Thursday, April 14, 2016

Spring Crafts for Kids with Oriental Trading!

We received free product to facilitate this review. No other compensation was received. 
All opinions expressed are our own.

I'm always looking for fun activities to keep my 5 year old busy and there is nothing better than theme-based crafts - they make us feel like we're celebrating something and who doesn't love to celebrate? Right now we're celebrating the arrival of spring and the arrival of a new baby!

I have mixed feelings about the change in seasons. I guess I'm one of those people who can think of a reason that each season is my favorite so it's always bittersweet to pass from one to the other! The early months of this year have flown by. We welcomed a sweet baby girl to our family in February... and basically the rest is a blur! Weather-wise, we had a mild winter in New England. Although I missed the blizzards, I was relieved to not be in labor during one. Now that the weather has warmed up even more, I'm excited for things like long walks, picnics, and sunshine!

We have a five year old and a seven week old and I kind of can't believe it. There aren't many dull moments around here but there are certainly some competing needs. Since I'm often preoccupied with the needs of a newborn, my five year old is sometimes feeling a little left out. We've been looking for some fun, kid-friendly activities that require minimal adult involvement. Thanks to Oriental Trading, my big girl has been very busy celebrating the start of spring and the start of big-sisterhood with some great craft projects. 

We love Oriental Trading for their affordable, vast selection of kids' crafts. Here are some of the spring crafts we've been working on!

These super cute scenes are easy and just sort of magical for kids! Using the plastic tool provided, just scratch away the top green layer to reveal the vibrant colorful scene below! There are, as is typical with craft kits from Oriental Trading, 12 identical pictures and tools included in the kit - great for sharing or crafting on more than one occasion. This was my daughter's first exposure to scratch art and she loved it!

This assortment of colorful flowers takes scratch art craft to the next level. Again, the kit includes 12 flowers and 12 scratching tools. The color and shape of the colors vary. Simply scratch your own creative designs into the top layer to reveal rainbow colors underneath. My daughter worked on this with her aunt and uncle when they came to visit recently. This craft was enjoyed by all ages!

I always loved sand art as a child, so I was especially excited to share this fun activity with my girl.  This kit includes four each of three different bugs, individually packaged, with individually packed colored sands. The activity is much simpler than you may think! Just peel the top off of each self-adhesive section and sprinkle the colored sand of your choice. Here are some of our creations!

We did some sticker foam crafts last fall and loved them, so getting some for spring was a definite! This is probably the simplest craft ever, but the characters and colors really make it special. Aren't these spring friends just the cutest?! We actually didn't use these as magnets, but instead used them as place markers for a big family dinner. They are so adorable and helped us set the perfect spring table! 

Sticker dot art is an activity that encourages creativity in a mess-free and organized way - hooray! This kit includes a variety of 12 flower pages and different colored and sized stickers. I loved this craft but my daughter felt overwhelmed by the number of small sticker sections. She enjoyed working collaboratively with her grandmother to complete these flowers. It was a team effort to finish them, but we were okay with that!

Sticking with the sticker theme (because what kindergartener doesn't love stickers?!), we really enjoyed this craft kit. Included are 12 sheets of paper with only grass and sky decorating them. Your task is to do the rest of the decorating with the enclosed stickers. This was a big hit with my storytelling five year old. She loved creating her own scene! Typical of Oriental Trading, these repositionable stickers are bright, colorful, and just so cute. And again, hooray for mess-free crafts!

Besides having some crafts that my daughter can work on alone, we've really enjoyed doing some special crafts together when the baby is sleeping. It's so important that she knows that even though my undivided attention might be hard to come by for a bit, spending time with her is still a huge priority for me. Fuse beads have taken up much of our alone time together. 

Oriental Trading has lots of different sets of fuse beads and fuse bead boards. We are using the Pretty Pastel Fuse Beads and the Vivid Fuse Beads, the Fantastic Shaped Fuse Bead Boards, and the Fuse Beads Ironing Paper to create some lovely masterpieces - all of which have been gifted to school friends! We've used the Spring Fuse Bead Free Templates which can be downloaded free as pdf's from Oriental Trading to create some extra special seasonal designs!

For those who may not be familiar with fuse beads, these little beads fit on tiny pegs on fuse bead boards to create whatever design you dream up (or copy from a template). When you're done, an adult covers it with wax paper and irons for 15-20 seconds to fuse the beads together. Once cool, remove it from the board, and you have a masterpiece! This craft is a tedious one but its very well-loved in our house!

Given that my daughter loves to make gifts and pictures for her school friends, it's not surprising that we go through stickers fast around here. We love this roll of 100 stickers with our favorite Peanuts characters. Aren't the messages on them are the best? Each sticker can be detached individually along the perforations, so if you want to give them away while preserving their stickiness, you can!

For outside time, now that the weather is getting warmer (some days!), we've tried these sidewalk paintbrushes that put regular old sidewalk chalk to shame! The colors are so vibrant! The only downside to these is that you'll use them up quickly. Luckily, when you order these you'll get a total of 10 paintbrushes - two packages with five different colors in each.

The assortment of spring crafts available from Oriental Trading is endless! There are so many affordable, high-quality, low-mess options to choose from. We highly recommended every craft that we tried but feel free to check out even more on the Oriental Trading website.

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