Sandy Souvenirs: Five Beach Crafts Using Natural Materials

beachAs residents of a land-locked midwestern state, our family loves to take a vacation to the ocean.

Whether it’s the Atlantic, the Pacific, the Gulf, or a cape, we could all four of us manage to lounge and frolic and just plain goof off at the beach every second of our trip. Forget historic sites of interest or fine art museums or nearby cultural treasures- we’ll be right here on the sand, thank you very much.

Of course, another thing that I love about the beach is the access to natural materials to craft with that I just don’t find at home. Twigs, fossils, corn husks- I’ve got plenty of those at home. But shells? Sand? Driftwood? Sign me up!

Below are some of my favorite craft projects to create with natural materials found at the beach:

  1. Sandy Handprints. Take one part plaster of Paris, add one hand of a loved one, and the result is a plaster of Paris handprint, all covered in sand.
  2. Painted shells, from Pink and Green Mama. For an ongoing art activity, use watercolor paints, then rinse the shells clean and paint them over and over again. For a permanent keepsake, use acrylic paints or paint on a top layer of clear sealant.
  3. Sand clay, from Childhood Magic. For beach houses with a kitchen, this clay is cooked quite like play dough, but ends up more like moon sand.
  4. Sand art in recycled containers. Color sand from a single beach into rainbow color, or collect sand from beaches across the country or the world to show off the variety in color and texture.
  5. Sea shell sandals from Crafty Chica. Sea shells have always been great for embellishment, but we’ve been short on wearable, non-tacky seashell embellishments. Heck, you can get away with anything if it’s on your shoes!

How do you craft from the beach?

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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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