Art with Alyssa: Poinsettia Yarn Painting

poinsettia yarn craft

Create a yarn painting featuring the season's favorite festive flower, the poinsettia. Find books about poinsettias at your local library to learn more about them.
Did you know?

Poinsettias are native to Mexico. They're named after Joel Poinsett, the first U.S. Minister to Mexico.

This type of yarn art originated in Mexico and South America.  

The red "petals" are called bracts; the yellow buds in the center are the flower.
Supplies

  • Newsprint or paper grocery bag
  • Damp paper towel
  • Cardboard or cardstock (or cut a cereal box to approx. 9" x 12")
  • Pencil
  • White Elmer's glue
  • Yarn (red, yellow, blue/gray, green)
  • Scissors
  • Toothpick

Directions

  1. Cover your workspace with newspaper; place a damp paper towel nearby for sticky fingers.
  2. Use a pencil to draw three circles in the center of the cardboard. This will be the middle of the flower.
  3. Draw 5–7 ovals coming off the center circles. These will be the red "petals."
  4. Draw two more ovals between the first set of ovals to represent green leaves.
  5. Outline and fill a circle with a light coating of glue. Starting on the outside of the circle, gently place yellow yarn onto the glue around the edge.
  6. As you close the circle, bring the yarn as close to the first row of yarn as possible. Push with a toothpick if needed. Continue until each circle is filled with yarn.
  7. Cut the end of the yarn and tuck under by pushing the end with a toothpick.
  8. Repeat this process with the red petals, green leaves and blue/gray background, outlining first and filling in with rows of yarn until you reach the center. Let dry completely.
  9. Optional: Turn the artwork into a wall hanging by gluing a loop of yarn on the back.


Note: For younger children, cut the yarn into 1-inch pieces and have them fill the spaces with cut yarn. Using large plastic tweezers will help improve their hand-eye coordination.  
Other ideas

Wall hanging.Draw a different shape to fill in with yarn. Simple outlines work best (try different flowers or an apple).

For a more flat yarn painting, place a sheet of waxed paper over the completed artwork and cover with a book to help it dry flatter.


Alyssa Navapanich is an art enthusiast who teaches art to elementary school kids in North County.

Published December 2016

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