Nov 19

Turkey greeting cards in watercolor and toes

So, it is nine days before Thanksgiving, and while all the rest of blogland is knee-deep in Christmas projects, I am still doing Thanksgiving projects… Yeah, I finished up these turkey greeting cards last night. As compared to every other holiday season in my life, I am so far ahead, but I feel SO FAR behind. It is really funny how your prospective changes. But, I am doing things at my own pace, and I have to stop comparing myself to others and be okay with that. I do have a lot of awesome Christmas projects to share with you, but you are just gonna have to wait a little longer.

Turkey Greeting Card in watercolor and toes at theexperimentalhome.com

Y’all know I love making things with my son, YMGP. I love helping him develop motor skills and his creative side. But, I also love turning his creations into something cute, fun, and perfect to send to his grandparents and great-grandparents. Of course, they love to get things made by him, so these turkey greeting cards are a win-win-win!

To start off, I got his YMGP his first set of watercolors. I taped a big ol’ piece of paper (off his activity table) to the kitchen table and let him go nuts. Honestly, he didn’t go nuts. He loved dipping the brush in the paint and mixing them up, but he didn’t do all that much actual painting. So, I had to help him out a bit to get enough paint on the paper.

toddler watercolor for turkey greeting cards at theexperimentalhome.com

After letting the water colors dry. I took a pair of scissors to them. I cut out the feathers by first cutting strips of painted paper, and then folding them accordion style like I was making paper dolls. Then I free handed the feathers, cutting off the folds on both sides to get individual feathers. I accidentally ended up with a variety of sizes. I used them to my advantage when laying out five feathers on a blank card, putting the biggest in the middle and the littlest ones on the bottom. I glued the feathers down with a glue stick.

watercolor feathers on a white card

Then came footprint time. The best foot-printing technique will depend on the age, stage, and mood of your kiddo, but here are a couple footprint pointers. 

  1. As I learned from YMGP’s first daycare teacher, don’t dip your kids foot in paint, apply paint to his or her foot with a foam brush in between each print. You get a much more consistent footprint with less splatter.
  2. Although kid’s poster paints are super-washable, the color tends to look washed out, so I usually go with acrylic paint.
  3. For little ones, hold your baby with his or her back to you and stamp down on a table or counter. For bigger kids (like my 20 month old), just sit them on the floor, hold their painty foot and bring the cards to their foot. I actually had YMGP hold the stack of un-foot-printed cards and hand them to me one-by-one. 
  4. Always, and I mean ALWAYS make more footprints than you need. Some will always be wonky or whatnot. In the case of these cards, it meant I made more feathered cards than I needed.
  5. Embrace the wonky. This is little kid art after all. Even if your cards look nothing like turkeys, they are still perfect in every way.

After YMGP’s footprints dried, I added googly eyes and a foam triangle for a beak. I cut up some foam pumpkin stickers that we had lying around for the beaks. You could use paper, felt, paint or whatever you have on hand to make the beaks, and the eyes for that matter. 

turkey greeting card in watercolor and toes from theexperimentalhome.com

In all the cards, I wrote: “‘TURKEY’ in watercolor and toes by YMGP.” Okay, so I used his real name, but the art joke is still cute! I know that all our family will appreciate the cards, especially those not joining us for Thanksgiving dinner. 

Do you think Thanksgiving cards get me out of Christmas cards? Do you send kid-made cards to your family?

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