Sunday, March 15, 2020

Staycation Crafts: 10 Fun Kits To Make While You're At Home Chilling

Remember when you were a kid and you'd get a little kit with all the pre-cut foam or clay or whatnot to make the Pretty Thing on the cover? I LOVE THOSE.

So since most of us have a little more time at home right now, I thought I'd put together a list of great craft kits on Amazon. And puzzles. And models. Basically anything that includes all the tools and materials we need to make something fun, and also that has good reviews, costs less than $20, and ships Prime so we can get to crafting ASAP.

Naturally, I got REALLY carried away.
(Nya-ha-haaa!)

Turns out there are so many cool craft kits now, you guys. And not just kid stuff! I'm talking needle-felting, string art, miniatures models! My head is spinning. I found kits for every skill level, from coloring to crochet. I'll link you to my complete list at the end of this post - since I'm still adding more - but first, here come 10 of my favorites:






This is a smaller model kit, about hand-sized. I've put together other UGears models and love them, though they can occasionally test your patience. You pop out the pre-cut wooden pieces and assemble, no tools required. I think this one would be pretty with some painted-on gold and black accents, don't you? 



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Next, can we talk about how far paint-by-number kits have come? These are NOT the forest scenes and portraits of puppy dogs I grew up with:




Always check the comment photos on paint-by-numbers kits, since the real thing doesn't always look like what's advertised. Happily these two are pretty bang on, though! I've got several more options in my big list, too, so keep scrolling for those. (I found at least 4 I want to paint!)

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 This comes with all the supplies you need to make Harry and Dobby, instructions for making everyone, AND a wand crochet hook?! Omigosh. Adorable.

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Next is sort of a reverse coloring book: Scratch-off art!


This is a 36-page book of scratch-off mandalas with the most gorgeous colors - and it comes with the stylus tool you need to do the scratching. The comment reviews have even prettier photos than the official ones, which is always a good sign. I love the partially-revealed designs, so magical.


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I've made a few kits from Weave Got Maille; they're fantastic and great for any skill level. (I should note you DO need two pairs of chain nose or flat nose pliers, which are not included.) The kit comes in 13 different colorways, so click over to see all your options! 

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Adorable clay baked goods? YES PLEASE. This comes with everything: tools, clay, beads, even display stands.

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And if you like that, I have even MORE cute:




This comes with all the needles and materials you need to make those 4 dolls. The kit comes with phone lanyards for them, but they'd also be adorable bag charms or pins!

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Here's one for dog and/or cat lovers:




This comes with plastic pegs instead of nails, and is apparently doable by kids as young as 6? Wow. That makes me feel better about my own chances with it. :D


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I remember loving latch-hook kits when I was a kid, but the pattern options were always a bit blah. Well, NO MORE:



Pretty rainbow options! These are sold separately and prices vary, but the heart one is only $12. I like the idea of turning them into shaggy pillows when you're done.

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I've always liked paper craft and papercutting, but I couldn't find a good origami kit I liked (let me know if you find one!). Instead, I stumbled across something called Kirigami, which looks super cool:


This only includes the pre-printed sheets you need to cut, so you'll still need a cutting mat and blade, ruler, etc. - but how gorgeous are those design? Reminds me of the layered shadowboxes I keep seeing with lights in them!


If none of these kits caught your eye, don't worry: I HAVE MORE. Head over to my Amazon Idea List to see all my craft kit finds! 


 As of this writing I have 32 different kits linked - but I keep adding more, so be sure to check back! I'm hoping to get a good variety in there, so feel free to hit me with suggestions. (Though for the record, I can't find a good quilling kit. I'll keep looking!) Hopefully something here will jog your memory and reunite you with a craft you haven't tried since you were a kid, or introduce you to something new!

I love you guys. Remember to keep calm and craft on.  ::elbow bump::

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Oh hey, and if you're looking for MORE crafts, mosey on over to my tutorials page!

26 comments:

  1. All my life, I've been collecting craft materials. I've made a lot of things over the years, so I have some overflow from that - but generally if I'm at a Goodwill or a Dollar Tree or a garage sale, I'm looking for materials. I try to keep them organized, but it's: a lot. Pretty much any kind of ribbon, yarn, fabric, paint, clay, sticker, paper, bead, finding, furbelow and notion known to man.

    A few years ago, I started working as a children's librarian. OK!, I thought. THIS is why I've saved all of these many and disparate items! And indeed I've used lots of things to enhance crafts with the kids.

    But now I know. THIS is why I've been hoarding craft supplies and books all of my life: to be happy in quarantine. We should start a hashtag: #quarantinecrafts on the EPBOT Facebook page, to demonstrate that we're only getting the good kind of demented whilst staying home!

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  2. I've just seen Spirograph kits... I think I need one!

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  3. Here's a great quilling set! Twirled Paper I guess they call it twirled paper so it doesn't sound so intimidating? It has instructions, but mostly great starter stuff, and then you can go wild!!

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    1. Looks like it's available for a reasonable price other places...

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    2. I was just coming to recommend this. I bought it for Christmas a few years ago and made some cute things although abandoned it to Value Village given lack of time for crafting. Now I wish I’d kept it.

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  4. This Harry Potter Perler kit is mighty cute. And I might have bought one before recommending it here!
    https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07PJNXSGH/?coliid=I3DGPXOMIXS2PL&colid=3VP7GQXXW1MTS&ref_=lv_ov_lig_dp_it&th=1#

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    1. That's perfect! Just added it to the list, thanks!

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  5. I’m actually in the middle of the Up paint by number, I got it for Christmas. It’s very cute but super tedious! If you have bad eyesight I don’t think you can do this without a magnifying glass!

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    1. I noticed some of those look insanely detailed! I'd be tempted to get one of those fancy light-up magnifying lamps, espeically since I like to craft in our low-light back room.

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  6. OMG Klutz books! Those are awesome! I used to work in a bookstore and loved to see the various crafts they'd come up with. They're how I got into making beaded jewelry, though it doesn't look like that book is available any longer.
    Here are the current offerings:
    https://shop.scholastic.com/parent-ecommerce/klutz.html
    --Yet Another Jen

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  7. I thank you for this post, but my wallet doesn't :P. I LOVE kits like these!! :D Do you know of any good, nerdy embroidery kits?

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    1. I think you'll find more on Etsy than Amazon, though most of them are patterns only; hard to find a good nerdy kit!

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  8. I havn't tried the Harry potter crochet kit, but I have the MLP and it was not for beginners. I'd recommend learning the basics before attempting it, but there are a lot of good crochet tutorials on youtube.

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    1. I was wondering about that; anything with an instruction book that long HAS to be difficult, lol. Thanks for the heads up!

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    2. I got the HP one for my birthday! It does start with a couple pages explaining the basic stitches, but it would be way easier for someone who already has some experience. I do a lot of amigurumi and some of the instructions are a little tricky for me to understand. But the end results are great!! The crochet wand is awesome, but it's mostly for looks, i wouldn't recommend using it, specially beginners.

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  9. I bought that Stitch pic as a diamond painting kit, and now I'm hooked on diamond painting.

    I've turned my office wall into an art gallery with Monets and Van Goghs.

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  10. I've now gotten lost in the rabbit hole of scratch off art. I love mandalas and have several coloring books, but I tend to get stressed doing them with having to pick the colors and keeping them repetitive in the pattern. These look perfect and I've got several of the scratch off ones in my cart that I'm trying to decide between. Happy crafting!

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  11. Jen, I just want to thank you for once again being a beacon of light and comfort in a difficult time. I'm off all social media at the moment as I can't take the constant stream of doom and gloom. This post, though I am not personally crafty at all, brightened my day.

    For anyone else who feels overwhelmed, a quick story: I called my sister today and told her of a sermon I just heard on the radio, where the pastor was listing suggestions of ways to reach out and stay connected with our various communities during this time. The pastor also encouraged listeners to cherish the additional time with family, and suggested simple activities like board games, taking walks, building things together, catching up on a favorite show, engaging in meaningful conversation, etc. My sister laughed and told me that she'd just read a blog post by a rabbi who encouraged readers to consider this time as an "extended Sabbath," a time to turn away from work and day-to-day cares and focus on family, rest, and reflection.

    All of this to say - no matter your faith or personal beliefs, there are some silver linings to this overwhelming situation. More time to craft and create is one of them. :-) The sermon and the phone call with my sister helped me so much today. I hope this message helps one of you.

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  12. Crafting, creating, and cleaning! Perfect time for all three. I am still able to work full-time from home, so my crafting time hasn't increased. Yet. I've already cleaned out the cupboard under my bathroom sink and found a whole bag of individual alcohol wipes! who knew they were there? lol Next up is to organize my craft supplies. I made sure my mom (age almost 75) has crafting supplies to keep her occupied and we have plenty of options for games and crafts to entice the kids off the video games for at least a little while each day. Craft On People! :)

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  13. What a fabulous list!! :) A quick heads up for those considering the scratch-off mandalas - I've done some other scratch-off designs, and they do look amazing when done, but doing them is hard on your dominant hand. You have to make very precise movements while holding the tool quite tightly, and I found my hand cramping up after a scratch-off session! So you might want to plan to do those over a longer period of time, in short bursts rather than extended sittings.

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  14. May I add a word to all the moms out there? I am not a mom, but I am a retired teacher and I just want to say, chill out! All these resources and other online educational resources are wonderful,but you do not need to educate/entertain/monitor your stay at home students 24/7. This is an unusual time, so make sure they're doing some assigned work, provide some other resources, and then LET IT GO! Be kind to yourself and your kids!

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  15. I have so many projects that I've been putting off....and I'm still putting them off. Blame the man for getting me a Switch and Pokemon Sword for my birthday yesterday.

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  16. If you're still looking for a fun, geeky Origami starter - my origami-loving nephew recommends "Art2-D2's Guide to Folding and Doodling" by Tom Angleberger. It's related to the Origami Yoda books (which I also highly recommend), but this is a companion book that teaches how to do a bunch of Star Wars origami crafts.

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  17. Hey Jen, you can do some seriously cool pop up papercrafting with your cutting machine. This is one I did years ago by hand, but if you search etsy there will be billions of patterns you can buy to cut with your machine. https://www.pinterest.com/pin/192177109074586180/ Papercutting and pop up cards are brilliant fun!

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  18. Hey Jen, I bought the Needle felting kit and wanted to leave a review for you and anyone else who may be interested. 1. It's super easy to get started and make something close to what is in the instructions. 2. The instructions are still a bit vague, so watch online videos to get better instruction before you start, You'll be happier with the results. 3. DO NOT get this if you can't handle needle sticks/ the sight of blood.... Even though the kit comes with leather "thimble" finger covers there are some times you just need the fine dexterity of bare fingers and you will get stuck! Know this going in and you'll be fine. This is a great craft kit for teaching patience. You will need to poke each shape/piece over and over and over again until you finally get it tight enough. The slower you go the less you get poked too! There are loads of other figures you can make once you have the basic idea of how to do this.
    Finally, BEWARE.... Needle Felting is addictive!!! It's a great way to get out frustrations as you can imagine whatever or whoever is frustrating you in the wool and then stab them over and over and over and over... until you feel peaceful!
    Not a good craft while trying to multi-task, You want to watch where you are poking the needle!
    Enjoy!!

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