The Rolling Stones Said it best:
“Childhood living is easy to do
The things you wanted I bought them for you
Graceless lady you know who I am
You know I can’t let you slide through my hands
Wild horses couldn’t drag me away
Wild, wild horses, couldn’t drag me away”
We’ll ride them someday.”…..
Middle childhood (ages 8 to 10) is a time when horses become magical. They are living creatures that can carry a child when his own parents no longer can. (Although part of growing up, this physical separation is a small heart break for many small kids.)
Horses can fill that emotional need to be carried with a fantasy. And because few children have access to a farm or horses, a love for horses is a gentile introduction to the concept of love and longing.
But maybe this just me thinking too much.
My eldest daughter is crazy for horses and I was too at her age. So I bought her my two favorite horse books, which she now likes too. They are: “The Gift of the Sacred Dog” and “The girl who loved Wild horses” by Paul Goble. Both books are based upon Native American legends of the Great Plains. They describe horses as divine creatures who needed special care and respect.
My daughter’s birthday is next week, and she wanted a horse party. So I organized a horse themed craft for the party. As a full disclosure, I searched on Pinterest and found a great pattern, created by a local artist, Ann Wood. I love Ann Wood’s art installation which she created in 2009. She has generously provided the instructions on the Design Sponge Website. (She also has some awesome crafting kits on her own site!)
I loved her interpretation of a herd of wild horses because it reminded me so much of Paul Goble’s stories. The way in which her horses are painted and then grouped together imbues them with mystical beauty and grace.
So lets get to crafting. I have made a few modifications to Ann Wood’s directions. One was to replace the buttons with brads. Another was to use more kid friendly materials.
Heavy to Medium weight Card-stock paper
Paper clips or Binder Clips
Long Popsicle sticks or wide paper straws
Glue sticks or Rubber cement
Sequins, Stickers, Glitter glue, Markers or Glitter
Small google eyes
- Cut out two copies of the horse template by hand. I used Ann Wood’s template to cut out the horses using my Silhouette Cameo Machine and a Pixscan mat. (Yes, this is totally cheating. But I got 12 horses to make! Each horse requires two copies of paper. That’s 168 little body parts!)
- Glue pieces of duplicate parts together. Place the differnet pieces of the horse in position. One pair of legs, should be under the body and one pair on top of the body. Hold it all together with binder clips or paperclips.
- Locate the center of the leg joints and place a dot there. Use a 1/8″ hole punch on this dot. (The doubled paper will be too thick to punch all at once so you will have to punch the top leg first, use the hole in this leg to make a mark on the body below. Next punch the body, mark the leg below and lastly punch the leg below with the whole.)
- Take the body or each leg separately. Place a 3/16″ eyelet in one hole. Place the paper and eyelet between two old dictionaries and press down hard to flatten the eyelet’s collar. Repeat (You can also use an Eyelet Punch and save your book covers from dents.) Each moving piece should now have it own eyelet. (This mult-eyelet assembly will allow the legs frequently with less damage to the paper.)
- Attach the back leg, body and front leg together with a brad. Repeat with the other pair of legs.
- Glue the eye, tail and mane in place. Decorate the horse with glitter, stickers and sequins.
- When decorations are dry, glue a Popsicle stick to the back of your horse with school glue.