Recycled Robot Craft & Cleveland Upcycle Parts Shop

Madman turned 5 last week and this meant it was time for his first real birthday party. I have a lot of feelings about both my baby turning 5 and birthday parties in general but I’ll spare you those thoughts for now and just share this awesome craft we did.

Madman is super into robots and has been for a long time. So several months ago I started looking for ideas on having a robot-themed party. I found some great robot decor and goodie bag items on clearance in the Target  Spritz aisle. But with 90 minutes to fill at the party venue I needed a craft that was 1) appropriate for 4 and 5 year olds and 2) would take up about a half hour. After crowdsourcing on Twitter and browsing the internet I found this great craft on TheArtAnnex.com. Once I decided on the craft I knew exactly where to get the supplies.

robot_prototype

If you’re a CLE parent (or a crafter) and you don’t know about the Upcycle Parts Shop you are missing out. I discovered them when they had kids craft tables at the Cleveland FLEA but hadn’t been to their shop until earlier this spring. It’ is a wonderland.

“What is The Upcycle Parts Shop?  Simply put, we’re an affordable art supply store stocking pieces, parts, nuts and bolts that have fulfilled their original purpose and are now looking to be transformed and repurposed into something beautiful and useful.  We offer classes and workshops in addition to a curated selection of materials on the shelves.” {yanked directly from their website} If you live in the Cleveland area give them a visit and have fun exploring.

I emailed Upcycle to check to see of they had CD cases for my craft – they did and set some aside for me. Last weekend I headed over to pick them up and find more “robot parts”. I had a BLAST … every time I turned around I found more shiny objects just begging to be part of the robot. The staff was super helpful but also just let me browse and do my thing, which was nice. I just kept piling my treasures up on a table until I was ready to check out.

What did I get? Washers, grommets, bunches of random beads from broken jewelry, what looked like fancy christmas ornament hooks, a brand-new bag of tiny silver hearts, old keys, plastic caps, book rings, and more. I found a ton of laminate samples – many with a metallic finish –  that would make perfect “heads”. I even found some sheets of colored paper and a stack of old folders that would work as a sturdy backing. I had more than enough supplies to make 16 robots. I spent $11. Let me repeat that: ELEVEN DOLLARS. I told they person checking me out “I feel like I’m robbing you!” The only things I did’t get there were the googly eyes and the craft sticks… I spent more at a big box craft store on those 2 items than I did on the rest of the materials at Upcycle.

That night I prepped my prototype robot (above) so the kids would have something they could visualize. Then I prepped the craft by gluing the folders shut, gluing the colored paper to the front (spray mount was great for this), then gluing the cd case “bodies” to each one. That way the kids could just go to town building their robot (and I figured having the glue dry would make thing go smoother).

At the party I had set all the parts out in an old muffin tin. The kids each picked a “body” and a “head” and I glued the head on for them. I had some old clothes pins to hold the laminate piece in place for a bit until the glue dried and I’m glad I did that. Once the heads were on the kids went to work picking and placing the parts. I had both glue sticks and Elmer’s glue out at each table and their parents helped them with the gluing. They kids had SO MUCH FUN! Some of them got really creative and went back and forth to the parts table over and over. There were robots with interlocking parts, robots with earrings, dancing robots and even a cyclops robot!

robots1 robots2
a
bout half of the robot creations

This was a really fun craft – most of the parents even said they had fun helping. WIth the prep work I did this was perfectly suitable for 4 and 5 year olds and occupied about 20-30 minutes of party time. I could see older kids having fun with this, too (Matilda, age 8, made one and said it was fun). I highly recommend it!

*This is NOT an ad for Upcycle Parts Shop. I’m just really glad I found them and want other people to know about what they do! I paid for everything and I have no affiliation with them. 

Advertisements

One thought on “Recycled Robot Craft & Cleveland Upcycle Parts Shop

  1. Life in Cleveland says:

    Super cute idea for a party craft! I love it! I’ve been meaning to check out upcycle parts… it seems so very neat.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s