Could you use some ideas for last minute, easy holiday gifts that kids can help make? The following four projects are great gifts for friends, neighbors, grandparents, and even stocking stuffers.
And my 3-year old helped make all of these projects, so they’re also all kid-tested.
Beaded Ornament Activity Kit
Collect a set of basic supplies (pipe cleaners and beads), and pull together your own craft kits for friends or cousins with young children.
Supplies: Pipe Cleaner Bead Ornaments
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Make a Sheet of Directions
- Choose a pipe cleaner
- Sting the beads onto the pipe cleaner until it’s roughly 1/3 full of beads
- Move all the beads to the middle of the pipe cleaner
- Create a circle of beads
- Twist the pipe cleaner to secure the top of the circle
- Make a hook
- Hang it on your tree
I folded a piece of card stock in half, typed (with this typewriter) “Make and Ornament” on one side (you could also stamp, print, draw this on, etc.) stapled up the sides, and attached an example of the activity to the side with a piece of clear tape.
We filled the envelope with a small baggie of assorted beads (from a few big bags that we sub-divided) and four pipe cleaners that I prepared with a little bead-stopping loop at one end.
Tissue Paper Circles or Coffee Filters
I prepared an envelope the same way, with typing, stapling, and filling. This time we placed a short stack of colorful tissue paper circles and a few pre-made snowflakes in the envelope for inspiration. If you don’t have circular tissue paper on hand, a stack of flattened, round coffee filters or squares of upcycled magazines would also do the trick.
Include directions on how to make a snowflake: I love this tutorial for making snowflakes from squares of newspaper squares, from Maya Made.
Homemade Sugar Scrub
This is a nice way to spread some pampering cheer that will shine away rough wintery skin, and they couldn’t be easier to assemble. Here’s what you’ll need:
- Glass Jar with tight-fitting lid
- Grapeseed Oil
- Essential Oil in your favorite smell
- Decorative Fabric or Paper
- Paper Label
- String or Rubber Band
- Small wooden spoon (optional)
Collecting materials was the most time consuming piece of this project. I found the jars and wooden spoons at Daiso, a Japanese dollar store that rocks my world, and the essential oil was from Whole Foods. I used grapeseed oil (Trader Joe’s) because it’s virtually scentless and has a long shelf life, and I included a wooden spoon so that my friends can scoop out their scrub without adding bacteria into the jar. It’s not really necessary, but I think it’s a nice touch.
I wish I was more scientific about this, but I’ll tell you how I made it and hopefully it will make sense. We filled 1/4 of the jar with sugar, added enough grapeseed oil to coat it, and then mixed it well. Then I added sugar to the 1/2 way point, added more oil, and mixed it again. I repeated this until the sugar-oil mixture was about 3/4″ from the top. I added a little more oil so that it floated on top of the sugar, making the whole mixture easy to stir. Once it was nicely blended, I added about 30 drops of grapefruit essential oil.
How much oil should you add? I added the essential oil, smelled it, and then added more until I was happy with the strength of the smell. I thought about using lavender, which I also had, but the grapefruit smelled so refreshing and it complemented the green fabric.
Lastly, I covered it with a circle of fabric (traced with a bowl), secured it with a rubber band (to hold that heavy spoon on tight), and wrapped a gift tag on with some baker’s twine.
Pecan Chocolate Turtles
These Pecan Chocolate Turtles is so simple, absolutely delicious, and I made them with both my 1-year old and 3-year old. My one year old exercised some fine motor skills by unwrapping the candies, while my 3 year old placed them on the pretzels. It was assembly-line cooking at its finest!
They won’t disappoint you, I promise!
More Ideas for Easy Handmade Gifts
Cookie Dough in a Jar, easy for kids to help assemble
Handmade Valentine Cards with heart-shaped envelope