Looking for an easy craft that kids can make for a Mother’s Day gift? This recipe card holder is something kids of all ages can do with the help of an adult.
When I was in 3rd grade, one of my favorite gifts that I made my mom was a recipe card holder. I remember making making it and from the moment that I gave it to my mom, it was on display in our kitchen.
That poor recipe holder took a beating too – it became faded in the sun that shined through the window, it fell in dishwater, and it got a bit chipped by being banged here and there. But it still stayed in our kitchen – usually on the window sill – and I think that because of that, it was my most favorite of all the craft gifts that I made as a child. It wasn’t tucked away, but rather used and displayed for all to see.
One of the best part about this recipe card holder craft is that it doesn’t have to be used to hold recipe cards. You can make it as a note holder for someone to keep at their desk or it can be a photo holder too. It’s also a very inexpensive craft for kids — great project for teachers, Girl Scouts, church groups, etc.
Earlier this week, I asked my son, Mattie, if he had an interest in making some of these and he gave me an enthusiastic “YES!”, so we bought all the materials and got busy.
When I made this way back when, my teacher’s idea was that these were to resemble a potted flower. At the top of the craft stick, each student was instructed to glue a felt flower. The stick part was painted green and the base was painted brown. While it was really cute, I prefer to let kids show their creativity, so we had no rules on how it was supposed to look.
- Plaster of Paris – you don’t need a lot, it just depends on how many you are making. I think we used about 1 lb (of the 4lb box I bought) to make the 4 you see in the photos. You want to prepare it with water according the instructions on your package.
- Insulated Foam Cups (6-9 oz size) – we ended up buying new ones, but you could recycle old ones or possibly use old plastic cups that you might be ready to throw out. Paper cups might work too, but I haven’t tested them. You need one cup for each recipe card holder.
- Craft Sticks – you need one stick for each recipe card holder. I have a box of them that I bought in the craft department at Walmart, but you could easily recycle popsicle sticks (just be sure to clean them up and let them dry).
- Wooden Clothespins (with metal spring) – you’ll need one for each recipe card holder.
- Craft paints and paintbrushes – we used little tubs of acrylic paints by Delta.
- Hot glue gun and hot glue sticks – you might be able to use other glues, but I prefer the hot glue gun.
1. Using the prepared Plaster of Paris, pour into a cup until it is approximately 1 – 2″ deep. (Keep a close eye on the mixture, as you will want to do the next step right when it begins to thicken.)
2. When the mixture is a thicker consistency, insert a craft stick directly into the middle. If your mixture is thick enough, it should stand straight up (if it’s not, you might need wait a bit longer).
3. Let plaster/stick stand until fully firm – which should happen within 30-45 minutes.
4. When plaster is hard, remove the cup (tear it off). Set aside the plaster/stick for about 24 hours so it can fully dry before painting.
5. With the hot glue gun and hot glue sticks, apply some glue to one side of a clothespin, just below the metal spring. I found that one side of my clothespins was more rough than the other so I applied the glue to the rough side. Press the hot glue to the craft stick that is sticking out of the plaster, with the part above the spring sticking up beyond the craft stick. (Note: the opening part of the clothespin needs to be pointing upwards, as this will be where a recipe card, photo, or note will be “clipped”.)
6. Paint and decorate as desired.
Mattie painted ours, but you could do so much with these – apply stickers, glitter, sparkly gems, tie a bow around the stick – the possibilities are endless. If you end up making your own, I would love to see how they turn out so drop me a note on Twitter or leave a comment.