Tag Archives: gifts

Holiday Shopping List 2012

With Thanksgiving a delicious, but increasingly distant memory, the holidays are now upon us! One of my {many} favorite holiday childhood memories is of watching the holiday TV specials—Frosty the Snowman, A Charlie Brown Christmas, and of course Rudolph, the Red-Nosed Reindeer. Do you remember Hermey, the elf who runs away from the North Pole because he wants to be a dentist? I like to think that perhaps he isn’t the only one and that there are elves working for Santa who dream of being firefighters, teachers, accountants, and even artists. So with Cyber Monday upon us, I’m stepping into my role as an art-loving elf and sharing some of my gift ideas for 2012.

For the littles (ages 2-4):

It’s nearly impossible to choose just one thing from the Mama May I shop, because everything is so beautiful, simple and well-made. The toys are open-ended, colorful, and inviting. Pair these counting acorns with the color sorting bowls for dramatic play, color recognition, sorting, and counting.

This Charley Harper take on the classic children’s puzzle not only introduces young children to the work of an American modern artist but also spans the breadth of the living world—mammals, insects, fish, amphibian and even a mollusk!

For the big kids (ages 5-8):

Painting has never smelled so good! GLOB’s natural paint set uses fruits, vegetables and spices to add color and scent to your child’s masterpieces.

When a Kiwi Crate arrives in the mail, you’ll be guaranteed hours of fun and exploration. Themed crates are filled with art materials, creativity sparks, science experiments and more. And with a monthly subscription, this is the gift that will keep on giving!

For the biggest kids (ages 9-12):

This isn’t your grandfather’s duct tape! With bright, modern prints and your child’s imagination, the possibilities are endless for what you can make with this Kid Made Modern Duct Tape Kit. I gave this to my nephew for his birthday, and he immediately tore into it with all kinds of ideas for things that suddenly needed tape. (And in a pinch, you can probably borrow a bit to tape up those boxes for the post office).

“Don’t worry about mistakes. Making things out of mistakes, that’s creativity.” Peter Max’s words set the tone for what Make Art Mistakes is all about—doodling, playing, imagining, creating. Quotations from artists mix with sketching and writing prompts, art concepts and mini-art lessons in this creativity sketchbook for budding artists. Pair this with a set of colored pencils and you have a great gift for the kid on the go.

Happy gift-giving!

Posted by: Leah

**All recommendations are purely my own!**


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Filed under 6 to 12 year olds, Babies & Toddlers, PreK

A Little Help for Santa

There are only 11 more days until Santa’s big day, and if you are like me, you might still be searching (or scrambling!) to find just the right gift for that last person on your list. Never fear—I’m here . . . to be your secret holiday helper. I’ve rounded up some of my favorite gift ideas for the budding artist on your lists. They range from art supplies and art kits to books and blocks.

Schoodio To Go Box, $35

This art bag from Schoodio comes STUFFED with all kinds of art materials. I love the open-ended possibilities it presents for your child, and no two bags are the same, so you can order multiples for your children and they’ll each getting something unique.

Fingerprinting Art Kit, $11.50

One of my favorite summer camp ideas with 4 year olds is creating fingerprint creatures. They always come up with creative critters. I like this set because the ink pads are perfectly shaped for just one finger, and it comes with extra stamps to add fun details. Find it at Paper Source.

My First Mosaic, $11.99

This is an easy, quick project that also helps your child practice her small motor coordination. The kit from Alex Toys comes with pre-printed images, but it would be fun to have your child create her own drawing and then turn it into a mosaic with the stickers. (Even better, you can then come visit some of the fantastic mosaics at the Museum!)

Make Your Own Monster, $24

Ok, who doesn’t want to create their own monster? This is a kit more for older children (ages 7 up), and because of the monster theme, it introduces sewing in a fun way to both girls and boys. I found it at ReForm School which is a super fun site to find lots of other treasures!

Winterscape Stamp Set, $30

This stamp set from Yellow Owl Workshop allows children to play with the idea of layering stamps to create a landscape scene. They’ll be focused on creating a picture, but they will also get hands-on practice with concepts related to space in art—how to make a two-dimensional space feel like it is three-dimensional. There is also a cityscape version. If you are in town, we have these stamp sets in the DMA store!

Colorframes, $46.75 (currently on sale!)

For the builder in your family, these beautiful blocks from Learning Materials Workshop offer an endless variety of combinations—tall towers, long train tracks, quaint houses. The varied hues of the blocks guarantee that the finished results will be worthy of displaying as art!

Mala Tabletop Paper Holder, $5.99

Have an ambitious artist, but no room for a studio? Turn your kitchen table into an art studio with the Mala Tabletop Paper Holder (find it at Ikea). The holder is portable, so you can create art in the afternoon, and then easily stow it away and clear the table for dinnertime.

Charley Harper: An Illlustrated Life, $32.97

This may officially be a coffee table book, but it will fascinate children and adults alike. With pictures of animals, insects, nature, and birds, you will find yourself poring over these beautiful reproductions by the American artist Charley Harper. When I flipped through the pages, I found all kinds of inspiration for art projects. You can find this at Amazon.

Need more ideas? Here are some of the places I gathered my suggestions from: Parents Magazine, LMNOP, Real Simple, and Cookie Magazine. Happy shopping!

Posted by: Leah

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