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masks

The Halloween countdown is speeding along – are your little ones getting SO excited?

This week we’re sharing the perfect Halloween arts and crafts project to get the whole family in the SPIRIT (sorry, we had to) of dressing up. It’s an animal mask DIY taken right from Lorena’s Craft Book; whether you use the masks to top off an animal costume for trick-or-treating next week or for dress-up every other day of the year, your kiddos will love getting to show off their wild side.

You’ll need:

  • Animal Masks templates (see links in instructions below)
  • thin, new or repurposed cardboard (such as a cereal box)
  • assorted colored or patterned papers
  • decoupage glue
  • elastic string or ribbon

+ Your Tools:

  • scissors
  • 1″-3″ (2.5cm-7.5cm) flat paintbrush
  • cutting mat
  • ruler or straightedge
  • bone folder
  • craft knife
  • pencil
  • ¼” (6mm) hole punch or large needle

Ready? Go!

  1. Begin constructing the mask pieces with the animal head templates. Select paper for the tiger head and the owl face. Using the templates for the tiger face and the owl face, cut out a piece of cardboard roughly the same outline. Coat each cardboard piece with decoupage glue and lay face down on the back of the chosen papers. Smooth it out with your hand and allow them to dry under a weight. Set aside.
  2. Using the templates, cut out the remaining animal pieces from the decorative papers you choose. Pick a sturdy paper for the tiger ears, tiger snout, and owl beak pieces. Crease the beak and snout pieces according to the templates. To do so, lay the corresponding template over the snout or beak piece. Set a ruler or straightedge on the crease lines and run a bone folder along the lines. These lines will transfer to the pieces below. Set aside.
  3. Cut the eye holes out of the tiger head, owl face, and owl eyes pieces using a craft knife. Apply the remaining pieces using decoupage glue.
  4. For the tiger snout: fold the flaps back from the center triangle of the tiger’s nose. Using decoupage glue, adhere the angled tabs together, forming the three-dimensional snout. The tabs at the base of the snout should be folded inward and will be hidden. Apply glue to these tabs and adhere the snout to the tiger’s face.
  5. For the owl beak: Fold backward away from the center diamond shape. Apply glue to the angled tabs and adhere the beak to the owl’s face.
  6. Once dry, use the hole punch to poke holes for the elastic string or ribbon, using the template as a visual guide.
  7. Thread the string through, leaving enough extra to knot.
  8. Let the wild rumpus begin! Hear them road and hoot!

The kiddos can certainly help with this project: take advantage of that giant imagination! Have them pick out the decorative paper (or even color new pieces to use), and they can help glue the pieces on, too. Need a different animal? Easy! By getting creative with color, stripes, ear size, etc., you can create a whole menagerie of creatures, real or imagined, sweet or ferocious.

Happy mask-making, and we’d LOVE to see your creations on Instagram: just tag ‘em with #petitcollage and we’ll be sure to share them.

Bonus! In the Bay Area? Need more crafting? Read on!

aldea

inmypatchfinal

Leave the fear and fright for the big kids: when you have youngsters at home, celebrating Fall and Halloween is a different story. We’ve loved seeing all kinds of Halloween arts + crafts and toddler-friendly costumes popping up around the web recently, and thought we’d join in by sharing some of our favorite Autumn and Halloween-themed picture books for young children. They’re sweet, silly, and only a tiny bit spooky — the perfect October mix.

In My Patch: Sara Gillingham + Lorena Siminovich

Perfect for: 2 +

What’s the story? A teensy tiny mouse lives in a pumpkin patch with curling vines, crunchy leaves, bright fall colors, and most importantly, his family.

Why we love it: How fun it is to collaborate with your friends! In My Patch is part of a family of books illustrated by Lorena with text from her good buddy Sara; each one features die-cut pages able to withstand a toddler’s enthusiasm, a short-and-sweet story, signature collaged artwork, and – best of all! – a finger puppet critter at the center.

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Ghosts In The House! Kazuno Kohara

Perfect for: ages 3 – 6

What’s the story? Here’s what to do if you live in a haunted house: grab those ghosts, toss them in the washing machine, air them out, and – presto! you’ve got sofa covers and cozy bedsheets.

Why we love it: The entire book is done in oh-so-Halloweeny orange and black, and the clever heroine will have readers giggling all the way through.

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And Then Comes Halloween: Tom Brenner + Holly Meade

Perfect for: ages 4 – 8.

What’s the story? All throughout October, children rake leaves, carve pumpkins, and hang skeletons in their yard. Finally, finally, it’s Halloween night!

Why we love it: Collaged illustrations and poetic text make this picture book a beauty. And really, what’s the best part of Halloween? Dreaming about NEXT year’s costume while you sneak an extra piece of candy before bedtime, of course!

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A Tiger Called Thomas: Charlotte Zolotow

Perfect for: ages 4 – 8.

What’s the story? It’s tough being the new kid on the block, and Thomas is afraid nobody likes him. But when he puts on a tiger costume and goes trick-or-treating, he discovers that his neighbors are quite happy he’s around.

Why we love it: A Halloween picture book teaching a feel-good lesson about just being yourself? Sounds pretty tiger-riffic to us.

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One Spooky Night: Kate Stone

Perfect for: ages 3 – 6.

What’s the story? A young monster encounters a host of Halloween characters as he adventures through a spooky forest. He finds a very Happy Halloween ending in the delightfully haunted house at the end of the path.

Why we love it: Elaborate cut-outs and sheets of ghostly velum are perfect for a Halloween story, and preschoolers will love the the fold-out grand finale.

 

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Humbug Witch: Lorna Balian

Perfect for: ages 4 – 8.

What’s the story? She looks like a witch, with her pointy black hat and stripey red tights. But why can’t she get her magic to work? Turns out, beneath her hat and behind her mask, she’s a sweet little girl playing dress-up.

Why we love it: A classic since 1965, the quirky illustrations and simple text make Halloween silly and heart-warming, and not a bit scary.
Have your own favorite Halloween picture books? Share them in the comments or shoot them our way on Twitter!

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Call it a tradition, or call it the reality of a packed to the gills lifestyle: when it comes to Halloween, Petit Collage founder Lorena is a master at whipping up made-in-one-day, no-sew costumes for her daughter Matilda.

We dug up snapshots of Matilda’s baby and toddler DIY Halloween costumes from the past few years to share with you, because — well, they’re pretty darn cute! But they also say a lot about our approach to crafting: with enough creativity and resourcefulness, it’s possible to magic up a last minute gift, a bit of brightness for a dark corner, or even a Halloween costume on the morning of October 31st.

Lorena put each outfit together in just one day, grabbing whatever supplies she had at home. Planning ahead? Sewing? Maybe next year.

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Matilda’s first foray into the land of Halloween. What a hoot! (Plus, check out those chubby baby legs.)

Lorena’s Tip: Felt is your friend. Cut out any shape you like, and the edges won’t fray a bit. She layered a few pieces together for the wings, and used craft glue to attach them to a basic cotton onesie. That’s a felt owl mask, too: easy to make and soft on the skin. 

 

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A is for Apple – and adorable.

Lorena’s Tip: Use the sleeve of an old shirt to create a head covering (here it’s an apple stem, but swap the leaves for ears and you’ve got yourself an animal head). And ribbon works well for pattern or stripes: just cut a few pieces and use your craft glue to attach it to the felt base. 

 autumnbirdforblog

Who says witches get to have all the stripey tights fun?

Lorena’s Tip: Be flexible! She originally set out to make Matilda a fall fairy costume, but ended up with an orange-feathered bird. (Of course this is also great practice for all those years where your kiddo changes what she’s going to be for Halloween every single day, starting in July…)

 

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A classic Halloween color palette!

Lorena’s Tips: Get creative with sourcing supplies from around the house. That’s tape wrapped around Matilda for her bumblebee stripes, and to make the wings Lorena covered a simple wire frame with the gauzy styrofoam that had protected a recent delivery of electronics. Busy bee costume made easy. 

 Happy DIY Halloween, everyone!

 

 

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1: Winter Water Factory Hat + Romper 2: Maileg Wolf 3: Donna Wilson Blanket 4: Petit Collage Owl Family Mobile 5: Petit Collage Bird Push Toy 6: Serena + Lily Storage Crate 7: Petit Collage Prints on Wood

Fall is blowing in, and we’ve got thoughts of favorite sweaters, pumpkin pie countdowns, and justified hot cocoa on our minds in the Petit Collage studio. And one of the best parts of Fall? Permission to broadcast our love affair with woodland creatures loud and proud.

Big-eyed owls, bushy-tailed squirrels, burly bears — there’s a reason we return again and again to these critters in our work: they’re enduring, endearing, and flat-out adorable. They’re a constant in the children’s world (think fairy tales, picture book characters, Halloween costumes), and even as the fox has recently edged out the owl for most popular forest creature (have you noticed?), it’s clear we’re not out of the woods anytime soon — and that’s fine by us.

Woodland themes rank high on our go-to list for nursery decor. Gender neutral by default but easily adaptable for your tiny guy or gal, based on a gentle, earth-hued color palette, and open to the inclusion of soft touches from natures: it’s a win — and oh so sweet.

Plotting your own woodland themed nursery? We whisked up a couple woodland moodboards to get you dreaming, and scroll down further for in-real-life examples of nurseries with a woodsy feel.

 

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 1: Oeuf NYC Crib 2: Coral + Tusk Friends 3: Egmont Mushroom Lamp 4: Fiona Walker Wall Fox Head 5: Livie + Luca Fox Baby Shoes 6: Petit Collage Forest Friends 7: Donna Wilson Pillow 8: Pinecone Garland 9: Petit Collage Fox Print on Wood

 Warm colors and whimsical woodland touches. From Covet Garden, via Decor8.

Not quite a nursery, perhaps, but too inspiring not to share. From Bobby Rabbit.

Not quite a nursery, perhaps, but too inspiring not to share. From Bobby Rabbit.

Let nature in! Live plants and natural light set this space apart. From LaTonya Yvette.

Let nature in! Live plants and natural light set this space apart. From LaTonya Yvette.

Think you have to avoid a bright color palette to do woodsy? Not at all! Designer Donna Wilson went rich and bold for her baby boy's nursery, and we love it.

Think you have to avoid a bright color palette to do woodsy? Not at all! Designer Donna Wilson went rich and bold for her baby boy’s nursery, and we love it.

Need more inspiration? Check out our Forest Friends Board on Pinterest for a great big dose of woodland dreaming. And happy decorating!

Feeling a little patriotic this month? Check out July’s Pregnancy and Newborn Magazine. Our Red Elephant mobile was featured in their “Patriotic Palette” Nursery!

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new usa map decal from petit collage

 

We’re celebrating the arrival of our two new fabric wall decal designs. For one week only, take 15% off all styles of wall decals on our site.

Petit Collage fabric wall decals are made from eco-friendly biodegradable adhesive fabric. Printed with classic patterns and textures from our library, these decals are easily removable and reusable!

Use code “junedecals” when you checkout. Expires 6/20/2014.

Bay Area fans, did you catch it? We were featured on last week’s Home+Garden cover in the San Francisco Chronicle! Read about Lorena’s beautiful midcentury home and her brand new craft book.

Can you spot the Petit Collage products that decorate Matilda’s playroom?

Petit Collage San Francisco Chronicle

Take a peek into the house of Petit Collage founder, Lorena Siminovich. Featured on Clementine Daily this week, Lorena gives us a tour in her mid-century San Franciscan home.

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Lorena's home on clementine daily

 

Petit Collage 25 Easy Craft and Décor Projects for a Playful Home – Book Trailer from Petit Collage on Vimeo.

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They say that making a book takes a lot of time. I have flashbacks of discussing this project with my agent while my toddler daughter was crawling under the the tables in a restaurant in downtown Manhattan. Crawling! My daughter is now entering kindergarten this year! So, yes, time. Lots of that and loads of glue, paper, love, and teamwork.

This book is an homage to Petit Collage’s roots, which started as unique handmade collages and evolved into a range of eco-friendly products. Our visual vocabulary remains based on the same love for paper and pattern that started our company. The projects in this book are easy to make and are for the whole family to enjoy. From a coat rack or step stool to use anywhere in the house to a baby mobile, blocks, mask or playhouse any kid would love.

Most of these projects require very few new purchases and are aimed to reuse what you already have or can easily find. All of the projects can be personalized or customized and include templates and step-by-setp instructions to make all projects your own.

I hope it inspires you!

Lorena

 

 

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