Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Paper Squirrel

Here is a great little paper squirrel that stands up on its can also be a card if you want as it will fold up. We made their tails with lots of Fall colors to tie that theme in as well.
Materials Required:
cardstock paper or manila tag
Squirrel templates 1 and 2
white glue
coffee filters
washable markers (Mr. Sketch, Crayola, etc.)
tempera paint
scrap paper
Let's prepare our materials first.....take some coffee filters (you need 1 for each squirrel) and your washable markers.
Don't use permanent markers like Sharpies.
Color on the filters in fall colors....don't use black as it overpowers the effect. Some brown is OK.
Place your filters on wax paper....take some glue thinned with about an equal amount of water and paint it all over the filter.
You want it fully saturated and then leave it to dry.
The colors start to ooze into one another making a really cool effect.
Take a sheet of 8.5x11 you can just use brown and opt not to paint it but I think it looks better if you do.
Use an old paint brush (scruffy) and mark it up like can add some light splatter of white, black, and dark brown...experiment a bit.
Let dry.
Turn it over and paint with a light white or tan...a Squirrel's belly is quite light.
Let dry.
Cut out.
If you are using this with a class you may want to make thin cardboard template for easy tracing.
Take your painted cardstock....I am using a yellow piece to make it easier for you to see what I am doing. Fold in half.
Take your template and fit it right along the fold line....square it into the corner. Trace around with a pencil.
Take your scissors and cut out keeping your fold line intact.
Now do the same with the head......we'll do the tail later.
Following where the lines are on the template fold in the secondary fold lines.
Your squirrel should be able to stand up now.
When you have added some detail to your face you can glue it into place.
Turn it over and add some glue below the ears and down the sides a bit.
Place on the head part of the body taking care to let the face fold outwards a can use clothespins to hold it in place while the glue sets up.
From the top it should look like this...the back fold goes out one way and the face fold goes out the a diamond.
If you are using this as a card you'll fold the face the opposite way when its folded flat and then pop it out when you open the card.
Now let's work on the tail......take your coffee filters....peel carefully from the wax paper.
Fold in half and lay the Squirrel Tail template on the filter with the straight edge on the fold.
Open it up and cut along the fold line giving you two tail sections.
Run a bead of glue along the outer edge but not on the straight edge. Place second half on top lining up the edges.
Let dry.
To add some extra volume to our tail stuff it with some scrap paper...I'm using wax paper from the painting step but you could also use kleenex or shredded paper.
Run some glue along the edges of the opening.
Now put into place along either side of the back fold on the body....the filter glues into place very easily.
If you want a really simple squirrel you could make just one tail traced from some colored cardstock and stick it onto one side of the fold.
Here I started painting the faces.....this is what happens when you haven't done your daily practice for a while and you're itching to paint.....all of a sudden this squirrel became more complicated.
Chances are you will paint a much simpler version or use markers or pencil crayons.
Here's how they look from the back.
Give it a go and we'll see you next time...get to use my fancy signature again....Thanks Lanie for showing me how!


  1. Too cute! And your welcome. I just dropped in to see your cute siggie. I think I might have to make some squirrels with my girls!

  2. I LOVE this craft! My daughter's nickname is squirrel. :-) She is going to love this.

  3. Oh Gail! These are the cutest squirrels on the planet! Well done!

  4. I'm going to make these squirrels, they are so cute!!!

  5. Hi I wanted to let you know we were inspired by your project and made some squirrel feeders. Thanks! Great instructions. (Ours are a bit rougher than yours) I linked to you today.

  6. These squirrels are amazing. Not only is the execution gorgeous, but the paper fold design is very clever! Wow! Beth