Give: Critters for the Kiddos


I think handmade gifts are the best gifts to give (and receive)--as a recipient, it's evident how much time and thought was put into the creation of the gift, and as a giver you're thinking of your recipient as you create the gift, so it's inevitably a one-of-a-kind gift specifically for them.


I made these two critters as gifts recently. The frog princess is for my 3-year-old friend, Zoe. She's a princess, too, and it's only fitting that she have a frog princess for her wall.

The owl is for baby L. We won't know if baby L will be a boy or girl until the birthday in November!


Below are photos of the process. I start by sketching my composition in a sketch book and testing colors. Then I paint acrylic paint in various color onto thick watercolor paper. I like to preserve the irregularity of the brush strokes, so I make sure not to take too much care in applying the paint.


Next I divide my composition into shapes and cut those shapes out of the painted swatches. After I've cut every piece to make the entire composition, I carefully glue all the pieces together and then onto a background--sometimes a painted color, sometimes white. After allowing it to dry I frame the pieces in a Ribba frame (from Ikea). Would you believe that this is the hardest part?! I'm such a perfectionist when it comes to framing and if there is any speck of dust under the glass I'll start the framing all over again. Then it's complete!


Check out similar projects here.

Lauren Larkin –   – (October 12, 2009 at 9:40 AM)  

Thank you so much for coming to the shower and of course for the adorable owl. I love it, and know it will brighten up the baby's room! The best part is knowing it was made with love :)

Anonymous –   – (January 31, 2010 at 10:01 AM)  

Leslie, these are adorable! The frog you did for LIam is precious in his room! You are so talented!

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