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Getting Crafty With Paper Cups

We all encounter that dilemma after a party - what to do with all the used paper cups? Paper cups nowadays have become more economical and manufacturers sometimes even use recycled material to produce them. So what better way to help save the environment by reusing them further!


Because it is a cup, there are actually a lot of ways to repurpose paper cups. You can even let the kids join in on the fun and create an afternoon on DIY crafting. 


You can choose different crafting materials and embellishments like stickers, glitters, sequins, lace or ribbons. The design possibilities are endless. Let your inner crafter shine out and let your kids have a fun time by doing these easy paper cups crafts.


Paper Cup Maracas

Maracas are all the rage to kids because of its colorful designs and punchy sounds. Recycle paper cups into fun maracas for kids. They are easy to make, enjoyable to decorate and will keep them busy for hours. Great for parades, sporting events or festive occasions! They can be great party favors, door gifts or giveaways too!

Materials you will need:

- 2 small paper cups

- Dry rice, cereal or beans, or small bells or pebbles

- Crepe paper

- Acrylic paint

- Paint brush

- Glue gun

- Glue stick

- Masking tape

- Scissors

Here are the Easy Steps To Make Paper Cups Maracas:

1. Make sure your two paper cups are clean and dry, and they are of the same size as each other. 

2. Take one paper cup and fill it to halfway with the rice/beans/bells/pebbles. You may like to experiment by also trying out different materials to see what sounds they make! More pebbles may make deeper sounds and lesser pebbles can make higher pitch tones. 

3. If you are letting the kids do the maracas themselves, you can help them join the two paper cups together as shown in the picture, and glue them together along the rim. Keep them in this position until the glue holds 

4. When the glue is dry, it is a good idea to tape the cups together as well. This will make the maracas nice and strong when the kids start shaking them.

5. Now it’s time to get arty! You can start by painting the cups with solid colors like this white acrylic paint and letting it dry before adding more decorations. White paint makes a base coat and putting other colours will make them stand out. You may also let the kids choose their favorite color to use as base to give the maracas more personality. 

6. Start adding more decoration by putting and drawing different patterns and colours. Spots, stripes, stickers, glitter – it’s up to you!

7. Once your decorations are dry, cut the crepe paper into strips and glue the strips to the top and bottom of the maracas.

8. Voila! Time to make some noise with your new maracas!


More Papercup Projects to Enjoy

The best part about doing crafts projects with paper cups is you are able to recycle those that have not been used during birthdays and other family events. In fact, you can even use these paper cup projects to decorate your next party. So here are other papercup projects you and your kids can start doing.


Paper cup treat boxes

What you can do is cover the paper cup with cardboard paper. Make sure to choose cardboard papers that have cool designs. Cut slits on the paper where the lid is so you can fold it on top properly. To secure it, you can punch two holes where the folded area is, then thread a twine through the holes and tie it. You can put candies and chocolates in the box for safekeeping, or you can use this as a party favour bag.


Paper cup vases

How about converting those paper cups into flower vases? You can choose decorative wrapping paper for this. Maybe you want a glossy flower vase or maybe you want it twine wrapped. Some people would wrap it in plain white cardboard paper and either paint on it or dye it in their favorite color. Don’t forget to put holes at the bottom of the cup so that water can seep out when you’re watering the flowers. Keep them on the windowsill so that it doesn’t create a mess. However, you can choose to just use the paper cup vase as a container. In this case, just put floral foam inside the cup and stick the stems in.


Paper cup lights

Paper cup lights are very easy to do because you just need to poke a hole in the bottom of each cup and insert each Christmas light bulb inside it. But to make it look more fun, you can use colorful paper cups, it will look magical especially if your lights start blinking. 


Paper cup pen holder

The classic DIY paper cup project is the pen holder. Some people would simply use washi tapes to decorate the paper cup. But you can go beyond that by wrapping it in colorful paper first; then using your markers and washi tapes, decorate the paper cup until it is covered in your unique art design. Then all you need to do is pop your pens in.


Paper cup crown

If there is a birthday party coming up, you don’t have to spend for party hats anymore. You can just cut the paper cup to look like a crown, punch one hole on each side, and then, using thread an elastic string through it. You can decorate each hat uniquely by using color papers, markers, and paint. However, to make the party even more fun, you can ask the kids to decorate their own hat as one of the activities in the party.


Paper cup popsicle

Now this is an activity kids will definitely love. Just prepare paper cups, popsicles, aluminum foil, and your popsicle ingredients on the table. SImply mix all the ingredients and pour them in the cup. Cover the cup in aluminum foil and then punch a hole through it. Insert the popsicle in the hole until it reaches the bottom of the cup, then pop it in the freezer. Wait for a good 3 hours, and then voila! You have just made popsicles!



Not only are these paper cup projects fun to do with your kids, you are also teaching them the value of recycling and making things that are environmentally friendly. You can use your downtime to start with the paper cup maracas or any of the paper cup projects listed here. Enjoy bonding with your kids as you help them explore their creativity.




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