I have a fairly high tolerance for messes when it comes to crafting. Messes involving toothpaste tubes left uncapped or Barbie clothes strewn everywhere? I'll pass. But crafting I do encourage with my children, especially when making gifts for someone else.
A recent craft I've been dreaming up was to make custom coasters using tiles and felt. I'd not done it but it seemed like I could do it cheaply enough to make a test-drive worthwhile.
Serendipity occurred upon my virgin voyage to the Southeastern Salvage which is a large emporium of a store here in the Southeast--think Home Depot meets Homegoods. I found mini-tiles for...wait for it...a nickel a piece. Bonanza!
Here's what we did.
1.) First, I cut up a garbage bag and laid it down on our tiled playroom floor so that the kids could get paint on everywhere BUT the garbage bag, including the rainbow rug and the door and themselves. Again, I am very tolerant of crafting messes. And my children enjoy the dog house where they are now sleep.
2.) The kiddies painted each mini tile with assorted acrylic paints which are a total pain to get out of their clothes, hence my son is not wearing any.
3.) After the tiles dried in the sun, I sprayed Krylon crystal clear acrylic in Satin on the tiles (to lock in the paint and keep it from chipping).
This is the moment when the cheerful hosts of Sesame Street would tell you to go get a grown-up to help you with this next part.
4.) I busted out the hot glue to seal the four mini-tiles together to form one coaster. I hot glued square pieces of felt onto the backs of each coaster to prevent scratching tables.
We gave ours to Eunis and Jeff, our bestest buddies and Tybee Island vacation pals. The coasters may or may not have gotten deep-sixed based on how flimsy and ugly they were, but we had fun making them regardless.
And that's the thing about anything worth doing. If you love the process, the outcome (sorta) doesn't matter.