My five year old has a very concrete view of the seasons. Once she learned that we can distinguish one season from the next on the calendar she became obsessed with keeping track of equinoxes and solstices. She doesn’t want to talk about the fact that Mother Nature doesn’t really abide by a date. Much like she expected snow on December 20 (once in a century here in Oregon), she is anticipating something magical on the First Day of Spring. No matter what we tell her, she’s been eagerly awaiting March 20 as if fairies will appear with tulips just for her. Who am I to argue? We’ll just play along and celebrate Spring Equinox with her. This year she’s very excited about growing flowers, so my older daughter and I put together a simple equinox present just for her. It’s a fun gift to give a child, and the cross stitch technique can be applied to any kind of paperboard boxes commonly found at craft stores (or in this case at Target). I have a little stash of these boxes set aside to use instead of wrapping paper for birthdays. It would take less than an hour to stitch a child’s name on the box to make it an extra special gift. It would also make a great alternative to an Easter basket.
Gather Your Supplies:
- Paperboard Box
- Embroidery Floss + Needle + Scissors
- Nail with a small sharp tip + Hammer
- Cutting Board or Scrap Wood
- Sheet of Felt
- Tape + Glue
- Cross Stitch Template: You can use our GROW template, or make your own. Download a free cross stitch font and type your text in Word. We used Home Sweet Home at 120 pt. You have to flip it to get the mirror image: In Word go to Page Layout > Rotate > Flip Horizontal.
Tape your template to the inside of the lid. (Remember, it’s backwards, so make sure the letters are where you want them to be!)
Place the lid of the box on the cutting board. Use your hammer and nail to punch holes in the box at all four corners of each X. I found that just a few small taps of the hammer was enough. (This seems like it would be tedious, but it took me less that 10 minutes to do all 4 letters.)
Check it out from the front to make sure the holes went all the way through.
Get your embroidery floss and needle ready. I like to use 4 strands.
Leave the paper template on for reference. Starting from the back, begin stitching the X’s. Try to be consistent with the sequence you go through each hole.
If you have to re-thread your needle, simply tape down the loose end.
Continue until all your letters are done.
Cut a piece of craft felt to roughly cover the back of the lid. Apply glue around the edges and from corner to corner.
Center the felt on the inside of the lid over the template and press into place to cover the paper, the stitches, and any stray threads or pieces of tape.
Fill with goodies. We found seeds (4 for $1) and starter pots at the dollar store!
Happy Spring Equinox!