Small children love nothing more than making a fantastic crafty mess, so spread your oilcloth tablecloths down on your kitchen tables and start planning their next crafty birthday party.

Try out these crafts to keep them happy:

Barnyard blowouts

Let children decorate store-bought blowouts with cute paper designs. You can use the downloadable designs or let them design their own.

Festive hats

Fold a 30cm square piece of patterned paper in half to make a rectangle. Cut slits down from the open edge, 2cm apart, stopping 5cm from the folded edge. Curl strips around a pencil. Curve hat into a circle, and staple. Punch a hole in each side; string with ribbon.

Woolly sheep

Use paper plates to form the body of the sheep, by cutting notches around the edge and wrapping wool between the notches. Stick on the faces and legs using the templates available online :  

Animal masks

Use paper bags to cut animal face shapes for masks, put in the eye holes and then get the little ones to colour them in.

Make stamps

Wrap string around a block of wood and then dip the stamp into paint and use to make patterns on gift wrap or t-shirts.

Snowflakes

Use lollypop sticks stuck to each other into the shape of a snowflake as a base. Then allow children to paint them white and either stick glitter, buttons or sequins on to add sparkle.

Scribble shirt

Place a large stencil with each child’s initials over the top of a cheap t-shirt and get them to fill in the spaces with fabric pens.