This colorful low screen became a central part of our table centerpiece for the season and I look forward to saving and re-using it every year!
I used a kit to make the panels and the only things I needed to add were craft glue and duct tape. If you prefer not to use a kit, you can easily assemble the materials yourself. You’ll need:
- Fun Foam to use for backing
- Craft sticks
- Paint and brushes if your craft sticks are natural wood color
- Construction paper in various colors
- Big googly eyes
- Craft glue
- Plastic or paper to cover your work surface
- Duct tape
- Adhere the craft sticks to a Fun Foam backing. The Fun Foam rectangles that came in the kit are adhesive on one side, so you just peel off the paper backing and lay the craft sticks on the foam. It’s a little tricky to get them positioned just right and fortunately the adhesive is lightweight enough that you can reposition the sticks. If you are not using a kit, paint the craft sticks if needed, cut a rectangle of Fun Foam (size of your choice) and glue the craft sticks to the Fun Foam backing.
- Glue on googly eyes and construction paper facial features. You could also add glitter, gems, stickers, etc. if you wish.
- If you want to make a screen, as I did, wait until the glue is completely dry and lay the panels face down next to each other. Think about the order in which you want them arranged – it’s visually appealing to contrast light and dark colors next to each other. Leave about a 1/4″ space between each two panels.
- Tear off about a 4″ strip of duct tape and lay it, sticky side down, over the 1/4″ gap between two panels. Smooth it down lightly. The tape will act as a hinge between the two panels. You leave the gap so that they can bend.
- Continue joining two panels to each other with strips of duct tape until all the panels form one continuous piece.
- Now you can sit the screen upright and flex the hinges accordion-style so it will stand on its own.
While we were working on the panels I asked Finn if he thought the monster I was making was scary. He told me that he’s not scared of anything. I found this seasonally appropriate book, The Little Old Lady Who Was Not Afraid of Anything, written by Linda Williams, illustrated by Megan Lloyd (Harper Collins, 1986). The storyline is suspenseful (but not really scary), there’s a repeated “Clomp clomp, wiggle, wiggle, shake, shake, clap, clap, nod, nod, BOO, BOO” motif that is fun to read aloud and accompany with gestures and it’s a good book to facilitate a discussion about the fact that everybody is afraid of something and it’s okay to be scared.
I think Finn’s face says it all – we had tons of fun!