Thursday, July 10, 2014

DIY Paper Airplane Baby Mobile

Well, most of y'all may know that our twin boys arrived earlier than expected, on June 1st!  After spending 18 and 22 days in the NICU, we finally have both of them home and are adjusting to having 3 under 3 (or actually, 3 under 2-1/2!)  I had hoped to finish the nursery posts before the babies arrived, but they had their own agenda :)  Newborn photos to follow one of these days...

Anyways, getting back to the nursery posts. Finally, a project that does not involve painting!  Hallelujah! 

When I was on bed rest before Ward was born, I spent my spare time in the hospital making this nursery bird mobile.  It is still hanging in Ward's room, and even though he's not a baby anymore, I still can't bring myself to take it down yet. 

Anyways, I couldn't really re-use it in the twins nursery b/c I now need two mobiles!  And since I don't have all the time I used to, I wanted to make something super easy....and paper planes were the easiest thing I could think of.  Now, there are a lot of steps here, but each part of this mobile can easily be done in front of the tv, so it just took some patience (and a helpful husband to speed things up). 

Here are the materials I used:

22" embroidery hoop
Yarn and/or Twine
Wooden Letter (not necessary, but I wanted to personalize each one)
Scrapbook paper in various patterns/colors
Glue Stick
Fishing Line
Small screw-in hooks
*Paint (if you're like me and change your mind after you're finished)

First, carefully break off the hardware on your embroidery hoop with some pliers or scissors.  If the wood chips it's not the end of the you can see mine did a little.  

Then, adjust the broken piece to be the same size as the smaller one.  Duct tap the two pieces on top of each other so the hoop will be thicker when you wrap it.

I wrapped my hoop with this burlapy twine I found at Michael's.  It doesn't take that long and is easy to do in front of the tv at night.  Once the entire hoop was wrapped, I just used a drop of fabri-tac to secure the end piece to the hoop.

Then I took my colorful yarn and wrapped 5 evenly spaced hanging points on the hoop.  An easy way to find the correct hanging points is to lay your hoop on a sheet of paper and draw a pentagon in the center.  I just eyeballed it and when I checked the measurements it was pretty spot on.

After the hoops were wrapped, I took white yarn and tied a knot around each colored hang point, and then knotted them together at the top.  Just make sure you measure out the same amount of yarn for each hang point and you should end up with an even-hanging hoop.

Because I wanted to do something a little different, I took wood letters and wrapped them in my colored yarn and then attached the white yarn to a screw in hook at the bottom of the letter.  (You will also need a screw for the top of the letter too).

Once the hoops were finished, I started on the planes. Take two pieces of the scrapbook paper and glue them together using a glue stick.  

We debated making different airplane styles, but since the paper was pretty thick with the two pieces back to back, it was easier to fold just a classic style plane.  If you need to know how to fold a classic paper plane you can find out here :).  To get the size plane we wanted, we had to scale down our sheets by 1/2, so 4.25"x 5.5"

After Trey folded the planes, the tricky part was hanging them so they didn't droop or nose dive.  We ended up using a small pin to poke 3 holes through the plane, and then threaded fishing line through each hole and knotting at the top. (Making sure that they hung level.)  Then, I carefully cut the unnecessary 2 strings, which left me with one string that I tied to the embroidery hoop.

After the mobiles were finished, I had a change of heart and decided I didn't want the letters to be wrapped in yarn anymore (classic me), so I unscrewed the pieces, cut off the yarn and Trey painted them the darkest blue from the ombre dresser for a cleaner look....(I guess I lied, there was painting involved.)  Then, I simply attached the pieces back together and here it looks like all together:

To enhance the background and add some color on the wall behind the mobiles, I used 22" embroidery hoops inset with light blue canvas fabric.  Then, I took some plain white felt and cut out cloud shapes and glued them with fabric-tac. 

To hang them from the ceiling, we installed a drywall hook and I found some old drapery tie backs that I had in my fabric stash, which ended up working perfectly.

And here is the view that the little guys will see

For the record, I DID miraculously have the nursery completed before the babies arrived, but unfortunately had a picture fall off a wall and break, so once I get to replacing it I'll post pictures of the completed room!


  1. I love the mobiles (and the nursery posts in general) & look forward to seeing the big reveal. I think about you & the three boys often & hope y'all are settling in well!

    1. Thanks, Natalie! We're hanging in there! I love reading about your boys too!

  2. So simple and adorable! Love it!

  3. So charming and simple! What a fabulous idea!


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