Craft: Coffee Filter Butterflies

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Spring is around the corner! We can look forward to blossoms and butterflies. This is one of my favorite crafts to do with kids. It’s the classic coffee filter butterfly. It’s simple and fun. I think I learned this from Girl Scouts or summer camp when I was a child.

Materials needed for two butterflies:

1 paper plate
2 coffee filters
2 clothes or doll pins
water-based markers
spray bottle of water
adhesive magnets (optional)
googly eyes (optional)

Coffee filter butterfly supplies 2-9-09

Step 1 – Flatten a coffee filter on top of a paper plate and create a design using water-based colored markers.

Coffee filter butterfly Step 1 2-9-08

Step 2 – Using a spray bottle, spray the entire coffee filter with water, being sure to spray evenly and thoroughly. It will allow the ink to spread, creating a “tie-die” effect.

Coffee filter butterfly Step 2 2-9-08

Step 3 – Flatten another coffee filter. Using the second coffee filter as a blotter, press it firmly on top of the colored coffee filter. The excess moisture and color will be absorbed into the second coffee filter.

Coffee filter butterfly Step 3 2-9-08

Step 4 and the final step – Gather the coffee filters in the middle creating accordion pleats to create “wings.” Pinching the pleats tightly, open a clothes pin and wedge the wings as far back as possible. If you are working with small children, you may want to help with this step. The clothes pin can unexpectedly snap shut if not held firmly. Feel free to color the “body” of the butterfly and glue on googly eyes. You can also add an adhesive magnet to the bottom to make a “butterfly fridge magnet.”

Coffee filter butterfly final step 2-9-08

May your wings take you to new heights!

Warmly, Dianne