Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Fun With Magnets - Magnet Board Tutorial

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Pinterest is going to be the death of me.
I'm actually not exaggerating...much.

Ways Pinterest could kill me:
  • Mr. Zinga could get sick of coming home to an untidy house and strangle me.
  • My cholesterol level rising from yummy food ideas could result in massive heart failure.
  • Accidental decapitation with a Skil Saw while repurposing pallets.  
 I'm fine, really. It's not a problem. I can stop pinning anytime I want to...I just don't want to.

I fell in love with the idea of making a magnet board for CeeCee the first time I saw one, on Pinterest of course. There are magnet boards for organizing makeup, keeping craft supplies tidy and I even saw one that had what looked like an herb garden growing on it. Considering how many different shapes and sizes they come in I was surprised there weren't more options for kids. Kids love magnets, mine does anyway, but magnets can be kind of sketchy. I don't know whats scarier, the risk of them choking or the risk of them swallowing two and having them stick together in their tummy. I decided the only way I was going to be comfortable with CeeCee playing with magnets was if I made them myself. My problem is I am horrible at crafts. I always start with the best intentions but usually end up swearing, bleeding and/or scrolling endlessly through the pages of Regretsy, thinking "It could be worse, Helen Killer could be featuring my crap...I mean craft"

You should also know that April Winchell AKA Helen Killer is my hero. She is living, blogging proof that sarcasm DOES pay off in the end. Take that Mom!

Now on to the crafting:)

Crafty Goodness
You will need:
  • Cookie sheet  You can buy new or repurpose an old one one. It's a good excuse to buy yourself new bakeware
  • One can of metal adhering spray paint  Don't be afraid to get colorful, kids love bright colors
  • Page of stickers Use whatever characters your kids are into, we chose Sesame Street
  • Sticky Magnet Paper You can find this stuff at most dollar stores. Look in photo frame or craft section
  • SOS pad For scratching up the surface of the cookie sheet 

Stickers on magnet sheet
 I started with the magnets, mainly because it rained the day I planned on making this and I wanted to get what I could done. First I took the backing off of the magnet sheet. Handle it carefully because this stuff is super tacky. Next I carefully arranged the stickers to maximize space. Between the glue on the magnet sheet and the glue on the stickers these puppies aren't budging once they're in place so make sure you have them lined up how you want them the first time

Choose simple shapes that are easy to cut out
                                                                                               Carefully cut around each sticker making sure there were no sharp edges. On a side note, if you are wondering where I got the stickers from, it was an activity/coloring book. CeeCee loves to color but stickers are wasted on her so I always tear them out before I give her the book.

Finished Magnets
I also want to point out that you are the best judge of your kids interests and abilities so choose stickers that are going to be engaging to them and also size appropriate for their development level. Obviously if you have THAT kid (you know, the one that has to go to the ER to have the beads removed from their nose on a weekly basis) you may need bigger stickers.

The cookie sheet proved a little more difficult to make. Here is a fairly accurate description of the process:

Step 1

  • Wait for a calm, sunny day
  • Scrub all the baked on gunk off of cookie sheet with the SOS pad and scratch the heck out of the non stick surface AND nail polish in the process.
  • Thoroughly dry cookie sheet (I put mine in the oven on broil for a few minutes just to be sure)
  • Take everything outside and get organized, lay down a garbage bag to prevent Watermelon Pink grass incident
  • Lightly spray cookie sheet, remembering Dad's words of wisdom that twenty thin coats is better than one gloopy mess
  • Realize in horror that paint is not adhering to cookie sheet and is beading up in an alarming manner.
  • Allow it to dry and hope that the next coat sticks better, check back in half an hour 

Step 2

  • Peel back edges of garbage bag that have blown onto surface of cookie sheet and are now adhering to beaded up paint
  • Apply second coat of paint, a little thicker this time to cover up the garbage bag smear marks and paint beads. Use handy nearby solar lights to weigh down the garbage bag.
  • Realize in horror that you have gotten overspray onto husbands solar lights. Death by Pinterest #4 - Husband beats you to death with a Watermelon Pink solar light
  • Realize that second coat of paint isn't sticking either, open bottle of wine at 10 am.
  • Apply sheet of lacy white tissue paper to tacky paint in effort to hide garbage bag smears, paint beads and bits of grass blown over from neighbors yard (thank you SO much for choosing right now to mow, CAN'T U SEE IZ CRAFTING)
  • Decide that rather than making it look vintage, tissue paper has made it look worse. Attempt to remove tissue paper only to find that the paint has instantly dried in places and has formed some type of spray paint/tissue paper paper mache.

Step 3

  • Use convenient garbage bag to dispose of  cookie sheet, tissue paper and solar lights
  • Consume remaining wine.

Voila! You have now created your very own set of  fridge magnets.

Handcrafted fridge magnets FTW
I think Helen Killer would approve.

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MamaZinga said...

Update: April Winchell, the "Helen Killer" herself read this article (which I shamelessly sent to her) and enjoyed it. She even had the grace to reply to my email. I feel as though I have arrived:)

Jake Grant said...

It is sweet of you to make a magnet board for CeeCee! I bet she loves it a lot! Maybe next time, you can make an educational magnet board too! That way, CeeCee would have fun, and at the same time, learn and discover lots of things with it.

MamaZinga said...

She has so many educational toys, alphabet magnets etc...I like to mix it up once in a while. Sometimes a toy is just a toy. Kids learn from everything around them, and sometimes I just want her to have fun:)