Are you cooped up in the house and having trouble coming up with ideas for how to entertain your children? Are you a teacher who needs an inexpensive craft for your students? If you have a coffee filter and basic craft supplies, then you’re set! Choose from the craft projects below to make snowflakes, covered jars, butterflies, Easter eggs, flowers, and more.

Snowflake Craft

You can make either white or colorful snowflakes for this project. To add color, have your child use markers (you may also use watercolor paint or food coloring) to color the coffee filter. Multiple colors will give a tie-died look; single colors are also pretty. Spray the filter or dampen in the sink. The color will run and should fill the filter. You may have to squeeze the filter to allow the color to spread to all parts. Lay filter flat to dry. When the filter is completely dry, fold in half two or three times, and cut your snowflake design. Wa-lah! For the white snowflakes, you may still want to spray the filter so it will lay flat.

Covered Jars

If you have a mason jar you’ve filled for a gift, add a personal touch with a homemade lid. Color a coffee filter as instructed above (see snowflake craft), and seal using clear acrylic spray. When dry, insert into the jar lid.

Butterfly Craft

To make the butterfly craft using an everyday coffee filter, first follow the snowflake directions for adding color. When the colored filter is dry, pinch the 12 o’clock and 6 o’clock sides together. Wrap with a pipe cleaner, and curl ends up to make antennae. You may also clip the filter with a painted clothespin. Decorate with wiggly eyes. Optional: glue a magnet to the back to make a useful refrigerator helper!

Easter Egg

Cut your coffee filter into an oval shape. There are several choices for how to color your eggs, based on the age of your crafters. Toddlers can be most independent using markers as described in the snowflake craft above. If your crafter is older, you can try watercolor and Q tips. An even older crafter might enjoy using food coloring and a straw (drinking or stirring).

For the straw technique, fill small cups with colored water. Put the straw in the water, covering the other end with your finger. Move the straw to the desired location on the “egg” and remove your finger from the straw. Start with very small amounts until your crafter feels comfortable with the technique. Allow the “Easter Eggs” to air dry, then display. You can even glue the egg to thick paper to make an Easter card. What a lovely gift that would make!

Flowers

There are all sorts of options for how to make flowers with coffee filters (which, by the way, hold up much better than using tissue paper). Try one of the coloring techniques described above or try this one: Fold the coffee filter accordion style. Dip the end into colored water. Allow the water to “crawl” up the filter; allow to dry, and repeat using the other end of the folded filter. This will create a beautiful flower petal effect.

Do this with as many petals as you want your flower to have. Hold the petals together, still in accordion style fold, and wrap a pipe cleaner around the bottom. Pull apart your petals, arranging them in layers. This project makes a great spring display, but is also loved as Mother’s Day presents or birthday gifts.

Coffee Filter Shamrocks/ Hearts

What better way to celebrate St. Patty’s Day than to have shamrock window displays? Use the coloring technique described in the snowflake craft, and cut dried filters into Shamrock shapes. This can also be done as a Valentine’s Day craft to decorate your window or make your own Valentine cards.

The ideas are limitless. Get creative and have fun!