Messy Crafts For Kids - Model Boats and Sea

Unprofessional Crafts for Kids – Cereal Seas and Butter Boats Junk Modelling

I always see images online of beautifully-presented crafts for kids, and I have to wonder, were the kids really involved in their production or were they watching TV next-door? I prefer unimpressive works of art that the kids make with little instruction and that perhaps don’t look Pinterest-worthy but were fun to make.

We had a day of more one-to-one time than usual today between myself and my older daughter while her sister was sick and sleeping. So, we made this monstrosity, I mean, masterpiece that I will always cherish!

We used junk in our house, a limited selection of three paint colours and five million stickers.



A cereal box

Small random boxes – eg, butter tubs, egg boxes

Toilet roll tube

Ball of wool/string

Lolly sticks


Paints and paintbrushes




Whatever you want 🙂


Cut cereal box down one side so it opens out flat. Cut off all the sticky-out bits.

Cut small lengths of wool. Stick pieces of wool to the card and make them wavey, like waves. Leave part of it blank for “the beach.” Get your child to colour a piece of paper yellow. Add gold glitter/ glittery paint/glitter glue. Stick it at one end of the flattened box.

Paint around the “waves” with blue paint and white/grey/green if you have it.


Paint the empty boxes and toilet roll tube whatever colour you like. Leave it all to dry.

When your kids are bored again, this gives them a second activity to complete 🙂

Stick buttons/beads on to the sand for shells.


Glue the toilet roll tube onto one “boat.” Glue a lolly stick with a flag made from leftover cereal box on it to another box boat. Set them in the sea.

Add sea-themed stickers if you have them. You could add any number of items you like: make a lighthouse with a kitchen roll tube, play doh fish and seals, pipe cleaner people or add pasta shells for shells.

My daughter added a whole packet of sea creature stickers and the sea is no longer visible beneath them, but at least she had fun.


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