Start a holiday-ornament tradition this Easter. You can adapt the techniques here to make ornaments for other holidays, too.
Note: This craft is for older kids or adults to make.
1. Stir together flour, salt, and water. Knead the mixture until it forms a medium-stiff, smooth dough. If necessary, add more flour or water to reach the right consistency.
2. Add color to dough. Take a small portion of the dough and work in little dabs of paste food coloring until you reach the desired shade. Place any unused dough in plastic bags in the refrigerator until you are ready to begin working on your projects.
3. Place a small amount of flour on a waxed-paper-covered surface. Use a rolling pin to roll out the dough to 1/2-inch thickness. Dip the cookie cutter in flour and cut out the rabbit shapes. If you cannot find a similar cookie cutter, make a master pattern from cardboard (trace the rabbit shown) and cut around the shape with a kitchen knife.
4. Roll some of the dough into 1-inch-diameter balls (about the size of a quarter) for the upper part of the rabbit's leg. Roll other small pieces of the dough into rope shapes as shown. These pieces will be used for the foot extension.
Note: We used acrylic white paint to color the dough. If any small children will be present while you are working, skip the acrylic paint. Acrylic paint could be very harmful if swallowed.
5. Make standing bunnies. Dab a little water on the smaller pieces to make them stick to the larger cutout shape.
6. Press one ball of dough (about the size of a dime) in place for the tail. Press a larger ball in place for the hind leg. Take a 1-inch piece of the dough and roll it between your palms into a rope shape; apply it to the hind leg to form the back foot. Dip your fingers into water and smooth the leg and foot together.
7. Add red food coloring to the dough to make light pink. Make a tiny ball for the nose. Roll small rope shapes for the inner ear. Flatten and press them in place. Use a blunt-end kitchen knife to make marks in the paws and tail. Press in place a small black bead for the eye and two 3-inch pieces of clear fishing line for the whiskers.
8. Color a portion of the dough green. Push the green dough through the garlic press. Apply to the lower edge of the bunny.
9. Lay the cutouts on a foil-covered cookie sheet. Ask an adult to cut a paper clip in half using wire cutters. Insert the cut end into the head. Or, make a hole with the end of a plastic straw for ribbon.
10. Ask an adult to help you dry the bunnies in a 325 degree F oven for one to two hours, or until the ornaments feel hard to the touch. When the bunnies have finished baking, remove the pan from the oven and place it on a wire rack to cool.
11. Hot paraffin is used next. You must have adult help to finish the bunnies. Melt the paraffin in a bowl placed in a pan of boiling water. Using a slotted spatula or spoon, dip each bunny into the melted paraffin. Transfer the bunny to a wire rack that is sitting on newspapers.
12. When the wax on the bunnies has cooled, use white crafts glue to attach jelly-bean "wheels" to the front and back of each side. This will allow the bunny to stand by itself. Or, make it the center of attention in an Easter basket centerpiece, surrounded by jelly beans and candy eggs.