We’re incredibly excited to welcome our first guest blogger to Mums and Me. Maggy from Red Ted Art. Maggy regularly inspires us with her wonderful craft ideas, often posting about activities she has done with her children, aged 2 and 4. Maggy also provides lots of tutorials for teens and adults – so there really is something for everyone!
Today we are making a Loo Roll Zoo! I LOVE working with Loo Rolls (or cardboard tubes), as they are a cheap and yet surprisingly versatile crafting item. I love them so much, I even wrote a whole ebook about them (check out it out: Time On Your Hands)!
This craft was inspired by a book that the children love – especially my 2 year old.
I bought Who is Hiding, by Satoru Onishi ages ago for my son, but my daughter (coming up to 20mths) adores it and has for quite some time. The book is simple: each double spread page has 24 animals depicted (you can see 12 on the cover). They are drawn in a simple colourful style. As you turn the pages, the background changes in colour – e.g. blue, so that in that case the rabbit and pig “disappear” as their body colour blends into the background colour (see cover, they are blue) and the child is asked, “Who is hiding?” etc… It’s a very sweet, simple book with appeal to “design geeks” like myself.
So, to our craft:
Loo rolls, paint, bits of felt (optional), glue, black marker pen for features and googly eyes (optional)
I tend to use acrylics for this kind of craft, as they don’t crumble when the children play with the animals afterwards. If you are not keen on acrylics you can mix poster paint with a little white glue (PVA glue), which also works, or paint them with normal paint and then varnish them.
The googly eyes are optional. On some of the animals I cut out paper eyes and, I have to say, I prefer these, as they look more like the original book.
2. Once dried, I cut out some ears and some feet. My son helped me stick on googly eyes and other features. For example, for the lion’s mane, we cut a circular piece of felt with squiggly edges and cut a hole in the center. For the elephant and rabbit we had painted an extra blue loo roll to cut ears from.
We glued the rabbit’s ears and, for the elephant, we “slotted” the ears into “slats” we cut. The cat’s ears are part of the original roll – I just cut the roll “down” – leaving two triangles.
(Caution: you may be roped into making 24 animals – which is quite some task. I reigned it in after 8 – that was quite enough!)
We love our zoo and it plays happily alongside our other loo roll crafts – maybe you would like to try some pirates (our favourite) or some cute monsters . Or check out Time On Your Hands for loo roll related crafts throughout the year – ideas for Chinese New Year, Valentine’s, Spring etc.
Thank you for having me to visit!