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Many adults cringe at the thought of craft projects for kids. Their concerns may include a lack of confidence in their creative abilities and skills, worries about what to choose for a craft project or belief that crafts are complicated and expensive. All of this is far from true. Want to know how to do an easy and stress free craft with kids? Just follow these steps. Take the time for preparation, have a craft free-for-all and don’t forget the clean up.

Preparation – Set Up Your Craft Cupboard.

Setting up your craft supplies ahead of time will make each arts and crafts project a breeze. Purchase your supplies ahead of time. Dollar stores, lawn sales, your recycling bins, and junk drawers are among the great resources for craft supplies and containers

Keep your supplies in labeled bins that have tops so you can stack the containers when you store them. Containers can be found inexpensively. Plastic shoe boxes can be as inexpensive as a dollar a piece. Also, check your recycle bin. Cardboard shoe boxes, plastic deli containers, tin cans and Styrofoam containers are all great for storing your supplies.

When storing your supplies, box like items together. Your categories can be general such as glues and adhesives, beads and gems, nature materials, foam supplies, etc., or you can label by project categories such as paper crafts, bead crafts, Christmas crafts, etc. Label each container with the items that are inside. File folder labels are inexpensive and can be run through your printer for easy to read labels.

With all of this done, you will need to store your supplies. Where you store them depends on the where you do your crafting, the amount of access your want your kids to have to the supplies, and the amount of supplies you have. Keep supplies close to where you will be crafting or you will be spending too much time getting them out. In addition, consider if you want to your kids to have free access to the supplies. For younger children, free access to paints and scissors without adult supervision is not a good idea. Store them where they cannot be reached or lock them in a cabinet. Consider the amount of supplies you have. A small amount can be placed in a drawer or a cupboard while a large amount of supplies may need their own cabinet or closet shelf. Places to consider include kitchen cabinets or china cabinets, the top of your fridge, a closet, an unused dresser, a bookcase, or a cupboard with doors.

Craft Free-for-All

Kids do not need instructions or patterns to make great crafts. Forget the end product and focus on the process. Sit the kids at a table with craft materials from your craft cupboard, recycling bin, junk drawers, etc. then step back and watch the magic. The creativity and flexibility in the thinking of children when they sit in front of a pile of raw materials will never ceases to amaze you. Make sure you join in the fun as well.

Clean Up!

I can hear the kids moaning now but clean up is essential. Taking the time to put the craft supplies back into their proper containers will make it easier to find them next time, leave more time for the actual craft project and decrease stress for both the children and adults. Plan the time for clean up into your craft project. If you have thirty minutes for your crafting time, quit with five minutes left for clean up. Setting a timer will assure everyone knows when clean up begins.

Give each child specific task to make the clean-up less overwhelming. Giving specific directions will make the task less daunting to the child. Use instructions such as, “Your job is to put all of the paints into the paint container,” or “Your first job will be to collect all of the loose beads and put them into the bag.” Allowing the child to escape this part of the craft project will fail to teach them to clean up after themselves and create resentment in those who have to do the clean-up.

Hopefully the information provided here will take the fear out of providing craft projects for kids. When you take the time to prep for the craft, make the project fun and easy, and remember the clean up, you will be enriching your child with a lifetime of great memories and skills for the future.

For more fun and inexpensive craft ideas, visit: http://www.kidscraftycreations.com.

Author: Carol M. Edwards
Article Source: EzineArticles.com
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Religious arts & crafts

Religious arts & crafts allow artisans and crafters the opportunity to showcase the symbols of their faith, and the opportunity to craft an expression of their faith into tangible form. In this manner, religious arts & crafts provide a way for the faithful to proudly acknowledge their beliefs, and profess their love for their god or gods. Religious arts & crafts usually do this by referring to their religion’s main textual tenants or predominant symbols.

Which religions use arts & crafts to express belief?

Religious arts & crafts, as commonly thought of in western society, is concerned primarily with Christianity. For this reason, the common symbols of Christianity – the cross, fish and loaves, angels, Jesus Christ, etc. – are commonly incorporated into American arts & crafts. Another popular theme is to incorporate scripture quotations. Of course, Christianity does not have a monopoly on religious arts & crafts; arts & crafts are well known within the Jewish tradition, for instance. Jewish arts & crafts typically focus on the most widespread symbols of Judaism, and include the Star of David, menorahs, and other icons of the belief. Jewish sayings are also frequently featured on Jewish arts & crafts.

Ideas for religious arts & crafts

Religious arts & crafts are designed to serve as decoration for one’s home, office, vehicle, or church. Although religious features could be showcased in virtually any type of arts & crafts, these are some popular ideas for religious arts & crafts used for decoration:

1. Beaded Crafts: With a set of beads and string, pipe cleaners or safety pins, the devotee can create cute, creative religious arts & crafts. The possibilities for these crafts are almost endless, and are great for the whole family. These beaded crafts can be designed as jewelry, decorations, and other adornments. Virtually any religious symbol is possible with this versatile craft idea, from the Star of David to the Shroud of Turin.

2. Paint Your Own: Try to let your creative side out and paint your religious items for decoration and display or even for use in a religious service. Special ceramic paints are great to use for painting, decorating, and personalizing ceramic crosses, angels, and even scenes from the Bible. Personalize these paintings with names, birthdays, and scripture to make wonderful personalized gifts.

3. Cross Stitch & Embroidery: While it may take more skill and expertise, with a bit of practice most devotees can become experts and creating needlework arts & crafts. Religious needlework is especially noteworthy as it can combine both graphical images of crosses, angels, doves, and Bible scenes, as well as scripture, Bible verses, and other words of inspiration. Some more popular options for religious arts & crafts using cross stitch and embroidery include religious pillows and Bible covers.

4. Stained Glass Arts & Suncatchers: Stained glass art is popular for religious arts & crafts since stained glass is usually associated with churches and places of worship. This does not mean that you need to be a church to afford stained glass art. Far from it, inexpensive stained glass kits are readily available in most hobby and craft stores, and can be used by those without any previous experience.

5. Ornaments & Window Hangers: Ornaments and window hangers are often quite simple to create – in the absence of specialized skills, all you need is some imagination and a dash of creativity. Ornaments may be designed specifically for the Christmas season, or may be year-round crafts that can be hung anywhere, even from your rearview mirror. Look on the Internet for some fun ideas for religious ornaments, hangers, and other crafts.

6. Handmade Jewelry: Most religious people will happily wear the symbols of their faith as a personal reminder of their faith and devotion. Handmade religious jewelry is very popular, and can include anything from resin angel earrings to homemade metal crucifixes. Brooches, necklaces, and bracelets are also very popular, and while they are generally designed for women, men are becoming increasingly comfortable wearing fine handmade crucifix necklaces.

Looking for resources for making religious arts & crafts

Many arts & crafts shows will feature quite a bit of religious crafts and artwork. While there are rarely shows designed specifically for this niche market, a very high percentage of artisans & crafters feature work that includes a religious focus. If you are not able to attend any shows, do not give up hope. When looking for other ideas for religious arts & crafts, head to your local Christian bookstore or specialty shop. These stores will almost always maintain special sections dedicated to arts & crafts supplies of a religious nature. These stores also typically have arts & crafts ready for purchase and gift giving. If you are more adventurous, go to a hobby and arts & crafts store and convert a secular hobby kit into a testament of your faith.

Mary Amos loves arts and crafts and has been creating beautiful projects for years. See her exciting new ideas for religious arts and crafts at Religious Arts and Crafts, and be sure to visit Arts and Crafts for more fun projects !

Author: Mary Amos
Article Source: EzineArticles.com
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Are you looking for ways to keep your kids busy during their summer holidays? Keep them creatively entertained for hours with these easy, yet engaging craft activities:

1. Painting Rocks: Your kids will love staying outdoors in your garden or backyard busy painting rocks of garden stones. Supply them with acrylic paints and brushes and let them use their own creative ideas. They could either paint little objects and scenes on larger rocks or paint smaller stones in single or multi colors.

2. Photo Frames: Photo frames can be made and/or decorated in many different ways. Ask kids to choose their favorite summer photos to be framed and supply them with plain plastic or wooden frames. Now ask them to embellish each frame with a theme that matches the photograph. A picture taken on the beach can be displayed in a frame embellished with sand and seashells. A birthday photo can have a frame embellished with birthday clipart, cutouts or stickers.

3. Wrapping Paper: Let your kids make different types of wrapping for use throughout the year to wrap presents for their friends’ and teachers’ birthdays. Give them paint and different household supplies that create various patterns on paper. For e.g. sponge, cut vegetables, carved buttons, jar lids etc. They can also make and store some for Christmas.

4. Bead Crafts: Assorted beads in different colors, shapes and sizes make for interesting craft supplies. Kids can create themed jewelry, bead art, pins and little decorations by stringing beads on to wire and then bending wire to create shapes.

5. Playdough: Homemade playdough is one of the oldest and still the most effective of keeping kids busy. Give the kids a ‘summer project’ to complete before the day ends in which they can make a summer scene or a number of summer themed objects.

Giving these crafts a ‘summer’ theme will not only give the projects an interesting twist, but it will also make your kids enjoy the season and wait for it to arrive soon next year!

For many more crafts for kids, homemade gift ideas and free craft projects, visit iLoveToCraft.com.

Author: Lata Tokhi
Article Source: EzineArticles.com
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Jewelry making is one of the finest crafts. It is a great hobby to get into because it will not only give you an opportunity to enjoy fabulous accessories at a cheaper cost but also open a chance at having your own business.

The first and most important thing that you need to think about when planning to start a bead crafts hobby is to find a wholesale supplier of your materials.

Finding a Supplier
Beads wholesale suppliers are widely available. There is no need to be confused about which is better than the rest. You simply need one with all the good stuff you will need for the kind of accessories you are looking to make. But of course, you need to be careful. As a smart shopper, you must ensure that you are getting real good value for your money.

Obviously, you need to single out a concern for quality, durability, and beauty. One will not work without the others. For your beads wholesale quest to be ideal, your purchased items must be long lasting and would not possibly loose their shine in the years to come. Do not let your eyes fool you. A thing for beauty is not enough. You need to be sure that your bead supplies will last a long time of use.

Tips on Finding Bead Suppliers Online
Bead jewelries are in thing now, which is quite good news for aspirant jewelers. Since it is in demand, you have a wide variety of resources to look at, especially online. Naturally, beads wholesale suppliers would claim that they have the best stock. It is your decision and your judgment, however, that really matters. Here are a few tips on how you can find a reliable beads wholesale supplier if you are using the Internet as your prime source:

* Make sure that your source is reputable. A good store to trust is one with a secure checkout.

* See if the items are reasonably priced. There should be a balance between price and quality.

* Examine the stuff in stock. If it is wide and various, you are in good hands. That means, you will have endless choices of styles to make.

* Check out the delivery charges. Make sure that you will not lose savings and profits paying by high amounts in distribution.

* Good customer support is a sign of efficiency. If there will be problems along the way, make sure that there is someone from the supplier’s end who will attend to your concerns.

* Always ask for discounts in case of bulk orders. Haggling, even online, is favorable for your budget.

Follow these links to read more about beads craft or putting up your own beading kit.

Author: Ronny Eriksen
Article Source: EzineArticles.com
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Although presumably you can use any kind of needle as a beading needle, if you are serious about the craft you should buy one that is specifically for beading. These types of needles are designed for both simple beading and elaborate beading, and they come in all different sizes and materials. For serious beaders, the types of needles they use can make the difference between a good finished product and one that is anywhere from slightly to very inferior.

To get your needles, visit a craft store, or even better, a beading store. A beading store will have exactly the types of needles that you need for your specific projects and designs, and the people there should be able to help you find the right beading needle for each of your projects. Don’t be afraid to go in and ask questions; these people want your business, and if they give you the right kind of help the first time, they know that you’ll be back when you need more supplies.

Although it may seem strange to you at first, wooden needles often work very well for beading, and well-made wooden needles can last a long time. A stainless steel beading needle can work well too – it really all depends on your preferences. If you are just starting out but are serious about your beading craft, you may want to buy more than one type of beading needle, so that you know that you’ll have the right one for each project that you will be working on.

You can find this article and more like it at [http://www.beadingcentral.info]

Author: Renee Flowers
Article Source: EzineArticles.com
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Beads are great to make beautiful jewelery and crafts. However, they are a little messy when it comes to work with the beads. You have to be extra careful about not spilling them. Moreover, you need to store them correctly otherwise you might not get your stash when needed the most. Here are certain tips for storing your tiny as well as large beads securely to find them when you want to finish the exclusive piece of that beaded bracelet or the earring!

Vials- vials or very small containers are available in the market and through online shopping. They are perfectly right for storing your seed beads. These vials mostly come in handy case having a nice snap closure that keeps your vials secured inside. The vials have top for easy viewing so that you open just the right container and not the others and save the risk of spilling them.

Bead Cases- There are different varieties of cases with novel features for keeping your treasure secured. Some of these cases have slots for storing bead. Some other bead boxes have acid-free tacky surface on top and bottom areas. Beads can be easily placed on these surfaces and they don’t slip from there. Needles are then used to pick them up from the surface. Some of them even have magnets to hold the needles. It makes them perfect for travel or for using at home.

Bead Organizers- There comes these organizer cases that are made with the purpose of easily carrying beads. These are in fact collections of boxes of various sizes. The large box or the organizer has some medium sized, small and mini boxes to store beads of different sizes. They also have scoops and tweezers in them to make the bead artists’ work simpler.

Bead Storage Drawers- Clear drawers are also very good for storing beads. They can be used individually for one or many beads and also for other accessories. The drawers pull out for easy access to needles, tweezers or other small items.

Plastic Tubes- Plastic tubes are good for storing seed beads. Craft stores mostly sell smaller seed beads and cylinder beads in plastic tubes only. They can even be used for storing smaller gemstone and glass beads. However, the tops should remain firmly closed while traveling or storing.

Plastic Bags- The strands of larger beads like those of gemstone or glass beads and even animal beads can be easily stored in plastic bags. However, loose beads that are small in size should be avoided to be kept in bags as they can spill over when trying to take them out.

Readers are recommended to read article on “tips for buying beads” at http://www.beads-manufacturers.com/articles/beaded-jewellery-christmas-gift-tips.html

Author: Deepa RC
Article Source: EzineArticles.com
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Fun alphabet bead jewellery can make a great gift for children or teens. Each letter bead is ordered separately for placement in a sterling silver or gold chain. Very pretty beads are available with sterling silver or gold edges that surround a brightly coloured alphabet letter in the centre of the bead. Alphabet bead children’s jewellery can come in necklaces, bracelets, and other fashion accessory styles that allow beads to be placed onto chains.

Alphabet Bead Gift Ideas:

The letter beads are high-quality jewellery items that can be purchased one piece at a time. When a grandparent does not live in the UK with their grandchildren, they might decide to send their grandchild a sterling silver necklace first. Next, a new letter bead can be delivered to the child every so often to remind the child how much they are loved by this missing family member. Americans can order their grandchild jewellery from an online UK jewellery store for delivery in the UK to save money on shipping.

The child-size sterling silver or gold letter beads are not simply bangles on a high-quality necklace or bracelet chain. As children are learning to read or to spell their names, the alphabet jewellery creations can become a teaching aide. The pretty silver, gold, or colourful enamelled beads can be purchased to represent every word or name. There are also dotty beads, animal beads, and butterfly beads available that can be used as the spaces between multiple word phrases.

When there is a new baby, the parents can order their baby’s name on a quality jewellery bracelet to include in their baby memory book. When friends are going to a baby shower, if the baby’s name is known, the mother-to-be can be presented with an alphabet letter bead bracelet to wear until it is time to tuck that jewellery away inside of the baby keepsake box. Jewellery beads come in very pretty gift boxes or velvety bags just like all other elegant forms of jewellery.

The children’s alphabet letter beads that come in sterling silver or gold are sometimes used as dangles that are attached to wedding invitations or anniversary notices. Young people in love can exchange jewellery letters in the same manner as friendship bracelets. Personalized messages can be created through the use of these jewellery designer bead letters that will delight children of all ages for every type of gift giving occasion. Children’s alphabet letter beads and chains are sold through online jewellers.

Lovejewellery is a new online channel which offers a whole host of children’s jewellery to suit all ages. From infants to toddlers, pre-school to high school sweethearts, there is a time and occasion for a new piece of children’s jewellery to be bestowed upon that special someone in your life.

Author: Gareth K Parkin
Article Source: EzineArticles.com
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A Seed Bead cost me .015 at a bead store in The Mall of America. Looking back, this is why I am so passionate about a community of beaders whose purpose is to help other beaders come into their own. It may be a lofty goal, and not completely altruistic (I have to pay for hosting after all) but it is a sincere goal of mine.

I want to provide a safe place for beaders. I want to provide a place that is safe for people to try free tutorials, to learn new weaves to use with their Seed Beads and a place where people can have fun enjoying their hobbies. I want to provide valuable information, and first rate resources for beaders – experienced and new alike.

I do not want to have a place where people aren’t welcome because of their gender (I am a male, after all). I want people to come regardless of their specific art form, regardless of their media, as long as they are working towards the same goal: Seed Bead knowledge and love.

When I first began shopping for Sead Beads, the very first day even, I spent over $100 and I had absolutely no idea what I was getting. I chose mostly Czech Seed Beads because those were the most prominently displayed. Normally this would be a first good bet for beads, but at almost $7 a hank for some truly unremarkable beads, most of my money went to the invevitable markup in a place like the Mall of America.

Before you go on your first Sead Bead shopping trip, make a list (there are a few on the internet). Stick to your list, and only buy things that are very pretty, and are things you will actually use. For example, I buy tiger’s eye because it is one of my favorite stones. I never have any idea on what to do with it, so it sits in my bead stash growing old. Even though you like it, if you wont use it, pass on it.

Second. For your first shopping experience at a local bead store, do not spend a dime. You want to go there to feel things, to find what catches your eye, and find out what is tactically and visibly pleasing to you. Is a “Japanese Barrel” Seed Bead more to your liking, or would you prefer a Czech Seed Bead. No one told me that the Japanese Barrel beads would be easily 10 times as expensive, but 100 times more useful.

I forgot to buy findings, threading material, needles, and the necessities. I hope no one goes through the problems that I have, and I believe that this community will be a hope for others!

Seed Bead [http://www.seedbead.net]

Daniel B. Karpouzian‘s Associated Press Articles.

I am a Thirty Something with a lovely wife and a 1 yr old baby boy. I love crafting, and especially Beading!

Author: Daniel Karpouzian
Article Source: EzineArticles.com
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If you’re just starting out in beading, then one of the worst things you can do is walk into a beading store and look at all the tools that are available! There are all sorts of specialized tools, and when you’re new to beading, it’s impossible to know which ones you really need.

The good news is that it’s possible to do lots of great beading without having to spend an absolute fortune in tools and materials. The best way is to start with a small selection of the most necessary tools, and then over time you can expand your collection as you need to. This will happen naturally as your skills develop and you branch out and tray new beading techniques and projects.

It’s a good idea to work out what type of beading you want to start learning, and then buy only the tools you need for that. Check out beading magazines, books, or websites to get ideas for beading projects. Look for a list of materials, and hopefully a list of required tools.

Beading tools can be found at specialist beading stores, either at their shops or via their Internet sites. Some also offer catalogue mail order. If you’re not lucky enough to have a beading shop nearby, then check out your local craft and hobby shop. You may even find some of the less specialized tools in a hardware store.

Also, remember that it’s often possible to pick up cheap tools, but be careful – cheap prices often mean poor quality as well. If you shop around, you should be able to find good quality tools at a reasonable price, without having to pay top dollar.

Some of the most common beading tools include:

- Pliers – round-nosed, flat-nosed, chain-nosed, snipe-nosed and blunt-nosed pliers

- Crimping pliers

- Split-ring pliers

- Wire cutters

- Needles

- Cup bur

- Files

- Loom

- Tweezers

- Hammer and block

- Jig

- Reamer

As I said earlier, which tools you start with depends greatly on the type of beading you plan to do. If you’re working with wire, then pliers and wire cutters need to be on your list. If you’re planning to bead garments, then the right needles are a top priority. Once you do some research, you’ll soon discover which beading tools you need, and you can start your collection.

If you want to read more about beading tools, click over to Felicity’s site at http://www.beading-is-fun.info To read Felicity’s Ultimate Bead Lover’s Guide, go to http://www.ultimatebeadloversguide.com

Author: Felicity Walker
Article Source: EzineArticles.com
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Transform your world with wholesale beads. With them you’ll unearth a world of possibilities that is limited only by your ingenuity. Add a unique sense of style to everything from shoes to jackets. Below you’ll find some quick tips and ideas that will have you beading like a pro in no time. 

Jewelry

Glass beads come in several different colors and designs. You can also find turquoise and pearl beads each in a plethora of sizes, shapes and pendants. It’s best to purchase them at wholesale for a discounted price and a larger quantity to experiment with. Once you’ve figured out the kind of beads and colors you want, the fun can begin. Necklaces can be made to include any pattern imaginable. Put together a wild assortment of swirled glass bead to make a bright choker. Don’t want to make a necklace, try assembling a bracelet or anklet. With the variety of beads you’ve bought, a hundred different styles of jewelry can be made. You’ll have an accessory for any occasion, for any outfit. Diagrams can be found online to help you make the more complicated pieces. Practice and diligence will help you find a unique style that won’t be replicable in any store. If you follow these jewelry tips, your fashionability will never be stale.

Youth Groups

Volunteering with a youth group is a wonderful way to spend your and concurrently give back to the community. Arts and crafts are always an activity that goes over well. Wholesale beads are an inexpensive way to boost the kids’s artistic confidence.  They can make key chains to give their parents as gifts; remember, Father’s day is coming up. Another good idea is making animals, like lizards or elephants, out of beads. Instructions can be found online with a quick Google search. This will help grow the kids’s imagination without costing the youth organization a hefty sum. A myriad of beads, both in type and color, will ensure none of the kids have similar designs. These activities are guaranteed to result in a good time that simultaneously produces art the kids will be proud of.

Beaded Life

Wholesale beads work great for sprucing up a jacket. Hang the beads from fringe or glue them to lapels. Take a tip from the youth group section, make a beaded animal and attach it to the back of a jean jacket or backpack. Are your shoe laces coming undone? Fix a few beads at the end of them and they’re good as new. If you’re feeling adventurous make a landscape using different beads. With the right perspective and sequence of beads, you can make a beautiful sunset. At the right angle it will look three dimensional. Using wholesale beads will affect the aesthetic of your entire life. The art you create will enhance your attitude and worldly perception. 

Tap into your creative vein with wholesale beads.  You’ll be taking a unique stance on fashion with your personally crafted jewelry or clothing. Wholesale beads are a great way to begin working with arts and crafts. There’s no telling where your beaded designs will take you. Working with beads of any style and shape will help you discover your inner artist. 

Sedona Stones offers wholesale beads to jewelry artists, hobbyists, resellers and everyone else. You can find beading patterns, supplies and guides to spark your creative side. Make sure to check out the ever expanding glass beads section.

Author: Daniel Cruse
Article Source: EzineArticles.com
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