As we near the end of summer, most of us become a bit desperate for ideas to keep our kids entertained and out of trouble. Crafts can be a great way to accomplish that goal. However, it can be hard to come up with new ideas. Since by now your fridge has been raided, your house turned upside down, and your pocket emptied, here are my top three low-budget, environmentally friendly craft ideas for kids.
- CORK-LIKE VASE. Take an empty bottle, any bottle. Then, either cut newspaper into strips about 1/2″ wide and about 5 or 6″ long (make them as even as possible) or you could use masking tape. Use white glue to paste the strips of paper unto the bottle. The strips should overlap slightly. Make sure the entire bottle is covered. Thin down a bit of the glue and brush over the newspaper. Let it dry thoroughly. (If using masking tape, all you have to do is cut and stick the pieces of tape onto the bottle). When the paper is dry, use an old cloth to put a layer of brown shoe polish over the paper. The polish will be darker over the edges of the paper, giving it a cork-like look. Use the completed bottle as a vase or pencil holder!
- BOTTLE CAP FLOWER COASTER. Start with 9 soda bottle caps (the plastic kind). You will need to paint, or cover the caps with fabric, so that you have one yellow, six red and two green. Place the yellow cap at the center. Then, glue all six red caps around the yellow one to make a flower shape. Then glue the two green ones, one at eaxh end to look like leaves. Once the glue dries completely, glue a pair of googly eyes to the yellow cap and draw a smile. Your coaster is ready to use!
- TIN BOX SCRAPBOOK. Find an old tin box you no longer need. The size that works best in my opinion in the color pencil tin cases, but since those are not that easy to find, any relatively thin tin box will do. Measure the width and length of the inside of the box. Cut strips of paper that will fit the length of the box and glue several together to make a long strip of paper (about 2-feet long). Then, fan-fold the strip using the width of the box as a guide. Make sure to leave a piece about 1-inch wide at the end so you can glue the paper fan to the inside of the box. Use paint, charms, buttons, shells, or anything else you’d like to decorate the outside of the tin box. Then, glue the strip of paper to the inside of the box, and fill it with pictures and memories!