For my daughter’s nursery I wanted to do an Alice in Wonderland theme, but I also wanted to keep it soft and ethereal. I dreamed of a swarm of blue butterflies!
But HOW??? So I set out to make it happen. Here is how I did it step by step.
Here’s what you’ll need
First, figure out how large and what shape you want your swarm to be. Then draw out a basic blue print. I chose 300 butterflies, and a crescent shape. My swarm is 8 feet by 3 feet, but tapered to one foot on each end.
Then start making your butterflies. You can purchase pre-made ones, but that can get costly, and it’s hard to find varying sizes. Print your butterflies on several shades of whatever color paper you choose. The different shades will bring realism and dimension to the piece.
Once you have your butterflies printed and cut out, put the finishing touches on them by adding black outines and filling in the bodies. You can use black markers, or felt tipped pens. Then add a little shimmer to several of the butterflies using a cheap shimmery eye-shadow.
When your butterflies are finished, begin stringing them on lines of clear fishing line. Using a large needle sting the butterflies through their middle, one by one. Use a dab of hot glue to secure each one. Make long and short strands, depending on how you want your swarm to look. I chose shorter strands for the outside edges, and longer strands for the middle. Be sure to leave enough fishing line on the top of the strand to hang and tie at your desired length. (set a few single butterflies aside to use free standing)
When your strands are finished, make your ceiling structure using your blue print. Start by spray painting your eye-hooks white, so they blend in with the ceiling. Then space the eye hooks apart as desired, and tie a strand of fishing line from one end to the other.
Repeat this process until you have your ceiling struture in place, Then start hanging your strands of butterflies.
Congratulations! You’ve created something magical for your little one to enjoy! Happy DIY adventures! -Kari