Here is a fun and easy little craft I devised, so I could use up some of the sheets and sheets of scrapbook paper I bought when I was semi-obsessed with that pasttime (passtime? How do you spell that?). I am partially committed to Use What You Have although with my current semi-obsession with the dollhouse redo, there's no way I could keep myself from scrounging up any materials needed for that. But at least maybe for Easter decorations, I can limit myself to what I have on hand. How does that sound? Okay I hear you all muttering out there, so I'll get back to the craft. They're what you might call pinwheels, but since I rassled with the basic concept and came up with some variations of my own, I am calling them pinspinners. I am pretty bad at giving tutorials, but I'll do my best to explain how to make them, and patterns can be found at the end of this post, which at this rate will be around next Tuesday.
The one above is the basic four-petal pinspinner, and here is the scallop-edged wingspinner:
Here's what you need to make a pinspinner:
- Two sheets of patterned paper (at least one needs to fit in your printer)
- Spray adhesive
- Detail Scissors
- A longish pin and a thickish needle
- A couple of beads
- A pencil with an eraser (or a pencil-width dowel and one of those erasers you buy to stick on the end of a pencil)
- A flower shaped punch (optional)
- Download the pattern, print it onto the patterned side of one of your pieces of paper (choose the lightest one, the lines are very faint and won't show well on a dark color).
- Don't cut on the lines yet, just trim it down so its easier to manage.
- Spray back with adhesive and affix to the back of your other sheet of paper.
- Poke your needle through the dots, (tip - place the paper over a pincushion, this helps keep the paper from bending).
- Cut out the spinner along the printed lines.
- Cut out a flower shape, either by drawing your own, or using a punch, and poke a hole in the center with the needle.
- Now for the fun part. Take your pin, and slide one of the beads onto it.
- Slide the flower shape on next.
- Then one by one, slide the wings of the spinner onto the pin, then poke the pin through the hole in the center of the spinner (note - there should be space between the back of the spinner and all the petals, that is what allows it to catch the wind and spin!).
- Add one more bead, then push the pin into the pencil eraser, make sure it doesn't poke out the other side and stick you.
Tada! A pinspinner!
The fun thing is that by varying the papers, you can create a whole garden of spinners! Like this one:
And not satisfied with four-petal spinners, I worked out a pattern for a five-petal spinner! I also added a larger flower shape in the middle as well as a few more beads to hold it out from the other parts. It spins like crazy on its own! However, this one is a bit more challenging to assemble. Be prepared for beads flipping and flying off as the whole thing has a tendency to want to unassemble until you get it stuck into the eraser. Here is the one five-petal spinner I managed to make:
The five-petal spinner takes up most of a sheet of 8.5 X 11 paper, but the four-petaled ones can be doubled up on one sheet if you fiddle with them in Photoshop, and create two of the same combo like these. Its interesting how different they look turned one way or the other:
So here are the patterns. Click to open the full size version and download them to your computer for printing. If I could make one teensy request, please feel free to use these patterns for your personal use, but respect my ownership of the pattern design and do not use for resale. I didn't want to put my copyright on there since you will be printing the pattern on the paper and it would show.
Four-petal pinspinner and wingspinner patterns:
So there ya go! I hope you enjoy them! My plan is to use some on my patio tables for Easter, arranging them in ice cream sundae glasses filled with colored buttons! Hopefully I'll remember to take some pics!
ps - Since this involves pins and stuff, I would suggest if you have little kids play with these you watch them so they don't stick themselves. Also if you make these with kids, you might do the pin part, just to be safe.