One of the projects in our Spring Bs homeschool unit is to make colorful coffee filter butterflies. Whether you are following are unit or not, your young crafters will enjoy playing with colors while dying the coffee filter butterfly wings. You can make just a couple of coffee filter butterflies to use as magnets, or make a whole bunch to use in a mobile or window display.
- White basket style coffee filters
- Food coloring in dropper bottles
- Pipe cleaners
- Colorful clothes pins. You can buy colorful ones or paint your own before starting this project.
- Baking tray or dish larger than your coffee filter
- White paper towel
- Optional: Magnets to fit on the back of the clothes pin
- Optional: Craft glue
Start by adding a drop of water to the bottom of your tray.
Smooth out your coffee filter over the water on the tray. Add a bit more water if needed. You want your filter to be wet through but you don’t want water pooling on the tray.
Choose two primary colors of food coloring. If you use more than two colors, the end colors of your butterfly wings may get muddy looking. Apply several drops of each color around the coffee filter.
Tip the tray back and forth to get the colors to blend. If your colors are not running well, add a bit more water.
Set your coffee filter butterfly wings onto a piece of white paper towel to dry. If you use newsprint or paper towels with a printed pattern, some of the colors might bleed onto your coffee filter.
While your coffee filter butterfly wings are drying, prepare you clothes pin. Paint your clothes pin in bright colors if you haven’t already.
Optional Step: When dry, apply a magnet to the back of the clothes pin. We used a magnet sticker sheet that I cut to size. Then all we had to do is peal of the sticker backing and press onto the clothes pin. If you have round magnets, you will need to glue them in place with craft glue.
Pick a matching color pipe cleaner for your coffee filter butterfly antenna. Fold the pipe cleaner in half and then curl the ends down a bit.
When all of your pieces are dry and ready to go, you can assemble your complete coffee filter butterfly. Carefully scrunch up the middle of the colorful coffee filter to make your butterfly wings.
Slide the coffee filter down to the center of the clothes pin. Then pinch the pipe cleaner antenna with the top of the clothes pin. If you would like, you can add a bead of craft glue in the middle of the clothes pin to hold everything together permanently.
Hang your brightly colored coffee filter butterflies in the window or on your refrigerator. They will add a whimsical, festive feel to your spring decor. This is a great craft for preschoolers through school age kids. Enjoy!