Here we are again, home and twiddling our thumbs…. so let’s make the most of this time…..up-cycle some rubbish, use our imagination and have some crafty fun!

Currently in the Crafty cupboard there are supplies for the Cardboard City project below, the beginning of our ODD KNITTERS fun and our latest craft project below….. BLUE BIRDS! [made from old jeans…]


Denim scraps

Blue or black sewing cotton

Sewing needle


Wadding/toy stuffing

Wire for legs


One sheet of brown paper or white paper and a brown felt tip pen/pencil. Black felt tip pen for the eyes

Glue stick


Cut out your pattern pieces according to the pattern sheet on the left [which, for a guide, is an A4 sheet of paper], adding a 1cm seam allowance around the edges.  For the body cut two pieces and stitch together with right sides facing.








Stitch around the edges leaving a 2cm gap so you can fill with the stuffing.  I have marked here where the legs will be placed – match it to your pattern when you have finished stitching the body.




Turn the right way out, then stuff until fairly firm, then stitch closed the gap.









Cut lots of feather shapes. You can mix denim colours.  Cut 4 pieces for the tail and overlap them when you stitch them in place.

Stitch on the tail feathers…..then the head feather in place

Start stitching the feathers in place, overlapping along the sides.





Stitch the wings so the tips overlap across the bird’s back.





For the beak, roll the triangle of denim into a point and stitch in place





For the legs, twist the wire into legs/feet shapes, then cut thin strips of brown coloured paper (coloured with felt tip if you don’t have brown paper). Using a glue stick, stick the strips to the wire legs, wrapping it as you go to cover the wire.  Stitch to the under side of your bird’s tummy, then cover with another feather panel.

 Draw eyes with a felt tip, and there you have your bluebird!




If you have a favourite toy figure then you can make it to scale for them, or maybe you can build a model that represents your own home or village/town? Of course you can also simply let your imagination run wild and create a completely imagined town or city. These can then be used for play, performance or simply hung on a wall as a sculptural work of art!

Just take a look at these lovely examples….

Let’s get started! You will need….

  • Cardboard boxes (tea bag boxes, cereal boxes, biscuits boxes etc.)
  • Glue (Glue stick or similar)
  • Cellotape
  • Coloured or plain paper 
  • Coloured pens, pencils and/or paints
  • Your imagination
  • A space in the corner of, or on a wall of, your bedroom [or some other space in your house where it can remain until you are fed up with it and it goes back I the recycling…]

You can find much of what you will need in the Crafty Cupboard, on site, at The Gugg as usual, but you should be able to find all you need in or around your home.

Some simple instructions to get you started:

If your boxes have advertising print on them, carefully unstick the seams and turn them inside out. Glue the seams back together.

Alternatively, wrap the boxes in paper that you can draw or paint on. 

Draw or paint windows, doors, window boxes, flowers, chimneys, whatever you fancy! Or cut window and door shapes from your cardboard stash, decorate them and stick them on to the outsides of your buildings. You might like to leave some buildings open and make furniture and inhabitants for them, or create doors like a doll’s house to get the best of both effects…..

Be brave and make your tower/townscape/village/city/wall art/play scene really special and different!

When they are decorated and dry, stack them together, place them side by side, on top of one another, in straight line or windy roads, gluing or sellotaping them in place. The world, as we like to say at the Gugg, is your winkle….[Oi! you lot… a winkle is a small sea snail/molusc that can be eaten!]

There you have your amazing cardboardarama, which you can keep adding to, or even play at being Godzilla in….!

There are lots of amazing ideas on t’internet of how to make a huge range of mini homes, offices etc… here are a few good places to start: