Birthday Crafts

Birthday crafts are a lot of fun. Getting the kids involved in making a gift for a friend makes the present all the more meaningful, and you'll save a lot of money making birthday crafts instead of just buying gifts from the store. Here are some wonderful birthday crafts for you to consider.

Birthday Books

A great, easy craft for a younger child is to make a birthday-themed coloring book. Many websites have printables with birthday themes or using characters that kids love.

Print out a bunch of pages, then bind them together. Your binding can be as simple as stapling a piece of construction paper on the front and back to serve as covers, or as elaborate as using cardboard or card stock and stitching the book closed. Another cute closure is to punch holes in the pages and tie them together with ribbon, raffia or thread.

Finish off the gift with a package or crayons, markers or colored pencils. If you buy these at the dollar store, this gift will cost you almost nothing!

Birthday Piñatas

Ask the mother of the birthday child before you do this craft. A piñata is a great gift that also becomes part of the fun of the party. They do take a little time to make because lots of drying is involved, but other than that, the instructions are rather simple.

Basic instructions for making a piñata can be found here. Start with a balloon and many one-inch wide strips of newsprint. You might also want a bunch of strips of white printer paper to make your last layer out of, so that it will be quicker to paint the piñata when you are done.

Using liquid laundry starch to wet the strips and allow them to stick to the blown-up balloon. Leave a small space around the knot uncovered so that you can remove the balloon and fill your piñata with treats later. Let the first layer dry, then add another.

Consider how you want to decorate your piñata. You can make it into a sun (attach cone-shaped water-cooler cups), a bat (attach wings and ears) or decorate it like the face of the child's favorite character.

Allow to dry thoroughly. It's great to sit the piñata in the sun so that it will completely dry out. The balloon should lose air during this process, or you can just untie the knot and remove it (once you are sure the piñata is dry and you don't want to add any more layers or decorations.

Then paint the piñata as desired. Fill with candy and other treats (again, the dollar store is great for picking up little trinkets. Then cover the hole with another piece of newsprint.

Attach a string to the top of the piñata for hanging. Don't forget to take a baseball bat to the party (and maybe a tarp you can lay on the ground under the piñata so little messy bits aren't left all over the hostess' yard.

Goody Box

We all know that lots of moms put together goody bags for the children who attend their children's parties, so why not make a goody box gift for the birthday boy or girl?

Take a shoe box and decorate it like a treasure chest. Use brown spray paint or tempera paint for the base, (you could even use a wood-grain texture pad to make the paint look more like wood if you want) let it dry, then paint black stripes for the straps and a circle on the front for a keyhole. Add gold paint to embellish the keyhole or to look like decorative tacks on the chest (or add scrapbooking tacks or brads to give your project a little texture0>

Fill the treasure chest with little trinkets: candy, small toys, art supplies, whatever you like. It's sure to be a "treasured" gift and highlight of the party.

Birthday Crafts for the Party

If your little one is the one having the party, birthday crafts take on a whole new meaning. Decorations for themed parties can be very expensive, not to mention those goody bags and treats that all the kids seem to expect these days.

Again, the Internet can help you a lot. If you have a good printer and a few hours to hunt for printable material, you can build a child's birthday party for very little money.

Let's say you were going for a butterfly theme for your little girl's birthday. Search for "butterfly printables" on your favorite search engine and you'll find all sorts of pages that you can download and print out.

A butterfly coloring book for each child would be a great "goody bag" type gift, or you could take one picture, crop it as needed, and print out. If it's not already in color, you can color it in by hand, scan it, and print the color version at a print shop or with your color printer. Cut these out and paste to plain white goody bags, which you can then fill with treats (gummy worms, perhaps?).

The same design could be used to print your own invitations to the party. Just get postcard-style card stock, print the image on one side and write or print the details of the party on the other side (they can be stuck in an envelope if they need to be mailed).

The Internet also has general birthday printables so you can make banners, table decorations and more. Just remember to throw in some of your theme elements where you can and have fun making a crafty birthday!

Birthday Crafts