Party crackers! They are a festive addition to any gathering. And, they're a snap to make, most likely using items you have on hand in your home. These crackers are designed for kids: Sparkly, simple and easy for little hands to make. Ready, set, CRACK!
Supplies You'll Need
To get started you'll need: Colorful 8.5 x 11 paper -- try using your kids' random drawings and paintings; pipe cleaners (bonus move: go glittery); scissors; cardboard tubes (toilet paper or paper towel tubes) -- one for each cracker, plus one extra to help hold the shape when closing; glitter (of course); clear-drying glue (I like mod podge); a paintbrush; bling with a stem (optional); awesome stuff to put inside (see next slide).
Choose the Treats
For the party cracker inside surprise, there's a lot you could do choose. Why not make the contents something kids love that also has a shelf life? For our glittery theme we chose tiny journals, sparkly pens, beaded necklaces and plastic jewels.
Make the Cracker Tube
If necessary, cut your cardboard tube to length -- be sure to measure the contents. Create your placeholders by cutting two small pieces (1 - 2 inches) from another tube. Set these aside (these are simply to hold shape). Lay your 8.5 x 11 paper face down, vertically, and paint glue on one side of the cardboard tube. Place on paper a few inches from the bottom and place the two (unglued) cut halves on ends of glued tube.
With your center cracker tube glued in place and your two unglued placeholders on each side, roll the tube into the paper to form a tightly wrapped unit. Paint (or have your little helper paint) glue on the edge of the paper. Roll tube into glue to seal.
Glitter It Up!
Mix glitter with glue to create a thick sparkly soup. Paint the papered tube with glitter glue. Do not paint off or along the ends onto your placeholders (this will make it hard to remove the placeholders).
Crimp One End
After the glue is totally dry, hold the tube in its center and then pinch between the tube and placeholder near the ends, all the way around. If the placeholder it sticky because of rogue glue, gently turn to unstick. No need to totally secure this end just yet. Just pinch enough to hold your goodies that will be placed in the other end.
Fill 'Er Up
If you have it, insert the stemmed bling in the crimped end. Hold the cracker tube upright and fill with the booty. All contents need to fit in the tube (not the placeholders that will be removed). Don't overstuff the cracker. A few things that can rattle and move create excitement and curiosity.
Once the cracker treasure is in place, insert the other stemmed bling and crimp remaining end. Gently remove both placeholders.
Seal the Deal
Lastly, wrap the pipe cleaners around the crimped ends. Done!
Other ideas: Use newsprint or a colorful magazine for the paper, stuff with a few clues that lead the kids on a scavenger hunt, or add sparkly garland to the pipe cleaners. Have fun with it!