laugh, explore, create!

Homemade Mother’s Day gifts – made with love!

Karen from ARTventurers Liverpool made the Liverpool Echo this week with an extra special Mothers Day gift feature in the Best of Liverpool magazine!

Follow the link below to read the full article and how to make a pretty jam jar vase and some gorgeous paper flowers – bound to be a hit with any mum or gran! (on page 21)

Mothers Day craft


The Very Hungry Caterpillar!

World Book Day this weecaterpillar[1]k and our Little ARTventurers have been having lots of colourful, creative fun inspired by the fabulous Eric Carle book “The Very Hungry Caterpillar”!


C is for caterpillar…..


The Very Hungry Caterpillar theme crafts

Butterfly puppets……

Butterfly puppets

Sparkly yellow suns……

Paper plate sun craft

Fruit printing………(can you spot all the fruit he munched his way through?!)

Fruit printing

Playdough modelling……..

playdough caterpillar

caterpillar playdough

Fingerpainted caterpillars…… fingerpainted caterpillar

Spotty dotty cupcakes and fruit…….

caterpillar 3

Painted butterflies…….

2014-03-04 13.45.38

And story time, using our creations to tell the story!

2014-03-04 14.04.50

Durham classes launching soon!

We’re really thrilled that our little team is expanding across the country and our baby and toddler art classes in Durham are launching at Newton Hall Community centre in Durham at the beginning of May!

You can find out more about Caroline’s Durham classes over at – and to find a class nearest to you pop over to

We have some more exciting locations launching very soon – excited!!!

Baby sensory play

toddler art class durham

Painting for Pusdey

One Direction party…with dinosaurs!

This weekend we were invited along to help Evie celebrate her 7th birthday with her pals. Evie is “the world’s biggest One Direction fan” she told me – and she is mad on dinosaurs too! So that set the theme for her special art party….

After the children had decorated their own take home party bags we started with some fabric painting – the children used fabric paints, pens and crayons, ribbons and embellishments to create fabulous designs on bags and T shirts. For the girls, One Direction was the winning theme. The boys opted for Batman, skylanders and lego!

fabric painting party

One direction themed party

One Direction party

One Direction craft activity

Once they’d finished their creations we all helped decorate a special birthday banner for Evie before finishing off the activity session creating some dinosaur fridge magnets – some crazy and quite scary dinosaurs!

And after all of that creative fun…….time for a delicious party tea! Happy birthday Evie and thanks for inviting us to share your special day!

Oranges and Lemons….

This week at Little ARTventurers we’re having tons of Nursery Rhyme themed fun – incy wincy spiders, humpty dumptys, pat-a-cake in sand and printing with oranges and lemons (say the bells of St Clements!)

Fruit printing is really simple for all ages, sensory (touch, feel and smell!) and can produce some fab colourful artwork!

fruit printing for toddlers 2014-02-04 13.36.15 2014-02-04 13.36.19  2014-02-04 13.53.04

Making smooth and squishy sensory bags!

Last week we had tons of fun exploring “Rough and Smooth”…painting on rough sandpaper and smooth shiny tinfoil, bumpy porridge paint, textured butterflies and creating our own squishy sensory bags!

The bags were a HUGE hits – lots of “Again again!”s echoing around the room.

We got large ziplock bags and had lots of fun squirting different coloured paints into them as well as adding some foam, bits of tissue paper, sprinkles of glitter…..

sensory bag activity, toddler sensory play

What’s in your bag? Paint and lots of glitter!

toddler painting activity


Then (and this is the important bit!) – we sealed the bags shut! Then placed them flat on the table and used our hands to squish, squidge, move and smooth the paint and foam around to make some fantastic patterns and different colours. A great exercise in colour mixing and for the older ones we also had a go at tracing letters and shapes with our fingers which was good fun.

sensory bag activity

It feels smooth!

sensory bag activity, toddler art class

Moving the paint around and creating some fab colours and patterns!


A lovely tactile, sensory activity – and low mess too!

toddler art class

Look what I made!

Entertainer of the Year…..?

Super excited that Fiona, founder of ARTventurers has been nominated as Entertainer of the Year in the Sunderland Echo Excellence awards 2014!  Being invited along to share special birthday parties is one of the loveliest parts of what we do and it’s lovely that nominations for this award have all been from people who have been to one of Fiona’s art parties!

You can find out more about our colourful art parties for babies, toddlers and children over on our party page!

childrens party entertainer sunderland, childrens art part sunderland, toddler party sunderland, toddler art party

In the Sunderland Echo! 15.1.14

Shaving foam sensory play!

This week at Baby ARTventurers we’re getting out the shaving foam for some fluffy sensory play!

Shaving foam messy play for babies

She was certainly having a whale of a time in the foam!

Playing with shaving foam is a great sensory and learning experience for babies and tots – however make sure the little ones are closely supervised as obviously it shouldn’t be eaten and some children may have skin that is a bit too sensitive for it (we do always use the foam suitable for sensitive skin)

Making tracks with diggers!

Making tracks with diggers!

Scooping, squishing, smearing, making tracks with trucks and diggers, drawing shapes and making ice creams and milkshakes, building foamy towers and then knocking them down…..foam play is always huge hit! You can add a little drop of food colouring to jazz it up too. Last term I did foam play on a table for my older toddlers and covered the table with a layer of bubble wrap first which was a great extra sensory experience!

What does it feel like on my toes....?

What does it feel like on my toes….?

Shaving foam sensory play

Shaving foam on bubble wrap!

For older toddlers shaving foam is a great tool for early mark making and trying out letters and shapes – children who haven’t yet mastered the pencil grip can really enjoy drawing and shape making with instant results and without frustration.

Toddler messy play shaving foam

What’s hiding in the foam…?

Plus it leaves our play tray really lovely and clean!

Pottery Painting Birthday Fun!

Pottery Painting Birthday Fun!

Just before Christmas we did a lovely party for Neve and her pals to celebrate her 6th birthday. The party was at Serendipity Tea and Trinkets in Sunderland, a gorgeous vintage tea room (if you are local and haven’t been yet then check it out) – so a cupcake theme fitted perfectly. The children each painted a pottery item (cupcakes for girls, cars for the two boys) and all helped create a cute keepsake plate for the birthday girl too.

Here’s a pic of the finished pieces – glazed, fired and ready for the birthday girls to give out to her friends. I think they will love them!

Make a Magic Craft Box!

If you plan on getting crafty with your kids at home then it’s a great idea to make a designated craft box and stuff it full of craft essentials so you’ve got everything in one place ready for when you hear the cry “Mummy, I want to make something!”

As I hoard more and more stuff our Magic Craft Box has turned into the Magic Doodle Drawers (we nicked that term from Cbeebies Mr Maker LOL!) – a set of drawers I bought from Ikea which live in the playroom. I also love the idea of making the craft box itself from a plain cardboard box and getting your child to decorate and personalise it him/herself. We also have a little childrens table and stools in the playroom and all of the craft stuff is accessable for them to use whenever they like – apart from the glitter, even I’m not brave enough to allow free reign with that!
Pasta collage

Pasta collage – lots of different textures and colours!

Anyway, I thought it might be helpful to have a list of those bits and pieces that I think are essential if you’re starting your own magic craft box at home……
  1. Construction Paper (slighty rough surfaced coloured paper – cheap, buy in bulk, fab for childrens crafts)
  2. Scissors (safety age appropriate ones of course!)
  3. Glue – glue sticks and PVA glue
  4. Sellotape
  5. Things to write and draw with – felt tips, pencils, crayons, pastels….I love using oil pastels with kids, lovely bright colours
  6. Googly Eyes (supervision needed of course as with all small craft and collage materials!)
  7. White plain paper bags – can buy in bulk on ebay really cheaply
  8. White Paper Cups – as above!
  9. Lolly sticks
  10. Pipe Cleaners
  11. Stickers – what child doesn’t love stickers?!
  12. Bits of coloured wool
  13. Cotton Balls
  14. Paper Plates – I buy Smartprice ones from Asda
  15. Ruler
  16. Washable Paints – I buy the squeezy bottles
  17. A variety of brushes and sponges
  18. String and ribbon
  19. Bits of fabric, tissue paper, foil, foam sheets, textured paper for collages
  20. Empty cardboard tubes
  21. Glitter/sequins to add a touch of sparkle

Whilst this list might seem long and expensive – lots of the stuff can be picked up really really cheaply, or for free by recycling! As you might have gathered I’m a bit of an ebay queen and I buy some of my ARTventurers session materials via ebay’s Wholesale section as I’m buying in bulk for large numbers of children. Shops like Poundstretcher, the Pound Shop, B and M Homestores and good old Asda are also fantastic for crafty items at great prices. Google searches will  produce a vast list of online craft suppliers.

Handprint bug

Handprint bugs – paper, paint, wiggly eyes, sparkles and ribbon!

If you’re a bit of a novice at childrens craft activities the list above should stand you in great stead and get you on your crafty way – you can begin to add to your magic craft box by saving everything from old magazines to yoghurt pots, cardboard boxes to egg boxes and then you’ll never be stuck for things to do on a good old British rainy day!

Superhero crafts

A collage superhero ready for action!