Tag: art for kids

12 fun, easy fall nature crafts for preschoolers: Let the season begin!

Our kids are all officially back to school this week — whoo! — but that also means that some of us now have bored preschoolers at home part of the time, missing their big siblings. They don’t want to miss out on the excitement their big brothers and sisters are experiencing, and our terrific sponsor KinderCare is here to help. We are so happy to discover tons of cool activities and craft tutorials on their Adventure Ahead website, which is inspiring us to help our preschoolers get creative with what nature has to offer us this season. Our readers know we’re all about messy imperfection when...

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My Big Art Show: the fun family card game that might turn your kids into art history whizzes.

Two of my kids have now outgrown some of my own favorite childhood board games like Candy Land and Chutes and Ladders — classic versions only, please. (And yes, I admit I do like Candy Land. Don’t ask why.) My kids are now into the kind of strategy board games that take 30 minutes to explain the rules and another 30 minutes to set up the board. They can be a lot of fun, but I don’t always have the time or inclination. So I like to have a few games on hand that we can all play quickly and easily. This week we’ve been binging on My Big Art Show by Susie Hodge....

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Break out the new crayons for this awesome coloring book from indie illustrator Laura Palmer

Who doesn’t need more coloring books in their lives? Well, okay, if you look in my kids’ craft drawer, maybe we don’t. But, we do need awesome ones. The cheap, thin, licensed ones can get tossed and we’ll replace them with cool, creative coloring books that the whole family can sit around the table and color while we eat our snacks after school. Because, don’t you have the best conversations while you’re sitting around the table coloring? Right now we’re loving this cool little tablet of doodles that your kids can tear off and color in. It’s created by the fun...

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Fight boredom with the huge, and hugely fun, coloring poster from Pirasta

I’ve been fighting boredom this summer with a bunch of magic markers and one really huge (like, seriously huge) and cleverly illustrated coloring poster for kids from a new company called Pirasta. And the beauty of these posters is that there’s room for everyone to get in on the action. The recycled-content paper is sturdy enough to let it take over the dining room table for a while, spread it out at a birthday party, or hang it on the wall. And at a whopping 63″ x 36″there is plenty of room for multiple people to color together. We’ve even rolled up...

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11 beautiful pop-up books to bring reading to life in 3D, no technology required

Now that my kids are finally all old enough to know better than to rip out the cut-art from a pop-up book as I flip the pages for them, I’ve been looking around to find some new pop-up books to read to them. And wow, there are some really, really beautiful pop-up books for kids that have been published in the last year, along with some classics I still adore. These are books that I’m enjoying as much as the kids are, even as they give my children a glimpse into another world, teach them a wider appreciation for art, or are just super fun. One will...

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Wonderful custom artwork for babies, kids, and kids at heart.

I still think that a great piece of personalized art can be one of the best baby shower gifts, provided you know the parents’ taste. And uh, the kid’s name. Of course. But I think this new discovery should fit the bill for lots of families and lots of styles. The new Jr. Alexander collection from Alexander & Co adds even more fantastic vintage advertising inspired custom wall art for kids and it’s hard to pick a favorite. Artist Alexander Doll has created options that are lovely for babies and young kids, and some that are even cool for older kids — or hey, dads....

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From Apricity to Zephyr: Posters that teach vocabulary, one SAT word at a time

I admit I was pretty proud of my fourth-grader when she helped me finish the New York Time’s Monday crossword, but then she was employing words like llama and Naples. Then I saw British designer Mark Watson’s graphic dictionary poster series that he created for his own nine-year old and I thought, whoa. Maybe we could be working towards the Saturday puzzle after all? Related: 13 Words to add to your child’s bookshelf thanks to Lemony Snicket According to Slate, the graphic artist behind Modern Giant first created a minimalist depiction of the word contrarian after, well, his daughter was acting like one one. The...

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Cool summer camps for kids that go way beyond swimming and archery

With spring break in the rearview mirror, our kids are already looking forward to heading off to camp. So we thought it would be fun to explore the coolest summer camps out there. We were blown away by what we found — from camps with long histories and cool new programs, to camps with activities that we had no idea you could even do at camp! It’s sure come a long way since we were kids and your choices were pretty much limited to art, music, or sports. Now we just wish we were young again, so we could...

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Owls and mushrooms and hedgehogs, oh my!

If you’re looking to bring some happy new artwork to your child’s nursery, or think it would make an awesome baby gift for some other lucky child, I’ve discovered a wonderfully affordable option that I absolutely love, in Woodland Friends. This colorful book is filled with twenty beautifully sweet pull-out prints, all created by five talented illustrators and designers from the US and UK. In other words, twenty gifts under $20. Not bad, right? From the simple muted tones of Dawn Bishop’s work to the Michelle Romo’s bright, vibrant colors, I like that there is so much variety in these heavy cardstock prints. And, yet, since all...

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11 of our very favorite travel toys and books for kids to help make those miles pass quickly

If Spring Break or Easter has you heading out by plane, train, or automobile, you may be wondering how to keep your kids happily occupied beyond the iPad, as you travel from Point A to Point B. And since we all know how hard it is to hear “are we there yet?” for the 200th time, I’ve pulled together 11 of the most portable, fun, and quiet travel toys for kids that we can all vouch help make the miles whiz by. CMP is an rstyle affiliate   Related: Road trip help for families: Tons of sanity savers, tips and our favorite essential products    Magnetic Toys I...

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Custom dolls from your kids’ drawings. Now that’s a keepsake.

My three-year-old son brings artwork home from nursery school by the armful — if you consider a couple of paint drops on construction paper to be art, that is. Every so often, however, he creates something that actually resembles a person, place, or thing, and I want to save it forever. The coolest way I’ve discovered to immortalize a child’s doodle is to turn it into a custom doll. We’ve covered quite a few impressive artists who make custom dolls from drawings that kids make and now there’s one more. Enter Yaela, a designer and mother of two. She runs an online studio called Dolls ‘n’ All...

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Handcrafted toy chests you’ll love to look at. Not just because they’re hiding all those toys.

It’s that time of year, so I was looking back at our post on colorful toy storage options, and came across the toy chests from Drift Studio. (Thanks, Christina!) So I clicked over to see what was new, and wow. As much as this Brooklyn mama loves the Brooklyn maps toy chest that we originally featured, I really dig the other toy chest designs from this Wisconsin based studio, too. From geometric patterns and graphic jungle animals to retro-toy designs like paper airplanes or jacks, there’s definitely something for any decor. Or hey, maybe it will inspire the decor theme to begin with.   Each chest is gorgeously handcrafted–with a...

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Please judge these beautiful gift books by their covers

A glance through our archives shows that we love wonderful books for kids. If you would like to help get a child in your life as hooked on books as we are, check out this stunning four-book collection of classic children’s titles. With new cover art by Rifle Paper Co’s Anna Bond, whose stationery and gifts have been featured many times on Cool Mom Picks, the In Bloom Book Collection pulls together four well-known titles in children’s literature: Little Women, Heidi, A Little Princess, and Anne of Green Gables. Each of these storybooks could stand on its own as a gift, but these new covers make them especially impressive as...

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Dream big and help others keep on dreaming too

The spirit of giving is alive all over social media today thanks to #GivingTuesday, including in our Instagram feed where we found these lovelies at baby Jives co. Today only, you can score these exclusive downloadable prints and support a wonderful cause while doing it. When you purchase a Dream Big or People Will Never Forget PDF for $10 each, half of that (yes $5) will be donated to two charities, St. Jude Medical Research and Feeding America, two causes we personally love and who can certainly use your support. Just print and hang, or add a frame to turn them into a gift....

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10 cool custom photo gifts for the holidays

If your kids are like mine, it’s no small feat to actually get one fabulous, shareable photo of them. So when I have a perfect one, I love looking at ways to incorporate it into great custom photo gifts for people on my list I know will appreciate it (hello, grandparents). This year, I’m really digging the growing collection of excellent custom photo gifts from Minted. We are so so happy to have them back as a sponsor (we love you, Minted!) because long before they were, we were fans of Minted holiday cards, which are not only printed beautifully, but help to support so many amazingly talented indie designers...

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Digital art you can eat. Sweet.

NYC local cupcake shop Baked By Melissa has had us wrapped around their finger since they rolled into town with their delicious bite-sized cupcakes and clever ideas–remember the cupcake gumball machine and the Betsy Johnson cupcake? We even have their insanely good cookie dough cupcakes in our 2014 holiday gift guide, as an awesome BFF gift. Their latest creation is just as innovative as all of those: the Baked By Melissa online cupcake creator, ready for wannabe dessert artists to flex their design skill. You can choose from 16 flavors and turn a blank digital canvas into your own virtual artwork made up of anywhere from 100 to...

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Kid-friendly Chicago activities: The best museum exhibits for kids

This year my husband and I loaded everyone up (even the grandparents) for a long weekend over fall break, and flew to Chicago, one of my very favorite cities, in search of some awesome kid-friendly activities. Our focus: checking out all the must-see exhibits for kids at Chicago museums. Lest you think that New York and DC are the only big museum cities in the US, know that Chicago has a ton of awesome options. In fact, it was a lot to tackle, especially with three children in tow, but I’ve survived to tell you it can be done–as long as you embrace the idea...

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A creative activity book that could make a future Duchamps or Dali out of your kid.

A few years ago, we fell in love with artist Marion Deuchars’ smart, fun activity book Let’s Make Some Great Art, which teaches kids about twelve great masters and encourages them to imitate their styles all over the pages. I’m thrilled to find a follow-up book for kids, Draw Paint Print Like the Great Artists, with more than 200 pages of creative inspiration for kids to absorb–and, best of all, draw, paint, or print all over. What makes this Marion Deuchars book so inviting is that it doesn’t look like a stuffy art manual, a boring composition book, or even an art workbook. In...

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The 2014 Martha Stewart American Made award finalists: A few of our favorite shops worth voting for

We are thrilled that Martha Stewart is again shining a spotlight on those gifted American makers who brings us so many gorgeous items to decorate our homes, dress our babies, and beautify our lives through the 2014 American Made awards. And now it’s time for you to vote for the Audience Choice Winner  from over 1,000 finalists. That $10,000 prize could go a long way towards helping one of your favorite American companies succeed. Though you can vote up to six times in a 24 hour period from now until October 13th, good luck narrowing your votes down to only six companies....

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5 of our favorite cool tech picks you don’t want to miss this week

In case you missed them, here are 5 of our most popular cool tech picks from Cool Mom Tech this past week. Enjoy!   1. Is the new Apple Watch right for you? Our editors share their thoughts. 2. Saving up to 50% on printer ink that’s delivered right to your door? It’s not make believe, promise. 3. One of our most favorite apps for parents just got so much better. Yeah! 4. If you use gmail, you need to see this super simple, super awesome time-saving tip. 5. Everything you need to know about the new iPhone 6,...

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