The Bug is a die-hard Fancy Nancy fan. She’s currently obsessed with Fancy Nancy’s Favorite Fancy Words: From Accessories to Zany and Fancy Nancy: Ooh La La! It’s Beauty Day. At first, I was a tiny bit (really tiny bit) concerned how this was going to fuel her princess-make-up-everything-twirly-whirly-girl obsession. Then she started dropping words like contemplate, scrumptious, and dapper into every day conversations.

Ok. I’m in.

Over the holidays I saw this adorable diy favorite animal necklace from Petit à Petit and family. I’m not a super crafter, but I loved that this project mixed science, fashion and crafting — and knew it would be a hit with the Bug. We didn’t have time to make something similar around the holidays (hello crazy schedule), so I decided to file the idea for a later date. Dye your own beads and glitter? Perfect for Valentine’s Day. Plus, it was a multi-step process that would keep post-rest time occupied for a few days. A great activity for these super cold afternoons lately.

So here it is! Our Fancy Schmancy Valentine’s Day necklace!

What You’ll Need

  • natural wooden beads (unvarnished) in a variety of sizes
  • natural or white yarn (must be composed of wool or silk for the dye to stick)
  • packets of kool-aid (we used black cherry, pink lemonade, grape, and cherry)
  • hot, boiling water {another reason this is a ‘we’ activity!}
  • string
  • paper towel
  • white glue
  • small paint brush
  • assortment of fine glitter (think Martha Stewart crafting glitter, not large chunky kids’ glitter)
  • fork
  • scissors
  • felt in valentine’s day colors
  • cord in valentine’s day colors (we used purple)
  • needle

How to Assemble

Step One: Dye Your Beads with Kool-Aid

Working with your pint sizer, string a variety of beads (make one string of beads for each color of kool-aid you have). This will make it easier to dye! Be sure not to dye all of your beads — you’ll need some to glitterize.

Heart Day Necklaces - (cool) progeny

Put each flavor of kool-aid into it’s own glass. Fill with boiling water (yes, an adult should do this!). Submerge each string of beads into a glass. Be aware that your kitchen will smell like candy. That’s the great thing about Kool-Aid dyeing — smells good and is non-toxic!

Heart Day Necklaces - (cool) progeny

The Bug really liked using the spoon to dunk the beads, although we had a lot of discussion about how hot the water was and how careful she needed to be. Allow to soak for about 20 minutes. Remove and let dry on a paper towel.

Heart Day Necklaces - (cool) progeny

Step Two: Dye Your Wool to Make the Pom Poms

After you remove the beads, fill the glasses with as much wool yarn as you can. We let ours sit for about an hour. Then removed it and allowed it to dry on paper towels. We had a bit of a tye-die affect, so we may not have left it in long enough. But it was still pretty (cool)! Note the cherry and black cherry kool-aid looked almost identical.

Heart Day Necklaces - (cool) progeny

Step Three: Make Your Glitter Beads

Glitterphobes beware. This will make a mess. But your girly girl will love it! Using a small paint brush, cover a bead in white glue. Let your pint-sizer roll in the glitter colors of their choice. Allow to dry. {Note: Dyeing the beads, wool and making the glitter beads was about all the attention the Bug could give to the project on day one. It was a good place to stop and let everything set!}

Heart Day Necklaces - (cool) progeny

Step Four: Make Your Pom Poms

This is really an ‘adult’ step, but the Bug wielded the scissors and, with assistance, cut wherever I asked her. Cut a piece of dyed wool (I used about 15 inches) and wrap it around a fork. Using another small piece of string, tie the middle of the wrapped wool as tight as you can. Using a scissors, cut the loops on each side of the bundle. Roll like a meatball until the pom is fluffy. Trim if needed. {The Bug liked the meatball rolling, too!}

Heart Day Necklaces - (cool) progeny

Step Five: Cut Your Hearts

You could use a pattern here, but I did the elementary school “fold and cut a heart” method. Cut a variety of sizes of hearts out of felt.

Heart Day Necklaces - (cool) progeny

Step Six: Assemble Your Necklace

Working with your kiddo, string the necklace! Thread your cord through a needle and design away. Come up with any patterns of beads, felt hearts and pom-poms. We used a large heart as the base and knotted small groups of beads to keep the necklace from being super heavy. The Bug was ecstatic that she got to be a ‘fancy jewelry designer.’

Heart Day Necklaces - (cool) progeny

There you have it — a valentine’s day necklace that Fancy Nancy herself would covet! And your preschooler can say “she made it herself.” {For the most part, she did}.

Heart Day Necklaces - (cool) progeny