Five kids' arts and crafts projects that are perfect for rainy days

1 February 2019, 11:03 | Updated: 1 February 2019, 11:06

Who said bad weather had to ruin the fun?
Who said bad weather had to ruin the fun? Picture: Getty

Sometimes a bit of bad weather is the perfect excuse to get messy... indoors.

A shock change in the weather can scupper even the best made plans - but being stuck indoors doesn't have to be a total disaster.

With a bit of imagination, a sandwich or two - and some basic craft supplies - a home day with siblings and mum or dad can go from a washout to a day to never forget.

Here we share some easy craft projects to try out at home - and they're so fun you might want to stay in and do them on a sunny day, too.

Nail polish marble mug

Grab an old plain mug - white ones work best, but this method can also be used on egg cups or other china items.

Fill a disposable plastic container with warm water before dripping in nail polish of your choice.

Pockets of colour will form, and if you need to, spread them out using a wooden stirrer or toothpick.

Dip your mug in to the mixture, and move it around in a circular motion.

Carefully remove the mug from the container and let it dry. To set the colour, add a layer of glossy acrylic sealer with a sponge brush over the design.

If you do decide to use sealant, make sure to keep it away from the inside of the mug.

The mug should only be cleaned with warm soapy water, the nail polish designs are not dishwasher-safe.

Make sure you have a good stash of craft items in case of bad weather
Make sure you have a good stash of craft items in case of bad weather. Picture: Getty

Homemade Moonsand

If your brood are the type that like to get mucky, you'll be pleased to know they can still get their hands dirty without going out in the cold or wet.

Making to create your own 'moon sand' is incredibly easy, and will keep them - and their imaginations - busy for hours.

All you need is baby oil and flour (9 cups flour to 1 1/4 cup oil), or vegetable oil and cornstarch or cornflour (4 cups cornstarch to 3/4 cup oil).

Regardless of which mixture you decide on, start off with a large, clean mixing bowl.

Pour the dry ingredients in, adding any fun 'extras' - glitter, powder paint, pleasant smelling spices like cinnamon or cocoa - before slowly adding the oil.

Mix thoroughly - or pass this bit to the kids! - and get playing.

If making moon sand with very young children, make sure they don't any in their mouths.

When the fun is over, the sand can be stored in an air-tight container in a cool, dry place. It normally keeps for a few months, and can be 'revived' with a few tablespoons of water.

DIY lava lamp:

Unlike electric lava lamps, there is no risk of this one causing a fire - it's made using bits and bobs from the cupboards.

All you need is an empty water bottle or jar with a tight lid filled with water, baby or vegetable oil and your choice of food colouring.

Add in a few handfuls of glitter to make it extra mesmerising - and some people claim dropping in a broken-up alka-seltzer also gives the mixture an extra special fizzy kick.

A bit of imagination can make a rainy day unforgettable
A bit of imagination can make a rainy day unforgettable. Picture: Getty

Jenga with a twist

If the thought of letting the kids loose with glue, glitter and food colouring brings you out in a cold sweat, why not improvise using their favourite games?

A game of Jenga is tense enough as is, but you can up the ante by using plain sticky labels to write dares on to some of the blocks.

Will they want to pull that block if they know it might have 'take the rubbish out for a month' written on the side?

Rain stick

Don't throw away your spent toilet roll tubes, they might be the rainy day craft staple you never knew you needed.

Get kids to decorate them with felt pens, sequins, feathers or torn out pictures from magazines before securing one end with a piece of paper or fabric and a rubber band.

Then partly fill the tubes with dry rice and beans before securing the other end in the same fashion.

Now you've brought the sounds of the ocean inside - and you can recycle your creation when it's safe to go back outside.