We made a nature mobile as our first day’s activity for this year’s 30 Days Wild Challenge. It’s a really simple idea that works for kids of all ages – just obviously with tiny ones they will be most involved with the collecting of nature materials than in the tying of cotton!
We made our nature mobile from dandelion heads, using hair spray to help them keep their shape and not blow away. You could use anything though – feathers, interesting leaves (again, hairspray or spray varnish can help preserves dead leaves), pressed flowers…pretty much anything your little foragers find with the exception perhaps of their ‘interesting rock’ collection!
What you need:
- Some nature ‘treasures’. We used dandelion heads but feathers, leaves, small shells with holes in or other common seed-heads would work equally well.
- Nylon thread or fine cotton
- Hairspray (only if you’re using dandelion seed heads)
- 2-4 twigs of similar length, long enough to form the mobile’s supportive cross-structure.
What to do:
- Carefully tie your sticks together at the top in a cross shape, adding more sticks if you want to go for a ‘fuller’ mobile with more hanging nature treasures on it. You may need to use a rough lashing knot (go over and under the twigs) to get the twigs to stay in place.
- Use the ends of the thread or tie some new thread onto the centre where the sticks cross. Tie into a loop so that you can hang up your mobile when it is finished.
- Gather your nature treasures. Try to find items of a similar weight for opposite sides of each twig to keep the mobile balanced.
- If you are using dandelion seed heads like we did, choose newly formed seed heads and lightly spray with hairspray from a good distance. Let them dry.
- Cut four (or more) equal length pieces of nylon thread/cotton. Tie each of your nature treasures onto the end of each piece of cotton.
- Attach the free end of the cotton to the end of each twig. It’s helpful if you have someone to hold the mobile by its string whilst doing this so you can adjust where you tie each item on to get the best balance, in case they are different weights.
- Hang up your nature mobile and enjoy!