Friday, September 23, 2011


So, I'm starting to get a little crafty in preparation for my little boy's upcoming birthday party. The party is at a nature center with a "forest friends" theme. I pulled together projects from a baby shower I put together at work and another baby shower a few years go to come up with this cute centerpiece.

Whooo's the cutest centerpiece in all the land????
So here is how I made the centerpieces. First you make the tree cake stands. Like I mentioned, I had them from a previous shower and a friend's husband put them together for us. Here is the original tutorial. You can buy the tops at Michael's in two different sizes (we used the smaller size) and then just cut the bases out of a fallen tree trunk.

For the animals, I purchased this set of graphics from MyGrafico two years ago. I don't think they have this exact set any longer but there are other similar ones on the site. I just create a Photoshop document and place the images of the animals on the page. I like to have the animal visible on both sides so I print out two of each, one being a mirror image, on white cardstock. If you're interested in using the invitation or some of the printable decorations for a shower you're hosting, please visit my Etsy shop . I will be very happy to work with you to customize colors and text!

The other materials I used are floral stem wire, faux moss rocks (which I found at the Dollar Tree!!), and cake circles (which are in the cake decorating section of the craft store). I originally bought the 6 inch cake circles, as shown in the photo below, but I exchanged them for the 12 inch circles after I decided I needed a larger platform for my centerpiece.

Along with the cake circles, you will need decorative paper. I used scrapbook paper (because that's what I always use and it's 12 inches square!). I knew I needed to make six centerpieces, so I pulled out six of the cake circles, traced them onto the green paper, cut the circles out, and then hot glued the paper circles to cover the cake circles.

So back to the animals...what you're trying to accomplish is just the printed animal standing up on its own with wire "legs". I am sure there are many ways to achieve this, but this is how I do it.

I take one of the wire stems and cut it in half with my wire cutters. Then I bend the stem piece in half again so that when laid on one half of the animal it lines up with its feet (see below on the hedgehog).

Once I get it aligned, I just put a dab of hot glue on the back side of the hedgehog and set the wire in place. After a few seconds, I put some glue all over the backside of the hedgehog and then place the second cut-out of the animal on top. Gluing the two together and sandwiching the wire "legs" in the middle.

Sexy wire hedgehog legs!
And then you're done. I have six of these tree stands and used six different animals from the MyGrafico set: an owl, hedgehog, birds, bunny. I bend the legs out from the bottom of the animal and then bend those pieces at a right angle, like this:

Then using a little piece of masking tape (since it happens to be the same color as the wood on the stands, I just tape down each of the wire "legs" and I'm done! I added a few pine cones and some of the moss covered rocks (you can just glue or tape them down) and it's done!


duchessofginger said...

My favorite part is the sexy hedgehog legs!

Jen@thecraftingfiend said...

LOVE this idea! I'm planning a woodland creature themed party for my daughter's 2nd birthday. I'm pinning this and following you now :)

Amy Trexler Mantay said...

Thanks, Jen! My two year old loved this party and it has great DIY potential!