Friday, December 17, 2010

Six-sided snowflakes

If there's one thing my dad couldn't stand it was a square snowflake. Snowflakes are hexagonal crystals, you know, which means for accuracy you need to fold your snowflake paper to have six sides, not four or eight. Do you know how to do this? I always used to forget. So here is your handy guide. Make my dad proud.

First, fold the paper [by the way, it's much easier if you use tissue paper or some other thin paper!] diagonally to make a square (above) and cut off the too-long end:
Then fold it about one-third of the way in (from the center of the bottom side of the triangle) like so.
Fold the other side in so the paper is now folded in thirds. If you miscalculated your first fold, you can adjust it here so that each third is equal. 

Now fold in half (lengthwise). Like this:
 
When you open it up you can see that part of the paper is shorter.  Re-fold and cut the whole snowflake off across this line so that all of the sides are the same length. 

Like this:
Lovely!  Now you are ready to cut patterns in it!

Friday, December 10, 2010

Snowflakes

We had such a great time making paper snowflakes last year that we could hardly wait to do it again.  Last time we were all a little sad to take them down ("Shouldn't we SAVE them?") but we knew it would be more fun just to make more.  And finally we did.
Seb and Abe were both really impressive cutters this year.  I couldn't believe how good their snowflakes were.  And Ky, amazingly, thought gathering scraps into little piles was the best job of all, and was content to do that all the time we were cutting.  There were scraps everywhere---it looked like it really had snowed in the kitchen.

Some of my favorite creations this year:
 Sun/wheel

 Bunnies

Above you can see the snowman/antler design on top, and then we have the ornament/six-pack ring in the center bottom.  Plus one of Abe's on the left, and one of Seb's on the right.

 Abe's rockets---big and small.  Can you see both?  Some look like the space shuttle ("with fire coming out") and others are rockets on the launch pad.

 One of Sebby's snowflakes on the left (amazing!) and spiderweb on the right

 Christmas trees and star (Abe)

 Lace---and are those some of those optical illusion face/vases? (What theory of perception is that? Gestalt?)

 Spirals and star

Owls---or should I say, snowls?