There's nothing corny about these creative pieces of art
The children are on holiday and we are all enjoying a lovely summer, so this month's craft idea Easy Corn Dollies can be done by young and old and is a great excuse for getting out into the sunshine.
Corn dollies have been woven or plaited ever since people began to grow grain.
Corn dollies were traditionally knots, fans, lanterns and all sorts of other shapes; only rarely did they resemble dolls.
It was believed that they were the embodiment of the crop's spirit and could help ensure the success of the next year's harvest.
They were often used to decorate the table during the end of harvest feast, before being hung in the farm kitchen until next year's harvest time.
If the corn has not yet been cut and there is no straw available, gather tall grasses or reeds to make Easy Corn Dollies, with everything you need growing on your doorstep.
What you will need:
Straw, tall grasses or reeds
Some finer grasses, try to find those with seed heads attached
Leaves and seeds
Raffia or string
Idea: Why not try using elastic bands if tying knots is tricky.
Safety tip: Supervise young children working with scissors.
What to do:
1. Use raffia or string to tie a bunch of stems together in the middle and near the top, making a neat bundle, and trim the ends with scissors or shears.
2. Divide the straw of the lower half into two sections to make legs and feet of the corn dolly, and then tie each with raffia.
Using raffia, attach a thinner bundle of straw at right angles to the dolly to form the arms.
3, Weave in finer grasses, leaves or seeds to make details as you wish.
Use your imagination and make corn creatures too.
For four legged animals take a longer bundle of grasses and tie it together about a third of the length along and again about two thirds along. Divide one end into two bundles and tie them making two legs then bend them down, turn the bundle and repeat, making four legs.
Create another bundle tied in the middle and with the lower part divided and tied as before. Attach this to the 'front legs' with the undivided part sticking up to create a neck. Use your imagination and attach flowers, seeds or leaves to make a head, tail, ears or mane, whatever you like.
Find out more about Barbara Melling at www.theoldforgeartstudio.co.uk
If you have a go at making your own Easy Corn Dolly why not send us a photo, we might publish some of the best!