We love arts and crafts at our house and these are our go to craft ideas.
Growing up, I have a lot of fond memories of crafting. I’ve always loved drawing and being artistic, but my fondest memories are doing big projects with my mom for school, when I was in elementary school. I still remember that overwhelming sense of pride when your work is displayed up on a board in the hallway or you get a prize for first place in creativity.
I’ve definitely become a crafts mom, and I wish I had more time to come up with better ideas, but thankfully, there are so many craft kits and companies that specialize in taking the background reserach work out of it and providing you with the ideas and materials! Today, I’m sharing the ones we’ve loved the most.
For reference, at the time of this post, my daughter is 3.5 and my son is 5, so these ideas are meant for Pre-K/early Kindergarten.
My Kids’ Favorite Craft Kits and Ideas
- Sticker Mosaic Art: I love this one because they’re practicing finger agility, colors, and it really requires them to focus. It’s great to bring to restaurants or on an airplane.
- Hey Clay: my kids love this because the App that comes with it is very well done, but you could also pay for the App and just use regular clay kits like this one.
- Stencil Kits: sometimes I’ll just set up a drawing station with colored pencils, paper, stickers, and stencils.
- Peel & Press Foil Fun: this is a recent find and I bought it in additional themes, because the kids love it – you basically press foil onto stickers and create these shiny stickers. Very fun!
- Mondo Llama: these crafting kits from Target are a Godsend, I literally stock up on them for long weekends, days off of school, and for rainy weekend days. Also, they do new kits for all the holidays, so always keep an eye out. Just snagged this one for Valentine’s Day!
- Coloring cardboard house: works every time and encourages peaceful sibling play – just set out a box of crayons or markers and let their creativity shine.
- Kiwi Co: so this is a subscription based company for crafting and science kits BUT you can also buy them a la carte, which I often do! Luca loved this one, of course.
- WeCraftBox.com: my mom bought this for the kids for Christmas and they love when it comes each month.
- Sensory kits: this kind of qualifies as arts & crafts, right?! I love sensory kits, especially themed ones for birthdays and holidays. I love the ones on Etsy, Playdough Party, and of course, Young + Wild and Friedman.
Basic Craft Items to Have on Hand for All Those Pinterest Ideas
Whenever my followers on Instagram always comment, “Wow, you always have the best ideas and do so many crafts!” it’s honestly because I have built a pretty decent craft supply base, so any of the Pinterest ideas I see are easy to throw together, since I usually have whatever I need. Throughout the years, I keep going back to these items, so if I had to recommend buying craft items to keep crafting more accessible and convenient for you, I’d go with this list:
- Glitter glue pens: these are a must in our house and I don’t actually buy glitter (it’s just so messy with the little ones) and they’re satisfied with the glue pens.
- The obvious: glue, glue sticks, scissors, crayons, pencils, coloring pencils (my kids love the erasable ones), and markers.
- Construction paper in colors, in kraft paper, and a bonus for glitter.
- Stickers, lots of them.
- Googley eyes, pom poms, buttons, popsicle sticks, colored ribbon, string, foam sheets, felt, and pipe cleaners. Or, you can start with a kit like this and build on it.
- Painting supplies: paints, paint jars, sponges, and paint brushes.
- Paint sticks, especially if you don’t want to deal with paints.
- Painter’s tape (also great for baby & toddler activities.)
- Paper roll: when I’m really desperate, I’ll tape this to the floor with their box of coloring utensils and say “have at it!”
- Paper towel rolls (just save these!)
- Paper plates– honestly sometimes my kids get more creative just when I present them with a paper plate instead of a piece of paper.
- Tissue paper (we have a great collection just by saving old gift wrapping!)
- Hot glue gun (I am the only one who uses this!)
- My Giant Busy Box: Luca and Roma both started off with this – it’s a great, all-in-one crafting/artwork box for kids. Love it!
If this list overwhelms you, just start with a few items and once you know what your kids gravitate towards, explore that and build upon it. For instance, Luca doesn’t love painting (he much prefers building with textures and making “sculptures”) but Roma could paint for hours. Also, we’re not a big beading family! Maybe when the kids are older, but for now, this list does the job.
Now for the craft organization, that’s for another post!
Favorite Crafting Accounts & Sites
I’m not here to take credit – I’m just like any other mom looking for inspiration on the Internet, haha! Here are some of my go-tos when I can’t come up with anything on my own or want to do something special with the kids (especially seasonally!)
- Pinterest. I get 9% of my ideas here. And literally, get specific. “Paper plate Santa craft” or “Birthday handprint card craft” or literally whatever the need is, search it on Pinterest. “Grandparent birthday gift craft idea.” Boom.
- Days with Grey – lots of activities here, but I most appreciate her craft blog posts!
- Busy Toddler – for more educational, messy artwork projects.
I hope this inspires you to do more crafts with your kids!