Holi Inspired Art Trading Cards

Holi Art Trading Cards by Lady Lucas for JCFamilies

The celebration of Holi is right around the corner, and this art activity is the perfect way for children to have fun with color, without making too much of a mess! In some fine art communities, artists exchange small works of art with one another (called artist trading cards) the size of a baseball card. It’s a great way for creatives to begin art collecting on a small scale.

Materials you will need:

– watercolors
– paint brushes
– bowl of water
– watercolor paper / scissors
– permanent black markers

Holi Art Trading Cards by Lady Lucas for JCFamilies

Step 1 Cut watercolor paper into small rectangular pieces about the size of a small index card or baseball card. 3.5″ x 5.5″ would work nicely.

Holi Art Trading Cards by Lady Lucas for JCFamilies

Step 2 Have your children draw patterns with black permanent markers that are happy and intricate. Some ideas would be: flowers, owls, hearts or geometric patterns.

Holi Art Trading Cards by Lady Lucas for JCFamilies

Step 3 Using a good amount of water, dip a paintbrush into a single paint color and begin adding color on top of the hand drawn design. The idea is to add droplets of color to the painting without mixing the hues too much. This technique mimics Holi powder, as it is vibrant and very colorful. I would suggest using yellow, orange, magenta, light green and blue for a nice balance of colors.

Step 4 The artist trading cards will curl a little from all the water, so allow them to dry fully, and then place a large book on top over night to flatten them properly.

Holi Art Trading Cards by Lady Lucas for JCFamilies

Step 5 If you’re making these with a group of children, have the kids exchange art cards with another. The more the merrier!

Variations: This project could also be done with pastels instead of watercolors. Another idea would be to have the children drop paint on their paper, and then add designs on top after the paint dries like so:

Holi Art Trading Cards by Lady Lucas for JCFamilies

Holi Art Trading Cards by Lady Lucas for JCFamilies

Ashley Lucas (aka Lady Lucas) is an artist, illustrator, author and crafts designer. Her adorable characters can be found online via her website and Etsy shop. She loves celebrating all holidays and teaching art to children of all ages.

Handmade Valentine Ideas

Hi moms! Here are some of my favorite DIY valentine ideas for children. One of my favorite memories from childhood is the memory of my mom and I making valentines on the dining room table every February. There was usually snow outside – and the house always seemed so bright and happy. Here are some easy ideas to get you started on making some cute love notes with your kids.
Materials you will need:
– Assorted paper (solid or patterned)
– Clip art or stickers
– Glue sticks
– Scissors
– Markers, crayons, colored pencils
*Optional – glitter, googly eyes, lace, etc.
Basic Heart
As an art teacher, I can tell you that kids love cutting out hearts. To make some basic hearts, gather square or rectangle pieces of paper, fold in half, and draw a line as shown – starting and ending on the fold.
Handmade Valentine Ideas by Lady Lucas for JCFamilies
Decorate with crayons or markers and don’t forget to write a cute sentiment like ‘Be Mine‘ or ‘I’m Sweet on You Valentine‘.
Handmade Valentine Ideas by Lady Lucas for JCFamilies
Handmade Valentine Ideas by Lady Lucas for JCFamilies
Monster Heart
Every February, I find that the boys in my classes really love making valentines with either a robot or a monster theme. This idea is the perfect design for any little artist. Simply cut a heart shape out of light colored construction paper (white, yellow or light pink). Sketch a monster face or body, and color in with crayons or colored pencils. Googly eyes would be great to use with this one – or sticker eyes (you can find both at any craft store). A cute saying to write on the front or back could be, ‘I Only Have Eyes for You!‘.
Handmade Valentine Ideas by Lady Lucas for JCFamilies
Handmade Valentine Ideas by Lady Lucas for JCFamilies
Fancy Heart
Choose a heart shaped doily to decorate. I attached mine to a folded greeting card using a glue stick. You can find heart or round doilies at any dollar store, craft shop or party shop. Carefully cut out clip art or add stickers to the front of the valentine. **Tip: A wonderful place online to find free, clip art for all occasions is The Graphics Fairy website**. You can be as creative as you want with this concept by cutting out phrases, letters or individuals pictures to add to your valentines. Instead of clip art, you could alternatively use images from a magazine or newspaper.
Handmade Valentine Ideas by Lady Lucas for JCFamilies
Ashley Lucas (aka Lady Lucas) is an artist, illustrator, author and crafts designer. Her adorable characters can be found online via her website and Etsy shop. She loves celebrating all holidays (making handmade valentines!) and teaching art to children of all ages.

How to Make Nautical Sea Friends | Time to Create with Lady Lucas

There is a lovely store below our apartment that sells awesome seasonal decor. Now that Easter is over, they have lots of nautical items for the home, and my favorite objects are the wooden fish and sailboats that are perched on top of pieces of driftwood. They have inspired me to come up with today’s craft; which I think is a really great activity for young boys and girls. 
Materials you will need:
  • Thick Styrofoam {from leftover IKEA packaging or purchase it directly from the craft store or dollar store}
  • Wooden skewers
  • Thick, white paper
  • Scissors
  • A pencil
  • Markers, watercolors, crayons or colored pencils
  • Craft glue or hot glue
Step 1
Break a piece of thick Styrofoam into sections that are approximately 5″ x 4′ in size. I used a kitchen knife to break my pieces apart, so this step definitely needs the supervision of an adult if the Styrofoam pieces are not already pre-sized.
Step 2
Have the kids draw nautical sea animals on a piece of sturdy paper such as watercolor paper. Some ideas would be a whale, shark, fish, crab or starfish. Each creature should be about three to four inches wide. 
Step 3
Color in all the sea creatures using whatever art supplies you have readily available at home. Watercolors or watercolor colored pencils work nicely for this craft.
Step 4
Allow all the drawings to dry completely, then cut them out with scissors.
Step 5
Using strong glue, attach the sea creature to the flat end of a wooden skewer. (You might need to cut the skewer in half first if it is too long). 
Step 6
Once they are completely dry, hold the creatures upright and put them into pieces of Styrofoam as shown in the picture above. 
Ashley Lucas {aka Lady Lucas} is a picture book writer and illustrator, crafting expert and kids arts educator. More info about her arts and crafts business can be found by visiting www.ladylucas.com or @LadyLucasArt. She would love to talk to you if you have any questions about this post, so feel free to comment below!

Clever Ways to Display Kids Art | Time to Create with Lady Lucas

I have a feeling this is a problem for all moms out there. Your children produce hundreds of drawings and paintings each year, and you have no idea what to do with all of them! Here’s a fun display idea I hope you will enjoy and try at home, as well as a list of other creative ideas to try.

Materials you will need:
  • Your child’s artwork {art on sturdy construction paper works best}
  • Clothespins
  • String
  • Ruler
  • Pencil
  • Scissors

Step 1
Gather about a dozen drawings and paintings by your child that are approximately the same size. Rectangular artworks work best. Using a ruler, draw two lines from the bottom of each sheet of paper like shown above.
Step 2
Cut out the triangle shape as shown. Be careful not to cut away any important aspects of the art.
Step 3
Attach a long piece of decorative string to the wall. I used washi tape, but thumbtacks or small nails would also be fine.
Step 4
Using two clothespins per artwork, string the artwork up; leaving a few inches between each picture.
Step 5
Adjust all the artworks to your liking on the string, and switch certain pictures out as the weeks go by!
Other Display Ideas
  • Attach artwork to your refrigerator using patterned washi tape. It looks more modern and chic than regular magnets 😉
  • Cut around the subject of your children’s picture {ex. a stick figure person, flower, rainbow} leaving a half inch of solid color all the way around the image. Using a glue stick, attach the image to a solid color of paper and frame.
  • Fold pictures that your children draw on construction paper in half and write in the inside for an instant greeting card {perfect for teachers and grandparents}!

Ashley Lucas {aka Lady Lucas} is the ‘Queen of Cute Characters’. She is an avid crafter, children’s book illustrator and owner of her own arts business. She loves all holidays; especially Halloween! You can find her online at ladylucas.com. She loves hearing from moms with questions so feel free to reach out with any particular comments about her crafts for JCFamilies! Don’t forget to Like or Comment on this post if you enjoyed it!

Ice Cream Art | Time to Create with Lady Lucas

Moms, hope you all had a great Easter with your families. Did you end up making any of the crafts you found here on the blog? I hope so! This week’s idea is a sweet introduction into warmer weather. ‘Ice Cream Art’ is fun for kids of all ages. Let’s get started!
Materials you will need:
  • Watercolor paper
  • Colored paper
  • Paints
  • Paintbrushes
  • Markers
  • Scissors
  • Glue

Step 1 Draw 6 or 8 ‘scoop’ shapes on a piece of watercolor paper. The shape you want to create is basically a half circle. This should be quite easy for kids over 6 years old, but younger children will need some help. 
Step 2 Paint each scoop a different color. This part can be pretty straightforward for toddlers by using solid colors, but older children will have fun adding lots of different shades of colors and patterns. Brainstorming different ‘flavors’ is really the best part about this project! 
Step 3 Allow the painted ‘ice cream’ to dry completely, and then cut out all the shapes carefully. Little ones might also need help with this part.
Step 4 Cut out a skinny triangle for the ice cream cone out of colored paper, and a circle for a cherry on top.
Step 5 Glue all the pieces in place on a sheet of brightly colored paper. I have been using construction paper from IKEA for these projects, and I find it to be the best. It’s colorful, affordable and sturdy enough for an art project that you want to keep for a long time.

Ashley Lucas {aka Lady Lucas} is the ‘Queen of Cute Characters’. She is an avid crafter, children’s book illustrator and owner of her own arts business. She loves all holidays; especially Halloween! You can find her online at ladylucas.com. She loves hearing from moms with questions so feel free to reach out with any particular comments about her crafts for JCFamilies! Don’t forget to Like or Comment on this post if you enjoyed it!

 

Egg Carton Creatures | Time to Create with Lady Lucas

I’ve noticed a trend in crafting this spring, which is to use regular egg cartons in a variety of ways to make really cool things! The most popular shape I’ve seen is a flower, but I thought I’d try some other ideas for you to make with your children this week. 
Just a reminder that Easter is only a few more days away! Don’t forget to check out these other Lady Lucas crafting posts: Easter Gift Wrapping 101 Giant Easter Eggs {this one has a FREE printable!} and Make a Birdhouse Bunting
Materials you will need
  • An empty egg carton {cardboard not Styrofoam} 
  • Acrylic or tempera paints
  • Scissors
  • Markers
*Tip* Cardboard egg cartons can be hard to find, but organic eggs are often offered in them since they are more earth friendly.
Step 1 Moms, the first step of this project you will need to help your children with, especially if they are very small. Cut out various shapes for your egg carton creatures using sharp scissors. You can cut out the cone shapes found in the middle row of the carton for mountains or trees, or get creative and make something unique like a swan or rabbit. For the rabbit shape pictured, I hot glued a few different shapes together. This is definitely more advanced, but if you’re an avid crafter, you can get really creative with this part!
Step 2 Have the kids paint each creature with acrylic or tempera paint. You will need a good amount of paint because cardboard really soaks it up quickly. Light colors such as white and pink look nice and are easier for kids to draw on top off.
Step 3  After the creatures are completely dry, add details with markers. You could also glue on googly eyes or stickers. You could even add glitter… the possibilities are endless for decorating!
Step 4  Display the creatures on the table this Easter, or use them for play time. 

Ashley Lucas {aka Lady Lucas} is the ‘Queen of Cute Characters’. She is an avid crafter, children’s book illustrator and owner of her own arts business. She loves all holidays; especially Halloween! You can find her online at ladylucas.com. She loves hearing from moms with questions so feel free to reach out with any particular comments about her crafts for JCFamilies! Don’t forget to Like or Comment on this post if you enjoyed it!

Easter Gift Wrapping 101 | Time to Create with Lady Lucas

Moms, if your family celebrates Easter, no doubt you are rushing around for some last minute gifts and ideas this week. This post is for you and all about wrapping those awesome gifts you plan to give your children, family members and friends. Let’s get started!
 
Suggested Materials
  • Assorted baskets
  • Gift bags
  • Easter themed wrapping paper
  • Ribbon and/or baking twine
  • Small Easter decorations
  • Watercolor paper
  • Newspaper
  • Stickers
  • Glue
  • Tape
  • Scissors
Tip #1 (See Image Above)
If you’re traveling far this Easter and need something a little easier and smaller than an actual basket, consider patterned gift wrap instead. Add a small gift on top like this small rabbit for interest. Pink and white ‘bakers twine’ adds interest instead of typical ribbon. All of these materials can be found at a store such as A.C. Moore or Target.
Tip #2
If you don’t have any Easter grass to use in your baskets, have the kids help you, and have them cut old newspaper into strips. Younger kids love practicing with scissors and will feel helpful!
Tip #3
Add tags to your Easter gifts and baskets such as these cute colored eggs. I added color to watercolor paper and then cut out egg shapes. This is another part of your gift wrapping session that children can help with. Especially if the gift is for their dad or grandparents.
Tip #4
Consider using gift bags instead of baskets. I bought a purple colored one for my niece and hot glued some decorations to the front of it. There are also a huge selection at the store already decorated for Easter!
Tip #5
Here’s some fun ideas for items to add into Easter baskets that you might not have thought of. The best part is, there is no sugar involved!
For teens or adults
  • nail polish
  • pretty packaged tea or coffee
  • soaps
  • spices for cooking
  • cookbooks
  • fancy magazines
  • tiny dishes
For kids 
  • stickers
  • crayons
  • small books
  • stuffed animals

Ashley Lucas {aka Lady Lucas} is the ‘Queen of Cute Characters’. She is an artist, crafting expert,children’s book illustrator and owner of her own arts business. She loves all holidays; especially Halloween! You can find her online at ladylucas.comShe loves hearing from moms with questions so feel free to reach out with any particular comments about her crafts for JCFamilies!

Newspaper Paintings | Time to Create with Lady Lucas

This week’s art idea is something I’ve been wanting to try out for a long time. It’s a really fun project for all ages and skill levels, and I could see a group of young tween girls really enjoying this at a birthday party or sleepover. As always, please don’t hesitate to comment below or reach out with any questions about this art project!
Materials you will need:
  • Newspaper pages and/or magazine pages with text
  • Acrylic paint
  • Paintbrushes
  • A thin, black marker
Step 1 
Select sheets of newspaper or printed text to paint on. You want to look for pages that have minimal to no images like those shown above. The New York Times or The Wall Street Journal are perfect because of all the small text and areas with no pictures. If you have any old books such as dictionaries or phone directories, those would work great too!
Step 2
Apply acrylic paint to the sheets of newspaper with a brush. This part is where kids can get super creative. For young children, a simple shape like a heart in red would look beautiful. For children a little bit older, 6 years+, check out the ideas I’ve provided. Spotted mushrooms are fun to create, as well as a rabbit or flowers.
Step 3
Allow the paintings to dry fully before adding detail to them. I would say 30 minutes is a safe amount of time.
Step 4
Add details to the paintings with a black marker. I love to use permanent markers, but regular thin tipped Crayola markers would work too. By adding an outline around the painting, it really make it ‘come alive’ and pop off the page. 
Step 5
Display paintings on the wall easily with some pieces of washi tape, or frame them. Another idea is to use them as bookmarks {as I plan to do with my bunny painting above}. The possibilities are endless!

Ashley Lucas {aka Lady Lucas} is the ‘Queen of Cute Characters’. She is an artist, crafting expert,children’s book illustrator and owner of her own arts business. She loves all holidays; especially Halloween! You can find her online at ladylucas.com. She loves hearing from moms with questions so feel free to reach out with any particular comments about her crafts for JCFamilies!

Giant Easter Eggs | Time to Create with Lady Lucas

This week’s craft is a great way to get ready for the upcoming Easter holiday. I made these with my cute and crafty niece this week, and they were a hit! She loved decorating each one differently, and I hope you and children will enjoy this idea too.
Materials you will need:
  • Construction paper in spring colors {light blue, pink, yellow, etc.}
  • Scissors
  • Markers and crayons
  • Stickers and/or ribbon
  • Clear tape
  • Fancy patterned paper or magazine images
  • *Tape or wall putty for hanging

Step 1
Have the kids draw a giant egg shape on a piece of light colored construction paper. This step can be hard for very young children, so I’ve created a PDF that you can download and print directly onto colored paper from your printer. Download the Easter Egg Template Here.
Step 2
Cut out the giant egg shape, (either following your own pattern or the one I have provided).
Step 3
Decorate your giant egg. A fun and cute idea is to cut a circle in the middle of the egg. Tape a picture to the back of the egg so that the image shows through the front (as in the picture shown above). This decorating idea is great for kids 7 years and older.
Step 4
Another idea is to draw a face on the egg with markers and add either stickers, or a long piece of ribbon to the middle as shown above. This example was completed by my niece who is 3, so it’s a great idea for children 3 – 5 years old!
Step 5 
Attach your Giant Easter Eggs to the wall with wall putty, or to your front door using rings of clear tape. They would also look great hanging in the window!

Ashley Lucas {aka Lady Lucas} is the ‘Queen of Cute Characters’. She is an artist, crafting expert,children’s book illustrator and owner of her own arts business. She loves all holidays; especially Halloween! You can find her online at ladylucas.com. She loves hearing from moms with questions so feel free to reach out with any particular comments about her crafts for JCFamilies!

Spring Fairy Garden | Time to Create with Lady Lucas

Moms, this craft is super fun to do with the kids over the weekend, and is a great way to bring some nature and springtime into your home. Fairy gardens are still a huge fad, and I notice them in almost every flower shop and garden center these days. 

Materials you will need:
– A shallow bowl
– Soil
– Moss {either from outside, or from the store}
– Twigs
– Miniature figures

Step 1 Choose a shallow bowl from your kitchen for this project along with the other materials listed above. Fill the bowl with soil if you plan on using real moss.

Step 2 Add some pieces of living moss that you find outside, or purchase artificial moss from a store. Craft stores, dollar stores and flower shops all should carry some sort of artificial moss. If you really cannot find any, green felt will do!

Step 3 Add some twigs to your garden to give it some dimension. I had some extra twigs from a flower arrangement, but small ones from the park would work just as well.

 Step 4 Add some waterproof miniatures to your fairy garden. If you are using real moss, you will need to water it, so make sure the miniature items you add to your garden won’t get ruined. I found these cute plastic animals at a tiny gift store near our apartment. 

Step 5 Add any other small items that you have at home such as small rocks or seashells.

Step 6 If you use real moss, water your garden with a spray bottle every few days to keep it looking green!
Ashley Lucas {aka Lady Lucas} is the ‘Queen of Cute Characters’. She is an artist, crafting expert, children’s book illustrator and owner of her own arts business. She loves all holidays; especially Halloween! You can find her online at ladylucas.com. She loves hearing from moms with questions so feel free to reach out with any particular comments about her crafts for JCFamilies!