Monday, 30 June 2014

Oh Canada, Our Giant Tie Dye Flag

     Happy Canada Day!  This year, for whatever reason I am so completely unprepared!  I have to agree with Christopher this time.  He always says that we do better on the odd years, and worse on even years. When he first said this I rolled my eyes and mentally called him an idiot.  This year I have been so scatter brained, and just the polar opposite of organized, that I hate to admit he may have a valid point!
    At our house Canada Day is a big deal.  In years past I have made the kids complete outfits with Canadian Flag inspired prints.  Every year Tweed has this neat little Canada Day parade.  Everyone is welcome to join in.  My kids have been taking part in this little parade for the last 15 years.  They love it!  This year I decided to be a little creative.  I have to admit that I am pretty pleased with Grace and my project.  We used an old white sheet and made a giant tie dye, Canada Flag.

    I consider myself pretty crafty, but I will admit my faults (in crafting and artistic ability only).  I stink at drawing, much and all as I would love to be gifted.  I know my limitations.  To create a template for our maple leaf, I used an entire sheet of bristol board.  I folded it in half, and traced out a maple leaf that had come as an insert in our week-end paper.  I then attempted to enlarge said insert, free hand.

    When I had created my stencil, I took all of my craft supplies outside.  I decided that I would much rather get red fabric paint on my deck, than on my floor, fridge, table, everything else.  I folded my sheet in half and used clothes pegs to mark the middle.  I then centered my stencil between my two clothes pins.

     I used a Tulip brand fabric dye spray to begin our project.  It was just not enough, so I ended up mixing red acrylic paint and fabric medium with a little water in a spray bottle.  This went on really well, and also allowed Grace and I to both work at the same time.

    We let the stenciled maple leaf dry a little before moving on to the tie dye process.  When it did not seem like our maple leaf would run, we folded the sheet accordion style and put a big elastic around it to create the line that would separate the white from the red on our flag.
   When we had separated the areas of the flag, we then added our elastics to the sides that would be red.  We did it the same as you would to tie dye a shirt.  We then sprayed each end with our red fabric dye.

    When we had covered the ends in red fabric paint we let it sit for a few minutes.  When the paint looked like it had set a bit, I very carefully hung it on the clothes line to dry.  My hands looked a little like I had committed a grisly murder.
    As we speak that giant flag is still on the clothes line.  I am really happy with the outcome of our project.  It was fun because it was just Gracie and I working on it.  When she came out and saw it on the line she let out a gasp of delight.  It was easy and inexpensive and most importantly it was a lot of fun.
    At this point you may be thinking that we are ever so clever, but asking yourselves why on earth would anyone need a giant Canadian flag.  My plan is for the kids to all hold it, like a giant parachute in the Canada Day parade.  In my head it looks awesome, the wind gathering under it, causing it to billow.  It may or may not happen like that.  Most likely, one of the kids will drop their end, and the others will trod all over my work of art, that is the most likely outcome.  Whatever the out come, making it was fun.

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