As the days grow shorter and you’re looking for something to do indoors, Halloween is a great excuse to try out some fun craft projects with your kids. Halloween crafts are more than just a spooky way to fill an afternoon. By using recycled materials for your projects, you can give kids a hands-on lesson in sustainability while you get creative. Here are a few recycled craft projects to try this Halloween.
Glass Jar Jack-O’-Lantern
This project is so fun and simple that my daughter has made new ones every year.
All you need is:
- A glass jar, washed and dried
- Painters tape or masking tape
Use the tape to create a face for your jack-o’-lantern. Tear or cut pieces of tape to create eyes, a nose, and a mouth, and tape them in place on the side of the jar. Paint the entire jar, including over the tape, however you desire. When the paint is dry, peel away the tape to reveal your jack–o’–lantern’s face.
Place a tea light or battery operated mini-light inside the jar to light it up. You can also add a handle by wrapping craft wire around the top (if you want to be able to carry your lantern).
Candy Wrapper Beads
All those tiny candy wrappers from the Halloween haul aren’t easy to recycle since they’re often made of mixed materials. Instead of adding them to the landfill, reuse them and turn them into some candy-themed jewelry instead. Since you probably aren’t eating all that candy at once, save up the wrappers until you have a bunch before you get started.
To begin, grab:
- The wrappers
- A pencil
Start by smoothing out the wrapper as much as possible. You can cut large ones in half lengthwise. Slowly wrap it around a pencil, but not too tight so you’re able to slip the whole thing off the pencil when you’re done. After the first loop around, add a dab of glue to secure it. Wrap the entire thing, and add another dab of glue to secure the end in place. Give it a few minutes to dry, and then gently pull the wrapper bead of the pencil. Once you’ve made several beads you can use them to make necklaces and bracelets or to just practice fine motor skills by stringing them.
Egg Carton Spider
This is one of the best DIY Halloween crafts for younger kids because of its simplicity.
Your materials are:
- An old egg carton
- Paint or markers
- Pipe cleaners
Cut off the end off the egg carton so you’re left with two of the cup sections together. Poke four holes on each side of the egg carton piece, and have your little one thread pipe cleaners through to make legs. Paint or decorate the carton with markers, and give the spider a face. Poke another hole on the top, and thread some yarn through so you can hang up your spider.
With all the Halloween artwork filling your fridge, you may need a few extra magnets to hold it all up.
All you need to make a pumpkin magnet is:
- Lid from the glass jar that you saved
- Craft magnet
Paint a jack-o’-lantern on the top of the lid and let it dry. Glue the magnet to the inside of the lid. If it’s a large lid, you may need to use a couple small craft magnets. Hang it up on your fridge once the glue is dry.
Pillowcase Candy Bag
A pillowcase is a timeless way to make a reusable trick-or-treating bag, but it’s boring the way it is. Jazz it up by giving it a face. After you’ve carved your pumpkins, save the cutout pieces from the eyes, mouth, and nose. You can then use them as stamps to make a face on your pillowcase.
Besides the makeshift stamps and pillowcase, you’ll need:
- A piece of cardboard
Place the cardboard inside the pillowcase to prevent the paint from bleeding through. Dip the jack-o’-lantern pieces into some paint, and then stamp out a face onto one side of the pillowcase. Let the paint dry before you remove the cardboard. Now you’re ready for trick-or-treating!
Let your kids think creatively and sift through the recycling bin to come up with their own DIY Halloween crafts. Finding ways to reuse items you already have at home will teach kids about how to live sustainably in a way they can understand.
Tweet pictures of your own recycled Halloween crafts to @TomsofMaine!
Image source: Sher Warkentin
This article was brought to you by Tom’s of Maine. The views and opinions expressed by the author do not reflect the position of Tom’s of Maine.