Jun 07, 2023
20 Best Summer Crafts Kits for Kids
Every item on this page was hand-picked by a House Beautiful editor. We may earn
Every item on this page was hand-picked by a House Beautiful editor. We may earn commission on some of the items you choose to buy.
No mess, no electronics, no problem.
Ah, summer. Three months of sunny days, no homework, and no set schedule. The very things that make it the most treasured time in a kid's year are daunting (if not straight up dread inducing) for parents. Try as you might to fill the time with camps and readings lists, you're bound to have holes. Luckily, you've got options to fill them that don't involve tablets or video games or setting them loose on the neighborhood. Stock up on fun summer crafts to keep them busy—and maybe even spark a new interest or hobby. We've found 20 of the best summer crafts activity kits to suit pretty much any age, interest, and ability level, from classics like tie-dyeing to newfound fun like candle making.
With its bright colors and large, soft pieces, this kit is blooming fun for kids ages 4 and up. It contains enough precut foam blossoms and leaves and pipe cleaner stems to make a bouquet of 24 happy flowers.
There's actually no paint (or mess) in this rock-decorating kit. You dip one of the funky patterned skins in water to "activate" it, then wrap it around any stone. It's a cool way for creatives ages six and up to personalize the ones they collect—not to mention an ideal rainy project.
Tie-dye is a summer classic for a reason—it's irresistibly fun, even for angsty tweens and teens. This 14-and-up kit contains everything they need to dye matching T-shirts (or socks, or scrunchies) with their besties and maybe even spend an afternoon off their phone.
Budding artists ages three and up will love leaving their mark on these ready-to-paint birdhouses. The nine- or 15-piece kits include smooth laser-cut wood pieces (no splinters), nontoxic paint, and paintbrushes. We love it for a little group. Kids can take theirs home to feed and watch the birds who flock by.
Here's something your kids just might love more than jumping on stepping stones: One of their very own plus permission to paint it however they want. This 7-inch ceramic marker comes ready to rock with acrylic paints and a brush. Suitable for ages eight and up, it'll be a little time capsule (sob!) of who they are this summer.
300 fun stickers. That's really all you need to know about this fun photo craft kit. Print out some 3-by-5-inch snaps from your vacation or a park or zoo day, then let your little one pair each one with a precut frame and cover it with stickers. Bonus: You finally get hard copies of your Instagram favorites, customized by your little one.
Doesn't suncatcher paint sound fun? This window art kit is cooler than basic coloring because it lets kids ages six and up make 20 pieces of their own "stained glass," with a dozen premade shapes plus peel-and-press acetate sheets for DIY designs. Older kids can take it on a road trip—they'll love hanging their creations in the car window.
Refilling a bird feeder's seeds and watching who nibbles them is much more fascinating when you made it yourself. Kids will go wild for this paintable, bedazzle-able kit. Its sparkly, gem-like stickers teach a fun lesson too: Brightly colored flowers attract brightly colored birds.
Believe it or not, this sand art kit isn't messy. Its nautical decals have peel-and-press adhesive on both sides, so kids ages three and up can remove one side to decorate it with sand and special finds, then the other to use it like a sticker. Bring it on vacation: It'll keep them occupied hunting for treasures, then serve as a souvenir.
Solar prints, aka sun prints or cyanotypes, work like magic. Have kids collect flowers, leaves, and more, then arrange their finds on the light-sensitive paper and let the sun do the rest. After a few hours or more, wet the paper and watch the designs develop. Little kids will love how the paper transforms; older kids can experiment with exposure times to get softer or deeper blues. We love that the paper is archival quality, so you can save their artwork forever.
Summer treats don't always have to be edible. Give your little one all the ingredients they need to concoct the wooden popsicles of their dreams. This DIY kit includes three ice-pop frames for them to adorn with playful sticker "toppings" and four flavors of paint.
A perfect party activity, these miniature vessels will really float their boat once constructed. Kids can choose how many sails they want and in what colors, plus the symbol and ship name they want fly proudly on the top of the flag pole.
Making your own kaleidoscope is easier than you might think, thanks to this kit. We love how it puts a natural spin on the classic toy. Kids can find materials in your backyard or park—just ask before picking flowers, please—and use them to fill the wooden frame. It also includes 10 colorful plastic flowers to get you started.
A great introduction to sewing techniques, this flower embroidery craft is an easier and safer way to satisfy your child's budding curiosity. Choose from four different yarn color palettes to coordinate perfectly with your little one's style.
This kit allows you to create your own candle start to finish—not just the pouring the wax filling, but the throwing the clay container too. Pottery is not only a great sensory experience for kids, but it also yields a result that will last (and smell good) for months after the clay is dry.
Let your little one's imagination run wild with this dinosaur-themed painting set, which comes with three different dinos and six vibrant paint colors. After it dries, they can add the wooden critters to their toy collection or put them proudly on display.
If you can't make it to the coast this year, bring the beach to your kids by making suncatchers. Create a collage of colorful tissue paper, then place it behind the nautical-themed frames and hang them up to reflect the light.
Cross stitch is another fun way to start sewing. This buzzy kit is suited for kids ages five and up, but it's fun for older kids (and adults!) too. The pattern is printed onto the cloth to simplify the stitching. Little ones might need help fastening it into the hoop and threading the needle, but they'll love making the x's on their own.
Under the sea fun is easy to pull off with this all-inclusive summer crafts kit. Kids six and up can stick googly eyes onto glittery paper and add craft sticks to make whimsical sea creatures (real or imaginary). Add the cute critters to an art project, take them to the pool, or post them on the fridge—they'll make waves wherever they go.
Nature-loving kids will love cutting and picking blooms to use with this simple flower press. Not only will it get them outside to find fun leaves and blooms to preserve, but they can arrange and frame their finds like a pro afterward on the textured paper that comes with it.
Kate McGregor is House Beautiful's SEO Editor. She has covered everything from curated decor round-ups and shopping guides, to glimpses into the home lives of inspiring creatives, for publications such as ELLE Decor, Domino, and Architectural Digest's Clever.
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