Here are some suggestions for craft supplies for kids that allow them to express their creativity and be friendly to the planet at the same time.
Wool felt is better than acrylic felt for making softies and other accessories because it:
- has stronger fibres than acrylic felt, so it holds together better and lasts longer
- has a smoother appearance than acrylic felt, which can pill and fuzz
- has antibacterial properties, so isn’t affected by mould or mildew
- has some elasticity so can be shaped more easily than acrylic felt
- doesn’t fray and its seams don’t come apart under stress
- is fire, stain and water resistant and easy to clean
- is hypoallergenic, so doesn’t cause allergies
- is easy to work with and can be used for lots of different types of projects
- is a natural, environmentally friendly and sustainable resource
One of the main disadvantages of wool felt is that it is more expensive than acrylic felt, but I think the extra expense is worth it for things you want to last. Also, the main disadvantage of acrylic felt is that lot of chemical pollutants are used to make it, so wool felt is definitely the more eco-friendly option.
Our favourite store for wool felt is Indigo Inspirations. The lovely Jo sells commercially dyed, quality European felt sheets in a wide variety of colours, as well as a range of cute, fun felt craft kits for kids to make themselves, including bunnies, mice, chickens, horses, dolphins, purses, gnome boys and flower girls.
(Photo credit: Indigo Inspirations)
Wooden craft supplies
Wood is a better craft material than plastic because it:
- comes from a natural, renewable resource, while plastic is made from petrochemicals, which is a non-renewable resource
- uses solar energy in its production, rather than the fossil fuels used to produce plastic, and needs less energy to make
- doesn’t increase the amount of carbon in the global cycle like plastic does
- doesn’t contribute to landfill like plastic does
- is biodegradable, while plastic does not degrade and releases harmful chemicals
You can find a wide range of wooden beads, buttons, pegs, peg dolls, popsticks and spools in your local craft store or online.
You can save money, energy and resources by using recycled materials, including:
- paper and newspaper
- cardboard, cardboard boxes and tubes
- egg cartons
- bottle tops/lids
Reusing these for craft projects will help reduce the amount of stuff going to landfill and can either be recycled again or most will biodegrade naturally when they are finally disposed of.
(Photo credit: Shamrock Craft – bottle tops)
Of course, the most eco friendly craft materials of all are the ones you can collect from nature, including:
- leaves and flowers
- pine cones
- gum nuts and seed pods
As long as you only collect what falls on the ground, they all come from renewable resources and are naturally biodegradable.
We would love to see your kids’ creations – just post them to Facebook or Instagram with #littlegreencrafters 🙂