Running late on holiday shopping? If you’re looking to make a few more Christmas gifts with the kids and you'd prefer to keep the mess out of your home, check out these fun places to get creative.
Instead of being dragged around the mall, the kids can put all that energy into making a gift they can be proud of. (We've also got a passel of DIY gift ideas and fun wrapping projects you still have time to pull of at home.)
1. Planet Happy toy store, Seattle.
Visit Planet Happy in the Ravenna-Bryant neighborhood of Seattle anytime to create a gift at a Drop-In Station. For $5 or less, the kids can make all-natural bath and body products, get creative with buttons, or decorate a Gingerbread Kid (through December 31). Note: Saturday morning craft classes will resume in January.
2. Bellevue Arts Museum
Join BAM on Saturdays for crafty workshops that could produce a gift for a loved one, such as the stained glass workshops on Dec. 7 and Dec. 14. Free with admission, or $2 materials fee. (Psst! Also check out the gingerbread house workshops on Dec. 21 and 28.
3. Space to Create, Seattle
Ballard's arts and craft studio for kids and adults offers several gift making workshops in December, including a class on Thursdays in December (ages 5 and up, 3:30-5:30 p.m., $20), and open studio sessions.
4. Seattle Art Museum
Need a charming gift for an artist in the family? Stop by the Chase Open Studio for free anytime. Your kids get access to great arts and crafts materials in an inspiring setting. Chase Open Studio is located on the south side of the building. Enter near the Hammer Man and take a right up the stairs.
5. Paint the Town, Seattle.
Located in Seattle's University Village, Paint the Town is a ceramics painting studio. Choose your ceramics and use their array of materials to decorate. They fire it for you in seven days, so today's the last day you'll have something ready by Christmas (with a rush fee), but you could have it soon after.
6. The Toy Place at Bellevue Art & Frame, Bellevue.
You can still visit the Toy Place for two more sessions of Paint Me a Story, a free story time and painting activity, on Friday, December 21 at 10 a.m. and 10:30 a.m. Kids can enjoy a story and take home a masterpiece for someone special. While you’re there, browse their 2013 calendar of art classes and workshops, too.
7. Seattle Children’s Museum
Visit the Children’s Museum at Seattle Center for gift-making opportunities; this weekend they have workshops in gift wrap paper printing and paper stockings.
8. Seward Park Environmental & Audubon Center
The center is holding one of its Winter Wonderland Holiday parties on Saturday, Dec. 22, from 10 a.m.-3 p.m. The kids can make a nature-inspired crafty gift, warm up with hot chocolate and cider, and learn about plants, animals, and birds in winter. (Plus the Nature Gift store is a great source of stocking stuffers.)
9. Color Me Mine, Mill Creek.
Mill Creek’s Color Me Mine provides everything from cups to ornaments for you to decorate, then they fire it and you pick it up. Make something by Friday at 9 p.m. in order to have it by Christmas. You can still sign up for Winter Drop Off Camp on Friday, December 21 from 9 a.m.-noon (ages 3-16).
About the author: Lauren Valencia is an educator and aspiring magazine editor. She loves sharing her passion for music and the arts with children and families, from writing kindie music reviews to throwing preschool dance parties to the tunes of Whitney Houston and Caspar Babypants. To chill out, Lauren practices yoga, reads novels, and tells bad jokes.