15 More Cheap and Easy DIY Toys Kids Will Love

By Ashley Marcin on 16 November 2015 0 comments

Looking for a great birthday or Christmas gift for your child? There are lots of toys you can DIY to give a personal touch. Check out the projects below for some major inspiration. And share your favorite do-it-yourself toy projects in the comments. (Related: 15 Awesomely Fun Toys You Can DIY)

1. Colorful Crayons

Melt together a bunch of old crayons using silicone molds or cupcake tins. You'll be giving new life to something that might otherwise be tossed out — and even young kids can help with this project! Just take all the broken remnants, remove the paper labels, toss them in your molds, and bake at 250 degrees Fahrenheit for 10 to 20 minutes.

2. Drum Set

Have a bunch of old paint cans you need to recycle? Try assembling this crazy drum kit. You'll clean your cans and then give them a coat of spray paint. Attach the cans together with bolts and screws. And don't forget to add some fancy stuff like cymbals. Grab a pair of sticks to start jamming.

3. Felt Food

Here's a quiet toy your kids will play with again and again: felt food. Find a stack of felt in assorted colors, print out the free template, and get cutting. Adhere everything together with hot glue and stuff some of the foods (like bread) will poly-fil. You'll make watermelon, bacon, pizza, and more.

4. Sand Blocks

Got an old Jenga game hanging around? Use the wooden pieces to make these cool rainbow sand blocks. Glue three of your blocks into an open-ended rectangle, then do it again. You'll make the rainbow sand using cornmeal and food coloring. Then, place the sand into a plastic bag and glue the bag in the middle of your blocks. Add two more blocks on top to finish the frame.

5. Nature Blocks

For kids who would rather be outdoors than anywhere else, you can make nature blocks. These blocks are inspired by the Waldorf toys and are simple to make if you have access to a hand saw. Go into your yard and find branches of different diameters. Then, let them dry someplace for a few weeks. To finish, just cut them into sections.

6. Kinetic Sand

Stop spending all that money on store-bought play sand. Try making your own with this kinetic sand tutorial. You'll need plain sand, corn starch, dish soap, and water. Mix everything together and consider adding some tea tree oil to the mix to keep it fresh.

7. Magnetic Fishing Set

If you have a sewing machine, you can whip up these DIY magnetic fish. Buy some round magnets, cut out fish shapes using scrap fabric and batting, and then sew the magnet into the fish. Make a quick pole using wooden dowels, spools, and rope. Don't forget the magnet at the end of the line so you can catch the fish!

8. Fruit Stand

Forget the play kitchen — try making a fruit stand. The maker of this project used an Ikea Rast table as the base. The rest is a creative mix of scrap wood, shelf supports, fabric, and little bins. Your finished product might not look exactly like the original, but the idea is to have plenty of places to stash play fruits and veggies.

9. Car Mat

This car mat is absolutely adorable. The only problem is that it took the author over 20 hours to cut, sew, and embroider everything together. You can make something similar by picking up some duck cloth (or other thick, sturdy fabric) at the hardware store, cutting it to size, and painting on a roadway, houses, and other cool spots with craft paints.

10. Hideaway Tent

Give your children a hideaway with this simple play tent. Create a foldable A-frame using 1" x 2" boards and dowels. Then use five yards of fabric to sew the cover that will tie onto the frame. This project takes around three hours from start to finish.

11. Painted Treasures

Don't feel like making a toy from scratch? Try finding something old and making it new again using spray paint. This Little Tikes car project is amazing and only took a couple cans of paint. Clean the toy well before disassembling and painting. You can try this makeover with play cars, houses, and anything else that needs freshening up.

12. Play Road

Before you toss out your old jeans, try using them in this DIY road project. After you trace a pattern for both curved and straight pieces, cut out your fabric from the old jeans. Then use glue and Mod Podge to fix everything together. Paint on some yellow lines and let the races begin!

13. Lego Table

Your kid will go crazy for this DIY Lego table. You'll need an old table (a square works wonderfully) and some of those Lego bases. Use glue to adhere the base plates to the table and give them some extra support with a few Lego bricks on the edges. Let the glue dry, and this project is done in around 20 minutes.

14. American Boy

Boys deserve dolls too! So, when I saw this American Boy doll in my Facebook feed, my jaw dropped. The mom took a standard girl doll (new or used would be fine), cut its hair, washed off its makeup, and dressed it in some clothes she found on Etsy. You can also sew your own for a personal touch.

15. Doll House

Make a super doll house using an old dresser. You'll need a relatively tall dresser as your base, and I recommended checking places like the Salvation Army and garage sales before buying new. Leave the bottom drawers on for storage. Then take the upper drawers out to make space for your rooms. Paint and fill with doll furniture to complete the project.

What are your kid's favorite DIY playthings?

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