You may have noticed that I am loving these natural elements this year with crafting. This cute little pinecone and pecan mouse is a perfect idea for kids to make and really could be entirely free to make if you use items you already have on hand. This makes a great little addition to a fall diorama, or can just be fun for kids to play with alongside action figures!
Pinecone and Pecan Mouse
Grabbing a few pinecones from outside can become not just a fun way to keep kids busy on a nature walk, but also the base of some amazing crafts. This little pinecone and pecan mouse is one of my favorite creations so far. I can imagine using this while teaching kids about rodents, or as a fun prop while reading a book like Stuart Little.
If you like the natural element crafts, then make sure you check out these fun little pinecone hedgehogs. You might also like this adorable little walnut mouse or even something from this huge list of pinecone crafts ideas.
What Other Nuts Can I Use for the Mouse Face?
The idea for this is to use all-natural elements. So, a pecan is ideal for the face as it is nice and rounded, and flat on the outside. It sticks to the pinecone easily and is all you need for a cute little creature. But, if you don't have pecans lying around or don't want to buy any, there are other ideas below that can easily work to create your little mouse face on this rustic craft.
- Chestnut, hazelnut, or macadamia nut have rounded surfaces and while smaller could still work for the face.
- Buttons, beads, bottle caps, or similar small round plastic items you may already have on hand.
- Foam paper, felt, fabric, cardstock, or construction paper cut into a face shape and attached with glue.
Do I Need to Clean Pinecones I Gather From the Yard?
Yes. It is really smart to take the time to clean your pinecones before using them in your crafting projects. While you can buy them online on Amazon or Etsy, and sometimes inside your local craft store, if you gather them yourself they may bring bugs inside with them. I think it's a smart decision to clean them well before you begin using them. Below is one great and safe method to clean them that kids can help you with.
- Tap the pinecones outside to remove any lingering dust/dirt/or debris first.
- Fill a large bucket with 1 gallon of water and ½ cup white vinegar.
- Place all of your pinecones into the bucket with vinegar solution and make sure they are all submerged under the water. They will float to the top some, so you may need to regularly go back and push them under the water, add a lid on top of the water to hold them down, or even stir them with a long spoon.
- Let them sit in the water solution for 30-minutes before you rinse them well.
- Set them aside onto towels or paper towels to dry for a few hours to overnight before you use them for your crafting project.
Can I Paint My Mouse?
Of course, you can paint them if you want. I like the raw rustic look of just the pinecone and nuts, but you can definitely get creative and paint them. You could paint them any color you want, or even just add a bit of glitter spray to make them sparkle!
If you choose to paint your mouse, I would recommend doing so before you start decorating. Just spray paint them outside and set them aside to dry for 15 to 30 minutes before you finish adding the face and tail.
You can paint with a brush and acrylic paints, but the individual seeds and all of the nooks and crannies of the pinecone could make that time-consuming and difficult. So, I really recommend just using spray paint for the best and fastest option. Just make sure to do so in a ventilated area and away from children or animals.
- Whole pecan
- Brown foam paper
- Brown moldable wire or pipe cleaner
- Black bead
- Black marker
- Hot glue gun
- Hot glue stick
How to Make a Pinecone and Pecan Mouse
Remove a few pieces of the top of the pine cone to create a hollowed space.
Glue the pecan into the hollowed space.
Using two of the "petals" of the pinecone, glue them to the top back of the pecan to create ears.
Glue a black bead onto the end of the pecan.
Use a black marker to draw dots for eyes above the nose and before the ears.
Use a pen to twist the wire or pipe cleaner into a spring shape and glue it onto the back of the pinecone for the tail.
Draw four tiny feet shapes onto the foam paper and cut them out.
Glue these to the bottom of the pinecone, two per side in the front and back.
Now you have a rustic mouse!
More Fun Kids Crafts
If you are looking for a few more fun ideas for the kids to make, we have you covered. There are tons of fun projects that kids can help you create for fall, winter, or any time of year. Below are some of my favorites that include natural elements and that can be used as fun decor or just for them to sit on a shelf and be proud of making. Make sure you bookmark, pin, or print the tutorials to make them soon!
- Easy Handprint Hedgehog Preschool Craft
- Adorable Paper Plate Hedgehog Kids Craft
- Easy DIY Paper Scarecrow Kids Craft
- Cute Hedgehog Kids' Craft with 3 Styles and Printable
- 15+ Fabulous Fall Leaf Crafts for Kids
- Adorable Upcycled Tin Can Owl Pencil Holder
- Fall Leaf People Puppets Made from Fake Leaves
- Remove a few pieces of the top of the pine cone to create a hollowed space.
- Glue the pecan into the hollowed space.
- Using two of the "petals" of the pinecone, glue them to the top back of the pecan to create ears.
- Glue a black bead onto the end of the pecan.
- Use a black marker to draw dots for eyes above the nose and before the ears.
- Use a pin to twist the wire or pipe cleaner into a spring shape and glue it onto the back of the pinecone for the tail.
- Draw four tiny feet shapes onto the foam paper and cut them out.
- Glue these to the bottom of the pinecone, two per side in the front and back.
- Now you have a rustic mouse!
Decorate your fall mantle with these pinecone and pecan mice and fall leaves for a natural look!
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Finished Project Gallery
Pair this with one of our other pinecone animals to share on your fall mantle.
Add a pink nose for a more realistic look.
Paint the pinecone gray or light brown to look more like a real mouse.