Craft ideas for rainy days and summer

Craft ideas for rainy days and summer

by Amanda Hayward
Stripes Japan

School’s out and the kids are anxious to get outdoors – rain or shine. Sometimes the timing isn’t right for travel or a vacation. But, there are endless of inexpensive kid crafts to make right at home. Who needs a beach? Fun memories with your children are fun memories, so make the best of what you have. 


Bird feeders – DIY bird feeders please your children and birds all at once. Pour two cups of birdseed in a large bowl and boil one packet of unflavored gelatin in a saucepan on the stove. Remove and cool (younger kids need to let the parents do this part), then pour the cooled mixture into the birdseed and leave the mixing for your child. Generously fill your favorite cookie cutters (arranged on parchment paper) with the mixture – you can also use muffin tins. Poke a hole through the feeders with a straw and let dry overnight (or pop into the fridge for a few hours). Finally, loop a string or yarn through the hole, hang your feeders and see where the spring birds have been hiding all winter. 

Canned flower pots – What child doesn’t love paint? Grab tubes of your favorite crafty non-toxic acrylic paint colors, dilute with water and clean out the empty food cans lying around the house (small coffee can-sized cans are ideal). Children love picking flowers for mom, so once the cans dry, fill them with water and place bright spring flowers in them. This project is fantastic for mom and child because it keeps the kids busy while mom’s house gets decorated. Acrylic paint is extremely versatile so it’s fun for the little painters in your life. It dries quickly and is great to paint over once completely dry. It’s washable on skin with a good scrub with soap and water. For more information on this DIY flower can project and other creative craft ideas with the kids, visit Little Inspiration.

Coffee filter suncatchers – Catch the spring/summer sun while it’s hot with your coffee filters? Yes, white coffee filters are inexpensive and hold liquid making them great for this project. You’ll need your kiddo, a handful of coffee filters, an eyedropper, water paint (diluted food coloring works well, too), an ice cube tray for the water colors (miniature bowls work well also), and plastic wrap for drying. Set up an ice cube tray with a water color variety, cut out fun designs on the filters with kidfriendly scissors (if you’re no Van-go, find cheap printable designs on Etsy and trace onto a paper plate. Now you have a stencil design for your filter). Let your child drip the one color at-a-time onto the filters. Watch the colors magically swirl together. Let dry and place them in the windows – voilá, inexpensive house décor.


Camping scavenger hunt – If vacation is a must, try camping – adding in crafty activities can make it interesting for the whole family. Think outside the s’mores – like paper lanterns and a nature scavenger hunt with DIY binoculars. Before leaving the house, grab an empty egg carton, print out 12 small nature pictures and glue them over each section. Have the kid’s find the items and fill up there cartons. DIY binoculars made with toilet paper roles, scrapbook paper, glue, a hole puncher and string will kick the hunt up a notch. Fit the paper to the tube and glue the end. Wrap the paper around the tube, gluing as you go until completely wrapped around and the other end is securely glued. Glue the tubes together (making binocular shape), punch holes and string in a long string, long enough to go around their heads and avoid choking hazards.

Water gun fun – Water-gun painting brings on a whole new idea to water coloring. A white canvas (found at your local Baumarkt), a cheap squirt gun, acrylic paint and a drop cloth for the mess are all you need for this fun activity. Tape a solid design on the canvas and shoot away. More details on this summer craft can be found at Somewhat Simple.

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