Thursday, December 30, 2010

More Aliens!

On Christmas day we had a bunch of leftover twist ties from new toy packaging and I thought they looked like hair.  ALIEN HAIR!!  Mwhoo hoo hoo ha ha ha!  The foil alien was born. 

You will note that my instructions say to add the arms and legs before the face, but the photos show that I made the hair first, then the face, and added the arms and legs last.  For goodness sake please learn from my mistakes and do as I say not as I do.  The googley eyes slid all over the place while I manhandled the alien's body trying to figure out how to make a neat and tiny hole for the arms, and the hair popped out over and over.  Fortunately it made no difference to the finished product. 

Age: 3+ (I admit I did most of the craft because of the distraction of the new Christmas toys.  But a 3 year old could do quite a bit of it. I just shamelessly used my kid as an excuse to make a foil alien out of a toilet paper tube.)
Mess/Cleanup: Just a bit of glue.
What You Need:
  • Toilet paper tube 
  • Aluminum foil 
  • Glue 
  • Googly eyes 
  • 2 or more pipecleaners (I prefer alien green color)
  • Needle nose pliers or tweezers
  • Twist ties (leftovers from packaging are great!) 
  • Optional:  large needle if your pliers/tweezers are not sharp

Why I Like This Craft:
Ah, the maleable properties of metal make for easy assembly.  My three year old has actually played with this little alien critter quite a bit.  The legs and hair fall off, but it's easy to just pop them back in and pinch the foil around it so it stays put without tape or glue.

Step 1:
Measure a piece of foil a few inches longer than the width of your toilet paper tube and tear it off.  Roll the tube in the foil and scrunch up the ends of the foil and push them into both ends of the tube.  No glue or tape required.  This makes the body of your alien.  Next you will add arms, feet, a face, and hair. 

I realize the glare makes it almost impossible to see the scrunching at the end of the tube.  Sorry!
Step 2:
Use your needle nose plier snippers (or craft scissors) to cut one pipecleaner into three pieces.  These can all be the same length, or you can just have two that are the same and one that is shorter.  Two pieces will be used for the arms, one piece will be the mouth. Use the tip of the pliers to make a curly coil at one end of a pipecleaner piece for the arm, bending a bit at the other end in the hope that it will help it stay inside the alien's body.  Repeat for the other arm. 
Coil up the third piece almost to the end, leaving a centimeter or two to poke into the face. 
Top of photo: arm in the process of being coiled
Middle of photo:  uncoiled nose
Bottom of photo:  finished arm with coil at one end and
bend at the other to insert into the alien's body
 Cut your other pipecleaner in half to make bigger coils for the feet.  Make two if you want a standard alien.  Make three or four arms or feet if you want to make a funkier alien.  Poke the bent end of your pipecleaner legs into the bottom of the toilet paper roll.  Really push 'em in there so the alien sits flat and stays upright.

My alien was very embarrassed by this compromising photograph but eventually gave permission to post it
Step 3: 
Poke a small hole in the side of the alien's body about halfway down to insert your pipecleaner arm.  My pliers are not sharp so I used a large needle to start the hole so I wouldn't wrinkle the foil so much.  Slightly bend the straight end of the pipecleaner arm so it will stay in the hole.  The fuzzy part of the pipecleaner will help the arm stay put. 

Step 4:
Poke a hole with your needle or pliers into the middle of the area where you want to make your alien's cute little face.  Poke the little curled piece of pipecleaner into it and give it a tickle for good measure.  Aliens like tickles. 

See the nice little hole just waiting for a ticklish nose?
Step 5:
Glue on googley eyes above the nose. 

Eyes, nose and hair complete!

Step 6:
Use your needle nose pliers to make curly ends in your twist ties to make hair.  My twist ties were clear over silver colored metal and I kept the kinks in the middle left over from being used in the packaging.  Poke these straight into the top of the alien's head.

Now make some bleeping martian noises and have some fun!

Take me to your leader (toddler)!

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