Ideas for arts/craft to make with kids

Personalised wind chimes

Why not make a personalised gift for granddad this Father’s day? Here’s how to make some windchimes!

This idea started about a week ago when a friend sent over an idea for the blog based on a wind chime he’d made using some old cutlery (see below). I searched the house for some forks and spoons but couldn’t find any spare ones and thought I’d better not use the ones from the drawer!

The inspiration for the idea!

With father’s day approaching, it got me thinking of an idea for a present for my dad and my father in law from the kids. It’s taken an hour or so each night for a few nights to pull it together, but that’s mainly because of the drying time on the paint and varnish.

Here’s how we did it.


I had an idea of how I could make a windchime (we needed two), but the first task was to sit with the kids and work with them to think what pictures we could include on the present. The question I asked was ‘what do gan gan and granddad like?’ (They call my dad gan gan, and my wife’s dad is granddad). Here’s what they came up:

Granddad likes…

From the ideas they came up with, we chose the best 5 for each person and the kids drew pictures of them. Here’s some of them…

Once they’d done that, I set about cutting up a spare floorboard into small sections, and then we gave them a lick of paint. We also used the two chunks of wood left over from the garden game the other day, which will be the top part of the wind chimes once its finished.

We left it there for one day, as the paint needed to dry. Later, when the kids were in bed I set about tracing the images they’d drawn onto the wood. I guess I could have done this with them but was just impatient!


Maybe you’ve done some tracing recently, or maybe you’ve not thought about it since you were about 6 years old. If you haven’t, here’s a refresher. Usually you’d use tracing paper or something like greaseproof paper, trace over the image, scribbling on the back before putting it in the new place. To get it on to the wood though, you can skip a step and just scribble on the back of the original drawing before then going over it again directly onto the wood. Even my wife was impressed with this so I knew I was on to a winner.

When I’d done them all, here they were:

Varnish and drill holes:

The next day we gave them a coat of varnish. This didn’t finish as neatly as I wanted but we had a thunderstorm half way through and so I had to leg it in to the shed and they all stuck together. Nevermind.

The circles at the top are the leftovers from the garden game :

Putting it all together:

Okay, nearly there!

Once everything was dry we just needed to drill holes in each of the drawings, and 5 holes in each of the top pieces to hang them from.

Then take a piece of string for each piece, thread it through the hole in the picture, knot it, and do the same with the top piece.

Tip alert!

A sneaky tip to get the string through the hole without having to get frustrated. Just get some cotton and tie it on to the string, then put a needle on the string and pull through.

Knot it at the top and bottom. Here’s an attached piece:

Repeat for all the pieces, trying to get the string roughly the same length so they’ll bang together when its finished.

At this point I realised that I had no way of connecting the top to whatever they were going to tie it to when they put it in the garden. I suppose I could have drilled another hole but I was losing the will, so found a small picture hook and screwed it in.

And Voila! The finished two products. Really pleased with them. Neither my dad or father in law are on social media so if you do see this and you know them – don’t tell them before Father’s day!