A castle keyring has got to be one of the coolest things we have made this month! We love castles and where we are spoilt for choice here in Northumberland as there are over 70 castles! You can find out more at the Visit Northumberland website. I think I have visited about 30 of them over my lifetime, so I still have more than a few to go.
Why Does Northumberland Have so Many Castles?
Northumberland has been fought over and raided for many years. Northumbria was a kingdom in its own right. Then the Romans built Hadrian’s Wall which cuts across from Carlisle to Wallsend. There were Viking raiders from across the North Sea who had heard of the treasures of the Holy Island (Lindisfarne) and the rich arable farmland.
When the country formed into Scotland and England, Northumberland was fought over by both sides for hundreds of years and the border shifted backwards and forwards many times, there are many castles around this area as well.
Finally, there were many castles and fortified manor houses to protect the people from the Border Reivers who were raiding parties from both sides of the border. Many were outlaws and had no regard for whether people claimed to be Scottish or English, they stole livestock, grain and people as well.
No wonder there are so many castles in Northumberland! We wanted to take some inspiration from all the castles we have seen recently and so we made our own castle keyrings!
Materials for the Castle Keyring
These are really easy to make and make stocking filler gifts as well. You will need:
poster paint in green, brown and grey
a thin black marker
some keyring blanks
paper or card cut to fit inside the keyring
*if you cannot get plastic blanks then either cover the dried painting in PVA glue or laminate it and cut out around the castle. Pierce the paper with a sharp point and thread a keyring onto it.
How to Make It
First, take the paints and put a little of each on a paper plate. Dip your finger in each of the colours and then press down on the paper towel to get rid of the excess paint. Next, press down on the card, with smaller fingers you may have to do this a couple of times.
Let the paint dry on one side, then turn over and repeat. Then, take the marker and draw on an arch doorway, some window slits and some crenelations on the top. Finally, pop it inside the keyring blank and put your keys on.
Of course, you may want to make variations on this theme, making different coloured palaces and castles or even a knights helmet or a flag!
This article was orginally part of the ABC’s Series
It’s time again for another fantastic month of alphabet fun with the 31 Days of ABC! All this month you can look forward to 31 more days of activities, crafts, books, apps, and more, all dedicated to teaching young children the alphabet.