Wednesday, 21 December 2011

Looking for stocking fillers? Then get Christmas crafts at Poundland!

The kids have finished school and are enjoying their time off, and it’s easy for parents to feel panicked about how to keep them entertained during the Christmas holidays.

"Poundland has come up with some festive and affordable craft ideas that can keep the kids occupied for hours. We’ve turned some of these ideas into a generic article about Christmas crafts, which we felt your readers may enjoy," explained a spokeswoman.

What springs to mind when you think of childrens’ Christmas crafts? Hair full of glue and glitter, a carpet covered in sequins and snowflake paper cuttings to clear up at the end? Yes, thought as much.

It all looks ever so easy on Blue Peter, with the famous ‘one I made earlier.’ But in reality, we don’t all have the time, patience or artistic ability to pull off a full size rocket made from toilet rolls and PVC glue... especially when there's also a Christmas dinner to cook and presents to wrap! While we all like the idea of being the perfect parent who embraces creative activities and then sweeps up the mess in one fell swoop, we all know this is difficult to achieve when we’re busy and stressed and there's a host of relatives knocking on the door.

It’s great to get children thinking creatively and expressing themselves through arts and crafts and – if you know where to look – it can be a pleasure, not a pain. Much precious time can be spent with the kids over the Christmas holidays making cards together, wrapping presents, creating your own crackers or even making decorations to put up around the home.

The warmth of the oven is also an inspiring place to start with crafts at Christmas. Baking a delicious Christmas cake needn’t cost a fortune, and the whole family will enjoy decorating it with snow white icing and fun accessories. If Christmas cake isn’t to your taste, what about crispy gingerbread men or cute Christmas cupcakes? Edible glitter is easily available and food dye makes for colourful and tasty treats! Best of all, ideas like these needn’t cost a fortune.

There are plenty of websites with handy tips on what to make and where to begin. Activityvillage.co.uk is a great website with plenty of ‘how to’ guides for kids’ crafts that are straightforward and something they will actually be able to achieve. Plus there are ideas to suit different age groups and budgets. Mummy bloggers often test a whole variety of products with their kids so it’s also worth checking out a few reviews and seeing what they have to say.

Most importantly, you don’t want this to cost a fortune as Christmas is expensive enough as it is! It’s great to recycle things from around the home (yes, toilet rolls included!) and as well as being a green way to craft, it keeps the cost down. Old shoe boxes can be decorated to make beautiful memory boxes, old sheets and garments are ideal for at home Nativity plays and flattened cereal boxes can be re-crafted to make bespoke Christmas cards from the kids.

Best of all, hobby and craft products are readily available on the high street so you don’t need to battle the Christmas shopping madness to find niche art stores for your supplies. Make sure you find a store that sells a range of arty products that are inexpensive. You can let the kids choose the items that catch their eye so they can get excited about using them and you don’t have to worry about the cost mounting up.

And who knows, with enough encouragement and a bit of assistance, you might have a little Michelangelo in the making!

Great sources for children’s craft ideas:

http://www.allfreecrafts.com/
www.crafts.kaboose.com/holidays/christmas/christmas-crafts.html

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