Arts and Crafts

I spent nice years of my London life running art and crafts workshops to children aged 4 to 11 years old here in South London, between after school clubs, festivals, art classes and birthday parties. Teaching them what I know, giving them ideas, making sure they understand colours and the billions things they can do with their hands, introducing them to new techniques and new materials, understanding them, making art together, and the most important, having fun!

I saw some of them growing, becoming creative, becoming confident, becoming happy about themselves… I have always seen them coming to art with a big smile and leaving with a bigger one.

Those kids… they keep you young!

Here are plenty of ideas of arts and crafts, done through the years.

Enjoy, make art and have fun!

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Mini terrarium

Activity for all, kids and parents! Each one can make a beautiful and colourful mini terrarium! 

What do we need: 
– glass containers 
-any coloured papers (crepe paper, newspapers, really anything..) 
-pipe cleaners 
-a piece of cardboard to maintain the pipes 

How to do: 
– 1: use the lid of your glass containers as a stencil and cut a smaller circle from it.  It has to be a bit smaller that the lid if you want to close the container. 
–  2: trace circles into different papers.  You can use a small  circle lid or anything circle as a stencil. Cut many as you want. 
– 3: pick a pipe cleaner and stick it into the centre of your circle paper. You can put few circles together. The pipe cleaner become the stem of your flower. 
-4: pick a button and add it on top, turn the end of the pipe into the button to maintain it and close your flower. 
-5: make 2 or 3 like this, or more, depends of the size of your container. 
-6: sticks the stems into the cardboard and place it inside the lid. You can glue the other side of the cardboard into the lid (using a glue gun) if you want to but it is not necessary. 
-7: you can hide the cardboard using another coloured paper 
-8: close the glass container 
-9: you can hide the side if the lid with another piece of paper and attached it with a string, wool… 
-10: et voila! You just made your very own mini terrarium 

Spin Painting

Experiencing painting with a salad spinner and it is all fun! I run this activity during one of my after school clubs and this one is a win win! Kids loved it!They will experience the effect of spin painting. 

  • What do you need: 
  • – a salad spinner (one you will never use again.. an old one..) 
  • – liquid paint 
  • – paper plate or any thick paper 
  • How to do: 
  • – cut circles from the paper or adjust the size of your paper plate. Size has to be just a bit smaller than the size of the bottom of the spinner basket. 
  • –  put your paper circle inside the basket 
  • – squeeze paint directly onto the paper circle. Start from the middle, put some at the edges…You will test different ways to have the best result possible. 
  • – then the fun start : close the basket and spin it really fast! 
  • – stop, open the lid and observe the result. You can add more colours if you want to and continue by spinning. You are experiencing all sort of paint effects and each step is awesome! 
  • – when you’re happy about one painting, take it out of the salad spinner to dry and start with a new circle. 
  • I’ve choose to make a flower artwork from it. 
  • -When dry , I’ve cut shapes of tulips. 
  • – I drew stems using pastels but you can use felt pens, crayons, markers, colours pencils, even paint … it’s really up to you. Draw a garden, trees, grass… 
  • – I then glued the tulips on top of each stems. 

Here we are, I’ve made an artwork using a salad spinner! 


Something fun and simple for all: Zentangle. 

I run this activity during one summer class last year and all the children loved it! Our theme was black and white, we ended up drawing black and white patterns following a simple Zentangle method. All results was fantstic!

Zentangle is a form of art, Zen means « calm », Tangle means a collection of overlapping patterns. It is basically a form of drawing without thinking too much in advance. There’s no wrong or right, there’s just you making a design using a marker or felt pens, or simply what you have at home and your imagination. 

Take a piece of paper and a marker. No eraser allowed because it will make you think too much at what you do. There’s no mistake in here. The main purpose it to create directly from your imagination.

-I divided my A4 in 4 by drawing two lines vertically and horizontally. This is to have like four little blank canvas. 
-I divided each space with a flowing line. I also used a little glass as a stencil on another drawing because I decided to start with big circles overlapping each others. -I then filed each space with a different colours and different patterns. I used colours but you can simply do it in black and white. 

The all A4 is filled with patterns and designs. My 4 spaces look completely different and it make the all design very interesting! 

Zentangle is a great quiet activity to do anytime. It is relaxing, calming and meditative and you should definitely all have a go!