Sunday, April 22, 2012

Earth Day: An Up-Cycled Art Project Idea -- Upper Elementary & Middle School

This was a tough project to create, so I recommend it for very patient upper elementary students or middle school students. It requires only four things to complete, old magazines, Elmer's glue, a dowel of some sort and patience!

Magazine Basket Weaving
To begin tear out the pages of an old magazine. One with colorful images would work best. One magazine should provide enough material to complete at least one project, maybe two.

Then follow these steps:
1. Using a thin dowel (I actually used a knitting needle) roll one page the long until they are completely wrapped around and glue the last edge down to make a tube. Slide off and set aside to dry. *Hint: It may be helpful to make a lip when you start rolling and glue that down securely so that the tube is less likely to unravel as you continue rolling. Also, do not use too much glue or the magazine pages can fall apart.
2. Repeat until you have a stack of tubes (about 20 or so will be enough).
3. Flatten the tubes.
4. Begin creating a weft and warp weave using the flattened tubes. You may need to tape down those going in one direction while you are working. Also keep the weaving only in the center because the ends will be folded up to make the walls of the basket. You will have more in one direction (i.e. either the warp or the weft will have more flattened tubes).
5. Fold every other tube end back over and through the weaving. You will have a one in one out pattern all around. This will secure the base weaving in place nice and tightly. Folding back in takes practice and patience because if you are not careful all your work will come undone.
6. Now the really hard part begins -- the sides. Fold up the remaining ends. Begin with one side and weave through another tube. Fold ends back and through. One tube will go about half way around the basket. Start on the other side and repeat with another tube to meet the first one. Continue up the sides about three more times.
7. With the ends that remain sticking up at the top, fold down and through the weaving to secure. The basket is now complete.

**This was my first woven basket. Even with a lot of patience it took me about two hours. With more practice it may go easier. I had no instructions to follow and pretty much winged it to figure out how to make one. If you have a woven basket lesson using magazines/paper, please share it.

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