As the clock winds down to Christmas, and the kids are on vacation, it’s the perfect time to spend some quality time making eco-friendly Christmas crafts. Children enjoying making gifts and decorations. A home filled with handmade Christmas crafts from natural materials is more beautiful than one filled with plastic holiday crap made in China under horrible social and environmental conditions.
The Guardian reports:
The likelihood is that most of those baubles, tinsel and flashing LED lights you’ve draped liberally around your house came from Yiwu, 300km south of Shanghai – where there’s not a (real) pine tree nor (natural) snowflake in sight.
Christened “China’s Christmas village”, Yiwu is home to 600 factories that collectively churn out over 60% of all the world’s Christmas decorations and accessories, from glowing fibre-optic trees to felt Santa hats. The “elves” that staff these factories are mainly migrant labourers, working 12 hours a day for a maximum of £200 to £300 a month – and it turns out they’re not entirely sure what Christmas is.
Our tree is decorated with eco-friendly Christmas crafts I made as a child, as well as ones my children have made. These ornaments bring back fond memories and are cherished more than store bought ones.
I’ve combed Pinterest looking for the 10 best eco-friendly Christmas crafts I want to make this year. We don’t have a lot of craft supplies, so I looked for ideas where the materials are readily available. A trip to the craft store is not exactly eco-friendly. These craft ideas do require adult assistance, depending on the age of your child.
10 Eco-Friendly Christmas Crafts for Kids
1. Wine Cork Reindeer
There’s no shortage of wine corks around my home 🙂 Just collect a some twigs, make small holes with a wine corkscrew in the corks, and decorate with ribbons. I little piece of red felt or organic cotton ball painted red can be used for the nose. If the wine cork labels bother you, you could always paint them. Step by step instructions are available from Jen Kim Made. Via: One Little Project My neighbor made a larger yard version of these reindeer with firewood logs and real deer antlers.
2. 3D Snowflake
These are really fun to make, and they can be made from old wrapping paper or other recycled paper. Scissors, tape, a stapler, and some twisting and turning is all you need! The directions are available on WikiHow.
3. Birdseed Ornaments
I was tempted to buy some big, cheap, plastic ornaments made in China to decorate our trees outside, but then I thought of the enviromental and social impact. Instead of contributing to the problem of cheap Chinese plastic goods this holiday season, why not feed the birds with your outdoor decorations. Birdseed ornaments are way easier to make then the classic pine cone and peanut butter version. These eco-friendly Christmas crafts bring a little holiday joy to the wildlife in your neighborhood. Many recipes include gelatin and corn syrup, ingredients you won’t find in my cupbards. I did find a coconut oil version though! (click the links for step by step directions)
4. Santa Logs
Super simple and super cute! These Santa logs take just a little bit of paint to bring some holiday cheer to your front porch. They are actually not inspired by Santa but by Danish elves named Nisse. Step by step instructions are available by Smart Girls DIY. Via: One Little Project
5. Pine Cone Owls
I love owls! These pine cone owls are so adorable! We don’t always have felt around, but I think you could substitute stiff fabric from old clothes. I also would use twigs for the claws instead of pipe cleaners. Clearly, this is a glue gun project. Directions by Lia Griffith. Via: One Little Project
6. Pine Cone Garland
We have lots of differnet pine cones in the woods around our house. Collecting them for eco-friendly Christmas crafts is a fun family adventure. Collected pine cones need to be washed and then dried in the oven at 200 degrees F for one hour. To make a pine cone garland, all one needs are scissors, twine, and pine cones! Step by step directions from Bob Villa.
7. Scrap Ribbon Christmas Trees
This eco-friendly Christmas craft is super simple and cute! It is perfect for using up small scraps of ribbon. I love how the trunk is stick. Complete instructions are available on Fireflies and Mudpies.Via: One Little Project
8. Little Yarn Hat Ornaments
These little hats are super cute! A toilet paper roll is used as the form. I love any craft that uses toilet paper rolls! All you need is some yarn, scissors, and a ruler. Step by step instructions plus a video is available on Handimania.
9. Mason Jar Snow Globes
It’s fun to take your children’s old toys and make snow globes. You can use any glass jar with a tight fitting lid, like an old jelly jar or mason jar. To make the glitter swirl around, a bit of glycerin is added to the water. If you don’t have glycerin (check your kids’ tinctures, they contain glycerin and could probably be used in a pinch), you can try baby oil or vegetable oil. The oil/glyercin is not necessary other than to slow the descent of the glitter. Complete instructions available from the Sweetest Occasion.
10. Sock Snowman
What to do with all those mismatched socks? Make snowman of course! Use rice to stuff the snowman and decorate with spare buttons, ribbon, etc. I love how the sock also make the hat! For directions, visit Darkroom & Dearly.
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