Teen Librarian Toolbox
Inside Teen Librarian Toolbox

DIY Neon Signs, Part 2

After figuring out how to make DIY Neon Signs (see the initial posts and instructions here), I recently hosted a Teen Makerspace night where we put the program outline into practice. As you may recall, the first DIY Neon Sign The Teen and I made did not have a background and it was just kind of a wire word, and although it works and is up in Thing 2’s room, we just felt it needed a little something something. So we modified our plans and added a wooden background, which helps it hold its shape better and gives it a bit of stability that it was missing.

I have a carpenter friend who helps me with the Teen MakerSpace programs and he came with pre-cut wood, nails, hammers and wire cutters to help with background. You will recall the other supplies you need are EL wire and batteries. In the neon sign we made with no background, we originally attached the EL lights to wire using zip ties to help it hold its shape. With a background, this step proved unnecessary.

So here’s what we did.

Step 1: Write your word on a piece of paper in cursive writing. You need one continuous word for the project to be successful and it’s simply easier. The Teen provided the excellent penmanship here.

Step 2: Following the outline of the word, hammer nails into your board along the shape of the word to hold the EL wire in place. Think of it as doing string art, but with EL wire instead of string.

Step 3: You will then wrap the wire around the nails to create the word in EL wire.

The trick is to use enough nails and get the placement right to hold it all in place. If you would like, you can use glue like e600 glue to adhere the wire to the wooden background. We wrapped the remaining wire and power source around the back and held it in place with zip ties and nails. You then just tear out all the background paper and you have a pretty awesome neon sign.

This is a pretty cool project and we all really liked the final results. There is a part of me that wishes I would have pre-painted the background wood white or black, but the natural wood color is attractive as well. The big thing is that the tweens and teens in attendance all thought this was really cool.

Cindy Crushes Programming: DIY Wizard of OZ Necklaces

Supplies:

Our library had a series of programs that were themed around the Wizard of Oz. I worked on coming up with craft I could make when I saw my friend, Andrea Sowers, post on her Twitter account a necklace craft she had made. That’s when I realized that what I wanted to do was to make a pendant necklace.

I talked to my coworkers who loved jewelry making and asked Andrea a couple questions about how she made her necklace. I then combined everyone’s contributions to make my own process, which I have outlined below.

Step 1: Print out small images that you want to use in the pendants. Remember they need to be able to be cut in a one-inch circle.

Step Two: If you want to have glitter glue in the image, make sure to tell the teens to use very little because you want the glitter glue to dry before you attach the round cabochon. I used a tiny bit of red glitter glue for the Ruby Red Slippers. Others used silver for Glinda’s wand or green for the Emerald City. I used a toothpick to make sure that I made the glitter glue attach well.

Step three: Take the round cabochon and put a layer of diamond crystal on it and attach the image. Use a toothpick to smooth it out. Roll the toothpick on the back of your picture like a rolling pin to release any air and help it stay flat. Wait for it to dry before staring the next step.

Step four: Use the e6000 glue and put it on the front of the pendant tray. You will want to put your dried round cabochon with the image attached on the tray. I would press it gently. Let it dry completely before wearing.

Final Thoughts: This craft turned out great. I really enjoyed it and I am doing a Disney pendant craft in April. I would have gotten longer necklace cords, because people have different neck sizes and not everyone likes having a tight necklace.

Cindy Shutts, MLIS

cindy

Cindy is passionate about teen services. She loves dogs, pro-wrestling, Fairy tales, mythology, and of course reading. Her favorite books are The Hate U Give, Catching FIre, The Royals, and everything by Cindy Pon. She loves spending times with her dog Harry Winston and her niece and nephew. Cindy Shutts is the Teen Services Librarian at the White Oak Library District in IL and she’ll be joining us to talk about teen programming. You can follow her on Twitter at @cindysku.

Cindy Crushes Programming: The Road to Wrestlemania

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Every year, I do a program during the week leading up to WrestleMania and I call it Road to WrestleMania. I started doing this program when I realized that many of my teens were wrestling fans. I do this program for all ages so families can come together.

Quick History of Pro-Wrestling according to Cindy:  Professional wrestling was a carnival sport where the outcomes where predetermined. Wrestling used to be divided into territories before it was changed into two major competing companies, WCW and WWF. There was also a small major company, ECW, which was known for hardcore wrestling. ECW went bankrupt and was bought by the WWF. WCW was sold to WWF after the Time Warner AOL merger. The WWF changed their name to World Wrestling Entertainment after losing a lawsuit with the World Wildlife Foundation. Professional wrestlers are now referred to as sports entertainers.  Other independent competitors have made this the Golden Age of Independent Wrestling. AEW, Ring of Honor, Shimmer, and Rise are making a strong impact on the wrestling world.  Pro-wrestling does have a long problematic history with race and how women’s wrestling has been treated. This year will be the first time a women’s wrestling match has headlined WrestleMania. This was announced on Monday, March 25, 2019.

I come dressed to impress.  I always dress up as a pro-wrestler and try to do their unique entrance. The entrance of a professional wrestler tells you a lot about the character they are portraying.

wrestlemania2Cindy as Becky Lynch

wrestlemania3Cindy as the Undertaker

The first activity I do is wrestling trivia. I like to do the following categories–Matches, Women Superstars, Male Superstars, Classic Wrestling, and Name that Wrestler.  This is done in the style of the Jeopardy game show.

Fun Fact: The first time I ran these programs, women were referred to as Divas and now they refer to them as Superstars, which is the same title that they use for men. They also now have a new women’s tag team titles.

Next I do promo class. Promos are when the wrestler expresses their thoughts and feelings. It is usually a what, who, where, when, and how. I am really excited because in the past it has been hard to get teens to feel confident enough to participate. I have a new game that I think will help make the experience easier and more fun. I learned about this at a wrestling convention. It is called SmackTalk Showdown.

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There are three types of cards.

Name cards– you will need two to make your wrestlers name.

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Segment cards that are about where and when the promo takes place.

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Smack: This will tell the player what their wrestler is doing during their promo.The game is similar to Superfight where one person judges the players when they performer their actions. The judge is referred to as the producer or they add more smack cards to wrestler’s segments. At the end of the game the winner is the first to have three winning segments.

wrestlemania9Pick the Winner:

I find scorecards online, which I print out for the teens to write down who do they think is winning.  I found one on Squared Circle on Reddit. This is usually posted the week of WrestleMania. This one from last year was made by user,  u/THEGRANDEMPEROR

https://imgur.com/a/Ki8pP

If I cannot find a scorecard, I will make one myself by looking at what matches I know are going to happen based on the day of the program. What matches are going to happen is determined by time interests and injuries. I have heard this year will be the longest WrestleMania ever.

 

Final Thoughts: This is a program I love to do and the teens really enjoy it. I think it is so interesting to see how the world of Pro Wrestling has changed since I started this program.  Women would only have five-minute matches, but now they are main eventing.

Cindy Shutts, MLIS

cindy

Cindy is passionate about teen services. She loves dogs, pro-wrestling, Fairy tales, mythology, and of course reading. Her favorite books are The Hate U Give, Catching FIre, The Royals, and everything by Cindy Pon. She loves spending times with her dog Harry Winston and her niece and nephew. Cindy Shutts is the Teen Services Librarian at the White Oak Library District in IL and she’ll be joining us to talk about teen programming. You can follow her on Twitter at @cindysku.

Cindy Crushes Programming: Hosting a Riverdale Fan Party

Today as part of Cindy Crushes Programming, Cindy is continuing her series of Riverdale themed programs that she recently hosted with her teens. Since beginning this series, actor Luke Perry suddenly passed away and we want to offer our heartfelt sympathies to the cast and his friends and family.

My library had a month of teen programming based on the popular television show Riverdale. I had an escape room, which I outline here, and a fan art night. On fan art night I made fan collages and gave my teens coloring sheets. Teens are very into coloring.

riverdale1There are a few Riverdale DIY craft ideas and coloring sheets on this Pinterest board

I had one more Riverdale event: a Riverdale fan party.

I was a little nervous wondering if I had used up all my Riverdale ideas already. What could I do to make it more interesting? Honestly, I was freaking out a bit.

I knew I was going to do Riverdale trivia because my teens love trivia. I used the same Jeopardy style PowerPoint many have used in the past. My categories were Actors, Episodes, Characters, Music and Serpents.  This was one of my most competitive trivia events I have ever held. Everyone was prepared and this shows how much the teens truly love the show.

Some Riverdale Trivia Sources: https://www.sporcle.com/games/tags/riverdale ; https://www.popbuzz.com/tv-film/quizzes/riverdale-trivia-quiz/ ; https://quizizz.com/admin/quiz/5bafa75eba102200190795f2/riverdale-trivia

ukcrest

My next competition was making a city crest for Riverdale. I explained how towns and families often have crests I even pulled up the Shutts family crest to show them an example of one. I talked about how the British crest has a unicorn which is the national animal of Scotland. The teens were very interested. They were very competitive about making their crests and asked often for more time because they were taking it so seriously. I loved the wining one so much. It had a serpent, a bottle of maple syrup, and the high school symbol on it. They used various elements of the show to tell the story of Riverdale.

DIY Coat of Arms

The last contest was a fan fiction challenge. I gave then all a prompt and told them to write a story from where the prompt left off. The prompt I used was, “Jughead walks into Riverdale High one Sunday morning and finds the principal dead.” I did have to explain what fan fiction was to teens who did not know. I explained that they were writing a story inside the Riverdale universe using the characters and the places in the show.  They all worked really hard and it was nice for them to get to use their creative writing skills. It was an enjoyable night

P.S. I had already taken my Riverdale display down when I heard about the tragic death of Luke Perry. I had watched the first two seasons and really enjoyed seeing him play Fred Andrews. He was an amazing television dad. I am sending love to all of his friends and family.

Cindy Shutts, MLIS

cindy

Cindy is passionate about teen services. She loves dogs, pro-wrestling, Fairy tales, mythology, and of course reading. Her favorite books are The Hate U Give, Catching FIre, The Royals, and everything by Cindy Pon. She loves spending times with her dog Harry Winston and her niece and nephew. Cindy Shutts is the Teen Services Librarian at the White Oak Library District in IL and she’ll be joining us to talk about teen programming. You can follow her on Twitter at @cindysku.

Cindy Crushes Programming: Riverdale Escape Room

In today’s episode of Cindy Crushes Programming, Cindy Shutts shares with us how she hosted a Riverdale themed escape room with her teens.

To learn more about the basics of hosting an Escape Room, please check out Breakout Edu as they have basic kits that you can use as a foundation. You can also read a couple of previous posts on Escape Rooms here at TLT and online:

TPiB: Build an Escape Room by Michelle Biwer – Teen Librarian Toolbox

TPiB: Locked in the Library! Hosting an Escape Room by Heather Booth

Cindy Crushes Programming: Stranger Things Themed Escape Room

Programming Librarian: Creating a DIY Escape Room for Your Library

Basic program premise . . .

Your teens will be “locked” in the library and in order to escape, they must unravel a mystery, find the secret codes, and “unlock” the boxes to survive or meet your end goal. Most escape rooms give participants one hour to escape. You will set the scene as outlined below.

riverdale1

 

8 Books to Read if You Can’t Get Enough Riverdale

Plot: Josie and the Pussycats have been kidnapped. You have 45 minutes to open the box to get the flash drive of their location or else they will never escape.

riverdale3

Supplies:

You could use the Breakout Edu Kit

  • 4 digit lock
  • 3 digit lock
  • Word lock
  • Key lock and key
  • Two lock boxes
  • Cat headbands
  • Homemade Pop’s Diner Menu (see documents at end of post)
  • Receipt showing chocolate milkshake but price is cut off (see documents at end of post)
  • A table up set up like a diner booth to represent Pop’s Diner. You can use paper and plastic tableware
  • Fake blue and gold newspaper with word spell circled (see documents at end of post)
  • Maple syrup with fake expiration date
  • Fake poster about the dance where Josie and the Pussycats are supposed to perform
  • A ransom note that that says, ”Josie and the Pussycats will expire if you do not pay $50,000.”
  • Flash drive
  • Pom Poms (Optional)

Instructions: I made sure I read the prompt, so everyone knew what was going on. I also let them know they had two hints. I am always prepared to add one more hint later on if they need it.

Red Herrings: Fake poster about the dance where Josie and the Pussycats are supposed to perform. I also I placed various random props.

Check out the Riverdale prequel book

Check out the Riverdale prequel book

Word Lock: I used the word “spell” because it is one of the easiest words you can use for the lock. I have an article in the issue of Blue and Gold in which the Spellman family of Greendale is mentioned. I have circled the word spell. This is the easier clue. This lock is attached the smaller box. The torn receipt is to be placed in this box.

4 Digit Lock: The clue is the ransom note with the word expire on it. I have a bottle of maple syrup that looks like it is a Blossom Maple Syrup bottle. This lock is attached to the large box. The combination is 0319.

riverdale2

3 Digit Lock: The code is 399. The menu will have prices on it. The receipt that is in the small box will have the price ripped off. This lock will be attached to the large box.

riverdale4

Key Lock: The key will be hidden in the room. I had a set of pom- poms and I hid them in any prop that would work.

Results: This program went really well and all the participating teens enjoyed it. Next time I would add one more lock to make it last longer. It took one group 30 minutes and the other group 20 minutes. I would also add more decorations next time.

Support Documents

blue and gold

Dance sign

pop’s dinner recipt

Riverdale pop’s menu

Cindy Shutts, MLIS

cindy

Cindy is passionate about teen services. She loves dogs, pro-wrestling, Fairy tales, mythology, and of course reading. Her favorite books are The Hate U Give, Catching FIre, The Royals, and everything by Cindy Pon. She loves spending times with her dog Harry Winston and her niece and nephew. Cindy Shutts is the Teen Services Librarian at the White Oak Library District in IL and she’ll be joining us to talk about teen programming. You can follow her on Twitter at @cindysku.

Cindy Crushes Programming: Hosting a Fortnite Party, by Cindy Shutts

cindycrushesprogramming

Like most teen librarians, my teens are obsessed with Fortnite. This popular video game downloads for free and is playable in different seasons, where they will play through different storylines and new player skins become available. One of the most popular parts of Fortnite is the dancing that different skins do. I have tweens and teens dancing around all day. I thought this could be a successful program for teens and tweens. I have done different fandom parties in the past for Divergent, Hunger Games, and British royals so I knew I could do this successfully.

fortnite

Trivia: The first part was I made a Jeopardy style PowerPoint using a format another librarian had already made.  My categories were modes, dances, character/skin, game development and seasons. In this part, I made a couple mistakes. I used information I got from an article that was incorrect for the season questions. My tweens gently corrected me. I listened to them because I know they are usually right if they correct me. If you want to use trivia, double-check your answers!

Jeopardy Power Point Template

Dance off: The dance off was super fun. I played the music from the Fortnite dances and the teen who got all the dances right won a small gift card from GameStop.

Craft/snack:  We had blue Gatorade as the drink, because in the game they drink a slurp juice. I also had a food craft where they cover up Rice Crispy treats with a red fruit roll up and put a cross with white frosting to be medic bandages.

fortnite1

DIY Fortnite Crafts & Party Ideas – Red Ted Art’s Blog

 

The Game: Here is where things got rough. We have a PlayStation 4 and I have downloaded Fortnite on it.  I had planned to play a mini tournament. I turned on the PlayStation 4 and it needed an update and it would not let me update. Even my tech savvy teens could not figure out what was wrong. I looked at the teens and said move the tables and shut the door. You get to play live action Fortnite. I told them no running so they would not get hurt. They got it right away. They used their creativity to make what could have been a failure into a success.

Result: I am so proud of my teens they made this event work even though I had some difficulties. We had such happy kids. We even had kids ask if we can do this again. I will be happy to do it again, but plan to make sure that PlayStation 4 is really working. Or even just prepare to play a live action version with one of the teens ahead of time. The teens made this program special!

Cindy Shutts, MLIS

cindy

Cindy is passionate about teen services. She loves dogs, pro-wrestling, Fairy tales, mythology, and of course reading. Her favorite books are The Hate U Give, Catching FIre, The Royals, and everything by Cindy Pon. She loves spending times with her dog Harry Winston and her niece and nephew. Cindy Shutts is the Teen Services Librarian at the White Oak Library District in IL and she’ll be joining us to talk about teen programming. You can follow her on Twitter at @cindysku.

Cindy Crushes Programming: Harry Potter Inspired Dragon Eggs

cindycrushesprogramming

Cindy has long been a fan of dragons. And who wouldn’t be? Dragons are cool! Today Cindy is sharing with us how she made Harry Potter inspired dragon eggs with her teens. Dragons not included.


dragoneggs1

I had made a dragon’s egg before with modeling clay and the results were not what I wanted. Thankfully, I found a YouTube video and saw how I could make this activity work.

I saw this method was very similar to the Harry Potter wands I made, that use hot glue to model the shapes. I had a lot of issues when creating this process in real life. I learned that making the egg was easy but getting the paint to dry fast enough was going to be an issue. I also wanted to make sure when I finished it looked like a dragons’ egg and not an Easter egg.

Editor’s Note: There is a lot you can do with hot glue. Check out this 5 Minute Crafts tutorial

Supplies:

  • Hot Glue Guns and Glue sticks
  • Plastic Easter Eggs or Foam Eggs
  • Paint, Metallic Fast Drying
  • Glitter Paint
  • Nail Polish (Optional)
  • Mod Podge (Optional, for sealing your egg)
  • Table coverings, paint pans, etc. to help create an environment that is right for painting

Step One:  Pick an egg, if using Easter eggs try to find one that is closest to the color you want to paint the egg.

Step Two:  Use hot glue to make a design. Since it is hot glue, if you make a mistake you can take off the glue if it dries.  I used a scale design for my main egg. One of the teens chose a lovely drop design, where they had small dots in rows neatly all over the egg. You can glue the egg shut if you want to. I did not.

Step Three: Paint that egg. I made sure that all the teens rolled up their shelves because this could be messy.  This is the hard part is you have to make sure to use fast drying paint. Metallic makes the eggs look the best. Do not cover the egg with lots of paint one solid layer will do the job. You can do it with nail polish, but be aware you have to have thick nail polish and that it will smell like nail polish.

dragoneggs2

Wait for your paint to dry completely before going on to the next steps.

Step Four: Paint with glitter paint. This makes it have more of a shimmer.

Step Five (Optional): My co-worker Maisie Ivens let me know she had sealed her eggs with a layer of  modge podge.

Final Thoughts: It took a little more prep time then I expected but it made the craft worth it. As long as you have patient teens, this is a great craft.

Pair your activity with a display of YA lit featuring dragons using this list found at Epic Reads (https://www.epicreads.com/blog/17-ya-books-with-dragons/)

Pair your activity with a display of YA lit featuring dragons using this list found at Epic Reads (https://www.epicreads.com/blog/17-ya-books-with-dragons/). Graphic by Epic Reads

Cindy Shutts, MLIS

cindy

Cindy is passionate about teen services. She loves dogs, pro-wrestling, Fairy tales, mythology, and of course reading. Her favorite books are The Hate U Give, Catching FIre, The Royals, and everything by Cindy Pon. She loves spending times with her dog Harry Winston and her niece and nephew. Cindy Shutts is the Teen Services Librarian at the White Oak Library District in IL and she’ll be joining us to talk about teen programming. You can follow her on Twitter at @cindysku.

Cindy Crushes Programming: Nail Polish Gems

cindycrushesprogramming

Today Cindy is sharing with us how to make gem stones with nail polish. Please note, the galaxy gemstones would make a great craft to go along with the 2019 space themed summer reading program.

gems3

Supplies

  • Old Nail Polish
  • Clear Glass Gems (can often be purchased at dollar stores or craft stores)

Additional supplies (not needed, but can be used to turn gemstones into magnets)

  • Magnets
  • Felt
  • Hot glue gun

I am always looking for cheap fun crafts and ways to use old supplies. I had lots of old nail polish from a previous craft, so I looked up nail polish crafts and found nail polish gems.

I tried three different types of Nail Polish Gems– crackle, rainbow, and galaxy.

See Also: How to Make Nail Polish Gem Stones

Crackle is when the back of the gem is painted white and then covered by another color. This one did not turn out well and would not recommend making this one.

Rainbow is very easy and very pretty. You make use of all the colors of the rainbow in order. I always make sure to have an image because some people, including me forget the color order. This would be an awesome craft to do with for a library Gay Straight Alliance Pride craft. You could use all the different pride color designs.

gems1

Galaxy was the most popular. You start off using a light glitter nail polish and keep adding more layers of glitter nail polish and the last layer is a dark color like dark blue or purple. Galaxy gems are so shiny and beautiful.

gems2

You have to make sure when doing nail polish layering the teens wait for to it to dry before applying the next layer. Layering is very important.

Finishing touches: If you put a circle of felt on the back it can be made into a magnet by hot gluing a magnet to the felt. They do not need felt, but this can be an added touch to make the back smoother.

Final Thoughts: This craft was so much fun and easy to make.. The teens loved it and the adults who saw the gems were very impressed. I would do this craft again. I would also try to learn a few more complicated designs.

If you still have nail polish left over, here are 31 DIY crafts you can make with nail polish

Cindy Shutts, MLIS

cindy

Cindy is passionate about teen services. She loves dogs, pro-wrestling, Fairy tales, mythology, and of course reading. Her favorite books are The Hate U Give, Catching FIre, The Royals, and everything by Cindy Pon. She loves spending times with her dog Harry Winston and her niece and nephew. Cindy Shutts is the Teen Services Librarian at the White Oak Library District in IL and she’ll be joining us to talk about teen programming. You can follow her on Twitter at @cindysku.

Cindy Crushes Programming with a Live Action Donner Dinner Party Game

Today, Cindy Shutts discusses how she played a live action Donner Dinner Party game with her teens.

cindycrushesprogramming

My teens, like most teens, are very interested in true crime and mysteries.  Last year I made a life size board game version of the old classic video game of the Oregon Trail. It was very popular with the teens that had learned about the tabletop game version now available. This year I decided to do something different and a bit darker.  So I decided to do a program about the Donner Dinner Party.

First, I realized it had to be much harder than the Oregon Trail. I did some research in The Best Land Under Heaven by Michael Wallis and I had previously read the Donner Dinner Party by Nathan Hale about the actual events. I learned there were a lot more members of the Donner party than I had thought there were.  These sources gave me a lot of ideas.

Getting Started:

  • Set up a square game board on your floor with 40 spaces. Spaces are described below. You will want to use a large meeting room for this.
  • See resources at the end of this post for additional supplies discussed in the post.
  • Dice

Divide your teens into groups of 4. I made supply cards that included water, food, medicine, and spare parts (below in resources). Every team gets two of each supply cards to begin with.

The game board that is located on the floor includes forty spaces. The corner spaces of the board are tasks they have to accomplish and the General Store. Corner spaces are: General Store, Pick a Fish, Pick a Berry, Knot Tying

Players begin the game on the corner with the General Store. Teams will roll a dice to move from space to space on the board.

Every space on the board had a different card on them. Here are a few examples “Grandma died! Lose a turn as you bury her!” “Find an Empty Wagon, Take Parts card!” “Oops— Snake! Your oldest player has died! “The spaces get progressively worse for the player as the game continues much as the real Donner Dinner Party continued to go downhill. (See resources)

The teams’ first corner task is to pick a fish. I had a bunch of fish cut out and turned over. All they had to do was pick a fish and not a skeleton fish. If they picked a skeleton fish, they would lose a food card.

Another corner games space was pick a berry and see if it is it edible. I did research on different berries and had a picture of the berry on one side and the other side had the name of the plant and if it was edible or poisonous. If they picked a poison plant, one of the people in wagon passes away.

The final corner is knot tying. This gives teens a chance to learn a valuable skill.

After this game, we played one more Donner game. There is a game version of the Donner Dinner Party called Donner Dinner Party a Rowdy Gamer of Frontier Cannibalism. This is a fun mafia style game where you can either be a cannibal or a pioneer.  If you are a pioneer you try to successfully make it through a game round and get enough food to eat. If you are a cannibal, you try to ruin the pioneers’ attempts to gather food.

Thoughts: This program super fun and the teens loved it. They may have not survived, but they loved having an adventure and also learned about history.

Support Materials:

Donner Party Supply Cards

donner party fish

Donner Cards

Donner berry game

 

Cindy Crushes Programming: Light the Night with Fandom Themed Fairy Jars

ccp7

I love making crafts with the library teens and get ideas from a lot of sources. I recently saw a video about making lighted fairy jars on YouTube and recreated it with my library teens. It was very popular, but I had some issues. First, it was very expensive because I had to special order woodcut fairies. Second, the directions said to use superglue to glue the fairy in the jar, which meant many people glued their figures together. So I made some adjustments and found a program that works! The twist here is that we’re going to create “fairy light” jars that celebrate our favorite fandoms, so we’ve personalized this craft and taken it to the next level.

I realized while I liked the outcome, but I did not like the process. I have found my own process for making lighted jars.

fandom1

Supplies Needed:

  • Clear jars, clean and dry
  • Cardstock
  • A Silhouette Cameo is helpful though not necessary
  • Glue or glue dots
  • Glitter glue or Mod Podge
  • Small paint brush
  • Tissue paper
  • Scissors
  • Embellishments such as string/yarn/ribbon, buttons, etc
  • LED lights or candles to place inside the jar (battery operated works best). Glow sticks also work.

Here are some instructions from another source for an overview

Step 1: Cut your shape to place inside the jar

I wanted to do this craft again but not with fairies. I was lucky my library had just purchased a cameo silhouette machine which allowed me to use cardstock and cut out different shapes I have found online. If you don’t have access to a Silhouette machine, you can cut out silhouettes using scissors or exacto knives.

My first lighted Fandom Jar was Beauty and the Beast. I use Pinterest and Google image search to find silhouettes that worked for my program.  I printed them off the cameo machine and that made life easier and you do not have to order silhouettes.

I believe in either using tape or glue dots to place the image in the jar as it makes things easier to fix for teens and teen librarians who make mistakes. I do not recommend using superglue; I lost a layer of skin that first time I tried it to fix the teens projects, plus it is just messy.

Karen’s Note: You can use the free software GIMP to turn a teen photo into a silhouette, which would be fun for this craft. There is also a free silhouette app that you can download for a mobile device.

Step 2: Cover the outside of the jar

I used tissue paper to cover the jar. I like to paint a layer of Elmer’s glue on the jar and the gently place the tissue paper around the jar. Trim off any extra. I am very careful about making sure the silhouette in the jar is not covered by the over fold of the tissue paper. I like to use as light a color of tissue paper as possible. Dark tissue paper will not work. I learned this when I tried to use golden tissue paper for my Hamilton lighted jars.  I then have the teens wait and add another layer of glue on top of the tissue paper. This helps smooth it out and makes it easier to see.

WikiHow: 4 Way to Make Faeries in a Jar

Step 3: Embellish your jar

fairyjar2

I let them pick out what the want to do next, whether they want toput a layer of glitter glue over it. Add accents. I enjoy tying a ribbon around the jars. I have a button box that I let them look through. I try to find objects that work with the theme such as I found rose buttons for Beauty and the beast or stars for Hamilton Jars.  I make it clear this is their jar they get the final say in what it looks like.

Things to Consider

I am very careful when getting the jars. I saved up coupons and also asked for jars as donations from staff and patrons. Spaghetti sauce jars work out very well as do some pickle jars. Couponing makes this craft affordable since I can use all the supplies the next time if I have leftovers.

Karen’s Note: To up the “making” quotient of this craft, you can make your own LED rope lights in a variety of ways. One set of instructions can be found here. This will significantly increase the cost of this activity.

Thoughts: This craft is always a winner and can be adjusted to different fandoms. As long as the jars are cheap this program works out nicely.

Cindy Shutts, MLIS

cindy

Cindy is passionate about teen services. She loves dogs, pro-wrestling, Fairy tales, mythology, and of course reading. Her favorite books are The Hate U Give, Catching FIre, The Royals, and everything by Cindy Pon. She loves spending times with her dog Harry Winston and her niece and nephew. Cindy Shutts is the Teen Services Librarian at the White Oak Library District in IL and she’ll be joining us to talk about teen programming. You can follow her on Twitter at @cindysku.