Janelle Sorensen is the Chief Communications Officer for Healthy Child Healthy World. Simultaneously, she takes care of her sweet little girls, cooks, cleans, gardens, reads, bikes, hikes, crafts, laughs, speaks using silly voices and accents, drafts environmental policies, works on a Master's Degree, and tries to keep up with social media. Well, typically not all at the same time.

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8 Awesome, Easy Eco-Crafts for Kids to Give as Gifts

I’ve been spending recent weekends crafting holiday baubles with my kids and I can’t tell you how much fun it is. We listen to festive music and let our imaginations carry us away in a flurry of sawdust and glitter. As much as we can, we try to use items from nature or things that simply need a second life (attics and thrift stores are gold mines for these.)

Not only does it encourage their creative abilities, it also instills in them a deep appreciation of giving. My youngest daughter has been deemed the family Elf, because it’s almost impossible to rein her in once she starts making holiday gifts. Her bedroom becomes more chaotic than Santa’s Workshop and even though the space under the tree gets tighter and tighter, she begs to make more.

Green Gift Ideas for Kids

Whether you’re a novice or a natural, here are 8 awesome, EASY, eco-friendly crafts you can make with your kids to give as gifts to almost anyone on your list:

1. Make easy, elegant pebble magnets. My daughters love collecting small stones and this is a great way to showcase their treasures.

2. Create a clove-apple pomander. When I was a kid, I remember making these with oranges. Either way, they smell divine and if you prep the holes, it’s an extremely easy ornament for a child to make.

Photo by Wendy Piersall, Flickr

3. Assemble dry ingredients for a meal in a jar. I find jars at local thrift stores and run them through the dishwasher. If your child is very young, you can measure the ingredients and he can pour them in.

4. Mix up a sugar scrub. There are tons of great recipes for sugar scrubs – which are awesome DIY spa gifts! Again, look for jars with a seal at your local thrift store.

5. Customize a picture frame. There’s no link for this one because it’s so easy and has infinite options. Thrift stores have TONS of frames. Let your child paint or embellish it, put in a nice photo and voila!

6. Make a perpetual calendar. If you have wooden blocks that your kids play with – repurpose three of them to make this gift that gives for infinity! Your kids can decorate the sides of the blocks (either by painting or decoupaging scraps of paper). You can add the numbers and months (or they can if they’re old enough).

7. Tackle a tiny terrarium. I love these! You can re-use an old salsa jar or something similar, take a scavenger’s walk with your kids, stuff your goodies inside, and end up with a little bit of Zen beauty.

8. Turn an old t-shirt into a reusable bag. (Okay, so you need some sewing skills for this one – but only the ability to sew the bottom of the t-shirt closed. Easy!)

How about you? What gifts are your kids (or you) making?

Learn more:

10 Easy Eco-Crafts for Kids

Make Sure Your Child is Playing with Non-Toxic Games, Arts and Crafts

Non-Toxic Tips and Tools for National Craft Month


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Comments (5)

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  3. Robin Akawi 12/11/2010 at 9:24 pm

    I like these ideas, thank you! 🙂

    • Janelle Sorensen 12/16/2010 at 11:03 pm

      Glad you liked these Robin! Do you plan on trying any? Do you have your own ideas?

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