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Book Review: Crafting Fun, 101 Things to Make and Do with Kids

Crafting Fun, 101 Things to Make and Do with Kids

By Rae Grant

St. Martin's Press, $19.95


What it is: Simple crafts and activities for kids.

What parents will like: The crafts are organized by season, making it easy to choose a project for a particular time of year.

What suprised me: There are no pictures of finished crafts.

Crafts we made:

Pine Cone Turkey

Materials needed

1 sheet each of color construction paper or felt

Dry pinecones of varying sizes

Feathers (craft stores sell these by the bag)


Pom-poms (1 per turkey)

Popcorn kernels, uncooked

1. For each turkey, cut out a yellow or orange beak from paper or felt. To make the beak, fold yellow construction paper and cut out a small double triange, about 1 1/2 inches along the fold. Cut a rounded L shape from red paper for the turkey's wattle.

2. Using 6 to 8 feathers per turkey, lightly dip the ends of each feather into the glue. Insert it in to the back of the pinecone to form a colorful turkey tail.

3. Glue the pom-pom to the tip of a pincone to form a head allow gue to dry. Next, glue the beak and a red wattle to the pom-pom. Add popcorn kernels for the eyes.

Before you start

Eyes: In the day of microwave popcorn, I didn't have popcorn kernels for the eyes. So I used stick on jewels instead.

Pinecones: I had a hard time finding pinecones that did not have a cinnammon scent. I left the bag on the front porch for several days to let them air out.

Glitter Pinecones

Materials needed



Glitter (various colors)

Empty jar or small bowls






1. Cover your work surface with newspapers. Pleace a tablespoon of each color of glitter into seperate bowls.

2. Pour several teaspoons of glue in a clean bowl and add about a teaspoon of water to thin it out. Working with one pinecone at a time, use a paintbrush to glue over the entire pinecone.

3. Using a spoon, hold the pinecone over a plate and sprinkle with glitter until the pinecone is well coated. Shake off the excess glitter onto the paper plate. Let the pinecone dry. Pour any extra glitter back into a small jar.

4. Tie a colorful thread about 5 inches long around the middle of the pinecone and make a loop. Hang it on your Christmas tree or use it as decoration on a wrapped gift.

Extra ideas: Make a glitter pinecone tree by adding sequins and small colorful beads to the tips of the pinecone. Set the tree on a small mirror and decorate it with soft, white fabric or cotton stuffing to resemble an out door ice skating pond.

Before you start

Pinecones: I had a hard time finding pinecones that did not have a cinnammon scent. I left the bag on the front porch for several days to let them air out.

Holiday Doorbell

Materials needed


Ribbon, about 12 inches long

25 small jingle bells of various sizes and colors

Embrodery thread

Count out about 25 jingle bells. Thread bells onto the ribbon until you have enough to form the size you want. Tie the ribbon in a knot and then in a big bow. Slip it over the doorknob and enjoy the festive sounds it will make.

Extra ideas: You can also make a musical ankle bracelet using jingle bells. You may want to use embroidery thread instead of ribbon for this project.

Before you start

Don't get hung up on the size. Each of our girls made a doorbell with one tube of bells from Hobby Lobby.

Ribbon: Make sure the ribbon you use to string the bells is not too wide. I was not able to figure out how to tie a bow large enough to fit over the doorknob. Instead, I tied a loop with the top of the ribbon holding the bells. I then tied a seperate bow just above the string of bells.

Tinsel Stars

Materials needed

6 standard tinsel pipe cleaners (silver, gold, or multi colored)

Beads (optional)


1. Cut a standard pipe cleaner in half so you have 2 equal lengths. Cut a third pipe cleaner about 1/4 inch longer than the other two pieces. This third piece will be the hook.

2. Twist the 2 equal pieces together at the centers, then wrap the third piece onto the twisted pieces forming a star.

3. Bend the top end of the third piece into a hook and hang the ornament on tree. Repeat with the reamaining pipe cleaner to make 2 more stars.

Snow Globe

Materials needed

Small glass jar with lid

(baby food, and jam jars work well)

Florist clay (found at most craft supply stores)

Plastic or ceramic figurines of deer or evergreen tree

Distilled water or water that has been boiled and cooled

Glitter (found at most craft supply stores)

Glycerin or corn syrup


1. Wash and dry your jar completely, including the lid. Press florist clay around the inside of the lid to make a base. Gently push figurines into the clay to make an arrangement that you like.

2. Fill the jar with distilled water within 1/2 of top. Add 1/4 teaspoon of glycerin or corn syrup to help the glitter float slowly in the liquid. Sprinkle 1/2 teaspoon of glitter into the liquid. Screw the lid on tightly. Add a layer of glue around the outside edges of the lid to seal in water. Allow glue to dry. Gently turn the jar over and bak again to make it snow.

Before you start

Jar: I did not have baby food or jam jars, so I purchased a jar with screw-on lid from Hobby Lobby.

Florist clay: Make sure the florist clay base is at least 1" high so figures can be seen when lid is attached. Also, make sure the clay doesn't go to the edge of the jar lid. Otherwise, the lid will not screw on to the jar.

Figures: The dye on the evergreen trees I purchased bled into the water and dyed the snowman and the water green. The snowman I purchase were actually small Christmas ornaments.