Make Things Monday: ‘Make These Toys: 101 Clever Creations Using Everyday Items’ Book Review and Giveaway

How many times have you ever thought your child might have been just as happy with getting the box the new toy came in?

How many times have you seen children have just as much fun imagining and creating with boxes, string, tape, just every day stuff?

How many times have your children said there was nothing to do, even though they probably have way too many toys , games, and other play things?

Make These Toys Book

If you are anything like me, then definitely more than once! This is the book for you. Make These Toys: 101 Clever Creations Using Everyday Items by Heather Swain is a clever guide to fun homemade projects you can do with your child using materials that might typically be found around the house or purchased inexpensively.

Author Heather Swain gives lots of good reasons why making toys at home is a great idea:

  1. Making Toys Saves Money – As with most things in life, if you make your fun rather than buy it, you’ll save a few bucks.
  2. Making Toys Conserves Resources – You probably already have everything lying around your house that I use in this book and most of it you were going to chuck anyway. So why not make something out of it first, then toss it after the kids have had some fun? (And if you don’t have it, a friend or neighbor just might!)
  3. Making Toys Means Fewer Toxins in Your Home – If the safety of toys concerns you, then making toys out of food cartons and fabric, poster board and drinking straws might alleviate some of your worry.
  4. Making Toys Is Fun – And if none of that resonates, then how about this: Half the fun of playing with homemade toys is making them. If you’re already a crafty person or you’d like to be more of one or if you want to raise kids to be creative and resourceful, then making toys is a simple, inexpensive, safe, and fun place to start. Understanding how to build the things we play with opens doors for imagination and innovation and ultimately teaches us how to entertain ourselves without always spending money.

“You can do anything with children if only you play with them” ~German Proverb

My own three really did have just as much fun in the creation of the toys as in playing with the finished product. And that didn’t surprise me in the least.

There are:

  • cardboard projects – like Kaleidoscope, Trombone, or Rocket Ship
  • clothespin projects – like Clothespin Fairies or Hungry Platypus
  • fabric projects – like Sock Baby or Master of Disguises
  • rubber band projects – like Chair Leg Catapult or Violin

to name just a very few.

My 7 year old also enjoyed reading some of the fun facts that go along with many of the projects. For instance, did you know a baby platypus is sometimes called a puggle?

We have only just begun to explore all that Make These Toys has to offer and now one of you will have the chance to win a signed copy and join in the fun too!

Enter to Win: Leave a comment on this post. Tell me why you want to win.

Additional Entries (leave a comment for each entry):

  1. Share this post via Facebook, Twitter, Stumble Upon. (1 entry each)
  2. Put my sweet little blog badge on your blog. (1 entry)
  3. Connect with Almost All The Truth on Facebook. (1 entry)
  4. Subscribe. Let me know by what method. (1 entry)

Contest Deadline: May 9 @ 9 pm PST.

Contest eligibility and fine print: Open to all US residents that are not me. The winner will be notified by email and will have 48 hours to respond, so make sure I have a valid email address. Email addresses will not be sold or used in any other way than to notify the winner.

See my disclosure policy here. This book was sent to me for review. All opinions are my own. Amazon is an affiliate.

Good luck!

prizey pick

This contest is now closed. Congratulations to the winner, Karen Dorris, chosen by!

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Make Things Monday: ‘Make These Toys: 101 Clever Creations Using Everyday Items’ Book Review and Giveaway — 96 Comments

  1. I’d love this book! I’m always saving tons of things that most people would throw out just to make things with But, when it comes time to use them, I sometimes draw a complete blank. It would be great to have a go-to book like this to jump-start my brain!
    ohmiss14 at yahoo dot com ☮

  2. I would love to win because the hunt is always on for reusing common items into something else! I am trying to teach my children the importance of reusing/repurposing for the environments sake!

  3. I’d lilke to win this, because it promotes creativity. “Old School” toys are great for imagination compared to electronic toys.

  4. We would love this! My 3 kids are always looking for something fun to do! Thanks for the giveaway!

  5. I have a 12 yr old son, 2 7 yr old daughthers, and a 2 yr old daughter. I think it would be a fun family project to make out own toys and then be able to play with them!

  6. I would love to win, we’ve been saving tp holders but haven’t seen any crafts we like to use them. I know this book could help~!

  7. I would love to win because this sounds like an awsome book. It would be so fun to watch my husband and son making things together!

  8. I love interesting info like this (my head is full of it, lol) so I would love to win and learn even more. Thanks.


  9. Subscribed to your blog via Google Reader as lewalk.

    Thanks again for this chance.


  10. I love to craft and especially with my grandson, neices and nephews. I am always looking for new and simple ideas….this would a great resource!
    Karen Dorris

  11. Subscribe to feed in Google Reader
    Karen Dorris

  12. I want to win because I love crafting with my children
    Thank you

    my_2_cents at hotmail dot com

  13. I am a new follower of yours on FB
    Valerie Sandel-Stayton

    my_2_cents at hotmail dot com