Red Ted Art: Cute and Easy Crafts for Kids

Gum nut pencil topper

I love arts and crafts books and often dream of opening a maker space where I can share shelves and shelves of inspiring books full of hands-on goodness with my friends and readers. Wouldn’t that be fun? I just added a new book to my library that I love, and I’m excited to share it with you in this virtual maker space today.

The book is Red Ted Art by UK blogger and crafter extraordinaire, Maggy Woodley. Maggy twists crafty standbys into fresh projects with clear photographs, beautiful design, and an easy-to-follow format that children can easily peruse on their own.

But you shouldn’t just take my word for it. When an advance copy of Maggy Woodlley’s Red Ted Art showed up in my house, my four-year-old got busy with a stack of sticky tabs and marked up all of the projects she wanted to do right away! 

Red Ted Art: Cute and Easy Crafts for Kids

We’re fans of repurposing materials, and Maggy is too, which made the activities especially easy to jump right into. We began with a couple projects that we had materials for, which is easy to do with this book. A quick flip through the book’s pages promise that you can complete just about every project with easy-to-find household and craft materials such as magazines, white glue, felt scraps, paint, and bubble wrap.

Project #1: Gumnut Pencil Toppers

As far as I know, we don’t have gumnuts in our neck of the woods, but acorns are aplenty and we worked on assembling our little yellow octopus friend with just a few materials.

Red Ted Art Book interior

  • To make the legs, we cut two pipe cleaners in half and then folded each of those in half.
  • We painted the acorn cap yellow.
  • When the paint was dry we used the glue gun to attach the eyes and legs.

Gum nut pencil topper tutorial

While the instructions suggested assembling this with white glue, an excuse to pull out the glue gun is always welcome in my house.

Project #2: Racing Walnut Mice

The trickiest part of this project was cutting a walnut in half, but Maggy provides clear instructions on how to split a walnut at the weakest point of the nut. I had a little trouble with this (see the chip little mouse’s mouth), but no one seemed to mind.

walnut mouse tutorial

  • Draw on a mouse face.
  • Glue on felt ears and a long felt tail
  • Place a marble inside the mouse and roll it down a sloping book.

My kids loved the little mouse so much that we never made it to the marble rolling part, but I look forward to trying that out.

Order a copy

If you’re in the UK or Europe, you can find Red Ted Art: Cute and Easy Crafts for Kids via Amazon UK.

If you’re in the US, the book will come out this fall (yay), and you can keep an eye out for it via Amazon.


Contest Details: This is an international contest and open worldwide. Deadline for entries is Friday, April 12, 2013, 9 pm PST. Winner will be chosen randomly. Please leave a comment as your entry. This contest is now closed. Congratulations to Irene, winning comment #33! You will be contacted via email.

A question for you…

What are your favorite (or most surprising ) recycled items to craft with?


  1. we love red ted art! would love to win the book!

  2. Really cute, and, most importantly, totally doable!

  3. Bubble wrap from packages is a favourite thing here to reuse for craft (and play)! Looks like a great book!

  4. Great book! My 4 and 6 year old girls would
    LOVE it!!! We often create with recicle materials
    such us bottle caps, paper rolls, cereal boxes, or with
    stuff we find such as rocks, shells, leaves!
    Thanks for the wonderful inspirations!
    Marina, Giulia & Nicoletta from Sicily.

  5. We love to use boxes and egg cartons. Would love to win a copy of this book!

  6. Our little one is due in July, and I’m so looking forward to the many fun, found item crafts in our future! I’m really excited about this book!!
    Most surprising repurposed craft I’ve done:
    As a kid, my mom used to have us collect the insects that died in our big screened in porch. We’d cover foam boards with cloth and pin the insects to them to study and display.

  7. My kids love new ideas for crafts. Would love to win it.

  8. Some of my kids’ favorite items to craft with from the recycling bin are big jugs (like juice, etc.)…yesterday my son put a paper towel roll and a jug together and made himself a tuba! 🙂
    Sarah M

  9. I’ve been following Red Ted Art for a while and my little clients love the cute stuff she comes up with! I collect tons and tons of plastic instant coffee jars (yes, I drink THAT much instant coffee) and we use them for lots of fun crafts. Covering them with construction paper, or wrapping them in Wikki Stix or decorating them with pompoms and cotton balls for snowmen! Anyway, thanks for the two new ideas:)

  10. Looks like a great book!

  11. Found items are a big crafting hit here. Would love to win the book. 🙂

  12. I LOVE these ideas!! so cute, the kid will love them!!!

  13. Our favorite surprise to craft with are LEAVES!!! We can paint WITH them, paint ON them, sew them to make a banner, examine them, learn from them! Gaahhhhh, the possibilities are endless!!!

  14. We love art of all kinds, but we especially love art that involves recycled, repurposed, or natural things.

  15. Looks like fun! My 4 year old would love this!

  16. My kids love to use all recycled materials, but I think their favorite is small boxes. We have a big box where we put our recycled treasures & they love to rummage through & think up ideas for the items.

  17. totally cute crafts!! would love to win!! 🙂

  18. what a fun book! most surprising craft item for us: almost any bit of nature–acorn hats, rocks, sweet gum balls, pine cones, pine needles. add glue, paint, glitter? instant sculture fun. ditto the previous, also fun to paint WITH these!

  19. I continue to find more and more uses for toilet paper rolls and paper towel rolls. It drives my husband crazy that I keep a giant garbage bag full of them. It’s getting to the point where I am reluctant to let the recycling go out because I can always find creative uses for plastic bottles and flattened cereal boxes!!!!

  20. Paper towel rolls are a hit with my boys.
    We would enjoy this book! Thank you!!

  21. This book looks amazing would soo live to win it for me and my childminding flock x

  22. Would love a new craft book! My kids and I always love using recycled items! Shoe boxes, paper towel and toilet rolls and egg cartons are a favorite!! Their imaginations come up with opportunities that are endless!!! What a great way to start the season!

  23. Bottle caps are the best recyclable item to create with. So many different things they can be used for.

  24. SO cute! My 4 year old is obsessed with crafting and creating. One of our favorite things to reuse are boxes – cereal boxes, shipping boxes, shoe boxes. We’ve made ships, cars, rockets, doll houses, fairy traps, you name it. It’s so fun to watch her imagination run free.

  25. My kids loved using egg cartons for crafts!
    any my DD comes home from school and scavenges the recycling bin for craft items 🙂

  26. I would love to have this book! 🙂 My favourite recycled item to craft with is paper. We use all kinds of scraps, magazines and newspaper.

  27. Would love to win this book to inspire myself and my daughter for everyday crafts, which we both enjoy, AND especially with recycled items.

  28. Oooh I’d love a copy to wing its way over the sea to London! We use lots of cardboard. “Mummy, you can make ANYTHING out of cardboard”! Also fabric scraps are a bit favourite, and glue, glue and more glue.

  29. Oh, I’d love to win, I’ve been a Red Ted fan for a while. Kids would love it. I use a lot of cardboard for crafts.

  30. What great craft ideas! Would love to get started on some with my little ones!

  31. Such cute ideas; so helpful, especially for inspiration.

  32. We love making art with caps, old sponges, and plastic lids. While we make a lot of art, there isn’t much crafting in our house yet. Would appreciate the extra inspiration!

  33. Oh my! Would I ever love for this book to show up on my doorstep!

  34. My kiddos would love this, and my hub the Eagle Scout would too. 😉

  35. I could use this book since I am craft-impaired. Thanks for the giveaway!

  36. I love to do stuff with cardboard boxes of all types for the amazing versatility, Yoghurt cups and milk bottles are brilliant as well.

  37. We’d love to win what looks to be a fabulous book! Toilet Paper and Paper Towel Rolls are by far the most exciting repurposed items here! The rolls become all sorts of things–musical instruments, dolls, tunnels, and traps. They are even popular with our cats! Thanks for the chance to win!

  38. My little daughter and I would love to get one copy! Cardboard boxes are our #1 raw material 🙂

  39. Would love to have this book! Looks like it contains lots of great ideas!

  40. I save all the lids from those new squeezeable applesauce pouches and use them for lots of things.

  41. Would love to gather all the art and crafts ideas on one book. Sounds awesome!

  42. Just discovered Red Ted recently & would love, love, love to win this! Thanks for the chance!

  43. Eiya seems to enjoy using cardboard and found nature objects such as twigs and acorn caps. This is an exciting book to own. On my list! Thanks for the chance (and many thanks for the tips on baby/preschool friendly art space!).

  44. my daughter collects EVERYTHING and she has an idea for most of the stuff, but often the stuff becomes piles around her room. Her crafting skills can’t keep up with her collecting skills……It sounds like this book will change that. Being kid friendly is brilliant, she can browse on her own time and gain some insight.

  45. The book looks like so much fun! We love cereal boxes to craft with a lot around here.

  46. Looking forward to the North American release of this book : would be great to win it before next fall though! 🙂

  47. This book looks great! My 3 year old is always raiding the recycling bin for boxes – we make box dollhouses, cars, and most recently, a cage for a pretend hamster – complete with slide, swing, bed, and kitchen of course.

  48. april 11 is not Friday in Alabama.

    • Haha! You got me, Wendy. I changed it to April 12. Have a great day.

  49. The book looks like a whole lotta fun, thanks for sharing some of the projects you have made.

  50. Am so keen to see the rest of the projects in this book. It looks great :).

  51. This book looks adorable. I’d love to win a copy! Thank you. 🙂

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