"What one can see out in the sunlight is always less interesting than what is behind a windowpane."

Thursday, May 10, 2012

Hand-Made Noah's Ark Pull-Toy

When I first started this blog two years ago, it was supposed to be a place where I showcased my folk art.  Since then, it's taken on a life of its own!   We all eventually return to our roots however, and this Prodigal Daughter is no exception.

 It's amazing how inspiration can hit when you least expect it.  One of my dreams is to make a big ol' Noah's Ark and carve all the animals.  While searching the internet for ideas, I found a vintage Ark pull toy.

It was really cute, but for $89.00, it wasn't meant to be.  Wait a minute.  Hold the boat (no pun intended!)  I'll just make one of my own.

Using my bandsaw, I cut out the shape of the ark and then set out in search of cute animal images.  I was very particular about the kinds of animals I wanted and finally found them in two old Rand McNally Noah's Ark books. Look at the two piggies caught on a log in the water! 

The other side of the ark holds completely different sets of animals, including a whale.  After decoupaging them on, I needed to try and make a roof.

Rummaging through my kids' blocks, I found this piece with three arches.  Although I didn't plan on making another level, I knew it'd go perfect with the boat.  I made the roof from two other pieces of wood, added the wheels and a pull string.  Yes, it moves!

Next, it was distressed by painting Burnt Umber over it and then sanding all the corners.  I'm pretty sure the ark would not have been pristine!

I just finished it this morning and am happy with the results.  My hands are crying out for more folk art.  I may need to carve a Santa next....or maybe a Noah. 

I've been making it a priority to spend time in my art room again.  Too much time away makes me grumpers.


  1. I love trying all sorts of different crafts and you made it work with a little ingenuity! What fun!!


  2. You are so clever!!! That is adorable!! Never thought of decoupage....great idea!! I can't draw so would not even think of something else!!

    I too have returned to my studio, just doing some small stuff, nothing overwhelming, don't want to get back to all that pressure again. It feels good to do a few things....and cleaning out as I go along to get ready for my garage/craft sale.......what a job!!1 hugs...cleo

  3. Your ark is adorable! I especially love the whale on the side. Thanks for your visit to my blog and your sweet comments! xo :)

  4. Beautiful creation. Also, I'm having a $100. Give Away that might interest you.

    - The Tablescaper

  5. Wonderful work Jill.I love to visit you.Hugs Denise

  6. This is really sweet-you did an awesome job!