Thursday, July 8, 2010

Wooden Soldiers

Once upon a time 24 lonely little pegs wandered into our home. They sat on the counter in a perfect looking V formation. We admired them from afar and discussed our plans for them. 
Then one day we pulled out the paint box..

We painted a lonely little peg into a great mighty warrior named George Washington. 
He didn't complain about his lopsided overly pointed 3-corner hat. 

We painted a second lonely peg into General Cornwallis.
He was a proud soldier, who was most unimpressed with the lint on his silly hat.

One day General Washington & General Cornwallis met. It was a secret meeting, so of course we tried to avert our ears so as not to be privy to their conversation. They talked at a great length about their troops and decided that getting them all together for a big peace talk would be a grand idea.

They all lined up, and even King George made an appearance. Most of the soldiers were indifferent to the meeting, except poor old Ethan Allen who was missing his hat and forced to wear a proper Colonial uniform. After a moment of uncomfortable silence Ethan was heard to shout, "JOHNNY PILE UP ON CORNWALLIS!"

And so they did. Even the British officers joined in. They were heard muttering something about having to surrender on Cornwallis' behalf and other such miserable things..

King George, who'd lost his whig for a moment in the pile-up, was less then impressed with the childish boy like behaviour of the British Army in joining suit with the Johnny Pile-Up. 

The End..

Note: We had this project logged away in our craft stash for a while. In fact, we tried to make them last July but were incapable of locating any dolly-peg stands. However, in our Revolutionary War study we were suppose to paint a small model soldier, and I knew one soldier each for my children would never do. They were going to want to reinact the entire war day after day. So I purchased dolly-peg stands from here. From what I understand you should be able to find them in America in your local craft store. I can't vouch for that though.

We used Acrylic paints on our soldiers, and I'll be honest. They were cheap accrylics too from a local shop. I paid a measly $2 per bottle for the colors, but they worked awesomely. I painted the stands and the soldiers boots first. I made the Colonial soldiers boots shorter then the British soldiers boots. Next we painted on white pants. The coats were either red or blue depending on which army they were in. The Colonial Soldiers are even on the back, the British soldiers coats have tails on the back. I added drops of gold paint for the buttons. The British hats are black pom-poms, the Colonial soldiers have felt hats. The boys hot-glued the little hats on. Mr Scarecrow covered all the soldiers (before hats were put on) with a coat of spray-on lacquer. Our paint wasn't waterproof and I knew these soldiers would be getting the run-around and agreed that a coat of sealer was a great idea. Had I thought it through I bet a coat of modge podge would have worked just as well without the migraine inducing stench.

The beauty of this craft is that you can make them as simple or elaborate as you want. We went for a slightly more elaborate set-up with our gold buttons, but then we were up to our necks in the Revolutionary War and we went all out. I found the original idea here, but we did our painting slightly different. Loved her hats more then mine, but my children are completely smitten with their soldiers and that's all that matters.


Basia said...

Could you let me know where you got the dolly-peg stands? This project looks like so much fun.

Kendra said...

I've updated that missed link, whoops! Anyway we got them from Country Craft Cottage. Their shipping was really quick too! You can buy the whole "kit" or you can by just the stands if you have this type of peg around!

Phyllis said...

They are so cute.

Gae said...

Dear Kendra,
I have been so interested in reading your last posts on your Unit study. You have done such a lot of work and I love the new additon of the peg dolls.
You do such intersesting and informative posts on your lessons
Thanks for this

Tracey said...

Kendra, those are so cute!