Quick and easy art projects require little or no advance preparation and can be made from start to finish in less than an hour, even by young children. Materials for quick and easy projects, whether they're projects for one or a whole group, should be inexpensive and easily found where craft supplies are sold.
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Thin sheets of craft foam, along with a pair of scissors and craft glue, can be used to make everything from greeting cards to small sculptures. Older kids can start with full sheets of foam, or purchase buckets of pre-cut shapes for easy embellishment. For kids of all ages, complete kits with pre-cut pieces of foam can be used to make picture frames, door hangers, ornaments and other easy-to assemble crafts. Look for inexpensive foam kits at craft stores and online.
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Embellish plastic masquerade masks---the type that cover the eyes only---for Halloween, Mardi Gras or just for fun. Glue glitter, plastic gemstones, pom poms, beads and feathers to the mask as desired. Attach a wooden dowel with hot glue to one side for a masquerade ball-style mask that you hold in front of your face. Tie ribbon, tassels or paper streamers to the dowel, or glue them to each side of the mask.
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Simple beading projects require little more than plastic pony beads or glass seed or lampwork beads and thin elastic cord. Use beads in holiday colours, school colours or patriotic colours, or mix and match colours as you desire. String beads in a pattern until the strand is long enough to wrap around your wrist or neck. Tie the ends together into a double knot and trim the ends. These quick and easy bracelets and necklaces can be traded with friends or given as gifts.
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If there are pine trees where you live, collect pine cones for simple crafts that can be made by any age. Spray them with paint or glitter spray and place in a bowl, or tie a loop of yarn to the to and hang as ornaments. Kids can roll pinecones in white glue and sprinkle with glitter, or roll them in peanut butter and birdseed for a super-easy bird feeder that kids can hang from a tree branch.