you turned the oven onto warm, stuck those papers on a cookie sheet and roasted those suckers dry while you made another set of suncatchers.
Once dry, you’ll want to add contact paper. (I included a picture of the scrap paper here – we just used some mostly clean white construction paper – because I think it is really pretty too. We might iron it flat and use it as gift tags or something next holiday.) I tend to cut a size roughly that I need and then stick the coffee filter to it (starting in the center and working out so you don’t get wrinkles) and them trimming away any excess with my scissors. I left a 1/2 inch border around the circle before giving it to SpaceFox and letting him stick them to the windows. You’ll want to try to avoid any North facing windows because they will not get direct sunlight.
This is my favorite one. It is on the window right next to the altar/nature table which feels completely appropriate. There are two more in my son’s room (first photo in this post.) He thinks this one looks like a nebula and the ones in his room and the sun and a Jovian (gas giant) planet. I love that my three and a half year old son can specify exactly what kind of stellar object he things they are. GEEK PRIDE!