Have fun making your own rattles.
MAKE a joyful noise with these egg-traordinary home-made rattles to herald in the year.
Fill the eggshells with a spoonful of dried seeds or tiny pebbles before you close up the openings with three layers of papier mache.
Decorate them with tiny mosaics cut from used gift wrapping paper or flyers before stringing them up into rattles.
I gave my nephew the privilege of throwing my last batch of papier mache eggs against the wall and floor to break up the eggshells inside.
It was a thrill for him to get into the act with all his might and to enjoy shaking them to check out the gentle rattling of the broken bits inside.
Old newspaper strips
Used white envelope strips
Used gift wrapping paper/flyers
1 disposable chopstick
Dried seeds or tiny pebbles
3 small plastic beads
4 No.20 florist wires – 36cm each
Satin ribbon – 30cm
UHU and PVA glue
Craft varnish (optional)
Making the papier mache mosaic eggs
1. Tap the egg lightly at both ends with a knife to crack a small hole in the eggshell. Empty the egg and rinse the shell thoroughly. Allow to dry completely.
2. Mix one part PVA glue with one part water to papier mache the eggshell with one layer of torn thin newspaper strips, one layer of torn unprinted margins of newspaper strips and one layer of torn white envelope strips. Fill the eggshell with some dried seeds or tiny pebbles before covering the holes.
3. Draw thin and wide bands around the egg lightly with a pencil. Within the wide bands, draw in simple patterns.
4. Cut the gift wrapping paper or flyers into small mosaics, no more than 5mm square. Separate them into piles by colours. Then glue them onto the eggshells to decorate. Papier mache and mosaic all the eggshells in the same way.
* Optional: Apply a coat of varnish over the eggs.
Making rattle A
1. With the piercing tool, pierce through two mosaic eggs at both ends. Swivel and turn the tool around to enlarge the holes.
2. Poke the disposable chopstick through the holes of one egg. Keep turning the chopstick as you push in from one end and out the other end.
3. Lodge the egg in the middle of the chopstick. Poke the chopstick into the other egg, and push until 1cm of the tip shows up.
4. Cut a thin short strip of felt and glue it to cover the tip of the chopstick. Cut a long thin strip of felt to glue around the chopstick for the handle of the rattle.
5. Cut two thin short strips of felt of another colour to glue them around the handle just beneath the egg at the bottom and at the end. Tie the satin ribbon to the tip of the rattle.
Making rattle B
1. Pierce holes at the ends of five mosaic eggs. Cut out five pieces of felt circles, each 2cm wide. Poke a florist wire through the eggs and felt circles, alternating them.
2. Bend both sides of the wire until they meet. Use the pliers to twist one end of the wire over the other a few times to secure them into a ring.
3. Adjust the ring so that the joint is next to a mosaic egg. Cut and glue a long thin strip of felt, about 1cm wide, to the wire to wrap it to make the handle of the rattle.
4. Cut two short thin strips of felt of another colour and glue them on either sides of the handle.
Making rattle C
1. Pierce holes at the ends of three mosaic eggs. Poke a florist wire through one egg. Add in a small plastic bead at the top.
2. Bend the top end of the wire over the bead and push it into the hole of the egg, securing the bead. Add a round piece of felt, 2cm wide, into the wire and push it up. Glue it to the egg.
3. Follow step 1 and 2 to do the same for the other two mosaic eggs. After that, place the three stalks together, with the eggs hanging down.
4. Twist the wires together into one stalk.
5. Then bend the wires and secure the ends to form a ring. Wrap a length of florist tape around the ring.
6. Cut and glue a thin long strip of felt over the taped wires to form the handle.