My children and I spent a wonderful Memorial Day playing together, not something I get to do with them daily because of my choice of career.
One of the things we did that day was go outside an make these recycled plastic bottle and duct-taped sock bubble makers.
I had the hardest time coming up with a title for these strange bubble makers, but after much thought and asking some people what they thought I should call them, we titled them the Rainbow Bubble Cloud Makers. (The other option, which I was not fond of was Rainbow Snake Bubble Makers.)
Not a catchy title at all to me but I think it accurately describes what my kids and I created.
They have been used multiple days in a row, but I would imagine that the dried up soap on the end of the sock will eventually not be useful for making bubbles any longer.
My youngest (3-years old when I wrote the Instructable) did not take his mouth off the bottle to suck in air to blow the bubbles out - this led to a ten minute "washing his mouth out with soap" ordeal, with many hugs and a little bit of crying and I hope you take note of this if you have a child who might do that like mine did.
The four-year old and eight-year old were both able to make bubbles well using these makers.
Because they used primarily recycled materials, the cost was not considered at all as we had all the materials on hand. (We had the colored duct tape already for other projects.)
My kids and I made a 45-second long video of these bubble makers in action, and just like always, I ask that you view the video just for giggles. Read on to see how we make these fun & different recycled material bubble makers.
Step 1: Materials
I have three children, so we made three of these little devices. Unfortunately as mentioned in the intro, my youngest (3-years old when this Instructable was written) sucked in the soap, and didn't use his after that one time.
What we used:
Step 2: Prep the Plastic Bottles
Cut any labels off the plastic bottles.
For my oldest (8-years) son's bottle, I cut a small hole for him about an 1/2-inch from the bottom.
I gave him the bottle and the scissors and he was able to cut the rest of the bottom off in a circle.
I cut the bottom of the plastic bottles off for the other two bubble blowers we made.
Step 3: Cut & Add the Sock
After doing this project, my suggestion is to cut the toe of the sock about three (3) inches away from the toe.
What we did was cut the toe of the sock about four to five (4-5) inches away from the toe, and the sock was close to the mouth opening when we slipped it over the bottle and pulled on it.
I ended up cutting the sock again to about 3-inches (shown in the photo), as it ended up being difficult taping the sock so close to the opening of the bottle, where you blow into to make bubbles.
Step 4: Secure Sock W-Duct Tape
We used colored duct tape to distinguish the bottles for the kiddos. (My kids have a hard time sharing things their mouths will go on.)
Starting at the lowest point of the sock line, we wrapped taped around the sock and bottle about three times.
Our socks seemed loose to me after they were taped down, but the bubbles still came out when they were used.
It did not appear to matter if the sock was inside out over the bottle. The bubble maker still worked both ways.
If I were to do it over again, I would try to get the sock tighter around the large opening by taping the pulled-down sock around.
Step 5: Dip Bubble Maker in Soap & Water & Make Bubbles
I did not measure the amount of dish soap added to the pie tin (and cake pans) but I would guess it was 2-3 tablespoons.
We added about 1/4-cup of water to the dish washing soap before dipping the end of the sock into the mix.
My oldest son removed a little lint from the inside of the bottle near the opening and we took a photo of that. Just something to look for if that might weird you out.
The children couldn't wait to try out the bubble makers, even without the food coloring to color the bubbles.
After dipping the sock end of the bubble blower into the soap/water mix, blow on the mouth piece end and ensure that the child understands to not suck air while his/her mouth is on the mouthpiece.
I will remind you here again that my 3-year old was unable to grasp the breathing-in portion of blowing bubbles. He breathed in soap and it was traumatic enough that he didn't want to use the bubble blower again after all the spitting and washing his mouth out.
Step 6: Optionally Add Color & Have Fun!
I said "optionally add food coloring" because of the mess.
Here is your fair warning: Food coloring will get everywhere. It was on clothes, me, hands, feet, hair, the dog, the grass - pretty much anywhere a bubble lands or gets thrown on gets colored.
With that said, if you want to add color to the bubbles you add drops of food coloring to the sock.
It wears out after a good long bubble snake is made and will have to be reapplied to the sock if you want to make more color. We were trying really hard to set up a "rainbow" snake, but were unsuccessful to make it in all the colors we had.
The color did not come out in the bubble if the food coloring was added to the soap mixture.
I hope you enjoyed. I know I did. Thanks for reading.
You can see my kiddos enjoyment in the video embedded in the intro of this Instructable.
Second Prize in the
Maker Family Contest