A couple of years ago I began reading the marvellous Aussie children’s magazine LMNOP online. Last year they introduced Joel Henriques of MadebyJoel as their regular craft contributor and I stumbled across his blog and had a fleeting infatuation. But Kazuo was still a little small for most of his clever innovations. Then, over the holidays, our friend Denise sent me a link to MadebyJoel and I revisited…and I am HOOKED! Joel has three year old twins who are the obvious inspirations for his prolific creative output. But even lowly derivative pseudo-crafty mamas (or papas) like me can execute many of his fabulous ideas. Especially since the kind man posts freebie pdfs of many of his kiddy crafts. And they are excellent – stylish, simple and so popular with wee pops. If you have any little people in your life, visit MadebyJoel NOW!
On the weekend I was looking for inspiration for the upcoming birthday…I found several ideas that might translate into great party favours for our three wee guests. But the major crafty gift from Mama this year is a playscape/street mat for Kaz to use on the floor for his little cars and animals etc. [More to come on this project once I have completed, it is very much WIP right now…] Joel’s Paper City will be a great addition to the little street mat.
Since the wee guy has just had Christmas and there are still a plethora of presents for this coming birthday, I thought I would just try out the paper city and let him play with it right away. So I printed it onto cardstock and cut it out for him to play with on Sunday afternoon, post-nap. The images are charming and lots of fun:
It was a hit. He particularly loved flinging the little button helicopters around.
Three days later and it is still in good shape and getting plenty of attention. In fact, yesterday, he built an extremely large duplo tower (a recent motor skill success that causes daily glee) and set it amidst the paper city as a kinda monolith for the little duplo and paper city people to admire. I love it when the new toys begin to merge with the existing toys.
I think Joel is pretty amazing…and I am just hoping I can stop reading long enough to try out some more of his great ideas…Thanks again Denise, for the crafty linky!