Successfully completing a craft project can give a teen a sense of accomplishment -- especially a teenager with a disability. Her world is full of limitations. Being able to accomplish a craft project can offer her a sense of confidence and well-being. It can be a challenge to find age-appropriate projects that don't require complicated skills, but with a little bit of imagination, simple projects can be created that will entertain and satisfy a teenager with physical or intellectual disabilities.
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Cut four squares from new denim fabric or from recycled jeans that measure 4 1/2 inches square, Fringe the four edges. Using fabric paint and artist's brushes, paint designs on the top of the fabric coasters. Another option is to rubber-stamp designs with permanent ink. This project requires no artistic ability if rubber stamps are used, and the project requires little dexterity. Teenagers will enjoy working with denim.
Cut the sleeves off an old sweater. Cut the cuffs off each sleeve. Stuff each sleeve with polyester pillow stuffing until it is full and firm, Using a small bundle of several pieces of different coloured yarn, tie off each end of the sleeve, leaving about 4 inches on each end of the sleeve to be unravelled and fringed. You now have two neck-rolls. The unused body section of the sweater can be made into a larger pillow. Turn the sweater inside-out. Stitch the neck so it is secure. Stitch the bottom opening of the sweater and one armhole. Turn the sweater right side out. Through the open armhole, stuff your sweater with polyester stuffing material until the sweater is fat and firm. Close the open armhole by turning the raw edges toward the inside and sew a running stitch to secure your seam.
Nature Printed T-shirt
Collect an assortment of leaves and ferns. Using a sponge paint roller, apply fabric paint to the roller and roll the paint onto the leaf or fern. Be sure the leaf is covered with paint, but not in excess. You don't want the paint to ooze when pressure is applied. Place the leaf, inked side down, onto the front of the shirt. Put a piece of waxed paper and then an old, heavy book over the leaf and press down on it, Very carefully remove the book and the waxed paper. Very carefully, lift the leaf, Let your shirt dry.
Friendship bracelets are popular among teens and are extremely easy and inexpensive to make. They are exchanged among friends and teens enjoy wearing them in multiples. For each bracelet, cut two strands of waxed beading string long enough to wrap around the teen's wrist plus 4 inches. Make a double knot, tying both strings together, 2 inches from one end of the strings. String the opposite end through as many beads as desired. Tie a simple knot next to the beads. This will prevent them from sliding up and down the strings. Make another knot about a half-inch from your last knot. String more beads. Tie another knot by the beads. Keep repeating these steps until your bracelet is filled, leaving a second 2-inch tail. Knot those two tails together when it is worn.
This project is simple and allows the teen to personalise his pillow to make it perfect for his room. Turn a T-shirt inside-out. Stitch the armholes and the bottom of the shirt securely closed. Turn your shirt right-side out. Stuff the shirt until it feels firm but pliable like a pillow. Turn the edges of the neck to the inside and stitch the neck so it is closed. Have the teens use fabric paints to write their names across the front and decorate the pillows with buttons, ribbons and charms.
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