Having two young girls that love to craft and create, I always find it a bit of a challenge finding art projects for them that are easy enough that they can work independently a little, projects that use materials we have on hand without having to run to the store, and turn out cute enough for them to proudly display and use. In fact, I subscribed for a long time to a craft box that came monthly just because I became frustrated in trying to come up with projects, materials, etc. myself.
So when I read that my friend, Katrina, had written a book that was all about awesome art projects for kids, I was so excited. Not only because I was so happy for her, but I knew the book would be amazing and might just fulfill my criteria for art projects with my girls.
I first met Katrina in New York City. She was a fellow winner of the Country Living Magazine Blue Ribbon Blogger Award (in the crafting category) and in the little time I spent with her, I came to know her as very kind, very genuine and very creative. I thoroughly enjoyed getting to visit and spend a little time with her, and since then, I've faithfully followed her beautiful blog and feel like I know her even better now.
What I didn't expect to happen when I received the book is that I would become so inspired. I knew it would be beautiful and I knew after reading her blog for so long that her projects would be fun and sweet. But I became so inspired to create with my girls, inspired to use materials we have laying around (like cardboard boxes and junk mail), and inspired to make art accessible to my girls. So much so that I cancelled my craft box subscription, and fully intend to carve out a special "creative space" for my girls as soon as our upstairs/bathroom renovation is complete so that they can create whenever they like. I've started saving little things, like certain cardboard boxes and paper scraps. What I love about this book is that so many of the projects rely on recycled or up-cycled materials. It makes crafting and art so accessible and enjoyable.
In the introduction, Katrina wrote a paragraph that I wanted to share because I feel like it epitomizes what I want art with my girls to be:
The book is filled with projects, many using materials that you would likely already have on hand. For each project there are gorgeous photos, including step-by-step photos (a must for me) and a photo of materials.
Along with step-by-step photos, there are also step-by-step instructions. I love that this gave us the confidence to follow along at first and then branch out a little on our own as inspiration struck.
|Photo Credit: The Paper Playhouse|
There are so many unique projects, including an Airstream trailer, a dollhouse, handmade books, mobiles, masks, and even a classic lemonade stand.
I honestly feel like the projects in this book are meant for all ages. There are some projects that worked great for my younger girls. Even Rosetta, who is just 3 1/2, was able to participate hands-on, like making this paper crown. She felt like she made it entirely by herself. There are also some projects that require a little more assistance from an adult, depending on the age of your child, like the VW bus pictured below. Some of the projects are so cute I would make them myself to display, such as paper garlands.
This VW bus was a project that Jillian wanted to do so badly. Justus actually did this project with her (so sweet) and I love how it turned out.
She added a few of her own little touches and has it on display in her bedroom. Who knew that a milk box and duct tape could look so cute!
Another fun project was making these crowns and wands. This is a great example of using the template and step-by-step instructions in the book to make the project, but then letting your children use their imagination and creativity to decorate as they like. I can even envision making these at a birthday party!
The truth is, I feel like I owe Katrina so many thanks for giving me the confidence I needed to foster an environment where my children and I can create together and enjoy doing so. I think this book is special and unique and so very inspiring. I think you will love it as much as I do. (You can also read more about her book here on her blog.)
Also, Katrina is kindly giving away a copy of her book to one Keeping It Cozy reader! I'm so excited!
All you need to do is leave a comment in this post and I will choose a winner one week from today, next Wednesday, March 4, 2015. You do not need to have a blog to enter, just be sure to leave your email address so I have a way of contacting you should you win!
*For shipping purposes, the winner must provide an address in the US, Canada, or the UK.*