HAPPY ALMOST – HALLOWEEN my friends! My name is Heidi Swapp, and I am one of those ‘Halloween-crazy’ people! I think it’s that whole “FREE CANDY” thing! I also just love the CREATIVITY of Halloween…the costumes, parties, and crafts! Halloween creative projects are among my favorite things to design!
I remember how excited I was as a little girl, when my mom would start pulling out the Halloween decorations! My kids are exactly the same! They LOVE being a part of all the decorating fun! The reality is though that it isn’t always easy to include kiddos in the DIY creative process! Today I want to share five tips for including your kids in the creative fun, as well as some inspiration for crafting fun with my NEW Halloween kits available exclusively at Michaels!
1. Create a Plan
It’s a great idea to take a minute to translate the mystical vision for your Halloween decor in your head on to paper to get started! I have found that if I start out by establishing a game plan, then I can get everyone on the same page and working together toward that plan! Admittedly, things don’t always (or ever) go “as planned”, but by sharing the vision things should stay on track. Drawing is certainly not my talent, but just a basic sketch will do the trick!
2. Prep for Kid-Friendly Tasks
Take a little time before hand to PREPARE to involve the kids. You can avoid wasting precious together time getting things ready. I recommend opening packages, reading through the instructions, being familiar with exactly what has to happen, and having all the necessary supplies gathered. Then you are ready to roll!
My Halloween “light up” banners are awesome because they come with everything you need! I learned that it was a little tricky for my 11-year-old daughter to place the lightbulbs into the banner pieces, so I had her layer the pieces, and I popped in the bulbs!
3. Make Age and Skill Appropriate Assignments
Consider the steps that are required for the projects you are taking on and evaluate which parts your kids have both the interest and ability to complete, either on their own, or with your help. It’s super frustrating for both mom and kiddos when the task is too hard for their ability level.
Kids LOVE to help slide inserts into the lightbox! Depending on their age, they can help come up with what to display in the Lightbox, sort through letters, and select icons
Note: When Lightbox alphas and inserts are brand new, they come with a protective layer of plastic on one side of each piece. Show the kids how to remove the plastic themselves and they will be your best helpers pulling all the coating off. I usually have to make it into a game, rather than a job (wink, wink)!
4. Get ‘er Done & QUICK
Little crafter’ attention spans are short! The BEST part of the craft is seeing the finished results, right? Choose projects with short, achievable steps and a WOW outcome! There is nothing with more WOW factor than my Halloween character Marquee Kits! They require just the right amount of effort with a big bright reward at the end! (Just make sure you have 2 AAA batteries on hand.) They are this easy:
- Place the printed insert.
- Insert the plastic bulbs into each hole.
- Thread the light strand according to the simple instructions. The instructions are really easy to follow, and it’s SO rewarding for them to make something SO COOL!
- Add batteries.
- LIGHT IT UP!
Encourage your young crafter to stick with it until the end to ENJOY the results!
5. Help, Hold, and Hang
Seeing the vision come together is where the “hard work” pays off. Let your kids be the ones to “hang up” the wreath, place the banners on the hooks, and position the pumpkins and props. With a little direction (and sticking with the plan), everyone involved will start to feel that EXCITEMENT of “making” something special! It’s so fun to switch the lights ON in the marquees, lightboxes, and garlands. Then step back and admire the festive (I mean SPOOKY) creations!
I’ve included a few of my favorite ways to display all this fun Halloween DIY decor!
- Layer the lightbox over a black feather wreath on your front door using fishing line and command hooks. Keep changing out the messages throughout the month to keep your neighbors guessing. Add some black cats on a mini-light garland to create the full Halloween welcome!
Extend light up banners across a hallway or entry. These provide a super spooky and festive entrance to ANY home, apartment, office, or school room!
The Halloween character light-up garlands look great draped across a table top!
Use faux-branches to “hang” and cluster the Marquee lit characters!
This year I have added something new and exciting to my Halloween collection! If you haven’t seen it yet, let me introduce you to the Lightbox Glow! With the use of blacklight technology I have created the ultimate addition to your décor. Insert your alphas or slides, flip the switch, and let your message glow!