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Home  > News  > Make And Do Ideas To Keep You Busy

Make And Do Ideas To Keep You Busy

December 21 2006

Christmas is over, you've played with your presents for days and days... it's time for something new to do.. which is where we come in. Show Me's here to make sure you don't get bored.

We've hunted high and low on museum and gallery websites for things to keep you amused. So - here's our pick of the top make and do ideas.

These are all things to do away from the computer.

Shows a cut paper snowflake resting on the palm of a hand.

We'll start off with some of our Show Me makes before going on to see what other museums and galleries have got for you.

First up snow... we all love the white stuff, while we're waiting for those blizzards why not make some paper snowflakes? Easy to make but they look great.

Here's an idea for making your own book covers, wrapping paper, book marks or present tags - marbling.

Marbling is a kind of printing, using swirls of ink or paint. Artists have used marbling for centuries. It's good fun, but can be very messy!

Now read on for something glam to wear...

Detail of marbled paper in red, blue, yellow and silver.

Screenshot from V&A Museum website showing woman wearing brightly-coloured headdress.

Print off the design for this Egyptian Style Art Deco Head-dress, colour it in, cut it out and stick it together - you'll certainly turn heads wearing this beauty.

That's from the V&A Museum, who also have a design for a Baroque hat you can make.

Photo: © V&A

Also good for making an entrance in is this very grand bicorn hat, which is like the hats worn by Napoleon, and Lord Nelson.

Download the instructions and make the hat in card and coloured paper. From SeaBritain.

Photo: © Sandra Lousada

Screenshot from SeaBritain website showing child wearing bicorn hat made of card.

Photo of a bracelet made from plaited embroidery threads.

Why not have a go at making Show Me's Friendship Bracelets?

You'll need some embroidery threads in different colours.

They're quick and easy to do, and the perfect way to let your friends know how much you care.

We've also got some great ideas for toys you can make.

First we have a Whizzer, from Wigan Pier. It's a disc with pictures on both sides and two strings attached to the edges. When you use the strings to make the disc spin, an optical illusion makes you see the two pictures at the same time, on top of each other.

The proper name for a whizzer is a thaumatrope - here's another one, from the Museum of Childhood in London.

They also have a design for a Jumping Jack and lots of other games for you to try.

Photo: © Museum of Childhood

Screenshot from Museum of Childhood website showing design for a thaumatrope.

Screenshot from Ingenious Ireland investigations page - with photo links to several experiments.

Ingenious Ireland has loads of great science experiments for you to try - including how to make a volcano, a pinhole camera and a periscope.

The instructions are easy to follow, but you might need a grown-up to help get everything ready.

Photo: © Ingenious Ireland

If you've got a whole day to fill, try making a beautiful Medieval book.

This make from the V&A Museum tells you how books were made in Medieval times and shows you how you can make your own. There's even a recipe for making ink!

Photo: © V&A

Screenshot from V&A Museum website showing process of making reproduction medieval-style book.

Screenshot from Playground Fun website showing cartoon girl skipping with a lightbulb above her head.

Finally, if you're in the mood for some fresh air, why not check out the Playground Fun website which has fantastic ideas for outdoor games you can play with your mates.

You've probably eaten more than usual over Christmas, so running about outside is a very good idea!

Photo: © Playground Fun

We hope you really enjoy trying out these makes - and don't forget, we'd love to see pictures of you with the things you've made, so Get In Touch.

There are lots of great ideas for online games to play in our Christmas Fun: Show Me's Favourite Games Of 2006 story. Happy making!

Kristen Bailey