Are you a bit scared to enter your teen’s room? Have you noticed noxious fumes emanating from beneath their doorway? Do your ears notice great stretches of either silence or loud music? You never know, they may be creating really great art. I recently peeked past my daughter’s curious collections to find a mini-museum of projects many teens would enjoy creating.
Painter’s Tape Canvas
This is a popular project for any age. Just put painter’s tape or masking tape along the lines of a design. It can be abstract and random or symmetrical if you can’t stand the chaos of such a modern interpretation. My daughter chose to blend each section, but solid colors work well, too. Some people even paint the entire canvas before using the tape so their dividing lines are colored. Feel free to add some glitter if you have it laying around as Nina did.
Duct Tape Items
This was a fad around my house for a while. I actually remember going to an office store that was going out of business and grabbing dozens of rolls of crazy colored duct tape to satisfy my kids ravenous crafting appetite. This photo is only a small sampling of duct tape items that were created in our house. There have been belts, barrettes, bookmarks, and loads of other things that don’t begin with “B”. The kids started with step by step plans and branched off into custom projects. Nina even sold a variety of duct tape earrings at a kid’s craft show. There is nothing stopping this versatile material from working its way into every cranny of your life. And in a pinch, you can deconstruct your duct tape wallet to fix a leaky pipe.
Nail Polish Washer Charm
These are great for necklaces or keychains. Start with the washer that mysteriously appeared on your table one day, or look for one in your junk drawer. You know you have one, or a dozen. Only begin painting after making sure nothing in your house is currently falling apart because of said washer. All of those funky colors of nail polish you don’t know what you were thinking when you bought will really come in handy for this project. Be creative, but most importantly, make sure you paint in an area you don’t mind permanently destroying, like the outdoors, or the old crappy desk your aunt gave you.
Paper Craft Balls
I was wondering where all of my good colored paper went when these started popping up in Nina’s room. The supplies are simple: just colored paper and glue. Time is the main ingredient after that. When you have access to Netflix and the weekend why not multitask and decorate your room or your Christmas tree with these.
Blended Paint Project
Simplicity can still be beautiful. This piece is Nina’s experiment with blending streaks of colors, and, of course, glitter. There are many ways to go about putting paint to canvas that can look put together enough to go on your wall. Experiment with what looks good to you and enjoy the process.
Chain Mail Jewelry
This project is courtesy of my oldest son and his Lego robotics team named “Knights in Rusting Armor”. He decided that he had to make each team member something from chain mail that season so we ordered a thousand tiny silver rings online. It turns out individual team jewelry didn’t happen, but others benefitted from Evan’s creativity. He ended up making very cute chain mail earrings to sell at home school market day. A number of Moms bought them and put them to practical use. I still wear my pair out on a regular basis. The technique is simple, but the finished product looks professional.
Making these dolls kept Nina’s attention long enough to gift each member of our family with one, and we have quite a few members. She took orders for the dolls which included specifics like colors, number of eyeballs, and the option for horns or wings. Each doll came equipped with something special to represent an interest of the owner. One received a heart, one a skull, a couple of them had game controllers permanently affixed to their hand and mine had books. These were made of fleece left over from the making of some Halloween costumes. Grab a yard or two from a sewing store, find some scissors and thread and off you go.
Teens can surprise you with some pretty amazing creations if you just provide some materials and a nudge. See if these projects inspire your teens to make something their friends or relatives might really enjoy.