How To Make Super-Stringy and Spooky-Ooky Spider Webs For Halloween
By Mara Shaugnessy
Photos supplied by author
Oct 21, 2021
Halloween is approaching, which means you've probably already been inundated with shelves of fun-size candy bars and a lot of costume requests from the little ones.
What do they want to be this year? They say "corn" but what does that even mean?
Perhaps a creative activity will help settle their minds a little. And I have just the thing: stringy, spooky spider webs. It's a very kid-friendly activity, and if your little ones like sticky, goopy prep, then this has it. (Don't worry, we're gonna lay down a cloth to keep surfaces from getting sticky!)
What You'll Need
- embroidery thread (Optional)
- tacky glue (White school glue doesn’t work very well for this craft. If you don’t have tacky craft glue, you can get really good results by substituting a paste made with equal parts flour and water)
- wax paper
- small bowl
- tablecloth or newspaper to protect your work surface
- damp cloth
How It's Made
Spread a tablecloth or newspaper to keep your work surface clean.
Fill a small bowl about half full with tacky glue and lay out a sheet of wax paper. Keep a damp cloth nearby for wiping your fingertips throughout the process. (It's glue, it's sticky business!)
Cut four lengths of string no longer than the size of your wax paper. These will be the “spokes” of your spider web. Lower a length of string into the bowl and swirl it around in the glue.
Pull it from the bowl and run your fingers down its length to make sure it’s well-coated. It should be as wet and glue-y as you can make it — without excess glue dripping from it. When in doubt, drippier is better than drier.
Lay pieces of string horizontally and vertically on your wax paper to create a cross shape.
Add two more pieces of string to create diagonals.
Next, cut longer pieces of string — kid arm-length is perfect! (Longer than arm-length can lead to tangles and frustration). Dip lengths in the glue and work from the inside out (or outside in) around your “spokes” to weave your web.
When you run out of length, simply add a new piece of string and continue on your way. Make sure the tails of your string overlap by a centimeter or so and there’s enough glue to make a good connection.
Once you’re finished weaving, your web might look something like this! Set your web to the side.
You can create spiders using the same technique you used to make your web. Create a cross shape using two lengths of embroidery thread and add two more to create diagonals. Instead of weaving a web, wind thread in a circular shape to make a spider body. You can shape the legs forward and backward before the glue dries for a little bit of added realism.
If you don’t have embroidery thread, create spiders from cut paper, pipe cleaners or other craft supplies you have on hand.
NOTE: The spiders and webs need to dry for a full 24 hours. It’s really tempting to poke at the webs a few hours later or maybe even the next morning. Try not to touch them before an entire day has gone by. Bending or peeling them up before they’re dry breaks the connection points and makes the string floppy. It's worth the wait!
Once your web and spiders have dried completely, carefully peel them from the wax paper. If you encounter wet glue, stop peeling and wait. Dry glue is key!
As a final step, have fun decorating! Glue your spiders on. Add lengths of string so your spiders can hang from the web. Now would also be a great time to repair any connection points that have come loose. A little dab of glue will fix your web right up!
Now choose somewhere extra-spooky to hang your web. Dangle it from a doorway, tuck it in a tree! Display it in a window or pretend spiders wove their web on your wall!
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