Better Homes and Gardens (Australia) - - Better Kids -

Gather your sup­plies

• 6mm foam­core board in white • Wa­ter-based paint in a shade of green • Marker pen in black • Small dec­o­ra­tive peb­bles in white • Ter­ra­cotta pot

You’ll also need

Scis­sors; self-heal­ing cut­ting mat; pen­cil; craft knife; me­tal ruler; small dish; paint­brush; news­pa­per; wa­ter-based gloss var­nish; Chalk Paint by An­nie Sloan in Lem Lem (or any green colour you love); tis­sue pa­per in colour of choice; dress­maker’s pins

For you to note

Foam­core board typ­i­cally con­sists of three lay­ers: poly­styrene or polyurethane that is clad with pa­per on each side. It’s strong, light­weight and eas­ily cut with a knife. Try Spot­light and Kmart for in­ex­pen­sive

sheets of foam­core board.

Here’s how

STEP 1 Us­ing a pho­to­copier, en­large Cac­tus di­a­grams to 400%, then 127%. Cut out shapes us­ing scis­sors to make 2 tem­plates.

STEP 2 Place cut­ting mat on work sur­face. Put foam­core board on top.

STEP 3 Place both tem­plates on foam­core board. Lightly trace around each shape with pen­cil.

STEP 4 Use craft knife to care­fully cut along marked lines. Use knife against edge of me­tal ruler to cut along straight lines. This is a job for an adult.

STEP 5 Pour a lit­tle green paint into small dish. Use paint­brush to coat both sides of cac­tus shapes. Ap­ply 2-3 coats. Let dry af­ter each coat.

STEP 6 Lay out news­pa­per in a well-ven­ti­lated area. Spray one side of each cac­tus shape with a thin coat of var­nish. Let dry. Flip shapes over and spray other side. Let dry.

STEP 7 Use marker pen to draw an even spread of short lines on both faces of cac­tus shapes. Th­ese are to mimic the prickly spines of the cac­tus.

STEP 8 Us­ing paint­brush, dec­o­rate pot with chalk paint. Here, only the rim of the pot is painted, but you may like to get cre­ative and paint zigzags or any de­sign you love. Let dry.

STEP 9 Slot cac­tus shapes to­gether. Pour a thin layer of peb­bles in pot. Place cac­tus in po­si­tion and pour more peb­bles around base of cac­tus to hold it in place.

STEP 10 Con­certina-fold a 5 x 5cm piece of tis­sue pa­per (make folds about 3cm deep). Fold this in half, then cut a neat tri­an­gle shape ex­tend­ing from the fold. Push a pin through the inside of the fold, then push the pin into the edge of foam­core cac­tus to hold tis­sue-pa­per flower in place. Re­peat to make as many flow­ers as de­sired.

STEP 11 Re­peat Steps 1–10 to make and dec­o­rate a whole patch for your place.

Cac­tus di­a­grams (en­large to 400%, then 127%)

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