How to Make Story Stones

How to make homemade story stones for story-telling & imaginative play:

When I first learned about story stones, I knew I had to make them.  See, I love making homemade toys, and the hooligans LOVE playing with stones!  We have a huge collection of rocks and stones that we use for all kinds of activities!  love finding new ways to turn every day items, found in nature, into cool things that we can play with, like our domino stones, letter stones and tic-tac-toe stones. As you can imagine, I was positively drooling when I saw some gorgeous story stones over at Pre-School Play the other day.

The Hooligans are off for summer break until September, and I thought about holding off, and making these story stones, when they return, but I’ve been seeing these stones everywhere, and can’t get them off my mind.

story stones - happy hooligans

At the beginning of summer, my boys and I went to the beach, and collected a bucket of smooth rocks.  We brought them home, washed them up and stashed them away for a project just like this.  Yesterday was gorgeous here, and I had nothing pressing to do, so I set myself up under the trees in the back yard, and got to work making a set of story stones for the daycare.

How I made our story stones:

I started with some scraps of quilting fabric, and cut out some animal shapes, but I didn’t have as much as I’d hoped, so I turned to some magazines, and cut out a few more things. Then, I stumbled across a couple of craft books that I’d picked up at a thrift shop a while back.   BINGO!!

The books were intended for a stained glass-painting type of craft, but the paints didn’t come with them.  I’d just thought the pictures inside might come in handy one day.   They were perfect for this project!!

easy homemade story stones by happy hooligans

To make your story stones,  put a puddle of mod podge on a stone, and then place the cut-out in the puddle, and use your fingers to smooth out any air bubbles.  With a sponge brush, smooth and dab a little modge-podge over the cut-out, pressing around the edges with your fingers, to get a good seal between the paper and the stone.

The quilt fabric was the easiest to work with because the material was thin and flimsy, and molded to the rock easily.  The magazine pictures worked well too, because of their thinness.  The craft book cut-outs were quite a bit thicker (similar to glossy card-stock), and required more pressing and smoothing, but they turned out great!

holiday story stones

I’m thinking an even easier way to make these, if you didn’t want to go to the trouble of modge-podging, would be to simply apply assorted stickers to your stones, and then give them a coat of varnish for protection.

Story stones provide a super opportunity for imaginative play, and there’s some great sensory stuff going on too: the colours are vibrant, they’re cool to the touch, and for me there’s something soothing about the sound of stones clacking together as you play with them.

Look at them!  Aren’t they cute?  I’m so pleased with the way they turned out.  I can’t wait for the Hooligans to discover them!

story stones - happy hooligans

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Yours in play, Jackie from Happy Hooligans

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