Valerie is the author of Skipping Through the Stacks a wonderful blog about her experiences as a new librarian. Her post, DIY Superhero Bookmarks, is about a creative solution to an UN-super, sometimes icky, forgotten bookmark epidemic.
I am happy to say I haven’t run into any horribly icky items in any of our books. However, I would like to keep it that way, I’m not sure I’m up for running across a used band-aide. My girls love to read, especially at night before bed. They are always shoving something in their books to mark their spot, even other books if the need arises. I think Valerie’s solution might just do the trick for my girls. They are more responsible with anything they make themselves and creating a book mark, or two, like these sounds pretty fun to me.
Thank you Valerie for stepping into our spotlight!
As a Children’s Librarian I often find really icky things in my students books. (The worst was the used band-aid of 2011) I won’t even mention the really gross things that my public librarian friends have come across. I try to find fun bookmarks that my students will actually use. I came across the idea for craft stick bookmarks on Pinterest and had to pass the idea along. If you have kids, work with kids or are just a big kid at heart; these are super cute!!
The original pattern and idea comes from Amanda Formano on her blog “Crafts by Amanda”. I used her patterns for the Iron man and Hulk sticks. Green Lantern and Wonder Woman are my own creations. See the original post here: Avengers Bookmarks
What you need:
- Jumbo craft sticks- (trust me the really skinny ones are hard to paint)
- Acrylic paints- I used green, purple, black, white shimmer, blue, gold, yellow, brown, clear glitter paint and red. I also mixed colors together to get the right shade.
- Detail paint brushes
- Modge Podge or Acrylic sealer
- Pencil and pen
**Click on the photos to see more detail**
Step 1- Select your sticks. Make sure the edges don’t have broken spots and the wood is mostly clear. This makes for easier painting later on! Sketch out your design in pencil on the stick. Here is my design for Wonder Woman and Iron Man.
Step 2- Start adding the paint! I used really skinny brushes to get the detail of her costume. Instead of painting stars on her skirt I used dots and glitter paint to make her more girly! Let the top dry and continue the pattern on the back or paint with a solid color. I decided to use a solid color for the backs of my sticks and just paint the fronts. Let them dry for several hours before adding all the details.
Step 3- Use a ball point pen to add the tiny details like the eyes and the outlines of each piece of the costume. My hulk muscles are kinda crazy! He has a very tiny 6 pack! Make sure it’s a pen that will not smear when you add your sealer. I found that using a pen was a lot easier than paint and more forgiving.
Step 4- Follow the directions on your sealer and use a good brush to paint it on. Look for one with soft neat bristles or you will have lines. Let dry between coats and seal one side at a time. My sealer made my detail on Green lantern run a tiny bit. It’s not that noticeable but still annoying!!
Once everything is dry you have a set of super fun bookmarks for your little guys or yourself. Trust me your librarian will be very happy that you are not using band-aids! Wonder Woman is one of the coolest things I have painted this summer. She just rocks my geeky socks off! Please feel free to use my Green lantern and Wonder Woman ideas as gifts for friends. (just not to sell for profit)
You could try this craft with your students using crayons or markers. Markers tend to bleed on the wood so crayons might be a better choice. If anyone tries this please post a link to the photo below. I would love to see some Batman sticks or other superhero ideas in either paint or crayon!
Happy crafting and geek out!!
You can read Valerie’s original post here.