Making Art, Making Craft, Making a Living and Occassionally Making Dinner...
Wednesday, February 22, 2012
Kite Making for Carnivale
For the next four weeks I will be going into schools, preschools, childcare centres, disability services and Tafe Classes to conduct kite making workshops as part of Wodonga's Carnivale Preparations. I'm working with a great bunch of artists and making stuff with kids is always rewarding.
There is no pressure to make flyable kites, as they are being used to decorate the streets and shop-fronts, but some do fly quite well. Much to the disgust of many family and friends, who shall remain un-named (cough..... nasty people rolling eyes and mumbling horrid things as I run up and down the footpath attempting to fly some little childs kitey creation... cough.... shame on you.... cough...).
They are very simple (and very cheap) to make, so if you don't mind slightly fuzzy one handed photos, I thought I'd share how to make them here....
Decorative Diamond Kite Demo
Step 1 - Gather your supplies. To make a simple diamond shaped kite simply take some bamboo skewers, some greaseproof paper, masking tape and strong water based glue (we used pva). Bamboo skewers and greasproof paper are available at your local supermarket - make sure to get greasproof and not baking paper. Baking paper has a coating on it which makes sticking and decoration difficult. You can find PVA or white glue at your craft or hardware store. You will also need something to cover your work surface, a little water and an old (but clean) paintbrush.
Step 2 - Take a piece of tape as long as your finger and lay it sticky side up on your work surface. Then take two skewers and lay them end to end long ways on your tape towards the top edge. Press them down to stick.
Step 3- gently roll your skewers towards you encasing them in tape to form a hing joint.
Note: It helps to fold the top edge over slightly to start you off. Repeat this until you have four skewers joined together in a line.
You can then join your four skewers together to form a diamond like such.....
Step 4- next add your support strut. Using a small amount of tape, connect a skewer across the centre of your kite frame from one corner to the other.
Step 5 - Lay your paper out on your work surface allowing enough extra to overlap by at least 2 to 5cm around all edges (or even more). I just tear my paper, you will see why the neatness of your edges is not that important shortly, but you may wish to cut it with scissors. Depending on the width of your paper, you may need more than one sheet. You can secure the join with a little glue or small pieces of tape. Lay your kite frame on the top and water your glue down in a small container at a ratio of 1/3rd glue to 2/3rds water.
Step 6 - Starting on one side only, hold your frame in place and paint glue lightly over your skewer and across the paper toward the outer edge. Don't paint glue into the centre of the frame, it's not nessecary and makes a big gluey mess that is hard to work with.
Next, fold the glued corner of paper in towards the centre of your frame making sure it is tight to your skewer. You may like to gently press with your fingers along the skewer. Repeat this around each side of your kite, one side at a time. You may need to fold your paper slightly at the corners and secure with a little extra glue so that there is no overhang. When you have completed all four sides, give your edges a good press down with your paintbrush. you may wish to add a little more glue to make sure thay are stuck down well.
Peg your kite to the line or leave it sticky side up on a flat surface to dry. Your kite is now finished and ready to decorate, add a tail and some string and see if it will fly, or just hang it on a wall or from your verandah, or in a tree as a decoration.
A small group of them together make a lovely display. Try experimenting with different shapes. A hexagon or star are simply constructed using the same method.