Don’t know a pipe cleaner from a pom-pom and don’t care much for a hot glue gun? Non-crafty mamas, this guide to craft fun is for YOU!
It’s not easy being crap at craft when all your kids want to do is stick, glue, dunk and create. And when they want to bring out the glitter… send help. And wine!
Fear not, we happen to know how to scoot our way around the craft table without flexing the DIY muscle too intensely. Also without having to spend the next 45 minutes scrapping glue and glitter off the table, or worse the walls!
Yep, it’s craft for kids done the EASY way. (You can thank us later!)
10 Super Easy Craft Ideas That Take Almost Zero Effort
1. Pop Stick Creations
All hail pop sticks! This ridiculously cheap craft item is aimed to please. Simply give the kids a packet of pop sticks and watch their imaginations take over their creative play. There’s no engineering degree involved, just an idea for a structure. Make pop stick webs, pock stick picture frames, pop stick pencil holders, or even pop stick Taj Mahal type buildings – there’s not much you can’t build or create with pop sticks!
TIP FOR MUMS WHO SUCK AT DIY CRAFT: Pick up some glue and googly eyes and take their creations up another notch. Animal pop sticks = hours of quiet fun!
2. Egg Dying
Get eggcited for this super easy craft! All you need are hard-boiled eggs (smashed fresh googs are going to ruin the fun REAL quick), vinegar and dye. To make dye solution:
- Mix 7-10 drops of food colouring into 1 cup of hot water
- Stir in 1/4 cup of white vinegar – you’ll need a separate bowl or cup for each colour
- Dip the boiled eggs into the dye water and let them soak for around 15 minutes (or hours for a really deep colour!)
- Let them drip dry in the egg carton and voila! Pretty eggs for minimal effort!
TIP FOR MUMS WHO SUCK AT DIY CRAFT: Wear plastic gloves!! It may seem like you’ve got the colouring under control but it can easily turn pear-shaped. Better to wear the gloves than risk looking like Smurfette for the rest of the week.
3. Finger Painting
We know – painting is never a clean craft with kids, especially ones who like to flick, spill and dribble paint all over the tiles. But hear us out first! Finger painting can actually be fun, as long as it’s done outside or you’ve wrapped every surface within your kids’ arms reach in plastic. Tape the corners of a piece of paper or Blu-Tack down some paper plates and let the kids merrily dip their hands into puddles of paint, using their little fingers as paintbrushes.
TIP FOR MUMS WHO SUCK AT DIY CRAFT: If it’s warm outside, get the hose and hose those kids off before they step foot inside! If it’s a bit chilly, have a bath ready to go.
4. Saved By Foam Alive
Don’t have time (or the will) to whip up some DIY craft magic? Doesn’t matter! Keep the kids entertained for hours on end with Foam Alive from Moose Toys. This soft, squishy and fluffy foam is totally mesmerising without being at all sticky or wet. What’s more, it cleverly moves in ‘flow motion’. The kids will love to watch and feel it move and flow through their hands and fingers. We’re talking hours of fun. Scoop it, mould it, drip it and poke at it – it’s crafty fun for everyone!
It’s not a one-hit-wonder either. Foam Alive never dries out, so you can get it out day after day when the kids want to craft. But the best news for mums is that it’s a mess-free activity (with loads of packs to choose from). #winning
TIP FOR MUMS WHO SUCK AT DIY CRAFT: Have some containers on hand to store the different Foam Alive colours after each session. Plus, pop the kettle on as there’s no cleaning up for hours with this little beauty.
5. Shaving cream
When the kids wanna craft and you’re not in the mood to go full glitter, head to your bathroom cupboard and grab a tin of shaving foam. Let them swirl patterns, mix a couple of drops of food colouring in it or paint with it. Sure, it’s gonna make a big ol’ (hopefully contained) mess but hey, at least everything will also smell delightfully fresh AND the kids will stop bugging you for (hopefully) a solid hour or two.
TIP FOR MUMS WHO SUCK AT DIY CRAFT: Prepare for the mess by heading outside. Or, if the little crafty demon spawn started the shaving foam party without you, in the house, pour yourself a big glass of wine and call in the cleaners.
6. Funny Face Biscuits
Ahh…baking with kids. The easiest way to make a massive mess of your kitchen, waste a bunch of flour and realise just how little patience you actually have. Next time the kids decide they want to ‘bake,’ try this shortbread shortcut. Simply pull a packet of biscuits out of the pantry and let the kids make funny face bickies with a dollop of icing mixture and a few bits and bobs from the confectionery aisle.
TIP FOR MUMS WHO SUCK AT DIY CRAFT: Place a large sheet of baking paper down to contain any spilt cream, chocolate bits or rogue sprinkles that don’t make it onto the biscuit.
7. Stickers. ALL The Stickers
Is there anything simpler than stickers? Give a kid a box or sheet of stickers and watch them stick up a storm. Whatever you do, make it very clear what they CAN’T stick stickers on – such as you, the walls or the cat. It won’t end well.
TIP FOR MUMS WHO SUCK AT DIY CRAFT: Give them a cheap photo album and let them make sticker books like we used to do as kids. Remember those?! Ahh, the 80s.
8. Pet Rocks
Yep, we’re going there. Rocks are fun. And crafty and not at all lame. Plus, they make great pets. Send the kids out to find a selection of just right rocks (flat and not too bumpy), give them a scrub to clean off the dirt and a good dry. Paint them up any way you like – into any animal they’re little heart’s desire – and while the paint is still wet, stick a couple of googly eyes on them and use a Sharpie to add detail. There you have it, a family of cute rocks. Who said you were useless at craft?
TIP FOR MUMS WHO SUCK AT DIY CRAFT: Whatever you do, put the Sharpie AWAY as soon as they finish with it. Or prepare to spend your afternoon cleaning Sharpie pen off your walls and contemplating the idea of making your kids sleep outside in the garden with their new rock pets.
9. Paper Chains
Not all of us non-crafters will have a box of coloured paper lying in wait in a dedicated craft cupboard somewhere but most of us will have plain printer paper and pencils/crayons/textas. Kids can colour in and decorate the paper so it’s nice and bright. Cut the decorated paper into strips to create rings and loop them through each other, fastening with tape to create a paper chain. Sweeeeet. Instant lounge room/kitchen/bedroom decorations. You’re welcome.
TIP FOR MUMS WHO SUCK AT DIY CRAFT: Make it a contest to see who can make the biggest chain and keep them chain-making for HOURS.
10. Making Playdough
An oldie but a goodie. Playdough is fun and it’s super easy and cheap to make at home. There are hundreds of playdough recipes floating around the internet, but I can personally vouch for McKenzies recipe. Add food dye (even some glitter!) for colourful fun. Be prepared for a gooey saucepan though, the clean up can be a little rough. But mamas, you have to take the good with the bad when it comes to craft.
TIP FOR MUMS WHO SUCK AT DIY CRAFT: Avoid playing Playdough anywhere near carpets… it’ll likely end in disaster.
Need more ideas for keeping the kids occupied? Up the ante with these 6 Toddler Games You Can Make at Home!