Autumn Crafts Minus the Turkey

The best ones don't gobble, don't you think?

After autumn arrives, many kids turn to crafting all things turkey. While handprint art and feathers are cute, fall certainly isn't just about all things turkey, and especially not just about Thanksgiving, a holiday that ends up causing as much harm as joy for many families. So what kinds of fall crafts are there beyond the turkeys and feathers?

Fall leaf crafts are my favorites, whether you're pressing real leaves and making crafts out of them or creating your own cute leaves out of whatever you have on hand. One fun thing we like to do in our home is make enormous leaves of different shapes and fill them with neat things that we find, from acorns and other odds and ends from the yard to buttons and scraps of fabric.

What kinds of autumn crafts do you like to make?

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The Best Crafts For Stress Relief

Share your favorites!

If you watched Adele hosting SNL recently, you may have laughed over her character coloring every day to cope with the pandemic. Many people did the same and can relate to her activities. But in reality, coloring really can help relieve stress, so it's a constructive activity to enjoy if you like to do it.

Plenty of crafts can help reduce stress, from knitting to journaling, which is my personal favorite. But there are also lots of fun projects you can make to help you alleviate stress, from scented stress balls to calming sensory bottles. All of these are fun to make but also give you something you can use daily to help manage stress.

What crafts do you do to help manage stress in your life?

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Last Minute Halloween Crafts

Share your easiest to-dos!

Whether you're planning on staying home this weekend, babysitting or just looking for something easy and quick to do to get into the Halloween spirit, there are lots of really simple Halloween crafts you can do that don't cost a lot of money. Here are just a few ideas:

Use sharpies to draw on pumpkins. If you have paint, try layering and flicking it on for a galaxy look!

Cut up a cardboard egg carton and draw on faces to make 12 quick, cute ghosts

Stuff some plastic shopping bags with newspaper, twist them shut and draw on faces for easy ghosts that you can hang in trees. You can reuse these as long as they hold up.

Cut shapes in paper bags to make them into quick luminaries (use electric candles to make them glow!)

Draw Jack O'Lantern faces on your candle jars

Make a fun Halloween house out of graham crackers, icing and candy you have around the house

What last minute crafts are you making? Share them in the chat.

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Using Leftover Wax

What do you make with it?

If you love candles and wax melts as much as I do, you may find yourself with the same dilemma that I have: what do you do with all the wax after the scent is gone? At least candles burn down to the bottom, for the most part, but both still leave you with leftover wax. I'd love to put mine to good use instead of throwing it away, so I have a bunch of it in pickle jars, just waiting to be used.

This article lists a few ways to reuse it, and I'm a little skeptical about a few of them. I think making ornaments might be fun but I do worry about them melting in the summer. Most wax is okay at my house, which can get pretty hot, but I have had some brands actually get pretty soft in the packaging. 

What do you do with your leftover wax? Send your crafty ideas our way!

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Election Crafting

What are you making?

No matter where you fall on the political spectrum, it's no secret that crafters have become more politically active lately--or is it vice versa? From themed crochet hats to embroidered art, I've seen so many interesting political crafts lately that have been very impressive! Many people are even selling them on Etsy.
Crafting has always been a potentially political act, especially given the history of strikes for better working conditions among seamstresses and other workers. But it's pretty cool to see people make their own statement pieces to display or wear, especially to help them find constructive and enjoyable things to do during a pandemic.
Do you make political crafts? What do you make?

Handprint Halloween Crafts

Make keepsakes at the same time!

When my kiddo was little, we used to make handprint crafts for just about every holiday. It's a wonderful way to make easy trees, ghosts, turkeys, etc. while also commemorating how tiny those little hands were! If all you have is some paper and pencils, you can even do it, although colored pencils, markers and paints definitely make it pop.

They also come in handy for healing hearts. Someone I love has all of her baby's keepsakes tied up in a hostage situation because her ex is human garbage, which pretty much everyone already knows. Think Trump's Twitter feed and you've got him: gaslighter, self-absorbed narcissist, controlling, emotionally abusive, manipulative, you name it. Rather than duke it out with him, as he's one of those men who isolated her enough to where she has no claim for anything legally, I've suggested making lots and lots of new pieces. No, they won't be as tiny, and it's awful that she's having this experience in her life, but it's definitely not too late.

Even if you think it's too late, make some handprint ornaments and decorations! Have a teenager? Want to make hand ornaments of you and your partner's hands? Try some salt dough ornaments! They're super cheap and easy. They are totally personalized and help you make memories while you create them, too.

What handprint decorations do you make for Halloween and other holidays? Share them in the chat.

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Crafternoons With Friends

A highly enjoyable zoom activity!

If you're looking for a good socially distant activity to do with friends, might I recommend some Crafternoon activities?  You can set up a time and date for a zoom chat with friends and all bring the things you are working on just like you might in real life.

Alternatively, you can set up themed projects to work on. Maybe you'll all do the same project, like knitting a sweater, or maybe you'll all just work on a common theme, like Halloween. You could also incorporate service into your project with something like blanket making for a crisis nursery or pet toys for a shelter!

What are you crafting this week? Share it in the chat!

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Spider Crafts for Halloween

What are you making?

One of the most plentiful items to use in creating Halloween crafts is the common plastic spider! From bags of tiny plastic spiders to spider rings, they are inexpensive and widely available at just about any store, making them perfect for making crafts of all kinds for Halloween.

Many people like using these for wine glass charms, but I like to glue them on wreaths and other decorations to add a creepy, crawly factor. In addition to crafts, I like to use them in my hair, too!

How do you use plastic spider rings in your Halloween crafts? Share your DIYs in the chat.

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All The Apple Crafts

What are you making?

A few years ago, I taught a fall crafting class for pre-K kids and I realized that I had forgotten how to make apple stamps! I figured it would just come back to me and I brought the apples to class with me... and nothing. I just made a mess! It was a good lesson in planning.

There are so many fun crafts you can make with apples in the fall, though, from apple banners and bulletin boards to shrunken apples to use for Halloween decorations. 

What apple crafts are you making this fall? Share them in the chat!

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Favorite Fall Leaf Crafts

Share yours in the chat!

Celebrating fall with vibrant fall leaves is a favorite crafting activity of many people. From wreaths to mailbox displays and many other cool ideas, lots of crafters enjoy using fall leaves in their crafting!

Some like to use real leaves, but there are also synthetic ones available for cheap this time of year. You can use leaf scatter to create cool displays in your home, to decorate photo frames or vases or to even mod podge onto containers for a burst of color.

How do you craft with fall leaves? Tell us in the chat!