44 Crafts for Adults That Won’t End Up in the Trash in Two Months
If you’ve ever looked at Pinterest, you know that crafts aren’t just for kids. Indeed, crafting has been shown to provide a laundry list of benefits for adults—from relieving stress, depression and insomnia to decreasing the risk of age-related cognitive impairment. Plus, a good craft project can go a long way towards helping you achieve your interior decorating goals without breaking the bank. That’s why we scoured the internet and compiled a list of crafts for adults that yield finished products you’ll actually want to put on display (and can actually accomplish). From decoupage magnets and DIY rugs, to painted glass vases and wearable works of art—here are our top picks for creative projects to inspire your inner artist.
1. Painted Wine Bottle Vases
Fans of wine and upcycling (raises hand) will be pleased as punch with this super simple craft, which involves using three different types of paint to quickly transform the evidence of last night’s boozy indulgence into an eye-catching vase with a swoon-worthy modern aesthetic.
2. Recycled CD Coasters
You’ve got a CD collection that’s been gathering dust since the early 2000s, but you can’t seem to part with it. (We get it.) The solution? Break out the Mod Podge and get started on an upcycling craft that promises to breathe new life into the obsolete whilst yielding a set of funky, customized coasters.
3. Fluid Art Wall Hanging
In case you missed it, acrylic pouring is a simple but crazy cool technique that can be used to achieve the visual effect of liquid, marbled color. This paint-on-canvas, fluid art masterpiece is easy to make and hard to take your eyes off of.
4. DIY Fringe Chandelier
First, summon your DIY spirit. Next, hit up the hardware and fabric stores for the (very few) supplies you need to start crafting this fringed chandelier. The project itself is not nearly as complicated as you’d think, and the payoff—a playful conversation piece and a feeling of pride—is pretty sweet.
5. DIY Boho Planters
It turns out a little fabric ribbon and some hot glue are the only materials you need to turn boring terracotta pots into boho-chic accent pieces for all your indoor plants—and that’s very good news for anyone seeking a crazy easy craft that’s 100 percent worth keeping.
6. DIY T-Shirt Yarn Rag Rug
Bet you didn’t know you could weave colorful T-shirt scraps together on a cardboard (or hula hoop) loom to create a vibrant, boho rug. (Neither did we.) If you’re looking for a DIY project that will blow your mind and impress all your friends, this is the one.
7. Mason Jar Photo Frame
Don’t be a square: Stick a family photo in a cylinder instead. These mason jar frames boast a frosted appearance we love—namely because it promises to spice up the standard photo display with an antique effect for extra visual interest. Best of all, you need little more than frosted paint, marbling medium and an empty jam jar to make the magic happen.
8. Rick Rack Picture Frame
Give a boring picture frame a cheerful makeover with colorful rick rack and miniature pom pom trim. A pair of scissors and some glue are the only other supplies you need to pull off this exceedingly simple craft and the finished product is bound to brighten up any photo display.
9. Circus Animal Cookie Pillows
Everyone’s favorite sweet snack from youth (i.e., animal cracks, but the frosted and sprinkled kind) has been reimagined as a throw pillow and we’re completely on board with it. You’ll need felt, rainbow-colored pom poms, stuffing, a hot glue gun and a sewing machine (or no-sew glue) for this DIY project, but the process itself is straightforward and the end result looks, well, good enough to eat.
10. Acrylic Pouring Mason Jars
Mason jars are a commonplace kitchen item with considerable crafting potential—as seen with this acrylic pouring craft, which turns the surface of an oversized mason jar into a work of art. The end result? A glass jar that looks as beautiful empty as it does filled with a fresh bouquet of flowers.
11. Fabric Decorated Flowerpots
These spiffy flowerpots boast an adorable flamingo pattern, but you can spring for a different design if you choose. Either way, this project promises to give any hum-drum terracotta pot a bold new look and, even better, it comes together with nothing more than mod podge and fabric. Easy peasy.
12. Clay Petal Planter
If you want to spruce up an outdoor planter, skip the fabric and opt for this polymer clay craft instead, which involves using a palette knife to embellish a ceramic flowerpot with petal-shaped pieces of multi-colored clay that can be dried in your kitchen oven. The task couldn’t be easier, and the resulting craft is tough enough to withstand the elements and pretty enough to make your garden feel sunny no matter the forecast.
13. An Oversized Scrunchie
This oversized style gave is totally back in fashion, and it turns out, it’s a surprisingly easy DIY project. With little more than a quarter-yard of fabric, an elastic band and a sewing machine, you can make your own for way less than it would cost to buy one at the store.
14. Mason Jar Wind Chimes
If you want to make sweet music with a mason jar, just polish off the last of the jam and upcycle that empty jar with this wind chime craft. You’ll need some chunky glass beads to string on wire, a couple of standard tools and a little focus, but the process is straightforward enough that even a beginner can succeed.
15. Glitter-dipped Wine Glasses
Ever wanted to skip the snoozy part of the wine tasting ritual (i.e., swirling and holding your glass up to the light) and proceed straight to sipping? Same. Good news: These glitter dipped wine glasses make it possible—necessary—to do precisely that. In other words, this easy mod podge project is a craft we can all raise a glass to.
16. Paper Flower Wreath
It might not be the most glamorous craft supply, but it turns out the humble toilet paper tube can do quite a lot. Case in point, this dainty and eye-pleasing floral wreath—made entirely from (you guessed it) the bones of the bathroom staple. You’ll need to collect quite a few tubes to complete this piece of decor (think, 15 to 20) and a can of spray paint is required to achieve a classier finish—but once that’s done, your budget-friendly craft will look like a million bucks.
17. Epoxy Resin Jewelry
Some seriously fun materials—sprinkles (like the kind you put on an ice cream sundae), confetti and glitter, to name a few—go into the making of this epoxy resin jewelry. That said, this project does also require some special equipment, like a heat gun or kitchen torch, and epoxy resin takes a little practice to work with. However, once you get the hang of the technique, the whimsical wearable art that results makes this craft well worth the effort.
18. Recycled Denim Beaded Bracelet
Good for you for saving the denim scraps from those cut-off jean shorts you made yourself last summer—because you can turn that fabric into a colorful beaded bracelet in the blink of an eye. (Well, almost.) Round up a sewing needle and some jewelry making supplies—clasp, stretchable cord, beads—and ready the hot glue gun for a straightforward craft that promises yet another comeback for your favorite pair of jeans.
19. DIY Rainbow Tie-Dye Hammock
No weaving skills are required to make an eye-catching (and decidedly happy-looking) hammock—just score a boring white one at the store and commence this DIY tie-dye project for a transformation that will breathe new life into your leisure time routine—a benefit you’ll be able to enjoy as soon as the creative work is complete (read, completely dry).
20. Decoupage Glass Magnets
If you’re a craft enthusiast who hasn’t already taken a deep dive into the world of Pinterest decoupage projects, our already numerous references to mod podge may have confused you. Allow us to explain: Mod podge is a magical decoupage medium that boasts the ability to glue, seal and finish all manner of crafts in one fell swoop. Here, an ideal craft for your decoupage debut: A foolproof mod podge project that yields magnets with charming (scrapbook paper) design.
21. Gourd Birdhouses
Got one too many gourds on your hands? Don’t get down on your green thumb; instead, put the bounty to good use with a clever birdhouse craft. With some help from a power tool (i.e., hole saw) and a can of spray paint, this one is a breeze—and the finished product boasts major backyard appeal to boot.
22. Faux Stained Glass Votive Candle Holder
Actual stained glass projects are admittedly not for the faint of heart, which is why we’re happy to report that there’s a way to create the same stunning aesthetic without the intimidating glass-cutting tools. The hack? Glass stain paints. Note: This project is not hard to execute, but definitely choose a boxy candle holder for your canvas, lest your craft turn out to be a runny mess.
23. Personalized Fidget Spinners
Keep your hands busy by beautifying that thing you have to, um, keep your hands busy. Let’s be honest, everything you own stands to benefit from your personal touch—and fidget spinners are no exception. A digital cutting machine is required for this one—but beyond that, all you need to do is gather any fidget spinners you find floating around your home and give them the Cricut treatment for a quick and satisfying craft.
24. DIY Folding Camp Stool
Some light construction work is required with nails, screws and the associated tools—but you can probably leave the sawing of lumber to the professionals at your local hardware store and skip straight to sanding if you prefer. More good news: If you measure your frame accordingly, a placemat can serve as a no-sew alternative for the fabric seat. In sum, this project is pretty hands-on, but the reward—Ikat-printed eye candy and a place to kick back—is well worth the effort.
25. 3D Graphic Clay Mugs
When your morning cup of coffee isn’t quite enough of a pick-me-up on its own, a cheery drinking vessel may just be the extra boost you need. OK, your DIY mug might strike you as obnoxiously ironic at first, but once the caffeine kicks in, that hand-crafted decor is sure to inspire both a sense of pride and well-being. (You know, the kind that comes from knowing you can wake up a hot mess and still rally for a P.M. polymer clay project.)
26. Photo Transfer Art
Score some of these special mixed media paints and grab a piece of plywood to make this super impressive piece of photo transfer art. The (incredibly cool) technique, which involves painting over a printed image and then using a matte medium to transfer it to canvas, is very easy to follow and the process leaves lots of room for creativity.
27. DIY Liquid Gold Leaf Desk Lamp
An inexpensive desk lamp gets a major upgrade from liquid leaf in this one-step DIY—a gamechanger for anyone who loves the look of antique brass lamps, but not the price tag. Just be warned: You will absolutely want to paint everything bronze after you see the finished product.
28. DIY Retro Painted Fridge
Turn a bland white fridge into a pastel mint conversation piece with loads of retro charm. The process requires quite a bit of work—multiple coats of primer, two coats of paint, and some spray paint for a finishing touch—but the reward is a work of art that won’t lose its finish (no matter how many trips to the fridge you make).
29. Coffee Filter Peonies
Everyone loves fresh flowers, but their beauty is so fleeting. Good news: You can enjoy the cheerful flower effect without going broke from buying new bouquets on the regular. This easy coffee filter craft requires precious few materials (floral wire, floral tape, scissors and food coloring) and produces an oh-so pretty bouquet of peonies with staying power.
30. No-sew Rope Baskets
You can never have too many storage containers, and these DIY rope baskets are a particularly stylish (and sturdy) solution for any organizational need. Best of all, you can make them in any size you want, and all you need is a glue gun, some parchment paper, a wheel of cotton piping and a bucket or bin to give your basket its shape. Nifty.
31. DIY Pendant Lamp with Origami Lampshade
Overhead lighting can be so harsh and mood lighting so expensive—half a dozen chic lamps can really add up. Well, we just found a solution with this DIY origami lamp. This craft comes together with nothing more than a pendant cord and (wait for it) a paper grocery bag. Don’t be fooled by the humble materials, though—the end result is absolutely gorgeous.
32. Comic Book Canvas
Gift this mixed media collage-on-canvas and you’ll score some serious points with the comic book lover in your life. Best of all, this art project couldn’t be easier to accomplish—thanks to mod podge and pre-cut wood letters. Word to the wise: Make sure you score your own comic books for the clippings or said comic book lover will be very sad.
33. No-weave Rainbow Wall Hanging
Add visual interest to a blank wall with a DIY rainbow wall hanging that boasts both visual and textural appeal. Bonus: This decorative piece—which consists of brightly colored braids of yarn, rope and cotton piping hung from a wood dowel—is a cinch to construct and requires no gluing or sewing whatsoever.
34. Rubber Cement Resist Watercolor Art
Watercolors and rubber cement don’t play nicely together, and it turns out that’s a very good thing. This painting project involves using the two mediums to achieve vibrantly colored, intricate designs. In other words, once the creative work is done and the rubber cement removed from the page, you’ll be looking at an I-can’t-believe-I-made-that kind of masterpiece.
35. DIY Cricut Corkboard Travel Map
Calling all Cricut crafters and travel lovers: This easy project produces a corkboard upon which future vacations will take shape and past travels commemorated. Simply use your handy digital cutting tool to cut a vinyl map and then clean it up with a neat hook weeding tool before you iron it on to your corkboard. The end result? An ode to wanderlust that will look great in your home office.
36. Boho Flower Wall Hanging
To say this craft involves upcycling egg cartons would be an understatement—because seriously, would you have guessed used cardboard could look so lovely? Indeed, those flowers are 100 percent egg carton—snipped, painted and hung from twine to great effect. Try this for a quick and budget-friendly craft that’s easy on the eyes.
37. DIY Drum Set for Kids
This kid-friendly instrument is so eye-catching it doubles as decor and, since the process involves painting designs on fabric, it’s completely customizable, too. Plus, aside from being irresistibly cute, the fluffy cotton ball drumsticks function well—but not so well that you’ll regret giving your little one this gift. The takeaway? This DIY drum craft is guaranteed to get your creative juices flowing and the finished product boasts excellent gifting potential.
38. Decorative Wooden Bench
Ah, the wooden bench—a mainstay of flea markets and antique stores that, more often than not, is begging for a makeover. Fortunately, that undertaking is made easy with this clever decoupage craft: Just sand and clean up your bench to your liking, deck it out with decorative paper (thank you, mod podge), and voila—a once weathered-looking piece of wood with a whole new lease on life.
39. Easy Pom Pom Trivets
Transform a snoozy cork trivet into the belle of the ball (or dinner table, as it were) with nothing more than a few large swaths of brightly colored felt and some dainty pom pom trim. This craft is so easy even a kid could do it—except for the hot glue gun part—and the festive finished product is so chic.
40. Paper Bag Pinatas
An adult craft designed to be the star of a kid’s birthday bash—these paper bag pinatas are every bit as attractive as the traditional ones and far easier for a pint-sized person to bust open. Pull this one off with a few, very basic supplies—paper lunch bags, magazine paper, tissue paper, and glue—and every guest will owe you a debt of gratitude for saving their dignity. Bonus: This craft involves making mini pinatas for every guest, thereby eliminating the harrowing spectacle of little kids fighting over turn-taking with a wooden stick nearby.
41. Seed Packet Decoupage Flower Pots
Yep, there are so many ways to add visual interest to a clay flowerpot. Here, a clever decoupage craft in which empty seed packets are repurposed to lend bold photographic imagery to brightly painted pots. The process is every bit as easy as it sounds, and the finished product is downright adorable.
42. Gold Foiled Tin Can Organizers
Take a hard pass on generic desk organizers from the office supply store and get creative with an upcycled tin can project instead. This straightforward craft requires little in the way of materials—decoupage craft paper, foam brush, X-acto knife and craft glue—and the end result will forever change the way you look at an empty oatmeal container.
43. Starburst Wreath
Bamboo paper straws, scissors, a wooden craft ring and a hot glue gun are all you need to make a striking wreath that looks like fancy, store-bought wall decor. Best of all, this cut-and-paste craft is a breeze from start to finish—just snip the straws to your desired lengths and glue them down. (The hardest part is deciding where to mount to your masterpiece.)
44. DIY Hanging Wall Shelf
We love a good practical craft and this one—a homemade hanging shelf that gets high marks for both form and function—is well worth the effort. Easy to construct and totally customizable (i.e., with wood stain, colorful paint, size modifications, etc.), there’s really no downside to this DIY.