3 Winter DIYS!

Bridget Gum, Arts & Living

With midterms quickly approaching, student stress is at an all-time high. A great way to manage some of that stress is to relax by doing some easy, low budget DIY crafts. The good news is, you don’t have to be an avid hobbyist or even have artistic talent. All you need is the focus to keep your hands and mind on a DIY project to strip the stress away.

A great craft for a person who is stressed is a homemade stress ball. All you need is some flour, a funnel, an empty, tall plastic water bottle, and some fun patterned or colored balloons. First, pour some flour into the water bottle with the funnel and only fill it a couple of inches. Then put the balloon over the water bottle and shake the flour into the balloon. Finally, release the air from the balloon and tye the balloon closed.  

Another great craft is crayon art. For this craft, you only need some crayons–either full length or broken–a canvas, a hot glue gun, and a hairdryer. To start, think of a color theme or pattern, like a rainbow or best friend’s favorite colors. If you can’t think of a pattern, there are plenty of ideas on the internet. Once you have your idea, peel the wrappers off of the crayons. Then use the hot glue gun to glue the crayons to your canvas in the pattern of your choice. Next, use the hairdryer to melt the crayons. The colors will drip down and create a trail down your canvas. As an added bonus, sometimes the colors will mix to create a new color. Add a quote, picture or drawing if you want (or just let the colors speak for themselves). Make sure to leave it out to dry for at least one night.

One craft that is not only a stress buster, but also a great gift for a friend, is an inspirational or motivational poster. You can easily make this craft with a canvas, paintbrush, Mod Podge, a glue stick, tissue paper, and some words printed or written out on paper. The first step is to find words, phrases, inside jokes, or quotes that remind you of a friend or family member. You can either write these or type them up and print them out, and glue them down with the glue stick. Make sure to use black or another dark color for the words because you’ll use other colors later. Also, try to avoid pictures because they will be harder to see through the tissue paper. Then take your paintbrush and Mod Podge and paint over the words you’ve already glued down.

Mod Podge is usually pretty expensive, but you can easily make a homemade version. Pour a bottle of washable school glue into a jar or canister, followed by one-third cup of water. Shake for one minute. Once you’ve finished with the Mod Podge, use different colors of tissue paper and put them over the glue you just put down. Finally, paint over the tissue paper once more with the Mod Podge and leave it to dry for a night.

Don’t let midterm madness bring you down. Pick up a crafty activity and find your moment of zen. And with the holiday season just around the corner, your newly made crafts can make great gifts for friends and family.