Parenting
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This post is sponsored by Clothing Shop Online, but all of the opinions within are those of The Everymom editorial board.

DIY Projects Are My Love Language—These Are the Crafts That Keep My Kids Entertained

written by TRISHA SPROUSE

The Everymom’s product selections are curated by the editorial team. If you buy something through our links, we may earn an affiliate commission, at no cost to you. We only recommend products we genuinely love.

kids crafts"
kids crafts
Source: Kathy Sisson
Source: Kathy Sisson

As a former DIY and crafts editor, I’m pretty sure it was inevitable that my kiddos would turn out to be enthusiastic little DIYers themselves. Whether it’s a spooky shirt for Halloween or a festive hat for a school parade, they’ve never shied away from getting their hands dirty while working on fun craft projects. It warms my heart that they truly enjoy working on DIY crafts with me, and I hope the vision of our dining room table serving as a makeshift crafting headquarters will one day become a core memory for them.

Having worked on a variety of different crafts over the years, I’ve come to learn that one of the DIYs my kids enjoy the most is customizing basic fashion items—shirts, hats, bags, or other apparel that provide a blank slate for them to run wild with their creative vision. Recently, I discovered Clothing Shop Online, and l was super excited to find that it’s a veritable treasure trove for this exact type of DIY craft. Not only do they have a large selection of basics that are perfect for customization, but you can also buy items in bulk, which makes them incredibly affordable. There are no minimum orders, you get free shipping on orders over $59, and best of all, it saves me a trip to the craft store.

After scouring their inventory and realizing they have T-shirts as low as $2 and hats that are priced under $1 (how these prices are possible in 2024 is mind-blowing), I’m already dreaming up some fun crafts to do with my kids over their upcoming spring and summer breaks. Being a mom of boy-and-girl twins, I find it so convenient that Clothing Shop Online offers so many different styles and categories to choose from—they have everything from hoodies and sweatshirts to leggings and totes, in every hue of the rainbow, too. Below, I’m sharing a few of the fun ideas I know my kids would love to create. Be sure to use code EVERYMOMAFF10 from now through April 20 to get 10 percent off your order.

Custom Tote

Graphics: Aryana Johnson

There are endless ways to customize a tote bag (puffy paint! stamps! pom poms!), but one of the easiest DIYs to pull off is an iron-on patch. Simply set your iron to medium heat, lay your tote bag flat, place the patch(es) in the desired spot, and apply firm, even pressure to the top of the patch with the iron for about 30-45 seconds. Pro tip: I like to cover the patch with a washcloth or parchment paper before ironing so I don’t accidentally burn it.

Be sure to supervise your kiddo with a hot iron, or if they’re really young, you can let them place the patch(es) where they’d like, and you can do the ironing. Whether they choose ones that are nature-inspired, fun retro designs, or custom letters, kids will absolutely love having a personalized bag they can tote their toys and books in.

clothing shop online
clothing shop online
Economical Tote

24 colors available

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clothing shop online
clothing shop online
Small Deluxe Tote

8 colors available

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clothing shop online
clothing shop online
Economical Recycled Sport Pack

8 colors available

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clothing shop online
clothing shop online
Economical Tote with Color Contrast Handles

21 colors available

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Tie Dye Sweats

Graphics: Aryana Johnson

While T-shirts tend to be the go-to tie-dye apparel of choice, I love the idea of tie-dying something a little less expected like a sweatshirt, sweatpants, or even a matching set. To get started, you’ll need to dampen your item (I like to throw mine in the wash and skip drying it). Then you’ll need to decide which kind of tie-dye pattern you’d like to create—spiral and crumple are the most common ones. Lay your clothing item flat on top of a plastic drop cloth or garbage bag, fold it into the desired pattern, and secure it with rubber bands.

If you’re only using one color, you can simply dunk your item into a bucket of the prepared dye. If you prefer to use a mix of colors, squirt the various prepared dyes onto the fabric, making sure to saturate inside the creases, too; then flip the item over and apply the dye to the other side. Let the dye sit overnight (or a few hours at minimum), then rinse until the water runs clear. Wash and dry separately, and then your snazzy new sweats are ready to wear!

clothing shop online
clothing shop online
NuBlend® Youth Crewneck Sweathsirt

10 colors available

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clothing shop online
clothing shop online
NuBlend® Youth Sweatpants

8 colors available

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clothing shop online
clothing shop online
Youth Fleece Hoodie

5 colors available

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clothing shop online
clothing shop online
Heavy Blend Youth Hooded Sweatshirt

19 colors available

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Embroidery

Graphics: Aryana Johnson

You don’t have to be an expert seamstress to create fun embroidery projects. It’s a beginner-friendly DIY that even kids can enjoy. For this type of project, I’ve found that kids have the best results by either drawing a design on tracing paper or printing one out. Then, they can cut the design out, leaving a 1-inch border around it, and pin it to the clothing to use as a guide.

All that’s left to do after that is to thread the embroidery needle with the desired color of embroidery thread and start stitching through the clothing and paper, following the lines on the design. Be sure to start stitching on the underside of the clothing so the knot is not visible. From a cute little heart on the shirt pocket to a cluster of Scandinavian folk florals on the sleeve or collar, it adds a pop of personality to an otherwise plain tee.

clothing shop online
clothing shop online
Garment-Dyed Pocket T-Shirt

24 colors available

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clothing shop online
clothing shop online
Women’s Pom Pom Long Sleeve Jersey T-Shirt

8 colors available

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clothing shop online
clothing shop online
Toddler Crystal Tie-Dyed T-Shirt

7 colors available

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clothing shop online
clothing shop online
Youth Three-Quarter Sleeve Baseball Tee

4 colors available

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Pretend Play Costumes

Graphics: Aryana Johnson

My kids love to dress up in fun costumes, even when it’s not Halloween, and it doesn’t take much to create a caped crusader or masked superhero. All you need is a plain shirt as the base. Then you could either iron on a fun patch like a lightning bolt or a star onto the center of the chest, or you could cut a similar shape out from felt and hot glue it.

To accessorize, you can tie a bandana around the waist for a colorful belt, or you could cut out eye holes and tie it around the eyes to create a masked look. For the cape, simply tie or pin either a towel or blanket around the collar, and your kiddo is ready to fly off and save the world.

clothing shop online
clothing brand online
Youth Jersey Long Sleeve Tee

5 colors available

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clothing shop online
clothing shop online
Budget Rally Towel

16 colors available

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clothing shop online
clothing shop online
Cotton Bandana

10 colors available

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clothing shop online
clothing shop online
Fleece Throw Blanket

11 colors available

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Graphic Prints

Graphics: Aryana Johnson

One of the easiest ways to jazz up a plain shirt, onesie, or bib is by adding a graphic print with a cute design or funny saying. Simply print out your design on heat transfer paper and cut out the image as close to the edge as possible (keep in mind that any border you leave around the design will be visible). Place your apparel on a hard surface, with a towel or pillowcase placed underneath it to protect the surface, and then iron your item to smooth out any wrinkles.

Peel off the backing, place your printed image face down on the item, and press the transfer paper firmly with a hot iron for about 30 seconds, making sure you run the iron over the entire image. I like to work in a circular motion from the center out to the edges. Let the image cool for a minute or two; then remove the transfer paper, and behold your unique creation!

clothing shop online
clothing shop online
Garment-Dyed Youth Heavyweight T-Shirt

31 colors available

Shop now
clothing shop online
clothing shop online
Women’s Boxy Tee

8 colors available

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clothing shop online
clothing shop online
Infant Flutter Sleeve Baby Rib Bodysuit

5 colors available

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clothing shop online
clothing shop online
Infant Premium Jersey Bib

10 colors available

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Animal-Themed Hat

Graphics: Aryana Johnson

Hats are such a cute accessory, especially for kids who may not want to get dressed up in full gear. And they also happen to be super easy to customize with a fun animal theme. I’ve made everything from bunnies to bears and even Humpty Dumpty. Really, all you need to customize a hat is some felt, scissors, and a hot glue gun. With just these supplies, you can easily create eyes, ears, a nose, and a mouth.

Or, if you’d like to create something specific, say, like an Easter hat, you could hot glue some paper Easter grass and plastic eggs around the brim and a bunny face to the front. This could work for many other holidays, too, such as a reindeer for Christmas with cotton balls around the brim to look like snow or a turkey with feathers for Thanksgiving.

clothing shop online
clothing shop online
Small Fit Bio-Washed Dad Hat

11 colors available

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clothing shop online
clothing shop online
Sustainable Sun Hat

2 colors available

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clothing shop online
clothing shop online
Waffle Cuffed Beanie

9 colors available

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clothing shop online
clothing shop online
Pom-Pom Cuffed Beanie

33 colors available

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Custom Towel & Blanket

Graphics: Aryana Johnson

Give bed and bath time a makeover by adding some fun flair to a towel or blanket. You could sew or glue some fringe to the ends of the towel, add a cute scallop border with some rick rack ribbon, or paint a fun scene with fabric paint. To create a cute hooded bath towel character, you could simply add a face on the front of the hood.

Level up a basic blanket by stitching a simple pattern of colorful embroidery around the perimeter, or you could attach some large-scale tassels to the ends. Pom pom ribbon would also add a fun pop of texture and color to the edges of the blanket.

clothing shop online
clothing shop online
Velour Beach Towel

13 colors available

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clothing shop online
clothing shop online
Terry Cloth Hooded Towel With Ears

5 colors available

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clothing shop online
clothing shop online
Mink Touch Luxury Baby Blanket

4 colors available

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clothing shop online
clothing shop online
Mink Touch Luxury Baby Blanket

4 colors available

Shop now

School Activity Shirt

Graphics: Aryana Johnson

There never seems to be a shortage of opportunities to show your school spirit at my kids’ school, so I would imagine it’s the same at most schools. From the 100th day of school celebration to the vocabulary parade during literacy week, we sure have customized our fair share of shirts.

A few ideas you could steal from our playbook: cut out letters from scrap fabric to create a word and hot glue it to the shirt; use a stencil and some fabric paint to add a fun pattern; or bedazzle the collar or cuffs with some fabric jewels or sequins. Be sure to check out Clothing Shop Online’s blog for even more custom clothing ideas and step-by-step tutorials that are sure to inspire your DIY projects!

clothing shop online
clothing shop online
Youth Three-Quarter Sleeve Baseball Tee

4 colors available

Shop now
clothing shop online
clothing shop online
Garment-Dyed Youth Long Sleeve T-Shirt

9 colors available

Shop now
clothing shop online
clothing shop online
Toddler Flutter Sleeve Tee

5 colors available

Shop now
clothing shop online
clothing shop online
Youth Cyclone Pinwheel Tie-Dyed T-Shirt

10 colors available

Shop now
clothing shop online logo

This post is sponsored by Clothing Shop Online, but all of the opinions within are those of The Everymom editorial board. We only recommend products we genuinely love.