The lazy days of summer are ripe with opportunities to engage kids in new and inspiring activities that teach them novel skills in a fun manner. Artterro “Art of the Earth” craft kits, designed for kids ages seven and up, are a collection of 12 open-ended mixed media projects that will encourage and inspire children to unleash their inner artist while slowing down, unplugging, and relaxing to create a unique masterpiece. Kits range from bookmaking and wire and bead art to collage, needle-felting, decoupage and doll-making.
Artterro kits are made by Goodwill Industries in Milwaukee, WI by disable people and by those in need of job training skills. Two moms, Forrest and Jen, are the owners and founders of Arterro, and they started this company to fill a void in the kids crafting market, which lacked sustainably made art kits that produced meaningful, well-made products that could be given as gifts and enjoyed for years to come.
I like that these kits feature minimal packaging, and that all packaging inserts are printed on “100 percent post-consumer waste paper using green printing methods with energy use offset by wind power.” In addition to their commitment to sustainable manufacturing practices, Arterro has also partnered with Project Kids in Cambodia by donating kits to an art program serving orphanages in Cambodia.
As a writer who has a daughter with a brilliant and vivid imagination and amazing storytelling skills, my favorite of the Arterro kits line-up is the Bookmaking Kit. It gives you the opportunity to construct four small books and includes colorful and extravagant 100 percent post-consumer recycled handmade papers, beads, sequins, craft thread, needles and an idea sheet.
Sitting down with a child of any age to capture their thoughts in one of these books, whether in the form of a fantastical story, the recounting of a special event, or as an extended letter to a loved one – or using one of these books to teach an older child how to journal their thoughts, dreams and gratitude, would be a wonderful way to spend an afternoon.
Artterro art kits cost $17 each.