There’s no autumn afternoon better spent than crafting with your family while finding inspiration in the crisp air of your own backyard. November is a month bookended between the kitsch of Halloween and the impending joy of the holiday season, giving you a window between well-defined seasonal decorations you find in the store. It’s important to get autumn out of your system before pulling out your deluxe gift wrap storage bag from the attic. From cornucopias to jars of gratitude, the possibilities are endless when it comes to creative autumn crafts.
Cornucopia on the Cob
Latin for "horn of plenty,” the cornucopia is one of the most iconic centerpieces of any fall occasion and a breeze to assemble. Unlike carefully crafted floral arrangements, this focal point of the season has a practical shelf life and your whole family can help put together.
- Unless you’re a basket weaving guru, there’s no reason why a simple wicker cornucopia from your local craft store won’t do the trick when putting together this seasonal craft.
- Incorporate the season’s most bountiful produce as the base of your cornucopia. Whether you choose a combination of apples and pears or pumpkins and squash, fill your horn with a motif that builds a sense of uniformity that will make your disrupting embellishments standout even more.
- Add hints of contrast with organic autumn materials like pinecones, autumnal leaves, and sunflowers. This adds a mix of texture to the cornucopia while simultaneously capturing the ambiance for the season.
Think Outside the Cornucopia
As you and your family put together your crafting materials, don’t be afraid to get experimental. Wax dipped pinecones or painted pinecones are a great way to add every more variety to your cornucopia. As the final products come in, you can even pair them with a personalized-to-design set of table covers. Take it a step further and match your outdoor pillow & cushion covers as well. There are no limits.
Hodge, Meet Podge
There’s no autumn crafting material more readily available than that of the fallen leaves stockpiled in your own backyard. What better way to use this abundant resource than by crafting a set of découpage leaf bowls?
For this craft, all you need is a collection of leaves from your backyard, balloons, and a mixture of white glue and water. Start by having your kids blow the balloons up for you while you make the solution of generic crafting glue and water. You want this mixture to still have the appearance of glue only slightly less viscous. This will both moisten the leaves and make them adhere.
Doing this project on the convenience of tarps or canvas tarps, simple, protective set of table covers or lawn furniture covers makes all the difference in the world as you begin dipping the leaves into the découpage mixture.
Dip the leaves into the glue and water before arranging them onto the balloon over the larger end (the one w/out the piece to blow it up). Arrange the leaves in the shape of a bowl. Let dry overnight before popping the balloon the next morning - leaving you with your own DIY leaf bowl.
Take faux floral inspiration to the next level with an easy to craft flower crown. November is the month of Marigolds, making it the faux flower of choice when it comes to assembling your crown. All you need for your crown is one wide hair band, a hot glue gun, and plenty of your imitation flowers to spare.
Start by separating the bulbs from their plastic stems. This will help your crown to be lightweight as you hot glue the flowers to the headband. Cover the base until little or no surface area is left at all. Finish the crown with seasonal accoutrements that highlight the eccentricity of autumn.
Ombre is the New Black
Ombre wreaths are all the rage. With a mixture of fall colors and textures to choose from, the possibilities for an ornamental outdoor craft piece are endless and an absolute breeze to put together.
Orange, red, and yellow are the official trifecta of the season, no more so than crafted into the multihued fashion of an ombre wreath. Achieving this seamless and elegant ornament starts with a trip to your local dollar and dime for decorative tissue paper, glue sticks, and circular bases that will help your wreath take shape.
While shopping for your wreath’s base, it’s easiest if you can find something already in the shape of an easy, closed loop. The outlines of two mixing bowls, traced in corresponding circles onto a piece of cardboard work perfectly. For something more elaborate, you can upgrade to a base from a local craft store.
The best thing about fall crafting is embracing the sheer rugged texture of the season. As you begin assembling your ombre wreath, all you have to do is tear uniformed pieces of tissue paper, gluing them around the circle. Repeat the process with your other colors, layering them together until the entire base is covered.
Thought you left decorating pumpkins behind way back in October? Think again. This time you’re going to take your vision down a level for a more refined aesthetic to the late autumn season. Try, if you can, to find a selection of miniature pumpkins at your local pumpkin patch; look for a uniformed selection to craft with.
Using acrylic paint and stamps, give your miniature pumpkins a little bit of personalized flair. From fall leaf patterns to flowers and acorns, the possibilities for crafting paint-ready pumpkins are endless. All you have to do is put a little imaginative ingenuity into the process and the rest comes naturally.
Flannel Flannel Everywhere
Pretty much everyone has beaucoups flannel rotting away in their closet, otherwise forgotten and without any real use. November is the perfect time to bring that dingy material to life with a crafty scarecrow project. Constructing a scarecrow from scratch is a lot easier than you think. The only hard part? Coming up with a name that best suits your scarecrow in all his pursuits and endeavors.
You want to start by finding a flannel shirt with a plaid pattern and a pair of worn out jeans. This will be the first thing people see when they meet him and the last thing you want is for your scarecrow to be a fashion victim. Next, lay your scarecrow’s shirt and pants flat on a picnic table as you begin stuffing him to the brim with hay, pinestraw, or leaves. As your scarecrow’s body begins to take shape, you’ll want to fasten the shirt to his pants using safety pins, simple twine, or a combination of the two.
When it comes to crafting his face, your scarecrow is never fully dressed without a smile. Magic markers go a long way in giving your scarecrow his endearing mug. Lay a light khaki burlap sack flat on a table. With an artistic hand, draw two eyes, a nose, and mouth, doing the best you can’t to do the scarecrow’s features justice. Then stuff his head. Finally, secure the face to the body before finishing the look with a toboggan.
Hang him on a nearby fence post or prop him up on your front porch. Want to take things one step further? Set the scene for your scarecrow. Bring your scarecrow’s porch perch to life with a personalized Armless Chair Slipcover or lawn furniture covers. Clip decorative birds to his person. Go the whole nine and turn your crafting project up to eleven.
Jar of Heart
Gratitude Jars are a personal, artistic, and hands-on way for members of your family to not only practice gratitude but keep a record of everything in their life they’re grateful for. In
this activity, each family member has the opportunity to create a special jar where they save statements of gratitude at the end of each day for a full calendar year - revisiting them in the future for reference.
For this craft, you’ll need: a clear glass mason jar and art supplies like ribbons, stickers, magazine cutouts, construction paper washi strips, etc… to best help decorate your jar. Personalize the exterior of the jar in a way the best expresses the individuality of each family member.
This process is equally about crafting as it is about the affirmations that go inside. Spending time with your family is reason enough to be grateful. Count that as the first of many blessings that will soon abound from not only your jar but also those most treasured to you.