It’s hard to narrow down all the great art masterpieces we can create from the supplies and kits in our stores but we have asked some of our Play Ambassadors to test out a few so we can share some creations and tips with you! Bonus: check out the sale details at the end of this blog!
First up is Lille testing out Do-a-Dot Markers in the 2+ age group. Similar to a bingo dabber, this marker has a screw cap, sponge tip and the paint is released by simply pushing the tip to the paper. No brushes to clean or cups of water to tip over. We LOVE that part 🙂 These washable, non-toxic dabbers are concave on two sides, making them easier for little hands to grasp. AND they won’t dry out or drip on your table if the cap is left off!
Pounding things on a table is a fun time for a toddler so this was no different. The babe had fun and dad got to work on colors and counting with her while she played!
The older crew (ages 3-103 is listed on the packaging) can enjoy drawing pictures, dotting their name and completing the coordinating activity books.
Do-a-Dot Pro Tips
Creative Uses–Try using these with plastic stencils, poster boards for GIANT greeting cards or try on coffee filters for a tie-dye effect when sprayed with water (pictured).
Negative Space–Use painters tape or Washi tape (a removable tape of some type) and spell out a name, word or design on white paper (works best on heavy white cardstock). Let your kiddos cover the paper with dots and after the paper dries, gently remove the tape to reveal the design. So easy even the 18 month old crowd can do it!
Stepping Stone Dinosaur Footprint
The Paint Your Own Dino Footprint kit (ages 8+) does double duty by allowing you to create mysterious dino footprint impressions in the sand or dirt (or even snow!) AND you can create a beautiful custom-painted all-weather stepping stone for the garden.
This kit was tested by 9 year old Play Ambassador, Felix. The stone comes ready to paint with a brush and 8 colors ready for mixing. “I love that I got to paint it myself. I liked that I got a bunch of different colors and it was fun mixing them up to make new colors.” – Felix, (future Picasso rival)
Parents liked how easy and thoughtful this project was. Felix got to learn about color mixing and the color wheel. He could be creative with color and pattern and the stone itself is hefty. Definitely feels like it’ll have no problem surviving many Minnesota winters to come!
Dino Pro Tips:
“The tip I would give to other kids is that it only takes a little bit of black paint to make colors darker.” – Felix
Felix can’t wait to put it at the edge of his yard so it looks like a dinosaur walked into the woods. Rawwwwwr.
Mythical Pom Animals
Kids will love that they can create their own stuffed animals with this Mythical Pom Animals kit (ages 4+). These pre-sewn felt shapes make this project SO easy (for kids AND parents!) and allow kids to be proud of creating their own snuggle buddy.
Etta (age 5) gave the Mythical Pom Animals a thumbs up! The project started a little slow with sorting poms (not the most exciting part but don’t skip it) but she was so excited that she got to make her own stuffed animal!
It’s so fun to spend time working on a project together when your little is so excited to be doing it! She also loved that there were ways for her to customize the kit and make it her own.
Mom loved that minimal extra stuff was needed–just an iron and scissors. No messy glue (HUGE win with little kids involved) so it wasn’t hard to clean up at all. And they got to make stuffed animals without any sewing!
“YEAH!”All non-sewing parents everywhere
Pom Pro Tips
Read the directions ahead of time. It does give clear instruction, but be sure to read and follow the directions before starting the project. It will help ensure your animals turn out looking great!
Take your time on the ironing part. Etta’s mom said she’d be more diligent on the next one knowing it needs to be done well.
Dino Sewing Kit
Play Ambassador Gabe (age 3 and a half…don’t forget the half!) tested out the Dino Sewing Kit (ages 4+). Even though he was on the young side for the sewing, he had fun making his own stuffie with some adult supervision.
Mom loved the idea of co-creating a stuffed animal with her toddler and Gabe loved peeling off decorations and throwing stuffing. It’s a win-win!
Displaying & Storing Kids’ Art
As parents, we all know the volume of art projects that can collect on the fridge/bulletin board/window ledges/laundry room/basement stairway/under the bed! And you know Marie Kondo would tell you to organize and store those keepsakes! It can be overwhelming to display and store them ALL, but the mom-guilt can also be fierce when it comes to getting rid of it. Here are just a few ideas for managing the art chaos:
Loft by Umbra Kids Art Display
This 11×14 black display box is perfect for displaying one piece of art at a time and storing other pieces in the box behind the display. The box can turn on its side to accommodate designs in either direction and we love that it stands up on it’s own–no easel or hanging necessary!
Shadow Box Frame
It’s one thing to store all the paper art that comes home, but what about the pipe cleaners and the clay and the castles they build out of refrigerator boxes. How do you display that?! We love the idea of taking pictures of the art and creating a collage to frame–you can even include a picture of the artist. This is a great way to consolidate and use very little space. Lots of photo printing websites (i.e. Snapfish, Shutterfly…) and store kiosks (i.e. CVS, Costco…) offer collage printing options so choose your favorite and start printing!
Keepy Phone App
This app for your phone can store your child’s artwork, allows you to record your child’s voice talking about the art and you can invite family friends to view the art, too! They also have merchandise you can purchase with the art printed directly on it. The creators designed this app to be a guilt-free way to reduce the piles of your kids’ artwork while still capturing those special moments, so you can look back on them for years to come.