wind crafts picture

Welcome to another Wacky Workshops project – wind crafts.

It can be a welcome breeze on a hot summer’s day or a devastating force, destroying all in its path.

The wind that is so vital to the environment, dispersing seeds to help plant populations, can also have catastrophic effects on all that it touches.

It is a force to be reckoned with. It is also a source of pollution-free, renewable energy.

Civilizations have harnessed the power of wind for thousands of years. Windmills used wind power to crush grain or pump water.

Today, wind turbines are using the wind to create electricity.

These projects celebrate wind, in all its glory and all its fierceness.

FAST AS THE WIND FACTS

  • Wind is the flow of gases referred to as the movement of air.
  • It is caused by differences in air pressure. Air rushes from high-pressure areas to lower ones.
  • Gusts are short bursts of wind moving at high speeds.
  • Winds can be known as a breeze, gale, storm or hurricane, depending on their strength.
  • Fierce winds – hurricanes and typhoons, were responsible for hundreds of deaths last year.

Hurricane Michael made landfill, at the Florida Panhandle and Gulf Coast, USA, on October 10, 2018, with winds up to 155mph. It caused immediate flooding and devastated homes and buildings, left more than one million buildings without electricity and cause more than six deaths.

Hurricane Florence hit the US East Coast on September 13 and flooded homes and streets in North Carolina. Winds reached 90 mph and more than 42 people lost their lives.

Just before this, on September 9, 2018, Super Typhoon Mangkhut hit landfill and caused massive flooding and power loss throughout Guam and the Marshall Islands. It then moved on to Guangdong in China, killing four and forcing the evacuation of more than three million people. The resulting storms in the Philippines caused more than 54 deaths.

Earlier in the year, at the start of May, Western and Northern India were hit by massive dust storms, killing more than 125 people.

Yet, without wind, our planet could not survive. Aside from helping to grow plant populations by dispersing seeds, the wind plays a vital role in making plants strong.

  • When the wind blows on a small seedling it helps the plant create a stronger stem. A hormone that stimulates the growth of supporting plant cells is released each time the wind pushes a plant. Research has shown that plants which grow with an absence of wind tend to fall over and break more easily.

DON’T GET BLOWN AWAY BY THESE FACTS

  • A little island off the north coast of Australia, Barrow Island, recorded the strongest gust of wind ever recorded – 253 mph (408 km/h).
  • Oklahoma, USA, recorded the highest tornadic wind speed – 302 mph – in 1999.
  • Antarctica is the windiest place on Earth. Cape Denison is a rocky point at the head of Commonwealth Bay in East Antarctica. Cape Denison’s annual average wind speed is gale force.

WIND CRAFTS THAT ARE A BREEZE TO MAKE

WIND CRAFTS – MILK CARTON WINDMILL

wind crafts picture

MATERIALS
  • Waxed milk carton – washed
  • Sand
  • Paint
  • Foam ball
  • Skewers
  • Cardboard rectangles
  • Coloured matchsticks
  • Glue
  • Wine cork
METHOD
  • Fill the carton about two thirds up with sand. WACKY TIP: Use a funnel to make it easy.
  • Push a hole through the carton, near the top.
  • Put the skewer through the hole and attach the cork to the end on the inside of the carton.
  • Push the foam ball onto the other end of the skewer. You may need to break off some of the skewer if it is sitting out too far.
  • Add a little bead with a touch of glue to cover the skewer end.
  • Use strong glue to seal the top of the carton.
  • Paint as desired.
  • Glue the matchsticks to the rectangular cardboard pieces. These are the windmill sails.
  • Attach them to the foam ball at a slight angle.
  • Use matchsticks to create a windmill door.
  • Make a roof out of craft sticks or cardboard.
  • Place outside on a windy day and watch the windmill sails turn.

WIND CRAFTS – KEY WINDCHIMES

wind crafts picture

I seem to have an enormous collection of keys. I have no idea what most of them unlocked for me but, given that whatever it was needed a lock, I’m guessing something special. So I’ve hung onto them and I’m so glad I did. Keys make the most delicious tinkling noise when the wind makes them chime.

There are many fun ways to use old keys to make wind chimes. You could attach them to a stick and hang it from a tree. Doesn’t get much simpler than that. Or, you can use a regular tin can.

TIN CAN KEY CHIME

MATERIALS
  • Tin can
  • Keys
  • Paint
  • Hammer
  • Nail
  • Buttons/beads
  • Fishing line
METHOD
  • Paint tin if desired.
  • Use the hammer and nails to punch a few holes in the bottom of the tin.
  • Make two more holes at the top (for hanging). WACKY TIP: I placed a smaller tin inside the one I was punching holes in to help it keep its shape.
  • Thread a length of fishing line from the outside of a hole at the bottom of the tin. Hang onto the end piece as you thread it through the tin with enough length to tie a bead or button (I used buttons as I didn’t want to waste the beads) to the fishing line. Pull the fishing line back through the bottom until it stops at the bead or button. This secures the line.
  • Repeat for each hole, being careful to hang onto the ends of the ones you have already threated.
  • Thread some string through the top holes and use this to hang the tin.
  • You could just add the keys to the ends of the fishing line, but adding beads makes it prettier and also helps to stop tangles in high winds.
  • Add some soil and a plant.

THE STRAINER CHIME

wind crafts picture

It’s no secret how much I love to reuse things that would normally be thrown out.

I had an old vegetable strainer and used it to make this sweet key chime planter.

I spray painted the keys, but this is not really necessary.

Then I used the holes already in the strainer to tie fishing lines with the keys attached at the bottom.

I put some coconut fibre at the bottom of the strainer,  then added soil and a plant.

WIND CRAFTS – RIBBON WINDSOCK

wind crafts picture

This is one of the easiest wind crafts and a great way to use up ribbon scraps.

MATERIALS
  • Ribbon scraps
  • Large ring – I used old egg rings but you could make a ring from wire or use large curtain rings.
  • Strings of beads, if desired.
METHOD
  • Fold each ribbon piece in half and lay over the ring so that there is a loop (where the fold is) in the centre of the ring.
  • Bring the two end pieces up and thread through the loop.
  • Pull until taught.
  • Repeat until the ring is no longer visible.
  • At this stage, you can use tiny scraps of ribbon to tie strings of beads to the windsock if desired.
  • Here’s another fun way to use ribbon scraps.

WIND CRAFTS – THE CLASSIC PINWHEEL

wind crafts picture

It’s so much fun to watch your pinwheel twirl as you run.

A post about wind crafts wouldn’t be complete without this classic.

MATERIALS
  • Square lightweight card or paper
  • Scissors
  • A pin
  • Pencil
  • Ruler
  • A small piece of cork.
METHOD
  • Draw a straight line in the centre of the paper from the top to bottom.
  • Draw another line in the middle from side to side. The centre is where the lines bisect.
  • Decorate the squares created by the lines with pictures, colours, words or anything else you can think of.
wind crafts picture

This one was decorated for Christmas.

  • Draw two diagonal lines from bottom corners to top corners.
  • Cut along the diagonal lines from the bottom corner towards the centre and stop near the centre.
  • Thread a bead to the pin (this is the separator that will make the wheel spin).
  • Lift one of the pointed diagonal edges up just near the centre and bring up one after the other and tuck them under the first one
  • Push the pin through the piled up paper edges to and then attach a piece of cork (or something similar) to secure it.
  • Check Global Wind Day’s website for a fun wind turbine project.

Happy crafting and have a gleeful week, Tamuria.