Handmade Memory Games Crafted from Sustainable Supplies

making a matching game from a kid's artwork

kid art: Kid art is the BEST! I love using my girls’ artwork to make memory games as presents for their cousins and friends. You can also cut game pieces from larger works of art, or just collect their smaller drawings until you have enough for a game set.

Letting the kid do the writing is good practice! this bottle cap memory game is from Mermaid's Makings.
Letting the kid do the writing is good practice! this bottle cap memory game is from Mermaid’s Makings.

bottle caps: Screw-off caps from milk cartons, beer bottles, or soda containers are all the right size for a bottle cap matching game. This one is easy enough for a kid to make.

can lids/jar lids: If you’ve got a can opener that doesn’t leave sharp edges, check out the can lid memory game that The Brooding Hen made. Otherwise, try using Mason jar lids, storage jar lids, or the plastic lids from yogurt tubs.

seashells: If you spend a little time at a favorite beach, you’ll notice that many of the shells that you find are VERY similar. Chasing Cheerios took advantage of this to make a quick and easy memory game using seashells and stickers; seashells can also be drawn on, for a game with even more sustainability and handmade flair.

rocks: Rocks can also look pretty similar, and can also be easy to draw on. Because the texture and heft of a rock is so different from a piece of laminated paper, a memory game made out of rocks can really be a fun change for kids.

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Written by Julie Finn

I'm a writer, crafter, Zombie Preparedness Planner, and homeschooling momma of two kids who will hopefully someday transition into using their genius for good, not the evil machinations and mess-making in which they currently indulge. I'm interested in recycling and nature crafts, food security, STEM education, and the DIY lifestyle, however it's manifested--making myself some underwear out of T-shirts? Done it. Teaching myself guitar? Doing it right now.

Visit my blog Craft Knife for a peek at our very weird handmade homeschool life, and my etsy shop Pumpkin+Bear for a truly odd number of rainbow-themed beeswax pretties.


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  1. I love the idea of making matching games out of Emma’s art to give to family! I don’t remember where I saw it, but someone took pictures/scanned all their kids art and printed them out to use as memory cards. As we are currently de-cluttering and scanning all of Emma’s old art (some of it about 5-6 years old) this would probably work best for us.

    Oh, or I could use her water color letters to make memory games for her to sell!

    Thanks for the awesome ideas Julie!

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