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Crafter Jen Perkins shares three of her favorite from her book, Upcycle It! Crafts for Kids—a denim book cover, plastic bottle night light + puzzle bowl.
Denim Book Cover
“Yes, you can cover journals and notebooks in denim,” says Jen. And it’s simple: all you need is a journal, glue, felt, and the perfect pair of blue jeans. “Pick an area in your blue jeans, like say the leg that is the width of the journal that you’re going to be using. I would cut it with a little extra [fabric on the perimeter],” she explains. Then, you’re just going to glue the jeans on to the front of journal—making sure to press so that everything gets good contact, wrapping the excess material on the inside.
Once that’s done, it’s time to whip out the felt—Jen’s had an adhesive back. “This [felt] will cover the uneven edges on the [inside front and back covers].”
Puzzle Bowls
When those puzzle pieces go missing, before throwing out the entire puzzle—Jen suggests making a puzzle bowl and all you need is glue and puzzle pieces.
Start by gluing those puzzle pieces together in a ring shape. “I started with a ring of puzzle pieces gluing it together because the first thing you want to do is make a base. I used a hot glue gun because I like my crafts fast, but you can also use regular craft glue, and don’t forget they have low temperature hot glue guns specifically for the younger kids,” Jen says.
“You want to build height first on the sides before you start going out until you get a bowl shape.”
Plastic Bottle Cactus Night Light
“It’s a lot easier to start with a bottle that’s already green. Cut the top part off. It doesn’t have to be perfect. You can do the spikes [on the outside] using hot glue. I did dimensional slick paint (you can get these at the craft store). Go around the whole bottle making dots. You can add a pom-pom on top because you know cactus sometimes have flowers,” explains Jen.
Next, grab a terracotta pot & your light (Jen suggests either a tap light or an LED candle). Turn the light on, stick your cactus in, and you’ve got the perfect little night light.
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