Category Archives: art and craft

Party Update

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Warning: Ms Modesty was reading this post with a raised eyebrow and a smirk on her face. Very annoyed, I packed her off to Mars with a one-way ticket. 
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Party was a soooper doooper hit! Kids and the moms and the few dads had a whale of a time! We had a good turnout too – around 67 turned up out of the 80 invited. Party started at 5.30 and went on till 9 PM. We had organised 4 art and craft activities and 3 traditional Indian games. Our wonderful neighbors volunteered as organisers for the events – party wouldn’t have been a success without them. We managed to have a Healthy and Green party that was also interesting (thoroughly enjoyable; the best b’day party ever- said the kids). Yay!

The art and craft activities were:

1. Bead key chains and bracelets: Initially the boys shied away from the beads. One little boy made a key chain and that triggered the rest of them to follow suit. They even made their own little variations. I saw these key chains on many cycles later. Girls  made some very pretty bracelets too.

2. Block Printing: We had plain white hankies and two types of blocks. No two printed hankies were alike. After the beads, boys didn’t shy away from anything else.

3. Decorative Terracotta Diya: We had the large size diyas. Some metallic colours, glitter and stones and the kids made magic! Again each diya was different ranging from simple to complex designs. Some kids were so interested that they made two diyas…

4. CD Painting: Borrowed the idea from utbt. We prepared the CDs beforehand – spread glue and smeared our own humble kola maavu instead of coloured sand. I made couple of samples so that the kids got an idea. Since this is a bit time consuming and effort intensive, we packed it for them to try at home.

And we had made newspaper bags for the kids to carry these back home.
G akka, Pattu’s caretaker deserves all the credit for preparing the CDs and the paper bags. MIL pitched in too.

Kids and moms had total fun with art and craft. A mom of a sleepy 2 yr old dropped her son at home and came back to do crafts. Lot of moms further borrowed the CD idea and newspaper bag idea for the kids’ reuse-recycle school projects.
All party decor conceived and executed by my mom. She also put up with resultant party mess in her house.
Pattu’s hairdo (which was very pretty and attracted many compliments) and dressing by G akka.  Pattu also liked the b’day frock that G akka bought for her so that’s what she wore at the party.

………doing a virtual dhrishti………I’m blessed to have such lovely people around……

Coming to Games:

1. Cycle tyre race – we had big and small cycle tyres for different age groups. Made some people nostalgic. Kids were oh so excited.

2. Gilli danda – Everyone (including some adults) had a go at this…

3. Bambaram (top) – Surprisingly, not many were adept at this. By the time we started bambaram, it started to rain and we had to cut it short and shift indoors.

All procurement for games by our driver and and event management by hubby, some wonderful neighbors 

Now to the Food:

Utbt – you were right about the food. Kids didn’t even miss the chips and the samosas. And the parents really appreciated the thought and the effort (and our guts 😉  )

1. Whole wheat pasta + corn and veggies in mint and basil sauce – a huge hit across age groups. It just vanished in minutes! Kids came back for second and third helpingsMany moms called me later for the recipe 😉
2. Bhel Puri – a hit with older kids and adults and a few 3 yr olds as well
3. Chutney sandwich – older kids and adults
4. B’day cake and chocolates – the cake was the ‘melt in your mouth’ variety… from Hot Breads
5. Real and Tropicana fruit juices

I was planning to bake some muffins but most moms felt it would be an overkill and kids would not be able to eat more than these many items. We served very little initially and kids came back for a second helping of their fav snack. Very little food wasted.

Utbt – ‘No Gifts’ on the invite worked... only 2 or 3 gave gifts. The whole community is planning to adopt this policy of no gift – no return gift b’day parties. We were quite worried about the kids’ attitude towards return gifts lately.

Pictures – next post…. 

Warli busts Gender Stereotypes?

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We were trying our hand at Warli. We made a family for starters… and Pattu wants to know, “In Warli the men also wear skirts?” 

And while on this topic….
At Nalandaway’s Art and Craft Carnival, I found many parents (both moms and dads alike) steering the daughters towards jewelry making and their sons away from it. Consciously or sub-consciously, I don’t know. One of the little boys was so fascinated with jewelry making that he insisted on trying it out while his mum was pushing him towards greeting cards and the likes. I couldn’t resist the aaarrrggghhh that was building up inside me, so I told the mom (politely only…) that a good number of jewelry designers are men and that it is a very lucrative profession. 
To which she said, ‘but it is a waste of time…he cannot wear any of these na’. **Gggrrrrr…the woman didn’t get it! ** 
and here’s the best part… the little boy said, ‘but I’ll make bracelet and chain for you amma… see this one is nice..’  **awww so cute it was**

So, they were made by the boy and proudly worn by the mom. She came and showed me…she was beaming! **Gggrrr gone and happy**

So, Parents, leave them kids alone!

We made it this time…

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…to Nalandaway’s Art Arattai Aarpattam. Pattu along with her friend A explored all the art and craft activities by Let’s do Something – pot painting, pop up cards, finger painting, jewelry making – they made their own bracelet and earrings.

We went back for the Sing along with Jeeva and Krishna Iyer. Awesome! Pattu and A had V as well for company and the three of them were super excited singing and jumping along! LB was just two rows away from us … I can’t tell whether the kids or the parents enjoyed it more.

And this Aarpattam continued all the way back home as well!

Highlight of the evening was V telling the girls, ‘ayyo CD odanju pochu’ (The CD got stuck) when the girls were stuck on a song trying to recall the next line. LOL! 

The Art and Craft Trail – Part I

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If you’ve seen M.A.D on Pogo or Mr Maker on Ceebeebies, you would, without doubt, be itching to try out some of those little art and craft ideas by yourself. It is when you set out to execute that plan, that you realise that you don’t have some things that’ll make it as pretty as the ones you’ve seen them make. I just love Mr Maker’s Doodle Drawers and wish I had one like that. Whenever I visit the regular neighborhood shops for art and craft supplies, I find them lacking in most of the interesting things – like the wiggly eyes, beads and foam sheets for instance. Ask them where to find these and they would promptly tell you to go to Parry’s Corner.
Having heard enough, I finally trotted off along with a friend who was as excited about it besides being more familiar with the area. I’ve only scraped the tip of the iceberg and I still have lots to report!
We first went to Rahman Decorations. A huge market with both gaudy and pretty decoration materials. Danglers, streamers, grass carpets, gift bags – you just name it! Found some pretty cane baskets, candles, vase, flowers, birthday confetti, wall stickers etc.The cane baskets were tempting, but I exercised restraint and moved on. We were looking for handmade paper and we were given some names and directions. Most of them were wholesale dealers and were reluctant to give us a few sheets. We finally found one dealer (whose shop was more like a hole in the wall) who didn’t shoo us away. He had a wonderful collection. Papers of varying thickness, coarseness, colours, design – self, glitter and dry leaf types. Irresistible! If you love handmade paper, you’ll love this collection!
Here’s the name and address:
Kibla Paper and Stationery Stores, 27, Anderson Street, Parrys, Chennai 600001. Mail – kibladiary@yahoo.co.in; Phone: 044-25380985/ 044-25380986
I still hadn’t found my wiggly eyes, chenille sticks and pompoms. After some asking around, RR Fancy seemed to be the place to go.We hopped over puddles and navigated some difficult lanes to find RR Fancy Stores snugly sitting next to the famous Saravan Bhavan. Knowing the Sowcarpet area, we didn’t expect it to be a big, fancy place but we didn’t expect a shop of this size to have pretty much every art and craft material one can name.
Here’s the address and the phone number : No 8, Umpherson Street, Chennai 108. Broadway, Near Saravana Bhavan Hotel. Ph: 8124757562/ 044-42064586.
So, finally what did I buy? Here’s the list of things that I carried back home:
– Wiggly eyes – so many sizes, shapes and colours…and nose
– Quilling kits complete with the tool box
– Wax for candle making
– Gel wax
– Candle molds
– Wicks, Wick holders, Aromas and colours for candle making
– Glass cut to size for painting
– Emboss painting kits
– Paints – Ceramic paints, glass paints, fabric outliners, various 3D and glitter shades
– Foam sheets
– Felt material in different colours
– Handmade paper  various colours and designs
– Books on the basics and some designs
– Beads, buttons, threads
– Pre stitched zardosi patters and stones – you just have to stick it with glue
– Pompoms
– Set of brushes
What they also had:
– Canvas stretched on boards and canvas rolls
– Complete materials required for oil painting
– Ceramic powder and molds for ceramic art
– Plaster of paris with molds
– Different types, designs of molds
– Paper – all kinds including quilling supplies
– All things required for Zardosi work, borders, designs etc
– Lace
– Wool, knitting materials, Knitting kits
– Embroidery materials
– Craft punches
– Complete charcoal set

What I still haven’t found
– Chenille sticks/ Pipe cleaners
– Furry pompoms

– Bendable wires 

The Glass paintings would have dried by now…will post a pic soon…