I don’t want to sound like an old lady but, whatever happened to being creative when choosing art and craft supplies? The craft stores are full of ready packaged crafts, just empty the bag and assemble. Some days that is great, with no thought involved I can give the kids something semi-creative to do. Usually, however, I prefer to make crafts that are special and unique. Instead of heading down the isle of commercial foolproof crafts I’d rather think outside the crayon box.
We need to think more like a child. I used to pick up all kinds of stuff from the ground, forest, or beach as a child. There were rocks, sticks, bits of glass, or plastic. They were all wonderful treasures to me.
What do we have around the house to use for art? Beans, rice, buttons, fabric, string, dry pasta, yogurt, drier lint, pencil shavings, recyclabled plastic, old clean foil, magazines, cataloges, cardboard, and bits ofused paper. In nature you’ll find materials like leaves, rocks, sticks, pinecones, bark, flowers, sand, mud, and dirt. The list goes on and on, just use yours and your childrens’ imaginations. I found a great list here.
Get your kids involved and thinking about this at a young age. You don’t need to go to the art supply store for ideas, just look around your house. Some glue would be helpful, and maybe some paint and brushes. Here is a link to a site to help make your own art supplies like glue and paint. I even found a link to make your own brushes.
Rip it, sprinkle it, stick it, cut it, smudge, and squish it. Just let your kids be creative and have fun. When you find your materials from nature the cost is very low, always an appealing bonus for us.
We must repeat this to ourselves, myself included for sure. “Happy mess is better than miserable tidiness”, “Happy mess is better than miserable tidiness”, “Happy mess is better than miserable tidiness”. ~Tom Hodgkinson
Into a zip-lock bag add about 1tbs of vinegar and four drops of food colouring. You can adjust this to get the desired colour. Add 1/2 to 1 cup of noodles and shake. Remove noodles from bag and lay out to dry on newspaper for about 4 hours. String onto shoelace or yarn. Yarn might need tape on the end to help with threading.
We raided the recycle bin and saved some celaphane gift wrap from the garbage heap and glued it onto a carboard sheet. Photos from a magazine and a little paint put the finishing touches on this award winning masterpiece.
Pencil Shaving Art
Our kids almost had more fun sharpening the pencil crayons to make the shavings than they did glueing it onto a coloured piece of construction paper. Almost, but not quite.