Joyful Jewish

Posts Tagged ‘New Year

Cork apples with paint

Card made by T (aged 7)

Rosh Hashanah cards 2014

Cards made by Mum

Looking for a fun and easy Rosh Hashanah card craft? This is a variation on an activity I saw on the Challah Crumbs website.  Basically it involves printing apples using the usefully circular nature of the end of a cork.  This may be easier said than done if you don’t drink wine – or even if you do, given how much less common wine bottles with corks are these days.  It might be time to pop that bottle of champagne you’ve been saving for the right occasion. 🙂

Fortunately for me, I saved a bunch of corks some years ago with the plan of making an entire pinboard out of recycled corks.  The pinboard never eventuated, but the corks were still hanging around. (Yes, I am that sort of person who finds it hard to throw things away, how did you guess?)

Rather than keeping the corks completely round, I used a cutting blade to take out two small chunks to mimic the dimples at the top and base of an apple.  The stems are just added in pen afterwards.

Cork apple stamps

Not that you can see it clearly, but I’ve carved two dimples into each “apple”.

Corks are not uniformly flat, especially once you’ve impaled them with a corkscrew, but this adds to their charm in my opinion. I initially tested my cork stamps with ink pads, and I really liked the result.  The handwritten Hebrew letters are less of a feature, but I was making this in a rush as a demonstration model for a class of children who were not going to be critical (thankfully!)  I gave them some Hebrew alef-bet stencils and they enjoyed finding the right letters for their own cards.

Cork apples with ink

We don’t have colourful inkpads at cheder, so there we used paint.  It worked fine, but if you are doing this activity with kids then I recommend you have a scrap sheet of paper or cardboard where kids can stamp first to lose some excess paint prior to stamping their Rosh Hashanah card.  This is because if you have too much paint on the end of your cork, you end up with a blob which looks less like an apple and more like somebody stepped on a paint bug and squished it to the page.

More cork apples

The advantage of paint is that you can end up with mixed colours which look fabulous, as my daughter demonstrates above.

Cork apples

Rosh Hashanah is in less than two weeks, so I foresee more cork stamping at home this weekend!

Update: I made cards for family on the other side of the country using ink, with a stamped greeting in the middle.  I was pretty happy with how they turned out.  It’s not so obvious from this photo, but the metallic gold apples looked great.

Rosh Hashanah inked card

 

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Finished challah cover

New Year is just around the corner, and I have been very busy in the lead up this year!

Following on from my earlier Chanukah and family handprint challah covers, I have now made one for Rosh Hashanah.  (I think I’ll be taking a break from challah covers for a while now!)  As Rosh Hashanah challah is round, so so is this cover, and the fabrics depict or represent apples and honey, two traditional sweet foods eaten for the new year.

Fabrics2

Fabrics1

I don’t have much patchwork experience and I wanted something simple (read: foolproof) so I found a very easy looking idea on the internet: a circle made by sewing triangles together.  I made a template out of cardboard, just a triangle with a 30 degree point.  12 “slices” x 30 degrees = 360 degrees aka a full circle. By cutting the point of each triangle off before sewing them together, I didn’t need to worry whether or not the points would meet up neatly.

Construction phase1

As you can see, it is not particularly circular at the edge, but you cut it back later.  (Make sure you cut your fabric larger than you think you’ll need so that it’s not too small when you trim and hem it.)  Alternatively, you might be smart enough to cut the template with the right curve built in – but I was sticking with simple!

Next I appliqued a circle to go in the centre and cover that hole.  I printed off the text for L’Shanah Tovah (literally “for a good year”) using a font called Frank Ruehl and traced around it to put the outline onto double sided iron-on adhesive.  A fair degree of fiddly cutting out and ironing on later, it looked like this:

Construction phase2

I used a bit more iron-on adhesive to stick the circle in the right place. Then it was just a case of stitching around the edges to make sure nothing falls off, EVER, and including a few beads for decorative effect.

Edging detail

Finally, I cut a circle of fabric for the back, trimmed the front to match, sewed the two faces together (you get the general idea…).  Next job, relocating that really good Rosh Hashanah challah recipe I used last year.

I wish you and your loved ones L’Shanah Tovah – may you be inscribed in the book of life for a sweet and blessed year.

Closer view of challah cover

Last year I saw this fabulous idea at Creative Jewish Mom: she had made apple-shaped gift boxes from the ends of plastic bottles.  For better or worse we don’t buy much in the way of soft drinks, so it was quite some time before I finished two bottles of tonic water and was able to make my own version of this great idea: a hanging decoration which we can use both for Rosh Hashanah and for our sukkah.

What I used:
– ends of two 1.25l plastic bottles (the sort where the bottom looks a bit like a flower with five petals – I used several different brands and some work better than others, so you may just need to experiment.)
– red or green cellophane (or tissue paper, or fabric.)  The beauty of cellophane is that the light shines through it.
– felt scraps for the leaves and stem
– thin ribbon or similar to hang the apple up, and a button to hold this in place.
– needle and thread

How to make this:
1. Carefully cut off the ends of two plastic bottles.  I found cutting one a centimetre or so taller than the other meant I could overlap them and they stick together even without glue.

2. Very carefully use a sharp object to punch/drill a tiny hole in the centre of one of the bottle ends.  Thread through the ribbon so that you have a loop on the outside.  Thread the ends through a button and tie it on the inside.  (The botton stops the ribbon from slipping out.  Alternatively you could make two holes and skip the button.)

3. Cut leaves and a stem from felt and stitch them together (glue might also work but thread seemed more secure to me.)  Stitch the leaves and stem to the ribbon.  If you’re more organised than me, you might even be able to do this in one step rather than in two.

4. Scrunch up some cellophane or other paper/fabric to provide the colour of the apple and put this inside.

5. Slot the plastic bottle ends together. Glue or tape them if necessary.

6. Hang and admire!

A couple of years ago my husband had his first opportunity to blow a shofar, and it turns out he is a natural.  He can even play a tune on one of those things!  When he blows, the shofar sounds amazing.  I, on the other hand, can barely make it sound like someone blowing a raspberry, or worse.  This year we decided that those of us not blessed with natural ram’s horn blowing talents should still be allowed to make a loud noise, and these shofarim are the way to do it.  This is a great craft activity for kids to do before Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur.

You will need:
– light card or heavy paper cut in the shape of a shofar (I used the pattern from here: http://www.cajestl.org/documents/ShofarCraftProject.pdf and just narrowed the shape of the handle slightly.)
– the hooter part of the type of party favour where you blow and part of it extends.  (What are these called? Party horns? If you google “party hooters” some of the photos are a bit risque!)
– double sided tape and sticky tape
– textas/stickers etc to decorate

Cut out the shofar and decorate with textas or stickers. Stick together with double sided tape (as per the instructions printed on the .pdf), and roll the handle to fit around the hooter.  Secure with sticky tape.  That’s it!  Then put in your ear plugs and let everyone else go blow their horn.

Collage is always fun for young children, and it’s easy to incorporate the key elements of Rosh Hashanah – apples, honey, shofar, round challah and “L’Shanah Tovah”.

I used:
– cardboard – I used a plate to trace circles on some old cardboard folders I was recycling.
– pictures – find them on the internet or draw your own, cut shapes from coloured paper
– scratch and sniff stickers – who knew they came in both apple and honey scents?  (Mind you if my honey smelled like those stickers I don’t think I’d be eating it!)
– textas for additional decoration

Cut out your pictures and glue them on, then add some decoration (if you want to) and hey presto, a colourful new year decoration for your fridge or wall.

If you’re short of time, you are welcome to print off my compilation of pictures gleaned from the internet: Rosh hashanah collage pictures

Last year I used the same pictures and we made cards to give to grandparents.


Fun crafts and activities for Jewish families with young children

A resource site for anyone who wants to share the joy of being Jewish with the children in their life.

Enjoy!