This Clothespin Reindeer is a great easy craft for younger girls. I used to make these with my grandmother too, so it’s a great family craft. You can use these very basic instructions or allow the girls to embellish the reindeer clothespins more with paints, glitter, ribbons, etc. Super easy and super cheap.
- Paint wood area of three clothespins Honey Brown. Let dry.
- Position two clothespins side-by-side and adhere with glue.
- Position third clothespin in opposite direction and adhere to small end of double clothespins for reindeer head.
- Position and adhere eyes and pom pom nose.
- Adults should work with the hot glue gun only.
This is one of my favorite crafts to do even as an adult! Etched Glass Canisters are a lovely gift or organizational container, and are super simple. Even younger girls can make these with supervision. Older girls may get a kick out of this craft since it is a more functional craft that can be used in many ways at home, in school lockers, etc. Etched glass is completely dishwasher safe and the etching is permanent, so these items can be used for years. Feel free to experiment with other glassware like drinking glasses, vases, and candle holders.
A word to the wise – I have not had good luck with frosted or colored glass, so for best results stick to the clear glass. This tutorial will tell you how to do basic knock-out style lettering, but stencil kits can also be purchased from most craft stores for around $12 for a few pages worth of rub-on single use stencils.
- Using the masking tape (or blue painters tape, both work fine) to make a rectangle about half an inch larger than the encased lettering. Spell out the desired contents of the canister inside the taped rectangle (canisters can be used for all kinds of things in the kitchen, like rice, sugar, beans, etc, or for smaller craft items like buttons, safety pins, needles, etc.).
- Put on the plastic gloves for protection and apply a thick layer of the etching cream, within the masked off area. Spread the cream evenly over the entire stenciled area, being careful not to extend outside the lines. You should overlap the making tape boundary a little, but not over the outside edge.
- Follow the directions on the etching cream for how long to keep it on the glass. Usually it ranges between 30 seconds and 5 minutes, depending on desired results.
- Without removing the stencil, wash off all of the etching cream with tap water. Remove the tape and letters, then thoroughly clean the glass with dish soap or window cleaner.
- Adult supervision is required when using the etching cream.
- Adults can allow younger girls to apply the desired stencils and take care of applying and removing the etching cream themselves.
Sand Art Magnets are a great project for Daisies, Brownies, and even Junior Girl Scouts, but the project can take up to an hour, so if your meetings are only half an hour long, you might want to do the painting during one meeting and the sand embellishing during the next. This is a messy project with the sand, so be sure to have smocks or old adult shirts ready to minimize the chance of stains on the girls’ clothes. You will also want to have old newspapers down on the tables to make clean up of the excess sand easier.
This is an easy project to theme. Standard unfinished wooden shapes can be bought in multi-packs but you can also go to craft stores to get larger unique shapes one at a time, such as horseshoes, flowers, animals, etc. For example, if the girls are in the process of learning about insects for a badge, you can easily get bees or ladybug shaped wood piece to paint. Using a theme will also help limit how much paint and sand you buy to keep to the colors of the theme and project – for instance you don’t need purple if all the girls are making bees or ladybugs.
- Use the foam brush to paint the shapes in the desired colors. Let the paint dry.
- Use the paint brushes to paint lines of glue onto the painted shapes where you want the sand to adhere to.
- Sprinkle the sand onto the wet glue and shake the excess sand off onto a newspaper or scrap paper to catch the sand.
- Repeat steps 2 & 3 for each color sand you use. It works best to use one color of sand at a time to avoid mixing the sands together. Start with the darkest and end with the lightest.
- Once the glue is completely dry, attach magnets to the back of each and let dry before using. You can glue individual craft magnets onto the wood pieces or use magnetic strips with adhesive backing. Usually the strips come in a roll that can be cut into pieces the right size.
- Make sure to use glue that is kid-safe. Not only does it work the best, but you don’t want to use a toxic glue.
- For added stability in the magnets, an adult can use a hot glue gun to attach the magnets.
- Look at the packaging for the acrylic paint and make sure you’re using a non-toxic, kid friendly paint. If you cannot find kid-friendly acrylic paint, ask someone at your local craft store for a recommendation on a non-toxic paint that will work for this project.
Consider how thick the wood pieces are before deciding what kind of magnet to use. You want to make sure that the magnet won’t fail when stuck to a refrigerator – nothing is worse than a girl bringing home her wonderful creation only to put it on the fridge and have it fall to the floor and break
Last week’s vase project was really more of a project for older girls, but this vase can be made by young girls and older girls as well. It emphasizes the importance of recycling as it uses clean, re-purposed bottles. Seek out unique and interesting shaped glass bottles, and involve the girls in collecting these glass bottles. Make sure to let the parents know what you’ll be using the glass bottles for; they will need to have the labels removed with the inside and outside both thoroughly cleaned. Collect some glass bottles to bring as extras for any girls that are unable to collect bottles on their own.
- Empty glass bottles (or a regular glass jar or vase will work)
- Tissue paper
- Mod Podge (or 2 tbsp. white glue mixed with 2 tbsp. water)
- Paint brushes
- Cut out shapes of your choice from the tissue paper. Cut out several of each shape. Feel free to trace out shapes with pencil before hand.
- Paint on the Mod Podge (or glue solution) onto a small section of the bottle. Stick on a tissue paper shape. Paint more Mod Podge or glue solution over the top of the tissue and add another layer. Continue until the shape is as opaque as you would like. Don’t worry about getting one layer exactly on top of another layer. It looks fine if they are a little off.
- Continue adding tissue shapes all over the bottle or jar. When you are done, paint a coat of Mod Podge over the whole thing.
- Let dry. The Mod Podge will dry clear.
- Use scissors with blades sized appropriately to the age of the girls you’re w0rking with.
- Ensure that girls are not getting the glue or Mod Podge in their mouths.
Be aware that the adhesive you’re using is water soluable, so you should use these primarily with fake flowers or have adults take great care in washing the insides ONLY if used with real flowers.
Quick Shopping for This Project