Get Crafty This Fall

By: Aaron B. Cohen | November 17, 2021

Michigan falls awaken the artist in many of us. The crisp air, crunching leaves, and contrasting colors lend themselves to a general sense of beauty that only comes around this time of year. If you’re feeling inspired by the changing seasons or looking for a creative activity for your kids, try one of these simple, inexpensive, and most importantly, fun autumn crafting projects.

Pumpkins

Halloween may be over, but Jack-o-lanterns are just the beginning of what you can do to get crafty with pumpkins. While the classic Halloween pumpkins skew toward large, round, and orange, it can be fun to expand to the more unusual presentations for the sake of your art project. When selecting your pumpkin, consider the space you intend to display it and the overall aesthetics and color scheme of the room. That way, when your craft is complete, the final product will look like it was meant to be there all along.

Instead of carving your pumpkin, try etching a design with a linoleum carving tool (parents should assist with the sharp objects), or painting the surface with a unique design. You can also experiment with cutting and pasting paper shapes to add texture and color to the pumpkin’s appearance. If you’d like, get several gourds in various sizes and stack them vertically by cutting the tops off the base levels.

Leaves

For many, brightly colored leaves are the best part of the season. If you want to bring some of that magic into your own home, there are plenty of ways to capture their beauty. Try making a leaf collage – simply find the leaves that you like the most, and glue them to a sheet of paper or cardboard. You can cover the surface in its entirety, or get creative with the paper color and use free space as a means of providing contrast. If you’re pleased with the result, place your artwork in a frame and enjoy the compliments you receive from guests.

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You can also use dry leaves as a canvas. Find the big ones, and then use a fine-tipped paintbrush to write place cards for your Thanksgiving table or messages for your children’s lunchboxes.

And of course, nothing screams fall like an artfully-constructed autumn wreath. Collect a bunch of the brightest leaves in your vicinity, and string them together for a thoughtful piece to adorn your front door.

Pinecones and Acorns

Squirrels aren’t the only ones who can make use of the acorns on your lawn. Send your kids on an acorn hunt, then spend an afternoon creating acorn necklaces and bracelets. Hot glue a split ring to the top of the acorn and string a piece of yarn to create a simple pendant that can then be decorated with glitter, paint, or whatever else inspires you. If the trees on your property are evergreen, you may not find any acorns, but you will experience a surplus of pinecones. Encourage your kids to save the ones they find, and when they have enough, string them together to make a crown. If you only find one or two, you can apply the same technique to the acorn necklaces and create a pinecone pendant.

There’s no better time of year to enjoy Michigan’s natural scenery. And there’s no better way to connect to your surroundings than to take on a creative project. This season, take advantage of the beauty that surrounds you and bring some inspiration into your home.