Christmas crafting with kids

With Christmas just around the corner and 3 children under the age of 5 in my home, it’s safe to say…the excitement levels around here are pretty high right now! So I had to give my excited little trio something to do and so I found myself agreeing to an afternoon of Christmas crafting.

Now as lovely as I know that sounds, let me just say from the very beginning…I am not the crafty mum.

I WISH I was that Mum…I spend most of my evenings enthusiastically pinning craft ideas to my Festive Pinterest boards, telling myself “Oh that looks super easy!! We can do that no problem!“…but when it comes down to actually creating our master pieces, it never quite goes as smoothly as I’d like it to!

When we sat down to make our festive delights, I was full of hope that this time it would be different…we’d chosen some nice easy crafts…a handprint bauble, a simple reindeer footprint Christmas card, a Holly wreath and a Handprint Christmas Tree…how hard could it be?!

Well…it took about 35 seconds for my 1 year to fall butt-first into the green paint for that question to be answered!

But we soldiered on anyway, and I learnt some valuable lessons during our craft session which I thought I’d take a moment to share with you…lets call them my 5 Truths Of Crafting With Toddlers!

  1. Footprint art seems like an adorable idea at first…until you realise that your baby has taken this as a lifetime pass for painting any part of their body they want to the very second you turn your back. 
  2. Glitter will get into places that you didn’t even realise existed before. And it will never, ever leave. No matter how much you vacuum. No matter how hard you scrub. That glitter is just a part of your home now. Enjoy.
  3. You should ALWAYS have the wet wipes within your reach BEFORE you start the crafts. Thinking that you can leave the green-handed baby alone for 5 seconds while you walk across the room to fetch them is a rookie mistake. 
  4. Even when your little ones are SUPER hyped up for crafting, their interest will fade after approximately three and a half minutes. Keep it short, keep it simple, keep it moving or you’ll find yourself finishing that holly wreath print on your own long after they’ve wandered back to play with their blocks!
  5. Pinterest is a LIAR. Those perfect crafts you’re looking at were sooooo not created by a child. They were created by a crafty mum, on her own, when her kids were at school. Do not be fooled!

On the plus side, we had a lot of laughs together creating our *ahem* Christmas Masterpieces and the boys were pretty proud of their creations!

Image source: Sparkles & Stretchmarks

We made reindeer footprint Christmas cards which were probably the easiest one of all…

And a handprint Christmas tree which the boys then decorated the next afternoon once the paint had dried, this was probably the part they enjoyed the most!

We made some handprint baubles for the Christmas tree using the biggest baubles we could find…painting the boys hands with white paint, and printing them on to the side of the bauble…they were slightly messier than I would have liked but I know I’ll treasure them forever!

And finally we used our dish brush to do some printing and create a holly wreath picture, which was low effort but kept the boys interest as they hadn’t tried printing before and were really intrigued by the patterns the brush made on the page.

They may not be Pinterest perfect but luckily childrens expectations haven’t been heightened by social media yet and their glee and pride at their handiwork rubbed off on me too – who needs perfection anyway?! Christmas is all about the fun! Of course that didn’t stop me finishing off the afternoon with another Pinterest classic for dinner…. creepy looking Santa pancakes, anyone?!


Hayley is a 30-something mum of three boys living in Devon. She started her successful blog Sparkles & Stretchmarks due to her love of writing, documenting family life in all it's glory - from the beautiful picture perfect moments we all love to the inevitable downsides that we're not so fond of. She covers all of my various areas of interest such as parenting, travel, food & cooking, beauty, fashion, home decor and many other subjects, as well as documenting her own personal journey into motherhood and dealing with anxiety disorder.

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