Friday, June 25, 2010

Tiny bow & arrow

Here is a beautiful little toy that you can make out of things that you probably already have in your house:







We have given these as birthday gifts a few times, and they work very well for 4 to 6 year olds.  We put them in a special pouch with 6 arrows, and we use fine point pens to decorate the bow with the child's name.  They require some practice and fine motor coordination.  Contrary to what you saw in that last menacing picture, in our house there is a no-shooting-in-the-direction-of-people-or-pets rule.  Take care, they can shoot a surprising 15-20 feet!

87 comments:

  1. Genius idea Maiz!
    Thank you for sharing, I will make a couple of them for Natalie and Diego.
    :)

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  2. when camping when the children were younger we used to make bows and arrows with found sticks and twine. The arrows were whittled to a point but then a marshmallow was placed on the end.
    They were very useful later in the evening when the campfire was one.
    have a wonderful weekend.

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  3. cool! my boys would love that. :)

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  4. I can't wait to try this one!

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  5. this looks like bunches of fun! & a great idea for party favors.

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  6. My 8-year-old grandson is going to flip over this. His mother, not so much. But that is what is great about being a grandmother, he gets to do it with me!

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  7. craft stick soaking as i type! great tutorial. i just discovered your blog. looking forward to more posts :)

    ~peace.

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  8. We just made a bunch to go with our Thanksgiving studies - and they shoot better than I ever imagined - just excellent!

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  9. This is brilliant!! I'm a mom to three young boys. I think I will be making these ; )

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  10. Fantastic project!!!! Sharing this project with all my friends!! Love it!!

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  11. Great project, too simple and a seemingly unending source of tiny soft tipped arrows. Thanks for posting this.

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  12. Hmmm... I bet this would be a great project for some 9 year old cub scouts ;)

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  13. Fun! We just made them and my sons and husband are downstairs shooting them all over the place. :)

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  14. My kids had a blast making these over the holidays. We tried the dental floss but, wound up replacing it with a small rubber band. It seemed to work better. Also, we soaked the sticks half the day then, we put them down in a cup and let them dry out/ harden. Thanks so much for the GREAT idea!!

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  15. We made a batch of these the other day and they are AWESOME. They shoot really far and they're pretty sturdy too. Thanks for the tute!

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  16. Ha, ha, ha! these are GREAT!

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  17. My son will LOVE this. And I will love that he can't do as much damage as with the toy ones... ;)

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  18. Oh my gosh, this looks fabulous! My boys have been trying to make bows from bamboo all week... I'm sure they will be allover this project. Thank you!

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  19. Brilliant...popsticks softening as I type.

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  20. I love this! My sons love bows and arrows or anything "manly" this is such a cute way to have a fun indoor target pratice game. Thanks for sharing.

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  21. making this for our gift exchange for the boys! they are all 10 and under, they'll love them!

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  22. Made them the other night and they seemed to work wonderfully. But by morning the floss had gone flacid. I need a fix for them, since I made them for my nephew for Christmas.

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  23. What am I doing wrong? I can't get the floss to the stay in the notches as I try to wrap it to the other side...

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  24. Thanks, everybody, for all of your comments! Here are a few more tips to help you with your bow and arrows:

    Make sure your notches are deep enough that you can wrap the floss tightly around the stick four or five times after you tie the first knot, and another four or five times before you tie the second knot.

    If your knots are slipping or your strings are getting slack over time, try tying them with something like a round turn and two half hitches. I use a thick, waxy tape style of dental floss, but they also work with a heavy gauge sewing thread.

    Good luck!

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  25. did this today for my 9y.o. and now all the other boys on the block want one! So cute! Thank you!

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  26. that is SO cool!!

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  27. I just found this via Pinterest, and my son and his friend are whooping and hollering!! "Can we make them RIGHT now???" Lol:) Thanx for posting..You have a great blog too..I will be back to visit!

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  28. Wow!!! This project looks VERY fun, THANK YOU for the tutorial!

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  29. Used this for a "Hunger Games" library program. The kids (teens and tweens) LOVED it!

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  30. cool!!!! i love it!

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  31. We made them today and the boys loved them. Thanks for making me the rock star mom for the day.

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  32. love it!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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  33. My 10 year old will get a kick out of this. He'as always looking for something to cut with his Swiss army knife.

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  34. These really do work! I only had a hard time bending the sticks without them breaking and wound up soaking them for many hours.

    Awesome and impressive once complete--thanks!

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  35. Awesome just done one with a blue stick I'm gonna make loads of these

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  36. how do you shoot them? i made three, i just finished putting the floss on the first one and i can't seem to be able to shoot them

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    1. Here are some tips that might help:
      *Make sure your bowstring is nice and tight.
      *Put your arrow on the side of the bow where the string is closest to the edge.
      *Grab the arrow with your thumb and index finger, keeping the bowstring inside the "o" of your fingers. Place the blunt end of the arrow against the string and draw it back slowly until you feel the resistance. Hold the bow steady and quickly open your fingers to release the arrow. (Use the last two photos for reference.)

      Good luck!

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  37. defiantly NOT enough detail/instructions on getting the floss tied and on the one side!also, its quite confusing on how to let the Popsicle dry to keep perfectly round. if i were rating this id give it a 2 at best. sorry but you need to improve on this detail. i tried it and it WILL NOT work as easily as this website makes it sound!!!!!!!!

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    1. Sorry you're having so much trouble with this! Did you eventually get it to work?

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    2. I actually found the instructions very easy and had no problems making many! My 4 year loved them!

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    3. Um... it seems pretty easy to follow. Not sure where the confusion comes in.

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  38. Really fun and they work nicely. We are using them for VBS because we are studying Ephesians 6 and the armor or God. We will shoot these "firery" darts at our shields of faith.

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    1. Awesome! Love this idea & how you are applying it!

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  39. is it hot or cold water? btw so awesome im 13 and think this is wicked hahahaha

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    Replies
    1. Either one will work, but hot might make it go a little faster!

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    2. If you put the sticks in REALLY warm water on the stove the soften in minutes.

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  40. What a great idea!!! Thank you!!!

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  41. I just found this when looking for craft ideas for my daughter's bookclub - we are doing "The Hunger Games". Thanks for a great idea!

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    1. Omg! I just finished reading that trilogy! I LOVE The Hunger Games!

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  42. We're using this for my son's Disney/Pixar's "Brave" party! They work amazingly well. I'll be doing them with my Cub Scout boys come November, as well. Thanks for the great idea!

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  43. This is on the list for this week. Wish us luck! My boys would love these.

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  44. My daughter-in-law shared your idea with me. I'm so excited to do it at our summer camp. We made bamboo bows and dowel arrows in a previous week; but for our giants theme we will be the giants with our mini bows and arrows! THANK YOU SO MUCH!

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  45. Monica in Huntington Beach, CAJuly 14, 2012 at 6:58 AM

    LOVE your craft! We're doing it for my son's 8th birthday party. Thank you for the inspiration!! Love your blog, too!

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  46. Way, way, way cool boy craft! Found you through Under the Sycamore. Thanks for curing the summer blahs for my son & his 3 guests today!!!

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  47. I'm hoping to try this. I noticed one person tried rubber bands instead of floss. Any comments or pointers on that modification? (Is floss better?) If we used rubber bands, any pointers on securing them?

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  48. Omg I love this! I plan on using them for my daughters "Brave" themed birthday party. ne question. After soaking how long do you wait to put on the floss? Also, about how long should the floss be or do you not recomend cutting it until it is fully tied off on both ends? Thanks!

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  49. This works brilliantly! BUT you have to pay close attention to Maiz's instructions about the way you hold the arrow. I re-read her instructions in the comment section about making sure the string is inside the "o" of your thumb and finger. In other words, your thumb and finger are on either side of the string, gripping (or pinching) the arrow end against the string as you draw back. Then you have good control and it's a winner!

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  50. awesome i've wanted a bow and arows for ever and i got won i was so happy a now i can make some at home for when i'm to lazy to go outside!

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  51. Very cool. haven't tried it. Will try soon. ;)

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  52. I sent the message just before this one. Does it matter Which q-tip I use?

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    1. I don't think it will matter which kind of q-tip you use. The ones we used have a white cardboard-like stick, but I think the hollow plastic ones should work just fine. I saw some cool ones in a Japanese market that have a pointy cotton tip, so if you can find those, I bet they'd look great!

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    2. the plastic ones dont work!

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  53. very cool! Im in to bows right now , and this is what
    im looking for. Thank you!

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  54. I'm 20, making these, and going to shoot my friends. You're never to old to act like a child! ;) Thank you for sharing!!

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  55. May I ask what pouch you used for gift giving?

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    1. We usually just recycle little drawstring gift bags, but we've also made pouches out of fabric. I think that something like this would be very cool, and I love the idea that kids could make it out of felt:
      http://pm-betweenthelines.blogspot.com/2011/03/simple-drawstring-coin-purse-tutorial.html
      I also love this style of bag, and if you like to sew, it would be perfect:
      http://kittybabylove.com/draw-string-bag-tutorial/

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  56. Just saw this on Pinterest. LOVE!!! Can't wait to try it next week while camping. Perfect craft and something we will actually use! Thanks for the details directions and for sharing!

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  57. could you upload a video on how to shoot them please!!!! :)

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  58. Umm...what can you use instead of Popsicle sticks? I can't find any in my house. :#} btw this is awesome

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  59. For even more fun, cover the arrow tip in vaseline and light it on fire. It will burn for at least 20 minutes! FIRE!

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    1. Very funny, Anonymous. Do NOT try lighting the q-tips on fire!!!

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  60. WICKED!!!!!!! im 12, and this might be what i need.... :)))

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  61. These are Amazing! Thank you so very much for the idea, I just found your blog, making a link on my homepage.

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  62. Making these with my Scouts next week. Very excited. Thinking of using colored chalk rubbed on the ends to track where their q-tip hits the target.

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  63. These are great! I am making them for my daughters 5th birthday party. We are having a BRAVE theme, so these are perfect!!!!!

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  64. I'm the Editorial Assistant for Fun Family Crafts and I wanted to let you know that we have featured your bow & arrow project! You can see it here:

    http://funfamilycrafts.com/tiny-bow-and-arrow/

    If you have other kid-friendly crafts, we'd love it if you would submit them. If you would like to display a featured button on your site, you can grab one from the right side bar of your post above. Thanks for a wonderful project idea!

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  65. Looks like fun! But I see so many comments saying "I have young boys" and "My son would love this"... Don't forget to include your DAUGHTERS on the fun, too!

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  66. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

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  67. When do you draw on them? before you soak in the water or after you have tied the floss on?

    Also, how long does it take for them to dry? Can you shoot them immediately?

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    1. I draw on them after they are soaked and then dry, but usually before I tie the floss. They dry in under an hour if left in the sun (you could probably speed that up with a hairdryer), and yes, you can shoot them as soon as the floss is tied!

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  68. I'd like to make these for a Robin Hood story time at the library, but all my examples keep cracking :(. I soaked the popsicle sticks overnight, which allowed me to bend them without breaking, but every time I try to "string" the dental floss the notch ends up cracking a little and the floss starts sliding down the crack so it won't stay taught. Any suggestions? I'm not sure if it's the quality of the popsicle sticks or the way I'm cutting the notches (with a dull box cutter, which is the only sharp implement we have in the Children's Room!) or if its something else!

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    1. Or rather, it won't stay taut. I have not tried to teach the floss anything yet :P

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