Christmas Crafts are a great way to build up the excitement for the big day. I love Christmas Crafts with Toilet Roll Holders as they are cheap and there’s always an abundance of them . The series of crafts we made were good for helping the boys development too (patience, understanding, hand-eye, fine motor, and so on). They are all really simple and can be done with even with toddlers. I don’t think they need any explanation but have added a quick note.
I simply got my boys to paint the toilet roll holder brown, then added a red circle for a redbreast, some googly eyes, an orange diamond folded in half for a beak, and brown tissue paper for the wings and over the head.
He simply was (again) painted brown (it is a good idea to do a batch paint, and also avoids wasting paint), then we added googly eyes, feathers for antler (I picked blue because I want him to be colourful and cheerful), and drew on a smile. Obviously the important part was the nose which was inspired by RedTedArt to use a pompom – I decided on a sparkly one to make it more festive. You could add on some ears, and I’ve seen some lovely ones involving handprints. Personally I thought that he looked complete without.
As adults are very important people I thought that I would couple this with another important person – I like to call him Father Christmas but you can also call him Santa. We painted the toilet roll holder (TRH) black to represent his trousers and boots. We then cut a circle from white paper and drew on a smiley face and glued it on. Then simply we made a cone shape out of red paper and a red cloak too and attached them. Then glued on cotton wool for his beard and white bits around his hat.
The Elf was simple to make. Paint the TRH green. Take a green piece of paper and make a cone shape for a hat, we folded back a bit and coloured it darker green to make a head band. Then make a face by cutting out a circle on white paper and drawing on your eyes, nose and mouth. Cut some ear shapes (I folded the paper in half so that they were both the same) and then glue them behind your circle face. Secure both the face and hat to the TRH. Then simply cut out a black strip of paper (we used white and coloured it in with felt, you can use black paper, or paint paper black), to make a belt and then glue it on.
To make our Wise man (or King) we painted our toilet roll holder (TRH) one colour (green), and then used white paper to make a face (we drew around the TRH to make a circle). We then used some sticker eyes (they were actually for monsters!) and eyebrows. We added cotton wool for a beard and hair; then drew the rest of the face with felt tips. We made a crown with foil by cutting off a strip long enough to go around the top of the TRH and then cut out triangles. After gluing it on we attached some sticky-backed gems. Finally we made him a coat out of tissue paper (that matched the colour of his eyes) and just pulled it around him, securing it with glue. You could also use fabric instead of tissue paper – I was actually looking for scraps of old clothing, as we had recently had a sort out ready for new Christmas clothes/winter wear.
I’m all for recycling so you may have noticed that the inside of a roll of wrapping paper (which many an elf may have left behind) is the same colour as that of a toilet roll holder (TRH)! So we simply used a plain TRH and some of the inner of wrapping paper roll and cut out a head, arms and legs. For the icing we just simply glued on some white paper. I used sticky eyes – but you could draw them on, use googly eyes, print some on plain paper – the possibilities are great. Again there are lots of ways you could make the mouth put we used red crepe paper – which we also utilised to make a bow (we decided on a girl so put it in her hair, but you could make a boy and put it as a dickie bow) and buttons. We again used the crepe paper for the buttons but you could use buttons, gems, stickers, glitter blue, paint – all manner of things. We simply then glued it all together (we secured the arms and legs with a bit of tape).
First we painted our toilet roll holder grey (actually I painted over a red one and it gave it a really good texture like fur I think). We also cut out two ears from card and painted the middle pink (I used a really bright pink otherwise it didn’t show up, alternatively I think crayon would be a good idea), and round the edges grey. Then it was simply a case of sticky on the ears, googly eyes, some teeth (cut from white paper) and some bits of paper (from packaging) for hair between his ears. We also drew some holes for his nose and a smile for his mouth.
Simply paint the toilet roll holder brown, then we drew around a hand and cut it out on top of lots of layers of brown paper. Once we had the brown hands we placed them on top of one another like a fan and then secured them together. This was then the tail and attached to the back of the TRH. We used some big googly eyes and some more of the brown paper for a beak. We used some red tissue paper for its head hair and then another bit for the turkey’s wattle.
We made a hand print wreath by simply cutting around the hands onto red paper. You could use any colour you like, or even better still get the paint out and capture all the tiny markings from their hands. This was another simple craft but really helped developed fine motor skills with the drawing around and cutting out of the hands. We then simply glued them together in a circle shape, before attaching them to the toilet roll holder. We decided to paint the TRH black first so that the wreath was really defined against it. To make some berries we simply drew around a penny coin to make small circles. This was also great timing as this is the first year that we have bought a wreath for our door.
This candle could not have been easier. We simply painted the toilet roll holder white, attached a short piece of silver pipe cleaner, and a yellow piece of crepe paper (shaped into fire). I have seen other candles with ‘wax’ melting around the top of the roll too – but I wanted to keep it as basic as possible.
We simply wrapped some shiny silver wrapping paper around the TRH and secured it in place. Then simply wrapped around some Christmas present wrapping ribbon and a bow. It could also be a present I guess – but this is representing decorations for us. It was a simple craft, that did not take long – but you do not want it to take long if you are then going to go and put up the decorations.
Again a really straight forward easy craft activity. I started with a toilet roll holder that I had painted red. I then rolled 2 bits of red crepe paper to make the arms and attached them with tape. I drew around the toilet roll holder, to make a circle for the head, on white paper and drew the features. It was important to do an open mouth to represent the singing. After attaching the face I taped on some shredded paper for hair Then the finishing touches of a pink sock for a hat, and a snowman sticker for the Winter jumper. I think I will make a crowd of singers with the boys with different stickers to make different Christmas jumper types.
We decided to revisit the nativity, as I think a few gentle reminders about why people celebrate Christmas are important. We started to make this shepherd as Joseph but there was just something about him that did not look right. I think it was the quality of the material I used being too rich. I think Joseph could be made by using brown material instead. I cheated and simply secured the material with a safety-pin at the back, but you could use hot glue, or even sew it together. Using material to make clothes for people was inspired by Maggy, at RedTedArt. It is such a great idea and I just used some scraps I had lying around. If you have a clothes sort out, especially if say a top has a stain, then pieces can be cut out and not wasted. Then I used a string from a paper gift bag to secure his head-piece around the top. I’m loving the crepe paper at the moment, and used it for his hair and beard. I just used a felt tip pen for the features. Then I got a bit of twig outside for the shepherd’s crook.
Start by painting the toilet roll holder (TRH) all white (if you are painting all your TRHs at once then I suggest that you start by painting the white ones first). When dry add an orange pipe cleaner folded in half (just to give it that bit of thickness at the bottom) to represent a carrot nose, we taped on our googly eyes just to ensure they didn’t fall off and just to help the nose stay in place. Then using a black felt tip pen we drew circles to form a smiley mouth (they idea is that they represent pebbles). Finally we took a grey sock and placed it on his head, rolling it to make it into a hat.
Paint your TRH either white or red (we went for white). Then simply spin around it, in a diagonal fashion, some ribbon (if you painted it red then use white, we painted white so used red ribbon). We attached the ribbon using just a glue stick. Then take some candy canes (we used 3) and secure them together using some more ribbon. Secure them inside the TRH with tape – to make the top of the cane. We stuffed some more candy canes out of sight inside the TRH otherwise the weight of the canes makes the TRH fall over.
It was an idea I had seen to make a Christmas decoration that involved fastenings that I knew we didn’t have (my son tried to make a pumpkin at Halloween). This is when I thought I’d see if it would work as a toilet roll holder (TRH) craft. Simply take your colour paper of choice and cut strips out that are long enough to stick to the top and bottom of the TRH and some to allow it to bounce out a bit. I don’t think it matters whether the strips are the same width or not but I tried to roughly match them up. Then simply stick each one to the top and bottom, spreading them out as you go around.
We used a combination of different types of sticks (what an excuse to eat ice-creams) and coffee stirrers (and who doesn’t need to pop out for a coffee with all the Christmas shopping). We used some green tape to secure the bottom ‘branch’ as it was heavier than the rest, but otherwise glue held them in place. You could decorate your tree with all manner of things. We used gems, but thought about adding some tinsel, lights, glitter etc too. We simply cut a star out of foil for the top – but you could be more elaborate and add an angel.
Two different angels. The first is painted and bit cut out, the second is paper cut outs and a bit of string – simple.
Sometimes you want to keep things simple as everything can become a bit much doing things that are complicated: There are many other factors going on around you (shopping, pantomimes, school productions, writing cards, decorating the tree). Or maybe your child is still young and so you need something that is not too much for them. Simply paint your toilet roll holder (red did not look right), then using a cookie cutter, draw around the star on some shiny paper (scrap bits from Christmas present wrapping) and cut it out (you could use foil).
Paint your TRH and make a snowflake. Simply fold a square in half and then keep folding – then cut out your pattern (making sure not to completely cut through the fold which holds it all together).
It is a real simple activity that helps with fine motor skills and the manipulation of scissors (our youngest has special scissors at school, whereby the child and adult can both hold them at the same time). Then simply stick it to your painted toilet roll holder. I tried this on white and you could not see it. Then I thought it could be snowing at night, so tried black. It didn’t really feel right – for me red was the most appealing. Maybe you could make them different sizes or make lots of small ones. Or add some glitter to them.
Simply paint your toilet roll holder black, cut 2 white circles (we used crepe paper from packaging), some black arms, orange feet and beak, some google eyes, and washi tape to make a scarf (I used a glue stick to secure them in place). We added a snowflake sticker just to give him a bit more of a cold look.
These were previously part of my Advent TRH crafts.