DIY Gifts for Family and Friends
We’ve pulled together our favorite kid-friendly diy gifts for everyone on your list so you can make it a handmade holiday! Handmade gifts are so much more special, less expensive and a great chance to teach your kids the meaning of the holiday while they have fun being creative and getting some hands-on activity time. Here are our picks, both simple and more complex, for brothers and sisters, cousins, teachers, aunts and uncles, and grandparents:
Tulle Dress for Girls and Dolls
This is a simple, no-new tutorial for making tulle dresses for both girls and dolls. What girl wouldn’t be thrilled to have one of these dresses for themselves or their doll?
Handprint Animal Artwork
Using paint, have kids create handprints onto white cardstock (or if you’re really brave, directly onto a small canvas). Once it dries, decorate them to create animals or other fun creatures inspired by their sibling’s favorite animals or storybook creatures. Here is some inspiration from LollyJane.com who uploaded the handprint designs to Snapfish and had them printed on canvas. You can also find some other handprint art ideas here.
While this is a really simple idea, the teaching element is so valuable and the end result is sure to be a keepsake. Ask your children to think about some things that their sibling would love – for example: using their favorite toy, making a fort, playing their favorite game, etc. Select the ones their sibling would like best and then write them on separate pieces of paper and decorate, then staple, sew or bind them together to form a booklet. You can also download templates online, like this simple one from Frugal-Mama.com.
Tie Dye Treasure Bag
We heard from lots of subscribers that the Tie Dye Bag they made with our Gifts Made By Me Discovery Box is going to make a great gifts this year for loved ones!
Story or Coloring Books
This is a great teaching activity for your kids and creates a really special gift that their cousins are sure to love. If you’re short on time, the easiest way to create a storybook is to have kids create their stories on index cards, which you can then insert into a small (4”x6” photo album). If you have more time, this video from About.com walks you through the steps to create a more classic, handmade book with a stapled or hole punched/yarn-threaded binding. We also liked this tutorial from ImaginationSoup which has a download for holiday themed ‘story starter’ images. (For more images, you can pick up free clip art right here.)
You can also create a coloring book using line-art stock photos or, if you have photo editing software, your own photos! PhotoJojo.com has a great tutorial on turning your own photos into black and white coloring pages. Get the kids involved by asking them to pick out their favorites and then helping to bind them together and decorate a cover.
What kid doesn’t love playdough? And, thankfully, it’s easy and inexpensive to make. Have the kids help measure and stir the ingredients and then decorate jars to gift it in.
Monogram Mugs or Decorated Pencil Cups
These projects require a lot of adult supervision due to the materials involved and the complexity of the project, but can be a lot of fun and make a great impression.
Decorating a pencil cup is another great idea and decoupage gives lots of options. Have kids use different colors of tissue paper to play with color mixing. We’ve also seen some great ideas using scrap fabric (including lace) and simple Sharpie markers.DesignMom has a great tutorial for creating monogram mugs using a porcelaine pen. Fill these with marshmallows, hot chocolate mix or a gift card to a coffee shop.
FOR AUNTS AND UNCLES
Star Shaped Desk Calendar
This is a great way to share some of your favorite photos from the 2012, and is a wonderful gift for any family member. The tutorial at AnOunceOfCreativityalso has a download for the calendar piece.
We heard from lots of subscribers that the tile coasters they made with our Gifts Made By Me Discovery Box are going to make great gifts this year. You can recreate the craft with recycled fiberboard and mini tiles, or try decoupaging full size tiles.
Helping Hands Oven Mitts
This adorable oven mitt project is a wonderful gift idea for Grandma!
Family Handprint Art Collection
Grandparents would love this series of handprint art from the entire family! Or on second thought, you might want to keep this one for yourself.
Handprint art is also a favorite for grandparents and we’ve yet to see anything more beautiful than this fabric hand tree. More complex, but definitely worth the effort.
Don’t forget the card! We love this simple handprint card that is easy to make, adorable, and perfect for everyone.
If you’re not already a Green Kid Crafts subscriber, don’t wait another day to join! You can also find tons of gift items in our store, from Stocking Stuffers to single-purchase Discovery Boxes – there is something for everyone!
From $16.95 / month! Monthly boxes come with 3-4 award winning Creativity and STEM Science Kits (science, technology, engineering, and math) designed by experts around national standards to build confidence, flex creativity, and make kids smarter. All materials and instructions included, along with some fun extras! Each Discovery Box is created around an exciting new theme each month (think Outer Space, Nocturnal Animals, Backyard Science, Ocean, and Mad Scientist). You can cancel anytime. Join Green Kid now!