Patriotic Craft Ideas for the Fourth

You may not have time to go all-out with Independence Day happening midweek this year, but you can still bring a few crafty touches to your home to make it more patriotic — and the local secondhand store will be a valuable source of materials. You can thrift a few mason jars to create Fourth of July lanterns, paint a patriotic shutter or create a clothespin wreath to celebrate the red, white and blue, Country Living suggests. More patriotic still, buying your craft materials at thrift stores supplied by donations to helps fund programs benefiting the nation’s veterans.

Get the Kids to Craft for Mom

To help the kids thank Mom, start a craft project. It’s fun and easy to make your own cards, fridge magnets, candles, bath bombs, earrings and other gifts, Woman’s Day says. Plus, unique, handcrafted gifts will brighten her Mother’s Day (and likely many more days to come) while encouraging children’s creativity. Materials for craft projects are often much less expensive than buying a similar item from a boutique, and many household items on the magazine’s list of more than 30 suggestions can be sourced from a local thrift that resells the goods donated to

New Ways to Decorate Easter Eggs

Is there any springtime family activity that’s more fun than decorating Easter eggs? Probably not — but you can expand upon the typical vinegar, water and food-coloring treatment to keep the kids entertained and your table stylish. Martha Stewart offers no less than 64 ideas to shake up your egg-decorating game. You can use chalk paints to make polka-dot eggs, for example, or decoupage them in gingham; you might even make them shine with an application of copper or gold foil. Whatever you choose, the project will help get the weekend off to a fun and crafty start.

Stylish Strategies to Weather Spring Storms

With April showers on the way, Martha Stewart offers 10 suggestions for surviving the sprinkles in style. Start by crafting an umbrella stand and making sure there are a range of repurposed hooks to hang the family’s soggy slickers and jackets. Then, keep your floors clean and dry by leaving “a double-doormat barrier” and tray for your wet Wellies at the entrances to your home. Keep a drying rack, mop and sponge handy, she says, and — as if a clean house isn’t reward enough — bake some lemony sugar cookies to treat yourself to a life well-lived.

Crafty Valentines for People and Pets

Nothing says love like a handmade gift, so why not craft your Valentine’s Day cards and gifts? Homemaker extraordinaire Martha Stewart has 37 suggestions for handmade gifts that will help you show your love, including felt coffee-cup sleeves, zip-tie garlands, heart-shaped potholders and even a Valentine’s fortune wheel. Spending the holiday with your pets? Make felt catnip pouches to give your feline friends a little extra love, or try baking some homemade treats for your hounds. The recipients will appreciate your hard work and creativity!