8 imaginative paper plate crafts for kids

8 imaginative paper plate crafts for kids

  1. If you’ve only used paper plates to simplify the clean-up process after a barbecue, prepare to discover a whole new world. Because they’re plentiful and inexpensive, paper plates make for a fantastic children’s craft supply. When it comes to paper plate crafts, the themes available are nearly endless, from animals and masks to flowers and holiday décor. We’ve rounded up eight creative paper plate craft ideas for kids (although you might find that the whole family wants to get in on the fun).  

    Note: In addition to scissors and paint or markers, many of the crafts require a few additional supplies. Always supervise little ones as needed.  

  2. Jellyfish

    You might not want to encounter them in the ocean, but you’ll love hanging Jellyfish in your home. Each jelly requires a paper plate (cut in half, one half painted as the face) and eight cupcake liners in varying colors or patterns (cut into long strands for tentacles) plus paint, tape, glue, and a piece of string. Once your child has painted the face—don’t forget the eyes!—have them tape two lengths of matching cupcake liner end to end, attaching one end to the bottom of the plate. Glue the plates together and staple a piece of string to the top so you can hang these jellies for all to see.

  3. Fox

    Feel clever like a fox with this paper plate fox craft. Other required materials include some cardboard (such as from cereal boxes), paint, markers, scissors, glue, and thread. The fox’s head and four legs should be cut from cardboard and colored. Your child can color the entire paper plate brown for the body, then cut the plate in a spiral. (They can paint the end of the outside spiral white as the tail tip.) Then fold the inner spiral upward so you can glue it to the head. Have them glue on the legs as seen here, and attach a string to the head so their fox can dance in the breeze.

  4. Puppy

    Your kids can use this craft over and over. With this printable template, a paper plate, paint, a pom pom, glitter (if desired), glue, and elastic you and your child can make a cute little puppy mask. You might need to assist your child and use a pencil, scissors, and a hole punch—and possibly a utility knife—to draw and cut out the shapes using the printable template. Add paint and/or glitter to the shapes before punching holes in the sides and attaching elastic to hold the mask in place.

  5. Hedgehog

    Got paper plates, scissors, and a black marker? You’ll adore this hedgehog paper plate project. Have your kid fold the plate in half and then cut out the portion shown here. Then, have them use scissors to cut slits along the outside of the plate, creating lots of “spikes.” From there, they’ll simply draw a nose, eyes, mouth, and ears, and they’ve got a sweet little hedgie all their own.   

  6. There are plenty of other great paper plate animals to consider such as chickensbaby birds in a nest, cats, friendly fish, diving dolphinswhales spouting “water,” or even an adorable party animal. 

  7. Pumpkin

    If animals aren’t your child’s cup of tea, how about some crafts based on holidays? This pumpkin paper plate project is uncomplicated and easily customizable. Have your child rip up orange construction paper, which he or she will then use to cover the paper plate. Cut out the green stem to glue on top. Ask your child to draw the eyes, nose, and mouth on black paper, which you’ll cut out and have them glue on the plate. 

  8. Christmas trees

    Paper plate Christmas crafts can also be a big hit, such as these paper plate Christmas trees using festive plates, along with straws and cardstock. Have your child draw a spiral on the back of the plate to cut, leaving about two inches of space between lines, then hot glue the straw to the center of the back of the plate. They’ll then flip it over and glue the cardstock to the bottom of the tree, secure the straw to the cardstock, and voila—a tree! 

  9. HalloweenValentine’s DayEaster, and the Fourth of July also offer ample opportunities to create some exciting paper plate crafts,  especially when you can make a hat for any occasion. 

  10. Wings

    Looking for more interesting crafts? How about a pair of wings? (No sewing or actual feathers required.) This project is a little more advanced, but could be a great chance to work closely with your child. You need 11 plain white paper plates, two strips of ribbon measuring about 2 feet each, a hot glue gun, and scissors. This tutorial explains how to cut and attach each “feather,” as well as how to attach the ribbon for the arm straps.

  11. Shaker

    If you have a budding musician, he or she may enjoy making and decorating a customizable instrument. This paper plate shaker requires one paper plate, a stapler, about half a cup of dry rice (or dried beans), markers, crepe paper, and anything else your kiddo might like to use for decoration. Fold the plate in half, decorate, and staple it mostly closed, then add your rice or beans before stapling the remaining portion securely. 

  12. Paper plate crafts based on anything from the weather to superheroes may all be welcome ways to spend an afternoon with your family.