The Craft Patch

The Craft Patch

The Craft Patch

Crafts, Home Decor, DIY's and Recipes

Thursday, July 21, 2016

Simple Lego Storage System and A Fun Lego Building Challenge

We love LEGO® at our house. I figure that if you calculated the amount of money spent per hour of play time, LEGOS are by far our best toy investment. They are the only toy we own that my kids play with every single day. I also love that LEGOS foster creativity and imaginative play in my children. I am always amazed at the clever things they build.

Do you have LEGO lovers at your house too? If you do, you'll know that one of the challenges of LEGOS is how to store them and most importantly, how to keep them off the floor where you might step on them... ouch!

We have tried several different methods for organizing LEGOS and I am finally happy with our current system. The best part about our LEGO storage system is that it is easy and inexpensive.

This is our system: We sort our LEGOS by color into a tall plastic drawer cart that sits inside the closet of the kids' bedroom.

We've tried other organization methods, but we keep coming back to sorting by color. Whether my kids are building something from an instruction booklet or from their imagination, they know right where to look for the pieces they need. 

Here's a peek at some of our drawers. They're kind of pretty, aren't they?!

The key element of making this sorting method work is to have a "dump-all" bucket.

We use the plastic bin that came with our LEGO Classic set as our dump-all bucket. We keep it on the Lego table so that when the kids are done working on a building project, they can just dump all of the extra pieces into the bucket. When the bucket starts getting full, we go through it together and sort the pieces back into the drawers. It's a great system and it has totally saved my sanity when it comes to cleaning up LEGOS.

My kids have loved the LEGO® Classic products. They love the freedom of the "no instructions necessary" building. Look at this cute park I found this week:

See the little bench and the arch and the pool with hot tub? Gah! So cute! I love peeking into their room and seeing what they are working on. Their little scenes are so creative.

I challenged my kids to build something unusual and they came up with such a fun idea. I posted a little video of it over on Instagram. Go check it out. I think you'll be surprised!

If your kids need encouragement to build without instructions, LEGO Systems and world-renowned improv group, The Upright Citizens Brigade, teamed up to show that all you need is a few bricks for hours of fun, inspiration and “out of the box thinking.” Check out their YouTube Video HERE.

Here are three fun LEGO building ideas to get your child's creativity flowing:

-      Warm up to building. Building can be satisfying and fun even if it’s simple. Try a tower-building exercise to get your creative juices flowing. Take a pile of bricks and build a tower of any height or width – your only constraints are to start and end with your favorite color. Why? Building is intuitive. A sure-fire way to unlock your creativity is to just start clicking bricks together. Giving yourself a simple exercise with one or two guidelines is an easy way to get started.

-      Build your world. Look around right now. Are you in the kitchen? Outside on the porch? In your family room? Focus on a favorite object and try and build it. Don’t dwell on the details just focus on the general shape or color and add one distinguishing detail.

-      The bricks tell a story. Ask yourself a question and build the answer. Start with something simple like, “What’s my favorite day of the week?” and then build what Thursday looks like to you. Share the story out loud even if you’re by yourself. Why? The act of snapping bricks together helps us come to decisions and formulate ideas faster and more clearly. You’ll find if you set out to build an answer to a question that the building flows easily and you’ll amaze yourself with your skills and insights.

I was selected for this opportunity as a member of Clever Girls and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own.

Monday, July 18, 2016

Organizing Hack: Turn A Craft Organizer Into The BEST Garage Organizer Ever!

We've been hard at work organizing our garage. With all of the remodeling we've done lately, it had gotten really messy in there. I've known for a while that I wanted to have my very own tool box. My husband has a ton of tools and I hate digging through his stuff to try to find a hammer and a nail to hang a picture. I needed a storage solution pronto! This is what I'm dealing with here, people:

In all fairness, we haven't built his storage wall/tool bench yet, so that's a big reason his stuff is a mess. BUT a girl's gotta do what a girl's gotta do. It was driving me batty... I had to get my garage organized! 

Since we have been organizing our garage, I had it on the brain when I was at Hobby Lobby a few days ago. I saw this organizer from Creative Options in the craft storage area:

This organizer is perfect for more than just organizing craft supplies!

and I knew immediately that it was exactly what I needed. These awesome organizers were made for craft supplies, but organizing hack: I turned it into the best tool box and hardware organizer ever!

BONUS: it's even pink so my husband won't be tempted to commandeer it!

Let's take a look at my new organizer, shall we?

The top bin is oversized and perfect for holding my tools.

Then there are three separate pull-out organizing boxes.

Use craft storage boxes to organize nails and screws

Each box has adjustable dividers so I can customize the size of the compartments to fit pretty much anything I'd want to put in there.

I filled one with picture hanging supplies, cabinet hardware and curtain bracket pieces. 

Use a plastic craft storage box to sort hardware.

The smallest of the three boxes was the perfect place to organize all of my nails and screws. I can't tell you how nice it is to see exactly what I have! 

Use a divided craft tray to sort screws and nails in the garage.

I think the best part about this organizer is that when I want to work on something, I can grab the whole box and take it to the part of the house I'm working in OR I can just grab one of the slide-out boxes and take that instead. It's so versatile!

Use a craft organizer in the garage to hold tools and sort hardware

Want to see my Creative Options organizer in action? I shared a really fun stop-motion video of it on Instagram the other day. Check it out HERE!

This post is part of a social shopper marketing insight campaign with Pollinate Media Group®  & Creative Options, but all my opinions are my own. #pmedia #Storagewithstyle

Friday, July 15, 2016

Magnetic Fairy Garden for the Fridge

I have to say, I'm loving the fairy garden trend right now. It's just really hard not to love things that come in miniature. They are just so cute! I've seen lots of creative ideas for fairy gardens, but I really wanted one that I could keep indoors and switch out to create different scenes. So I came up with this awesome magnetic fairy garden for the fridge!

To make your own fairy garden, you will need: (affiliate links)


Pebbles (or just gather some from your yard)
Strong Magnets (these ones are awesome... my fairy garden never moves!)
Glue Gun and Hot Glue
Scrapbook paper

Begin by hot gluing the sheet moss on the lid, top and sides of the pencil box. This step is a little messy FYI.

I chose to make a little pebble walkway just to add interest. 

Carefully add more moss around the outside edge of the box so that all of the wood is covered when you slide the lid back on. This is what makes the secret compartment, which is the perfect place to store extra fairy garden pieces when you change out the scenes.

Glue the magnets to the back of the box (the side directly opposite from the sliding lid).

Bend the fence so it fits around the box and cut it down to size. Then attach it to the box with more hot glue.

Now comes the most fun part. Use scrapbook paper to make different backgrounds for your fairy scene. Attach little bits of the sheet magnet to the back of each piece so they stick to the fridge.

I made a "laundry day" scene...

... and a picnic dinner scene, complete with a little window box. 

I mean really, how fun is this?! I can't wait to make even more scenes. I was thinking a camping scene for summer, then a trick or treat scene for Fall and of course, some kind of Christmas scene for December. So many options!

Want to see it in action? I made a little movie because you HAVE to see the secret compartment in action. 

Monday, July 11, 2016

Road Trip Snack Bingo Activity For Traveling With Kids

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #GetPackin #CollectiveBias

We have two big road trips planned for later this summer and that means many hours in the car with all three kids. I've learned that a little preparation beforehand can make the car ride much more fun when traveling with children. So, to prepare for our summer vacation, I created this road trip snack bingo activity that combines our two favorite things to do in the car: play and eat!

The game is designed to fit inside a plastic craft organizer so that the snack pieces don't go flying around and little fingers don't drop the snacks on the floor. The longer side section is the perfect place to store the snacks before playing the game!

Before I forget, I wanted to let you know about the Mondel─ôz Summer Road Trip Sweeps. You can win road trip weekly prizes and a grand prize! Sweepstakes is from 6/27 to 7/24. Enter below. Good luck!

To make a road trip snack bingo game for your family, you will need:

- Road Trip Game Free Printable (download HERE)
- Plastic Craft Organizer
- Scissors

I headed to WalMart and bought a bunch of our family's favorite snacks, including RITZ Bacon & Cheese Cracker Sandwiches, SWEDISH FISH candies, OREO Mini Cookies and HONEY MAID TEDDY GRAHAMS Graham Snacks. The cookies and crackers were in the cracker aisle and the SWEDISH FISH were in the candy aisle. Here is another great snack idea that would work perfect for this game.

I also bought the plastic craft organizer at WalMart. It was located in the craft section near the jewelry making supplies.

Kid-Approved Road Trip Snacks

There was even a peel-off coupon booklet attached to the cookie boxes, so be sure to look for those to save yourself some cash. Woot! Gotta love coupons!

Download the free game board, then print it and cut out the pieces along the gray lines. 

Place one game piece in each section of the box. The good thing about doing the game this way is that the pieces can be rearranged, creating a new game board each time you play!

To play the game, have your children watch for the vehicles and road signs as you drive. If they spot one, they can choose a snack from the larger side compartment and place it in the correct spot. Three snacks in a row counts as a bingo and the child can then eat all of the snack pieces they have placed on the game board so far.

Isn't that fun? Road trip snack and road trip activity put together! 

If you want to save this idea for later, don't forget to pin it!

For more road trip ideas and games, click HERE.

What's your family's favorite road trip activity?

Friday, July 8, 2016

DIY Farmhouse Style Mason Jar Planter

Are you as obsessed with the show Fixer Upper as I am? I am a major farmhouse style lover! I also love having places to display flowers and greenery in my home, whether real or fake. Combine the two loves and you get this farmhouse style mason jar planter. I've been using it as a dining room table centerpiece and as tabletop decor in my entryway and it is just so darn cute.

To make your own farmhouse planter, you will need:

Materials Needed:

- three 16oz mason jars
- wood and chicken wire planter box
- white chalk paint
- metallic silver craft paint
- gray craft paint
- foam brush

Start by painting the mason jars with the white chalk paint. It takes a couple of coats to get good coverage.

Paint the entire planter box with a coat of metallic silver paint. This may also take two coats to get complete coverage.

When the base coat of metallic paint is dry, dab small amounts of gray paint over the metallic paint using a paper towel. This gives the project that weathered metal look. 

If you apply too much  gray paint, go over it again with more metallic. Continue layering paint until you have achieved a look you like.

When all of the paint is dry, your project is done and ready to go on display! Fill it with real or fake flowers, succulents or greenery. This is what I've put in mine so far: