The hustle and bustle of living in a hyper-capitalist society can often leave us feeling disconnected, and that's why the concept of "nature connection" has gained significant traction these days. It encourages us to pause, embrace a state of mindfulness, and foster a deeper connection with the natural world. This connection has far-reaching benefits for our overall well-being, including: physical, mental and spiritual. In this article, we'll explore one way we can build this connection with nature through wildcrafting with these 5 nature-inspired crafts. And bonus, they are all family friendly. So feel free to invite the whole fam to join in.
Craft 1: DIY Terrariums – A Miniature Ecosystem
One of the most captivating ways to immerse yourself in nature while staying indoors is by creating your own terrarium. Terrariums are self-sustaining ecosystems that bring the beauty of the outdoors into your living space. This craft not only serves as a creative outlet but also deepens your connection with nature as you curate a self-contained world.
- Glass container or vase
- Succulents, air plants, or small ferns
- Potting soil
- Pebbles and small rocks
- Activated charcoal
- Moss, lichen and/or decorative stones
How to Create Your Terrarium:
- Begin by adding a layer of pebbles or rocks to the bottom of your glass container. This aids in drainage and prevents waterlogging. Bigger rocks on bottom, with pebbles decreasing in size as you go up.
- Follow with a thin layer of activated charcoal, which helps in filtering the air and preventing odors. Careful, this part is super messy.
- Add a layer of potting soil, creating a foundation for your plants.
- Carefully plant your chosen greenery, arranging them in a visually pleasing manner.
- Add decorative moss or stones for added flair.
- Place your terrarium in a well-lit spot, but away from direct sunlight.
- Mist the terrarium occasionally to maintain the humidity levels required for your plants.
Craft 2: Leaf and Flower Pressing – Capturing Nature's Beauty
Preserving the fleeting beauty of nature is a true art form that aligns perfectly with the principles of slow living. Leaf and flower pressing is a timeless craft that allows you to create delicate, nature-inspired art while fostering a mindful connection with the outdoors.
- Fresh leaves and flowers
- Heavy books or a flower press (a microwave flower press retains color best)
- Parchment or blotting paper
- Cardstock or art paper
- Glue or adhesive tape
How to Press Leaves and Flowers:
- Begin by collecting an assortment of leaves and flowers during your nature walks or hikes.
- Place the plant specimens between parchment or blotting paper within the pages of a heavy book or a flower press.
- Leave the specimens to dry and flatten for 1-2 weeks.
- Once fully dried, carefully remove the pressed leaves and flowers from the parchment paper.
- Arrange and glue them onto cardstock or art paper to create intricate designs and patterns.
- Frame your pressed flower art or use it to adorn homemade greeting cards.
Craft 3: Nature-Inspired Wind Chimes – Harmonizing with the Elements
Wind chimes have a serene and soothing quality that brings a touch of nature's melody to our surroundings. Crafting your own nature-inspired wind chimes invites you to engage with both natural materials and the therapeutic sounds they produce.
- Small branches, twigs, or driftwood
- Pinecones, seashells, or beads
- Nylon thread or fishing line
- Metal or wooden ring
- Paint (optional)
How to Create Wind Chimes:
- Begin by gathering an assortment of natural materials, such as small branches, pinecones, or seashells.
- If desired, paint the natural materials to add a pop of color.
- Attach nylon thread or fishing line to each individual element, ensuring they are suspended at varying lengths.
- Secure the other ends of the nylon threads to a metal or wooden ring.
- Hang your nature-inspired wind chime in an outdoor space where it can catch the gentle breeze and create soothing sounds.
Craft 4: Stone Painting – Infusing Rocks with Positive Energy
Stone painting, also known as rock painting, is a creative way to connect with nature's timeless elements while expressing your artistic flair. By transforming ordinary rocks into colorful works of art, you not only engage with nature but also infuse your creations with positive energy.
- Smooth, flat rocks
- Water-resistant sealant (mod podge or clear varnish)
How to Paint Stones:
- Begin by collecting smooth, flat rocks from a riverbed or shoreline – the natural wear of water gives them a beautifully polished finish.
- Clean the rocks thoroughly to remove any dirt or debris.
- Use paints to create intricate designs, patterns, or even miniature landscapes on the rocks.
- Allow the paint to dry completely before applying a water-resistant sealant to protect your artwork from the elements.
- Once sealed, place your painted stones in your garden, on your windowsill, or within your home as decorative reminders of nature's beauty.
Craft 5: Eco-Friendly Bird Feeders – Nourishing Feathered Friends
Bringing nature into your immediate surroundings can be achieved by creating eco-friendly bird feeders. Not only does this craft provide sustenance for local bird populations, but it also grants you the opportunity to observe and connect with these graceful creatures.
- Pinecones or recycled cardboard tubes (from paper towel rolls)
- Natural twine or jute string
- Peanut butter or eco-friendly adhesive
How to Make Bird Feeders:
- Begin by attaching a length of twine or jute string to the top of a pinecone or cardboard tube – this will serve as the hanger for your bird feeder.
- Spread peanut butter or eco-friendly adhesive onto the pinecone or cardboard tube, ensuring an even coating.
- Roll the pinecone or tube in birdseed, allowing the seed to adhere to the adhesive.
- Once fully coated, hang your bird feeder from a tree branch or outdoor hook.
- Refill the feeders as needed to provide a consistent food source for local birds.
Cultivating a deep connection with nature is an essential aspect of holistic and eco-conscious living. Wildcrafting with nature-inspired crafts allows us to immerse ourselves in the beauty of the natural world, fostering a mindful and therapeutic experience. From creating miniature ecosystems in terrariums to crafting wind chimes that harmonize with the elements, these creative endeavors enable us to bridge the gap between our fast-paced lives and the serene tranquility of the natural world. So, the next time you find yourself yearning for a deeper connection with nature, consider indulging in one of these mindful crafts – a small yet meaningful step toward embracing a more intentional lifestyle.