I’m so excited! This is my first post ever! 🙂 Thanks for reading!
I switched out Graham’s mobiles today again. I’d tried putting up the Dancer Mobile a couple of times – in his room and above his changing table (at about 10 weeks and another time after that), but he never took much interest in it. It’s been quite a while since he’s seen it (he’s now about 5 and a half months), so I thought I’d try it today, and he seemed riveted!
When I placed him in his floor bed for his first nap of the day…
…he stared at the mobile without moving for about 13 minutes! (And then he slowly riled himself up as he tossed and turned and chatted himself into a semi-frenzy… the usual, these days! Mom (me) had to come stroke his forehead and “shh shh” for a few minutes until he finally fell asleep. Stay tuned for a post about nap time!)
Making the Dancers mobile was fairly simple compared to the other Montessori mobiles I made – just about 1-2 hours – and was very inexpensive.
After doing my research on how to make this mobile (from wonderful websites such as Texas Health Moms, Sadhana Mama, and La Tela Di Carlotta), I compiled information from these websites into my own version of directions I wanted to try.
The PDF of directions can be downloaded and printed here: DIY_Montessori_Dancers_Mobile.
This is the template I used (listed on Texas Health Moms’ blog): Montessori Dancer Mobile Template.
Here is a breakdown of the PDF in case you’re not able to download it:
DIY Montessori Dancers Mobile
These directions are mainly from the wonderful post from Texas Health Moms blog – and edited/reformatted by TammyMom. TammyMom’s additional comments are in blue.
- Template for the shapes from Texas Health Moms blog
- Two pieces of self adhesive metallic paper or hologram paper in two contrasting colors (like dark blue and silver or bright red and silver) – I found mine at my local Jo-Ann Fabric and Craft Store
- A needle
- Invisible thread – also from Jo-Ann’s
- Wooden dowels – I bought mine from Hobby Lobby and cut it into 3 sections – 30cm, 15cm, and 15cm.
- Hot glue gun and sticks
- Peel one of the metallic papers and stick it on to the back of the pattern so that you can see the shapes. Cut out the shapes.
- One side of the shapes should now be covered with shiny hologram paper. Peel the other metallic paper and stick the shapes to it, white paper side down. Cut the pieces. You should now have hologram paper on both sides.
- Lay the shapes out so they create figures. You can make each side all one color or alternate like I did here. Starting from the bottom, use the needle to poke holes through the shapes and thread the fishing wire (or invisible thread) through to tie the shapes together, knotting each time. This is the step that took me the longest. For a great close-up of what this step can look like, look at this post from La Tela di Carlotta: https://www.lateladicarlotta.com/en/montessori-mobile-the-dancers-free-template/.
- With the cotton thread, tie the sticks together to form a cross. Then, attach one dancer to each arm of the cross using the invisible thread. Attach them at different heights. I actually did mine differently – see picture at top. I used three sections of a dowel – a longer section (30cm) and two identical shorter ones (15cm). I used invisible thread to tie them together. IMPORTANT – start at the bottom of the mobile with the dancers attached to each small dowel. Then, find the points of balance of where you would tie the smaller dowels to the bigger dowel. Once tied, I place a very small dab of hot glue on my knots so that they stay in place. Make sure it’s only a tiny dab so that it doesn’t throw off the balance of the mobile.
Here’s a picture of how my hot glue looks:
Now, how do you hang the mobile? This was one of the hardest things for me to find on the internet. We found that the best way was a key ring. We tied the key ring to the top of the mobile using the invisible string and put hot glue on top of the knots again. Voila!
The top of the mobile makes an isosceles triangle with the longest dowel and the two invisible thread lines that connect at the key ring. Those invisible thread lines are exactly the same length, but it looks skewed in the picture since I needed the light from the window to shine on it so you could see it. Here’s another view:
See that paperclip? That paperclip is tied to invisible string that goes all the way to a hook in our ceiling.
We keep the invisible thread hanging from the hook with the paperclip at the end. This way, we can just hang different mobiles whenever we like. Whenever we want a different mobile, we just take the key ring out from the paperclip and put a new key ring (attached to the new mobile) into the paperclip! Cheap and easy. Just the way I like it!
Thanks for reading! Until next time…
P.S. What’s your favorite Montessori mobile? How do you hang it?
P.P.S. Here’s a couple of tips for the new DIY crafter that took me a while to learn: when embarking on DIY projects, I LOVE to go to Jo-Ann Fabric and Craft Stores because they are the only crafting store in my area that lets me use as many competitor coupons at once as possible – printed AND in different store Apps. I also can use my teacher discount there, which I appreciate. Hobby Lobby also continually has a 40% coupon on their website, which you can print out or show them on your SmartPhone. xoxo