Spooktacular Crafts for Halloween with Viking-Direct

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As my boys are growing up it takes a little bit more encouragement for them to get crafty. I really enjoy making things and try my best to encourage the boys to do so too. They have a set of art drawers in their bedroom that is full of arts and crafts, the boys would often rummage through them and create little masterpieces. And when they do get crafty they do produce some lovely art pieces, my youngest has just finished an art project (set by school) to create a Halloween scene in a box – he loved doing it, but just needs that extra little encouragement to do so.

Viking – an online stationary and office supplies company – invited us to take part in a Halloween Craft Campaign, which I thought would be a lovely idea for the boys to get involved in some spooky arts and crafts.

In the box

We were sent a box of goodies to use our imaginations with and creative to produce some spooky crafts and to share with you all what we come up with.

Our kit included:

  • A selection of coloured paper and card
  • A pack of felt tip pens
  • A set of Halloween based stencils
  • A gold and silver metallic craft pen
  • A ball of string
  • Glitter
  • A pumpkin carving kit
  • Elastic string for masks
what's in the viking craft box

What we created

I love getting crafty with the boys, they have great imaginations and i just enjoy spending the time together sitting at the table. It is far better than watching them playing games on their phones or tablets

Frankenstein’s Monster Mask

We cheated paper, card, felts, metallic pens, scissors, glue and the elastic to create a Frankenstein’s Monster mask for my son to wear on Halloween. He really enjoyed this craft and we are pretty smug about how it turned out. We used black card for the base and stuck the green paper on top, my son then went on to add in the details with the felts.

drawing the scar on the mask

Halloween Card

A Westham halloween card
Happy ‘Hammers’ Halloween

As my son plays football and trains once a week at the WestHam Development centre, he really wanted to make a Halloween Card to give to them. He used the coloured paper, the stencil and felts to create a spooky picture. The broom and the sword are creating the famous ‘Hammers’

String cobweb

Next up we made a cobweb using the ball of string and 3 twigs that we had collected from outdoors.

Cobweb made from string and twigs
String cobweb

Here is how we made it:

  • Secure three, same size, twigs together with some of the string in the middle to make a star like shape.
  • With the rest of the string start to wind the string around the twigs, moving from one to another.
  • keep on going around the twigs, wounding the string around and around.
  • We wrapped the string around the twigs once before moving on the next twigs as this helps to secure the string in place.
  • When you get to the end of the twigs, tie a knot in the string.

Pretty cool eh! And very effective when you leave them hanging around the trees in your garden.

We also created a tiny spider from the black card and placed it in the cobweb

String and twigs spiderweb hanging in the tree

Pumpkin sweet treat holder

Halloween isn’t just about dressing up into the scariest outfit you can find but, for children, it is also about knocking on the neighbours doors ‘trick or treating’. These cute little Pumpkin sweet favours are not only sweets but also double up as a little gift that you can give to the children.

Pumpkin favours

You will need some orange tissue paper, string and green paper.

  • Cut out a circle from the tissue paper – big enough to hold some sweets in
  • Place the sweets in the middle and then bring the ends up into the middle
  • Secure the middle with some of the string
  • Place some green paper over string to create a green stem
  • Draw on a scary face or leave plain
  • They are now ready to give out to children as gifts

Pumpkin Carving

The last part of our Hallowe’en crafts was the best bit, the bit where we got messy. Pumpkin carving is always the best part, in my opinion, of celebrating Hallowe’en.

We used the pumpkin carving kit that was provided to us in the box. Once we had decided on what design we was going to put onto our pumpkin we was ready to get going.

First we cut off the top of the pumpkin and then using the scoop we scooped out of the middle of the pumpkin. Once it was empty of all of the flesh and the seeds we drew on our design and then following the lines we cut it out.

Pumpkin carved put as harry potter
Harry Potter Pumpkin

The boys like to do something a little different with their pumpkins and this year they wanted a Harry Potter Pumpkin. What do you think?

We were enjoyed getting crafty with our little box of stationary that Viking gifted to us

Happy Hallowe'en
#spooktacular Hallowe’en

Why not take a look at what Viking-Direct has to offer for your next arts and crafts projects here

We were gifted with some craft items for the purpose of this post

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Make your own Home Mobile Cinema – Kids Craft

This past week my boys have spent more time on their smartphones than anything else. The weather hasn’t been great and they have spent much more time than I would have preferred them to in the house.

They have become addicted to watching Youtube – football videos and playing Pokemon.

I saw a video about a girl who made a cinema from a box and thought what a great idea it would be for my boy to give it a go.

We get our weekly food shop delivered in a box (Gousto) so as soon as it arrived I knew instantly what we was going to do with it. I looked over at my son, who at the time was sitting on the kitchen side playing on his phone and asked him if he wanted to go to the movies. He obviously replied with a big nod of the head.

I showed him the box and explained to him that he would be making the cinema from the box. He wasn’t quite that keen on the idea at first but as I described to him in more detail on how the cinema would work, he soon became more interested in the idea.

We gathered together the equipment that we would need, which isn’t much and got started on the home cinema project.

You will need:

  • A decent size cardboard box
  • Scissors or a craft knife (Ask an adult for help)
  • Marker pen
  • An old t-shirt or some paint
  • Masking tape
  • A Mobile phone
  1. First cut away the flaps from the top of the box
  2. Turn the box over and place the mobile device in the middle. Draw around it
  3. Cut it out so you now have a hole in the top of the box
  4. Turn the box over and on the inside where you just cut the hole out, you need to place some more cardboard on the sides. Secure them in place with glue or tape. This will ensure that the phone will have somewhere to sit.
  5. Now cut out a semi circle at the bottom so that your head can fit through.
  6. All that’s left to do now is to decorate the box.
  7. Spend some time painting it or use an old t-shirt and stretch it over the box. Depending on the size of your box a medium sized top will do.
  8. Make sure that the neck is over the hole and secure inside with some tape.
  9. Et Voila!

Find a comfy spot on the floor and lay back and watch a movie. No more pain in the neck or having to hold the phone in front of you.

Check out our video on how to make the cinema.

We had so much fun making the cinema and it only took just under 10 minutes (longer if he had painted it). He is having much more fun watching movies and less time playing games.

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Bonkers about Conkers

It’s that time of year when the ripe seeds from the Horse Chestnut tree fall to the ground.  The conkers are encased inside a green spiked capsule, which are attached to the branches of the tree. When the spiky capsule begins to turn brownish in colour they fall to the ground. It’s a sign that Autumn is on it’s way.

My youngest has never really been that into conkers, that is until this year and he has absolutely gone bonkers for conkers! Collecting well over 400 of them; with the help of friends.

Wherever we go: on the way to school, to the park, to football practice or walking to the shops, he is always on the lookout for a conker. When we get home he empties his school bag, trouser pockets and even his lunch bag and places them into his growing collection.

With so many conkers I asked him what he wanted to do with them. His reply was just that he wanted to collect them and see how many he could find.

I know conkers are, apparently, good for keeping spiders away if placed in the corner of the room. So I think we will be safe for a while from our eight legged friends.

Apart from the obvious of playing conkers we decided to get our craft heads on and do something a little different with what we had. We made conkers paintings and snail conkers.

Conkers paintings are really simple but can get quite messy.

You will need :

  • Conkers
  • A tray
  • Paper
  • Selection of paint

Place the paper into the tray. Then add in the paper and squirt some poster paint around the paper. Place some conkers on to the paper and now the fun and messy part. Start to shake the tray so that the conkers roll around in the paint leaving a coloured trail behind them.

About to roll

Finished picture

Conker snails were so much fun

You will need:

  • Conkers
  • Paint pens or acrylic paints
  • playdough

First we made up our playdough. We added in chocolate powder to give it that earthy colour. My son loved making the playdough as he likes to get messy and it’s really good for the children to practice their measuring and motor skills.

Then, we decorated the conkers with the paint pens, we used my posca pens but you can get cheaper versions which are just as good. Once the conkers were dry we moulded the playdough for the snails body and placed the conker on top for the shell.

Aren’t they just so cute!

You could even hide the snails around your local park for other children to find or even just the decorated conkers ( just like the rock decorating craze)

As a child, I used to love playing conkers with my friends and big brother. It was something that my parents had taught me. Who had the strongest conker? There were even methods that you could use to strengthen your conker; keeping a conker for a year, baking, soaking, boiling in vinegar, or painting with clear varnish. Nowadays, children don’t seem to want to play the simple, but fun games that we played when we were younger.

Conkers is a game that could dates back as far as 1821. To score in Conkers you must break the opponent’s conker to gain points – you can score when you are attacking or defending. If strings become entangled the first player to shout ‘strings’ gets an extra turn.

I have not given up on introducing the boys to the game, as I know they will just love it as much as I did.

All ready for a game of conkers

But, this activity is for another day 🙂

 

 

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Make Your Own Mouthy Trick Or Treat Bags for Halloween

Are you ready for Halloween? Whether you’re ready or not, I can bet that your children are already planning what they are going to wear and how they want the house decorated ready for the many trick or treaters that will be knocking on your door.

Help your children collect their goodies in these spooky trick or treat bags. Which are also ideal to give out to any spooky guests that may turn up at your door

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They are simple to make and a fun activity for the children to do over the half term

You will need:

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  • Paper bags
  • Acrylic paints or felt pens
  • Scissors
  • Black marker pen
  • Pencil

First cut away the handle from the top of the bag

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Then place your hand on top of the bag, in the middle with your fingertips touching the top and mark with a pencil either side of your fingers (little and pointing finger)20171015_113139

Now draw in your monsters mouth – this will be your new handle

Once your mouth in place you can then draw your monster. Be as spooky as you like

Why not draw a zombie monster or a spider?

Choose the colour and paint your monster, think bright colours like; orange, purple, green and red.

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You can design both sides with different characters or just do one side.

Add sparkle in with some glitter, paint it with glow in the dark paint or even some googly eyes

Now you’re ready to fill the bags with goodies

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Have a spooktacular Halloween 🙂

 

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Customising with Gel-a-peel #review

I love a good craft project, especially when its one that combines summer and neon pens.

I had never heard of Gel-a-peel before, maybe because my boys are more into football or climbing trees. But when we was contacted and asked to join in on the gel-a-peel summer campaign I couldn’t wait to introduce it to my boys. The box itself doesn’t really appeal to my boys as it was a little girly but once I showed them what the pens could do they were showing signs of interest.

We was sent a gel-a-peel box which contains 3 glow in the dark pens and a pair of sunglasses for the boys to decorate and customise to their own taste.

What’s in the box:

  • 3 glow in the dark gel tubes
  • 16+ design templates
  • Gel tray with shapes and letters
  • 4 designed tips
  • 1 plastic sheet
  • Instruction sheet
  • Cleaning tools

The pens are easy to use. They come in 30g tubes and made from silicone. You can create any fashion accessory in 4 easy steps

  1. Choose a template or create your own
  2. Pick a colour gel pen and a tip
  3. Place the plastic sheet over the chosen template and trace over it. Use some tape to secure it to the table (your drawing sheet may slip otherwise) Once finished leave it to dry. Each template tells you how long it takes for it to dry
  4. Once dry, peel it off and now your ready to wear/use it

We found that when you are tracing over the template onto the plastic sheet you need to make sure that the lines are nice and thick, be generous with the pen but try to keep it even. Overlap the lines and reinforce thin spots. Our bangle, in the shape of a cherry snapped when we was putting it on, but the magic of these pens is that they can easily be fixed. Just apply more gel to the break and wait for it to dry.

The boys made me a lovely bracelet following the instructions. They also used the tray to make some letters and using the gel pens they attached them to the bracelet

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Cute isn’t it!

These pens are such a brilliant idea, fun and easy to use.

My son couldn’t wait to decorate his sunglasses with the pens.

He chose the fine tip to decorate around the frames and a the star tip to leave little stars on the arms.

 

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The tips included are round tip, rake tip and star tip. Remove the cap and plug from a gel tube, then twist on your chosen tip. The longer you squeeze the bigger the shape will be. These tips help you create different effects.

Once you have finished with a pen and tip just place the lid back on the pen and clean out the tip with the tool provided. I found that the next day, once the gel had set and dried I could easily pull it out of the tip ready to use again with another pen.

The Tray is easy to use, not only does it have the alphabet in capital letters but also, numbers, 4 emojis and 5 different shapes. You use the round tip to completely fill in the shapes and then use the cleaning tool to remove out any bubbles in the gel. Then use the squeegee tool to remove any excess gel from the tray. Once your chosen shapes are filled in leave them to dry, loosen them with the cleaning tool and just peel them out ready to use on your designs.

He chose to use some of the shapes to decorate his sunglasses

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We left our sunglasses over night to completely dry out before we wore them.

My son was really pleased with his glasses, it makes them extra special as they are his own design. He couldn’t wait to try them out in the sun.

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They have been packed and ready to use on holiday. His very own customised pair of sunglasses, an original that he knows that no one else with have. This pack of pens are glow in the dark so will be ideal for customising any accessory ready for the summer festivals

The pens are a really good idea for any child to get creative, they are advised for children over the age of 8.

My only complaint about them is that the advertising is aimed at girls and really boys will enjoy this activity just as much. As you can see from my son’s face in the above pictures, he enjoyed the activity and the outcome of his design.

Gel-a-peel is available to buy from £14.99

We was sent a box for the purpose of this review

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