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Our Favourite Christmas Crafts for Children

Decorating for Christmas is a personal thing, some people decorate as soon as the bonfires have been extinguished and others wait until the last minute to assemble the tree

 

Regardless, most of us have traditions and decorations that return year after year. With the Children finishing school more than a few days before Christmas they may need some entertaining, so we've rounded up some arts and crafts that could be used to add a little Christmas cheer to your house, or as a gift to someone else!

Some children are happy drawing Christmas Cards and finger painting snow drops on black coloured paper, while others are interested in a challenge and may want to spend hours perfecting their craft. Either way, a little time and bonding over these crafts is a great way to spend a chilly afternoon, especially with a cup of hot coco in hand.

We've tried to provide a few similar options that vary in degrees of difficulty, but we'd love to know how you've carried out and altered these ideas to suit your family traditions!

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Christmas craft ideas for kids

Paper chains - a simple classic

What you'll need:

  • Paper (this can be white, and decorated, colourful strips or even pages from old magazines)
  • Markers
  • Glue stick (if this becomes too fiddly, try using a stapler instead!)
  • Scissors
  • And anything you want to decorate with, even Glitter!

What to do:

  1. Cut the paper into strips approx. 21 cm long and 3-4cm wide
  2. If you need to decorate the strips, do that first! Let the strips dry before moving on to step 3
    NOTE: If you are using glitter or raised objects make sure you keep about 3 cm at one end clear of anything!
  3. Then take your Glue stick and put glue on the last 3cm of the strip
  4. Loop the strip around and connect it with the other end of itself
  5. Hold firmly in place for a few seconds and then repeat this step with the other strips until you have a chain long enough for its destination.

Popcorn garland

What you'll need:

  • A bowl of popcorn (left at room temperature so it is not hot to touch!)
  • A needle per person
  • A spool of thread

What to do:

  1. Take off a large piece of thread, the length depends on how long you want each piece of garland to stretch.
  2. Tie a big knot in one end of the string.
  3. Thread the needle and begin by putting the needle straight through a piece of popcorn.
  4. Repeat until you run out of thread.
  5. For a twist add cranberries or raisins to your strands, at varying intervals.

Popcorn garland will last for a few weeks on your tree, and then you can place it outside for the birds to enjoy! This is great for the child who is given a new camera for Christmas or who is an avid bird watcher. You'll be surprised what birds appear, and some furry squirrels too!

Reindeer candy canes

These are a great gift to give to children, and even the young at heart, when they visit your house over the holidays!

What you'll need:

  • Candy Canes
  • Brown Pipe cleaners
  • Googly Eyes
  • Red Pompoms
  • Glue

What to do:

  1. Take the pipe cleaner and wrap it around the curve of the candy cane twice, leaving an equal amount on either side
  2. Shape the two ends of the pipe cleaner into wacky antlers
  3. On the short part of the candy cane, glue on your two eyes and pompom nose
  4. Once the glue is dry, hang the reindeer on your Christmas tree or garland, or put them in a tall glass for a collective reindeer effect. If you do this you might want to use brown pompoms for all but one of the noses!

Stockings

This is a great family activity, as you can display your efforts on Christmas even, and everyone knows which stocking is theirs.

What you'll need:

  • Cloth - jean, felt, burlap, cotton (any material that you have really)
  • Scissors
  • Glue
  • Decorations
  • Needle and thread or a sewing machine

What to do:

  1. Cut out two identical stocking shapes from your cloth.
  2. Either have an adult sew these together with a sewing machine or use a needle and thread to sew the two pieces together.
  3. Once they have been attached, turn the stocking inside out so the stitching is hidden from view.
  4. Decorate the stocking! Be creative, you can sew or glue on almost anything from buttons to feathers or simply beads.

Hand print wreath

What you'll need:

  • White or kraft paper - bigger than you want your wreath to end up.
  • Scissors|
  • Red and Green Paint

What to do:

  1. Cover the floor with newsprint
  2. Lay out your paper, weighting down the corners will help little hands to keep the shape of the wreath more easily
  3. With a pencil, draw a circle the size of the wreath on the paper
  4. Cover your child's (and your own, you know you want to!) hands with red or green paint
  5. Make hand prints in this colour all around the circle you've drawn
  6. Wash your hands and change colours, repeat the same steps with the other colour
  7. Once the paint has dried, cut out the wreath and hang it on your doors or cupboards

Salt dough decorations

These are a great way to remember babies first Christmas, as they are easy to add a footprint to, and using a tooth pick to carve letters before baking!

What you'll need:

  • Salt (1/2 Cup), Water (1/2 Cup), Flour (1Cup)
  • Olive oil (use only if the dough dries out while you are rolling it out, just a dash on your hands will do!)
  • A rolling pin
  • Pastry cutters in various shapes
  • Some paint - you can use anything from acrylics to metallic sprays and glitter glue
  • Varnish - you'll need this only if you want to save the decorations for future years
  • An Apron - this can get messy

What to do:

  1. Make the dough by mixing half a cup of salt and a whole cup of flour together and then slowly stirring in a half a cup of water.
  2. Knead the dough for about ten minutes. The dough should be soft, and malleable. If the mixture is too sticky, add a bit more flour, if it's too dry add water. Make sure to add small amounts at a time.
  3. Just like pastry, lightly dust the counter with flour and use a rolling pin to flatten your dough. Use cookie cutters to cut out shapes. Remember if you want to hang them from the tree you will need to put a small hole through them before drying.
  4. Once the shapes are cut, place them on grease proof paper, and either leave them to dry for 2 or 3 days in a warm room, put them on a tray in the oven on a very low heat for a few hours or place them in the microwave for a few minutes. If the ones in the oven start to go brown, cover them with aluminium foil. Microwaves differ, so be careful not to bake them for too long or the will start to go a crispy brown colour! Remember the thickness of the dough will change the amount of time you need to cook them for!
  5. Once the shapes are dry and cool, you can start to decorate. Be sure to let the paint dry completely. If you want to use them for more than just this year make sure to coat the dry shapes with varnish or they will start to rot!
  6. Hang them on your tree or around the house for a little Christmas cheer!
 
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Tinies created a perfect crèche environment for the range of children attending the party. All the guests commented on how relaxed they felt having their children completely looked after and entertained throughout the day and most of the children did not want to leave at the of the day. I would certainly use Tinies crèches again.
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