Sea Life Mobile

In this project you will make a mobile using sea creatures made of a decorative material.

This project is rated: EASY

Materials needed:
  • Computer paper or card stock
  • Scissors or craft knife
  • Laminating sheets
  • Colored tissue paper
  • Glue
  • Needle and thread
  • Wire, sticks, or dowel rod

Project Instructions

First, you need to make the decorative material. You will make the decorative material by sandwiching colored paper between two laminating sheets.

  1. Start by cutting a laminating sheet into two half sheets. Note: a half sheet size is easier to handle than a full sheet.
  2. Remove the protective paper from one of the half- sheets. Lay the laminating sheet on your work surface with the sticky side up.
  3. From several different colored tissue paper sheets, tear (or cut) numerous small pieces of paper.
  4. As you tear small pieces of paper, lay them on the sticky surface of your half laminating sheet. Position them randomly as to color and slightly overlap the pieces. Cover the entire half-sheet with these bits of paper.
  5. When you have covered the sheet with your bits of paper, remove the protective paper from the second half-sheet and place it sticky side down onto the first sheet. Position it so that the edges of both sheets are in alignment. You have now ‘sandwiched’ your colored tissue paper in the laminating sheet. The result should look similar to the image at right.

  6. Next, print the pattern page of sea creature objects that you will use for your mobile.
  7. Cut out the sea creature patterns and using these patterns, cut out your mobile objects from the decorative, multi-colored material that you have prepared using the laminating sheets.

  8. The completed pieces should look similar to those shown in the image at right. You may add facial features, or other embellishments, using a marker or other medium.

Mobile Instructions

  1. Cut a length of thread about 8 inches long.
  2. Double the thread and put the loop end through the eye of a needle. Knot the loose ends together.
  3. Find the balance point of the butterfly, and push the needle through the body from the under side.
  4. Pull the thread through the hole until the knot is against the bottom of the body.
  5. Remove the needle. It may be necessary to place a dot of glue on the knot to secure the thread.
Patterned paper
Sea life images
Sea life images

Once you have made the sea creatures that you will use, it is time to make the hanging mechanism. You can suspend your objects from wire, like at right, or us sticks, or dowel rods.

If you select wire, the most commonly used type is coat hanger wire. It is good, but may be difficult to work with. Another choice is 18 gauge galvanized steel wire which can be purchased at a hardware store. You can make your wire (rod or twig) any length you find suitable. For the first piece, I recommend a length of about 6 inches.

Suspend the Mobile

  1. Take two of your objects and suspend them using the thread from each end of your wire (rod or twig.)
  2. Next add a thread at the balance point to support this entire assembly. Since your objects will probably not be the same weight, you must position the supporting thread by trial and error until you find the correct balance point. To keep the thread from sliding, it may be necessary to fasten it with a dot of glue.

  3. Set aside the part that you have made and cut a longer piece of wire (rod or twig) for the next step.

  4. Select a third object and suspend it from one end of the long wire. Suspend the other part that you have made in steps 1. and 2. from the other end of the wire.

  5. Add a thread to the long wire to hold the entire completed mobile. You must position this thread by trial and error to find the correct balance point.
  6. Make a second mobile with the remaining objects and suspend the two mobiles from one wire as shown in the image at right.

mobile wire
Sealife mobile
Sea life mobile
Sea life mobile

You have now completed a mobile. You can hang it from a light fixture or a hook in the ceiling.

You can make even more complex mobiles by repeating or varying the steps given. You can add another longer wire and objects repeatedly. Or, you can make additional two assemblies and incorporate them into larger mobiles. Or, you can make two or more mobiles as illustrated and use them to make a single larger mobile. The options are only limited by your imagination.

Tags: mobile
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