So you want to do a craft project with your kids but you don’t have the dozen or so things needed to make something amazing? Don’t be intimidated by a materials list! From edible necklaces to easy bird-feeders, here are our five-ingredient-or-fewer faves.

photo: Melissa Heckscher

Cheerio Necklaces

Depending on how hungry she is, your little jewelry-maker will probably want to make a few of these necklaces that require only Cheerios (or any O-shaped cereal) and string to create. Just thread your string through the "O" until you're ready to tie it up and put it on. Hint: These are great projects to do at the table when kids are waiting for a meal.

Materials: "O"-shaped cereal, string.

Tic Tac Toe Rocks

Sticks and stones may break your bones—but they make great craft materials! A little paint and a bit of nature's own ingredients and your kids can make a tic tac toe board worthy of your coffee table. Crafty moms Jodie and Jen of Eighteen25 will tell you how.

Materials: Rocks, four wood square dowels (or plain old sticks, if you want a more rustic look), paint, paintbrush.

Straw Rockets

Note to self: Keep a few of these super-cool straw rockets in your purse for the next restaurant outing with the kids. Better yet, tote the simple four ingredients in your bag and let your kids put together (and launch) this craft while they’re waiting for their meals. The other diners will thank you… until a paper rocket lands in their wine glass. Get the instructions from Mama Leslie at Pink Stripey Socks.

Materials: Paper, markers, straw, tape.

DIY Harmonica

Why buy a cheap, plastic harmonica when your tiny tinkerers can make their own with a few easy steps and just four ingredients. Get the instructions from self-proclaimed "reinventor" Maya at mayamade.blogspot.com.

Materials: Rubber bands, popsicle sticks, paper, tape.

photo: Melissa Heckscher

Paper Plate Frisbee

Would your kid rather play outside than do arts and crafts at the table? This easy paper craft will giver her a little of both. Get the simple instructions from blogging mother-of-four Amanda Formaro at Crafts By Amanda.

Materials: Paper plates, markers, tape, scissors.

Clothespin Dragonflies

Pipe cleaners and clothespins are the main ingredients for these colorful clip-on dragonflies. A few easy steps and your kids will be clipping these adorable winged creatures all over your house. Mama Michelle has the details on her blog, Crafty Morning.

Materials: Clothespins, pipe cleaners, googley eyes, paint, glue.

Bowtie Bookmark

Want to make something that will inspire your child's reading and her creativity? Bowtie pasta has never looked cuter than in this easy DIY bookmark. Get the scoop from the Mod Podge gurus at Mod Podge Rocks.

Materials: Laminated cardstock, bowtie pasta, glitter, Mod Podge gloss, glue gun.

Egg Carton Bird Feeder

Next time you're about to toss an empty egg carton into the trash or recycling bin, stop and read Creative Cubby's easy instructions on how to make an egg carton bird feeder. Your feathered friends will thank you and you'll teach your kids a good lesson on repurposing everyday items.

Want more bird-feeding ideas? Checkout our post on 12 Backyard Bird Feeders that Rock the Treetops.

Materials: Egg carton, string, glue, scissors, bird seed.

DIY Cork Boat

Remember those mystifying ship-in-a-bottle creations? Handmade Charlotte gives our fascination a little twist with a cork sailboat project. Watch it become nifty house decor after you put the ship in a jar filled with water and pebbles, or let it travel the harsh waves of bathtime. Find out how to make your kids captain of this craft here.

Materials: Corks, thread, cardboard, toothpicks

Balloon Bracelets

Don't throw those popped balloon remains away! Artsy and creative mom Michelle has the secret to turning those frowns upside down with a balloon bracelet. Get ready to string popped or new balloons into wearable happiness. Note: With completely shattered balloons, snip and save the stems and necks for a different style.

Materials: Balloons, tape, elastic bands

“3D” Paper Neighborhoods

Handsy tots will love watching their imaginative efforts “pop” into the third dimension. Snip magazine scraps and colored papers into houses, streets and skyscrapers. To see how to make this city come to life, head over to Mrs. Picasso’s Art Room!

Materials: Scissors, paper (from plain to magazine scraps), glue, stapler (optional)

Nature Printing

Reprint nature with stamps from Mother Earth herself! Scavenge your backyard for tiny pine cones, ferns, and flowers (last two need to be dried for stiffness) and experiment with ink. Emily Neuburger encouraged her kids to roll, press and smudge their creativity out. The final product? Lovely wrapping paper, framed art or even gift cards.

Materials: Craft paint, ink pads, dried rose buds, pine cones (almost anything can be used as a stamp)

Toilet Roll Characters

Fold in the edges of paper rolls and what form do you see? Do those points make an the ear of a cat? Or maybe there's a wild rumpus ready to start! That’s exactly what Katie from Matsutake and her little assistant saw, and with some paint, they brought a Wild Thing to life. Check out her blog to see what other creatures she was inspired to create.

Materials: Paper rolls (toilet, wrapping paper, paper towels, etc.) paint, markers

— Christal Yuen & Melissa Heckscher

 

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