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Get Outside and Decorate Your Yard With Nature

After the flowers fade and trees drop their leaves, many people use colorful lights and decorations to add festivity to their yards. You can continue to add cheer throughout the winter season with these frozen suncatchers.

(Photo by Heather Van Zyl)

Search outside for different natural materials like berries, leaves, twigs, flower heads, acorns and small pinecones — anything will do! Make sure you have permission before snipping or taking anything. And remember: You cannot remove any items from the Will County forest preserves.

Your suncatcher can be more than just pretty. Add birdseed and orange or apple slices, and now you’ve made a snack for wildlife like birds and squirrels!

(Photo by Heather Van Zyl)

Is the temperature outside below freezing? You can do all the steps outside!

  1. Find a shallow dish, like a plate or pie pan.

  2. Fill with water.

  3. Place a loop of string, yarn or twine over the top as a hanger.

  4. Add the natural materials you collected in a design of your choosing.

  5. Leave outside until frozen.

  6. Remove from the dish and hang from the branch of a bush or tree, or even outside your window.

Not cold enough outside to freeze? (Or too cold for your comfort?) Bring everything inside. Complete the first four steps, then put the suncatchers in your freezer until they are frozen and can be hung outside.

As temperatures rise and fall, watch the changes to your suncatchers. They may change shape as they start to melt and refreeze, or as animals take a nibble. Try making different shapes and sizes. Cookie cutters make fun shapes. Can you think of a way to make a round, ball shape?

Let these suncatchers bring you cheer on these cold winter days. And enjoy the visits from hungry critters too!


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