Playful Pumpkins: Part 3

October 10, 2017
Decor, DIY Home, Early Elementary, Grown-Up, Halloween, Holidays, Older Elementary, Preschool, Toddler

light bright pumpkin craft diy kids

When you think of pumpkins, you normally think of a hollowed-out gourd with some candles in the center and triangles for eyes. Well, these two illuminated beauties might help redefine your idea of carved out pumpkins!

The last of my three installments of this pumpkin feature ever that I did for Parents magazine, these two pumpkins might make you laugh a little.

(Above) To make these ’80s-inspired jack-o’-lanterns, start with hollowed-out pumpkins and Lite-Brite pegs. Trace out your design with washable marker, then poke the outline with the piercing tool that comes with a pumpkin-carving set (a thin screwdriver also works). Wipe off the marker residue with a damp paper towel, push pegs into the holes, and place a few battery-operated candles inside to make it glow.

cinderella pumpkin coach diy craft

Delight the troves of trick-or-treating princesses with a pumpkin carved to look like Cinderella’s carriage. Start with a large white pumpkin and scoop out the insides. Carve windows and a door and decorate with stick-on gemstones and glittery paint (Martha Stewart Crafts Multi-Surface Glitter Acrylic Craft Paint, $3) on the stem. For wheels, spear four tiny white pumpkins onto skewers and rest carriage on the skewer axles. Toy horses lead the carriage and a princess doll sits inside.



Kitty Cat Catch-Alls

October 6, 2017
Animals, Decor, DIY Home, Easter, Everyday Crafts, Grown-Up, Jewelry and Fashion, Kids Rooms, Older Elementary, Styling, Tween to Teen, Wood

anthro hack cat box

Oh I can make that! Have you ever uttered those words before? And do you find yourself saying it, but never actually crafting the object you claim you can totally make? This is literally my life story.

So, when my daughter saw this precious cat trinket dish at Anthropologie, I said, let’s make it! And this time (back pat) I actually did…but with my own Project Kid spin.

Here’s what you need:

  • Round 4-inch diameter box
  • Scissors
  • 4 golf tees
  • Tacky glue or hot-glue gun
  • Felt, black and one other color
  • 2 wood buttons
  • Black marker
  • Thin wire


  1. Glue four golf tees to the bottom of the round box. Let dry.
  2. Print out templates. Trace tail shape twice on felt and the eye/ear shape once. Cut felt pieces out.
  3. Cut out 2 small black felt triangles and glue onto the ears.
  4. Color wood button black and glue to cat’s face. Glue cat’s face to round box and draw nose and mouth onto the wood, between the eyes.
  5. Cut a piece of wire, about the length of the tail shape. Glue the wire in between the two pieces of tail felt. Glue the tail to the back of the box.


anthropologie hack cat jewelry bowl





Super Simple Nature Crafts

October 4, 2017
Decor, DIY Home, Early Elementary, Everyday Crafts, Fall, Grown-Up, Holidays, Nature, Parties, Thanksgiving, Upcycled, Yarn & Fabric

hedgehog pinecones, diy hedgehog, hedgehog craft,

When Parents magazine asked us to do a story on nature crafts we jumped at the opportunity. Repurposing items from outside is one of our favorite ways to upcycle! After scouring the park for supplies, we stocked the studio full of sticks, stones, pinecones, and leaves and got to work.

With a coat of paint and a felt face, a pinecone becomes a happy hedgehog, above. Craft the cone from a circle of felt, then add a pom pom for the nose and two beads for eyes. We were inspired by the pinecones’ natural “personalities” when choosing colors and face shapes.


For a cheery bouquet that won’t wilt, wrap branches in brightly colored craft bin scraps. Start with bands of paint and then add yarn, ribbon, and pom poms. If you’re like us, this is the perfect way to use up all the pieces you haven’t had the heart to toss.

 modern terrarium, diy terrarium, toy terrarium,

You don’t need a green thumb to create an eye catching terrarium! Stack stones, moss, and painted sticks in a glass container to make a mini landscape. Let your child set the scene with with tiny toys that can be swapped whenever they want to tell a new story.


leaf print napkins, diy leaf prints, nature craft napkin, leaf stamp napkin

Set a festive fall table (ahem, Thanksgiving!) with easy leaf-print linens. Collect foliage in a variety of shapes then add paint and roll with a brayer to create a stamp onto napkins (we used these from Amazon!). Make a matching set or play with patterns and colors for a “freshly fallen” look.



Playful Pumpkins: Part 2

September 25, 2017
Halloween, Holidays, Toys

lego toy pumpkin diy craft for kids halloween

Getting kids excited about Halloween isn’t that hard, TBH. But as a parent that “celebrates” Halloween multiple times a year (that’s what happens when you style for print magazines), the squeals of delight truly never get old.

And these pumpkin projects that I crafted for Parents magazine had my littles even more excited than normal because they actually got to be my craft assistants. Oliver, my then 6-year-old, got to build a bunch of Lego construction vehicles for this awesome jack-o-lantern carving scene. (above)

Builder’s Special

Your family’s Lego maniac will go brick wild for this clever twist on a classic jack. Carve a face into a small pumpkin. Once you’ve finished carving, build a Lego staircase to the face and arrange the Lego people so that they appear to be doing the carving themselves. Bonus points for a few construction vehicles bulldozing the seeds!

And Sommer was excited to help me pick out the facial features for these Potato Head Pumpkins!

potato head toy pumpkin craft kids diy halloween project

Mr. Pumpkin Head

Look for unusual pumpkins and gourds to give your creation even more character. Then, simply push the Mr. Potato Head parts into the flesh.

Tip: Poke wooden skewers vertically through the pumpkins to prevent toppling!

Photos by Dane Tashima.


5 Fall Inspired Crafts

September 21, 2017
Decor, DIY Home, Earth Day, Everyday Crafts, Fall, Nature, Uncategorized, Wall Decor, Yarn & Fabric

walnut totem pole, nature craft,

Tomorrow is the first official day of fall! We are always sad to see summer go, but autumn brings a whole new collection of natural crafting materials. The best way to celebrate the shifting seasons is to use these free supplies! Sticks, leaves, stones, and nuts are all perfect for creating projects that will last long after fall. We’ve been inspired by color palettes that will span seasons too. Rather than getting stuck in the orange, yellow, red rut – try adding a brighter rainbow of shades to make your fall crafts even more modern!


Stacks of walnuts (above) make whimsical totem poles when you add fun painted patterns. Check out the easy how-to in our book “Project Kid: 100 Ingenious Crafts for Family Fun”.

fall craft, leaf craft, bakers twine leafThese lovely baker’s twine banners from Dream Green DIY look a little like Matisse don’t you think? This technique would be a sweet way to decorate muslin goody or gift bags for a reusable party treat.

3.gods eyes, gods eyes crafts, yarn craftsSticks make an ideal frame for creating God’s Eyes. This classic woven craft feels fresh when made with bright colors and hung in a group. Extra points for adding pompoms! Check out Hobby Craft for instructions. (Image via Claireabelle Makes)

painted leaf mobile, fall leaf mobile, fall crafts, leaf crafts, nature mobileIf watching leaves fall is your favorite part of the season, make a mobile! This painted version from Hello Wonderful is so graphic and bright that it would look amazing hanging in front of any wall color. Mixing patterns and styles makes it more fun so collaborate with your kids to give the leaves personality.

5.painted rock craft, rock photo holder, painted rock photo holderGive your kids’ park treasures some purpose by transforming stones into photo holders. Patterns are cute, but rainbow rocks are too, so let your kid add her personal touch. Adding a cluster to your desk takes up less space than frames but is twice as cheerful. (via One Little Project)