Filter Paper Butterfly Mobile

Learn color mixing while creating colorful coffee filter butterflies and later string them together to make a mobile.

Safety Tips

  • Kids 8 years and younger should use child-safe scissors.
  • Watch out for this sign Ask for an adult's help. It means adult help is needed for the particular step.
Filter Paper Butterfly Mobile craft

Materials

  • Filter paper or coffee filter
  • Wooden clothespins
  • Food coloring or crepe paper
  • Droppers or small spoons
  • Pipe cleaner
  • String
  • Hole punch
  • Cardboard, cardstock or transparency film

Steps

Step 1 Filter Paper Butterfly Mobile 1. Cut out 3 or more butterflies from coffee filters or any filter paper. The size of the butterflies should be just right for a wooden clothespin to be clipped at each butterfly's middle section.
Step 2 Filter Paper Butterfly Mobile 2. Prepare different colors of food coloring. The three primary colors red, yellow and blue are great for learning about color mixing.
Step 3 Filter Paper Butterfly Mobile   *Here's an alternative to food coloring:
Soak (bleeding type) crepe paper in a small amount of water. Wait for 5 minutes or until the water attains the desired color intensity. Remove the crepe paper and use the colored water in place of food coloring.
Step 3 Filter Paper Butterfly Mobile 3. Put a few drops of red on a butterfly and then add a few drops of blue. Watch as the two colors blend together. What color is created?
Step 4 Filter Paper Butterfly Mobile 4. Repeat this process using other colors on the rest of the butterflies. Primary colors mixed together create new colors called secondary colors: blue and yellow make green, red and blue make purple, yellow and red make orange. Set the butterflies aside to dry.
Step 5 Filter Paper Butterfly Mobile 5. Make the butterfly bodies by painting wooden clothespins. Paint on some spots or stripes if you like.

*An easy and mess-free way to paint the clothespins is to clip each one onto a cup.
Step 6 Filter Paper Butterfly Mobile Ask for an adult's help6. While waiting for the butterflies and the clothespins to dry, cut out the top shape for your mobile out of cardboard, craft foam or any sturdy material. I cut out mine from transparency film to make a nice sun catcher top.
Step 7 Filter Paper Butterfly Mobile 7. Paint or decorate this top shape. Finger painting can be a fun idea!
Step 8 Filter Paper Butterfly Mobile 8. Once everything has dried, clip each painted clothespin at the center of a butterfly.
Step 9 Filter Paper Butterfly Mobile 9. Make the antennae either from pipe cleaner or paper. Cut the pipe cleaner in half and bend it in the middle to make a pair of V-shaped antennae. You can curl the tips if you like.

If you would rather go with paper antennae, simply cut a V-shaped piece from colored paper.
Step 10 Filter Paper Butterfly Mobile 10. Use white glue to attach the antennae at the back of the clothespin butterfly, positioning it close to the top.
Step 11 Filter Paper Butterfly Mobile 11. Punch a pair of holes on opposite sides of the top shape.
Step 12 Filter Paper Butterfly Mobile 12. Cut a string long enough to string all your butterflies. Tie one end of the string through one hole on the top shape.
Step 13 Filter Paper Butterfly Mobile 13. Clip each butterfly along the length of the string. Cut any excess string below the last butterfly.
Step 14 Filter Paper Butterfly Mobile 14. Loop a piece of string at the top hole to make the handle.
Step 15 Filter Paper Butterfly Mobile 15. Finally, hang your butterfly mobile on a sunny spot.

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