9 Easy Games for Kids and Craft Activities for Summer Vacation

Here we are, teetering on the edge of summer vacation. Kids are waiting to burst out the door for a wild and crazy summer, while parents are biting their nails as they try to figure out some thrilling games and activities to keep kids from bouncing off the walls for the next two months.

You don’t need to send the kids away to camp all summer to relax; just visit FaveCrafts, AllFreeHolidayCrafts, and especially the new site AllFreeKidsCrafts for some brilliant ideas for homemade games for kids and craft activities for summer vacation. From homemade toys to kids’ games to fun in the sun, these cool games and craft activities for children will keep kids occupied all summer long.

I’ve picked out some of my favorites below! Be sure to tune back in for more exciting news about AllFreeKidsCrafts.com, and check the site–we feature new projects every day! In the meantime, check out these easy games and crafts for kids to inspire a spectacular summer.

 

Campfire Cupcakes

Camp out in the back yard and make these incredibly realistic Campfire Cupcakes! Don’t burn yourself though! While you’re out there, you can have a marshmallow war with the kids by making PVC Marshmallow Shooters!

 

Travel Game Tin

Everyone is happier when toddlers are occupied, and this Toddler Threading Game is a great idea for travel activities for toddlers that improves fine motor skills. Plus, this Travel Game Tin from FaveCrafts is a great way to keep older kids occupied in the car when you head out to the beach on vacation.

 

Seashell Fairies

Once you’ve arrived at the beach, you can relax in the sand while kids create a myriad of Seashell Fairies.

 

Easy Superhero Capes

Dress up games are great indoor and outdoor fun, and we have a ton of cool costumes for kids, like these amazingly Easy Superhero Capes.

 

Eye Bombing

Bring inanimate objects to life, two googly eyes at a time with this Eye Bombing game.

 

Welcome to Bug Village

Nature and animal lovers will love visiting Bug Village and making this gorgeous Basic Birdseed Wreath from AllFreeHolidayCrafts.

 

Plastic Bottle Bowling

For rainy days, check out these 27 Rainy Day Crafts and Cool Games for Kids. The Plastic Bottle Bowling game in particular is a ton of fun and keeps kids active when they’re stuck inside.

 

Avengers Bookmarks

Turn summer reading into an adventure with these awesome Avengers Bookmarks shaped like Captain America, the Hulk, and Iron Man!

 

What is the best way to entertain kids in the summer?

If you need more ideas, get out and explore with nature crafts for kids, beach crafts and outdoor crafts for kids!

Swing into Summer: Light and Lacy Patterns

Do you dread spring cleaning as much as I do?  Literally the only way I can get myself to dive into the pile of clutter that’s taken over my closet is to remind myself that once it’s over I get to fill it with fun new clothes and accessories.

As an early reward to you (I just know you’ll get that closet tackled this weekend!), I decided to share some of my favorite light and lacy patterns for summer!  From feminine scarves to pretty shawls and even some fun and girly accessories, I love everything about summer fashion. Keep reading if you’re on the hunt for some great crochet, knitting and sewing patterns perfect for warm weather. I’ve found some good ones 🙂

Light and Airy Summer Scarves:

This Lightweight Infinity Scarf is a great option if you want to jazz up an outfit without piling on the layers. The infinity design is practical and fun at the same time and it’ll definitely keep your neck warm on a breezy summer night!

 

The last thing you want in the blazing summer heat is a bunch of extra fabric on you. That’s why this short Light and Lacy Scarf is a good accessory option. Its airy design allows your neck to breathe while still allowing you to show off a cool crochet design!

 

 

Lacy Shawls and Cardigans:

Want to show off your feminine side this summer without being too revealing? Try this elegant cropped lace cardigan, which should be a staple in every woman’s closet!  With its scalloped eyelet accents, ribbed edging and pretty lace detailing, this short and lightweight sweater is just the thing to wear for date night or a picnic in the park!

 

 

Wrap yourself in just enough warmth for a cool summer night with this beautiful crochet shawl!  The simple yet chic design will make you feel fabulous and fashionable when you wear this shawl out at night this summer!

 

 

Pretty and Feminine Accessories:

When you’re putting together the perfect light and lacy look this summer, don’t forget about your accessories. Earrings like these Simple Lace Hoops can make an ordinary outfit shine!  It’s so easy to add a dose of feminine flair to your ensemble when you have lovely lace-accented accessories like these in your jewelry box!

 

Don’t tote around a bulky bag this summer; carry this beautiful and dainty Silk Lace Bag instead!  Toss in a pair of fun sunglasses, some pretty pink lip gloss and a container of sun block and you’ll be ready to stroll the sidewalks in style this summer!  Embellish your bag with tiny beads for an extra feminine touch that completes the whole light and lacy look.

 

I never get tired of looking at pretty, lightweight summer patterns. They make me think of days at the beach, delicious iced coffees and dining al fresco!  You too?  Then be sure you check out the following summer collections for even more easy, breezy outfit ideas!

Summer Sewing Patterns

Knits for Summer

Summer Crochet Patterns

Feminine Summer Accessories

 

What’s your favorite thing to wear in the summer?

 

7 Kid’s Crafts To Make This Summer

Spring break has come and gone, but summer is fast approaching. Before you know it, your little ones will be hanging out at home with you all the time! This can be both exciting and stressful. Somehow they always seem to have more energy in one hour than you can imagine having in a lifetime! Well no worries, we’ve found some fun crafts to keep them busy this summer. You can make them with your kids and then they can spend the rest of the afternoon playing with their new toys! It’s a win-win situation.

 Kid’s Crafts for Avid Travelers

Do you take lots of long car trips with the family in the summer time? I remember that used to be my favorite part of summer with my family. Camping and fishing trips were a staple for us but they always included long car rides out of the city and into woody counties. If you’re planning on taking any car trips or sight-seeing trips, you definitely want to make these fun kid’s crafts!

How cool is this Cardboard Camera for kids? They get to make and decorate their own camera to play with that you won’t have to worry about them dropping!

 

 

 

These Magnetic Paper Dolls are perfect for long card rides! No mess, no fuss! Everything you need sticks to itself and it’s all contained in a nice little tin. Genius right? This craft is perfect for any time you need something to keep them occupied on the go.

 

This craft project let’s you recycle and create something your kids are going to love! The Cereal Box Notebooks will keep creative minds busy and happy in the back seats of cars with just a few colored pencils!

 

 

 

Kids Crafts to Fuel Imaginations

What’s better than playing pretend when you’re little? These easy to make kid’s crafts will help spur imaginations to far off lands to visit some interesting creatures. Create some props with them and sit back to see what they come up with!

What little girl doesn’t want to be a fairy? Make your little one’s dreams come true with this super fast and easy fairy wings tutorial. They’ll be fluttering around your back yard for hours and it’ll probably make for some great photo opportunities too.

 

 

 

Are they running around and terrorizing your village? Strap these tails on them and let them run around rawring at each other. These easy Dino Tails equal hours of entertainment.

 

 

 

Don’t want to limit then to just one creature? No problem! Follow this quick tutorial to have your choice of the animal kingdom! They can hop, purr, scratch, and sniff to their little hearts’ desires!

 

 

 

Surprise from Imagination Movers!

Do your kids love watching the Imagination Movers on Disney? Well we found this awesome craft video they put together with Craft Foxes for making your very own Tambourine! Craft Foxes even has a fun giveaway going where you can enter for a chance to win 4 tickets to the show! That would definitely be a fun summer trip with the kids. It’s going on through April 20th, so don’t wait to enter!

So there you have it. 7 kid’s crafts to make this summer.

What’s your favorite way to enjoy summer off with the kids?

This Week on Cool2Craft TV – Summer Picnic

Join host Tiffany Windsor and her special guests for this week’s episode of Cool2Craft TV. This new episode features a ladybug themed picnic. EcoHeidi sets the design theme with a cute ladybug created from upcycled plastic spoons, forks and plastic caps, Candace Jedrowicz wraps plastic utensils with wire and beads and Tiffany glitters up the party cups. Monday August 22, 2011 at 9 am Pacific/ 10 am Mountain/ 11 am Central/ noon Eastern. Watch craft demos and join in the live chat at showtime at Cool2Craft.com.

8-22-11 Cool2Craft TV - Summer Picnic

It’s easy to watch Cool2Craft TV right from your computer. This episode airs Monday August 22, 2011 9am Pacific/10am Mountain/11 am Central/noon Eastern. Go to http://cool2craft.com and find the Livestream player and chat box. See you Monday!

Watch live streaming video from cool2craft at livestream.com

Early Summertime Favorites – The Top Sewing Projects of June

At the end of every month, the other craft editors and myself round up the most popular projects from the last 30 days. It’s always fun to see which projects you, the readers, have deemed the best. This month it was especially exciting to reveal the results because with the start of a new season comes a whole new collection of projects! I loved adding new summertime sewing projects to many of the newsletters in June.

For those of you that aren’t subscribed to receive AllFreeSewing newsletters, you’re missing out! If you wish to subscribe, you can do so here.

For a quick recap on the things you missed, check out a few of the top projects in June. If you’re one of the regulars, please take this opportunity to revisit your favorites – they could spark some new inspiration!


Quick Trip Diaper Bag
Issue first appeared in: Diaper Dilemmas Solved: The Quick Trip Diaper Bag + 8 More
A super cute design for anyone, not just moms! You can use this bag to easily transport your belongings.


30 Minutes a Day at the Park Dress
Issue first appeared in: 10 Ways to Become a DIY Fashionista
This dress pattern provides quick, easy, and comfortable fashion that your little one will adore!


How to Sew a Cute Summer Sun Dress
Issue first appeared in: 10 Ways to Become a DIY Fashionista
This adorable sundress pattern will make you look and feel fabulous all summer!


Sorbetto Top
Issue first appeared in: 11 Summer Sewing Essentials: What’s In Our Sights This Season
Cool, comfy and colorful, this Sorbetto Top is a free summer sewing pattern that will dazzle any fashion designer!


Bitty Bug Pincushion
Issue first appeared in: Take the Creative Pincushion Challenge! 9 Pincushions to Get You Started
Here’s a simple idea for spring or summer. The Bitty Bug Pincushion will be useful for holding your pins but also makes for a great gift for a crafty friend.

For the entire list, see ‘The Top Sewing Projects of June’ collection.

What’s your favorite project you made in June?

This Week on Cool2Craft TV – Outdoor Living

Join host Linda Peterson for Livin’ the Creative Life TV featured on the Cool2Craft TV Channel. Linda gets us in the mood for good ol’ summertime with her show featuring super cool watermelon-themed crafts including watermelon applique placemat, dyed fabric watermelon napkin, glove utensil holder and hand-painted glass goblet. Featured on the Cool2Craft TV Channel Monday June 27, 2011 at noon Eastern/9 am Pacific. Watch craft demos and join in the #livecraftchat at showtime at Cool2Craft.com.

Livin' the Creative Life TV with Linda Peterson - Outoor Living

It’s easy to watch the Cool2Craft TV channel right from your computer. This episode airs Monday June 27, 2011 9am Pacific/10am Mountain, 11 am Central, noon Eastern. Go to http://cool2craft.com and find the Livestream player and chat box. See you Monday!

Click here to sign up for the Cool2Craft FaveCrafts newsletter for easy links to the projects featured on this episode of Cool2Craft.

cool2craft on livestream.com. Broadcast Live Free

Yard Sales Creativity, Viewer’s Opinions

 

Don’t you just love when you felt you ripped off someone at a yard sale knowing you just picked up something for a nickel that was normally twenty bucks or more. You can’t help but think, pay it real quick, run to the car and leave rubber tire marks on the road thinking that the previous owner doesn’t know what just happened.

On The Crochet Crowd Facebook Fan Page, viewers have been revealing that yard sales are one of the most fabulous ideas for implementing creativity, getting inspiration, and picking up incredible products. One viewer revealed she got nearly 30 skeins yarn for five dollars. She scored about one hundred and forty five dollars. The previous owner was over purchasing yarn and got carried away thinking she would use it one day. One day never came and its now on the yard being sold to someone else with lots of ambition.

I’m not a fan of hosting a yard sale. People do slow and judge like prey animals. I have to smile when you see the people in the car and the woman figure has got her hand over her mouth to stop us from reading her lips. I can just hear it. “It’s junk… where’s the next sign!”. With so many people driving by without ever getting out, I look around and say, “Sheesh all my stuff must be junk!”

Yard sales to me are puzzles of creativity. A bit from this sale, combined with another sale can make a complete item. I love decorating clay pots that sit in the garden as part of the décor. Most plants aren’t in bloom all summer, so a freshly painted pot sitting amongst the green between flowering times can add so much beauty. It’s not like figurines where today’s trend is out next year. Pots can be re-painted at any time.

I’ve come to adopt the feeling that the junkier the sale appearance, the more you have to discover. Viewers have chimed in on this topic on The Crochet Crowd on Monday May 23, 2011. See their opinion below.

      • I just like to snoop. I get out of the car if there looks like a good amount of stuff. Love multi family sales. If there is only a little out there I usually skip it.
      • I did a yard sale the other day. I had matching Table Clothes, professional signature and all colour coded… I think that is why no one got out… was too organized.
      • I don’t mind organized–In fact- one of my biggest pet peeves is totally unorganized with no prices!
      • I look to see if it has some organization to it. If it is just out there I don’t stop It may be your Junk but to others it could be a diamond mine. I go looking for craft supplies and things I didn’t know I needed lol
      • I have always made a list througout the year of things I would like to find at yard sales during the summer. I give the lists to family and friends so they can also keep an eye out for me and let me know if they find any of the items Im loo…king for. Right now on my list I have buttons, lace, fabric, yarn, crochet needles, microwave, and the list goes on and on. I refuse to stop at yard sales that only have “one table” full of stuff. I am a drive by shopper or so my husband says. I drive by really slow and try to see if it looks like its worth stopping at.
      • Both! I usually have a mental list of what I want to keep an eye out for and sometimes just find things that I just hae to have! To stop I have to see more than just clothes and a box of books! Yes the junkier the sale the better and usually better prices! I hate going to overpriced yard sales!
      • We are running a garage sale at the moment. We plan on doing it on most nice weekends through out the summer. We have tons of nice things and do not price most items. That way the stickers don’t ruin the item (which has happened to us lots) and if you are interested, ask. Our answer is usually fair or “make me an offer”.
      • Usually we drive by slow and then if I see something I want to check out we get out. Usually we are just looking for clothes for my 4 year old daughter. I like to look for stuff so if it is organized or not I don’t mind. Usually when I have… my own I try to get everything organized to a point. People still have to look through the boxes of clothes, but I put all the clothes in one area LOL.
        My mom on the other hand will get out at all yard sales she sees and really look around. She doesn’t care what it looks like. When she throws a yard sale though I think she over prices her stuff. You aren’t supposed to be trying to make money you are supposed to be getting rid of stuff.
      • I love to snoop and see what treasures I can find! I stop at every one I can find. And if they have toys I have to stop so my daughter can look. Some time it pays off. I have found some great things to use for crafting. Love to find knitted… swetters that are no longer wanted. I Frogg them for the yarn, buttons, zippers… Love to remake old or broken jewlery new. I add it to my crochet, knit, or just make more jewlery with it.
      • When my mom used to take my brothers and I out, we used to hunt for lost treasures, it was definately a case of the junkiest yard sale was the best to go to. I remember finding a vinyle copy of Elton John’s Yellow Brick Road, it was amazing…! Some of my best memories are of getting up on Saturday, walking around the neighborhood with a twenty dollar bill, and going back home with an armful of things, they just don’t do it like that anymore.See Moreabout an hour ago · LikeUnlike
      • A sale has to have lots of stuff!! Not piles and piles of clothes. A table of folded clothes and some on a hanging rack won’t deter me. But I want to see tables of books and tchotchkes. Toys are okay, but piles of stuffed animals…yuck! Furniture yes, tires NO! But lots of stuff visible from the street.
      • Kids selling lemonade or water & sodas are a plus. The organizer wearing a hat and apron mean organized to me.
      • PRICED ITEMS! If items are not priced or priced far to high, organized or not, I will walk away. I know many o fthe things we see in true garage sales are personal treasures and have a history with the seller but the seller has to be hone…st and put good prices (prices that will sell) on their items. I put low prices on my items and sell more than if I had high prices. . . .would much rather see the money in my pocket than the item back in my house! Homemade items that are made for the sale (Like Mikey’s) are a whole other story!
      • I usually go out if I have something I am looking for and enjoy the snooping. Gas prices are to high these days to just go out without a reason.

Guest Post: How to Make a Beaded Glasses Chain

This guest post was written by Sarah Beckman.

Beaded chains for eyeglasses, reading glasses and sunglasses are trending among fashion-conscious celebrities right now. Not only are these chains practical and help you keep track of those always-disappearing glasses, but they are also a fashion statement. A beautiful, beaded glasses chain is practically a piece of jewelry!

Reality star and fashion designer, Whitney Port, made fashion headlines at the 2011 Coachella music festival with her pearl sunglasses chain. We share the scoop on how to make your own Whitney-inspired chain!

Materials:

  • 28 to 34 inches of beading wire or beading nylon cord. Choose your preferred length
  • 2 plastic eyeglass holders or jump rings. These are what will hold the chain onto the arms of your glasses. Find them at a beading or craft store
  • 2 crimp beads. These will stop your beads from slipping onto the eyeglass holders. Find them at a beading or craft store
  • Your choice of pearls or beads
  • Flat-nosed pliers
  • Scissors

Instructions:

  1. Cut the wire or cord to your preferred length. Be sure to consider a length that is comfortable when your glasses are on your face and also around your neck.
  2. Gather one crimp bead and one plastic eyeglass holder or jump ring. Thread one end of the wire through the crimp bead and then through one plastic loop of the eyeglass holder.
  3. Pull the wire through far enough that you can thread the wire through the crimp bead once more, pulling the eyeglass holder close to the crimp bead.
  4. Secure the crimp bead by squeezing it closed with the pliers.
  5. Start stringing the pearls or beads onto the wire or cord. If there is a loose end from     securing the crimp bead, thread it under the first beads. Continue to string the beads until you near the end of your wire or cord.
  6. String the other crimp bead onto the wire or cord so it sits next to the last bead you strung.
  7. Add the second eyeglass holder or jump ring after the crimp bead.
  8. Thread the wire or cord back through the crimp bead. Tuck the loose end through the end beads.

Sarah Beckman is a writer for Reading Glasses Shopper. When she’s not writing about topics like reading sunglasses, she’s probably making crafts for her upcoming wedding.


Photo credit:
plastic eyelgass holders
jump rings
crimp beads

Sunday Preview: Crafts for Kids, Summer Sewing, Crochet Patterns, 4th of July and Quilting

We’ve got some great stuff coming up in this week’s Quick & Crafty newsletters.

Monday: Need Thrifty Summer Crafts for Kids?

Goldfish Paper Plate

Tuesday: 12 Fun in the Sun Sewing Patterns

Oversized Beach Tote


Thursday:
Another Source for Fabulous Crochet Patterns

Popcorn Stitch Flower Afghan


Friday:
15 Easy 4th of July Crafts + 10 Quilts to Make

Contemporary Table Runner Quilt Pattern

Subscribe to the Quick and Crafty e-newsletter to receive weekly updates directly in your inbox.

Kids Saturday: Paper Crafts

With easy to obtain materials and simple directions, you can never go wrong with a paper project.   They also make a really fun craft to do with your kids.

Here are five paper projects that your children will have a blast creating.

Colorful Tissue Paper Frames- Hold your most precious pictures in  creative DIY photo albums made with styrofoam and tissue paper.

Colorful Tissue Paper Suncatchers– This colorful sun-catcher is a perfect present to make with your kids.  They will love picking out colored tissue paper and turning this project into their own creation.

Crayon Friends Greeting Card–  This card is the perfect simple project to do with your child.  Everyone likes receiving cards and these crayon friend cards are no exception.  These cards make the ideal refrigerator decoration.  After this fun project your kids will want to work for Hallmark!

Best Friends Wreath–  Does your child have a best friend?  They could have loads of fun making this project together.  It is also a great present to give to that very special BFF.

Flower Sticky Notes Pad–  This easy crafting with kids project featuring foam and craft sticks comes in handy when you need a note pad.

The next time your kids are bored and looking for something to do, have them create a fun paper project!