If you grew up in the '90s, odds are you did a lot of crafts and art projects, whether it was at school, at home, at summer camp, or just of your own volition. When we think back to arts and crafts we did in the '90s, it's easy to forget just how many there were. Sure, we may have used coloring books and scented markers to our hearts content, but that wasn't all we did. We got creative, too.
In fact, given that many of us didn't necessarily have constant access to technological marvels like computers, we spent a lot of time just... occupying ourselves. Between school, after school sports, books, clubs, and more, us '90s kids and teens spent a lot of time being creative. We didn't all grow up to be working artists, but we did get an awful lot out of all that time spent using our imaginations and making stuff with our own two hands. Time wasted, it was not.
Kids and teens today, of course, still do arts and crafts. But there is something different about being creative before technology entered the picture in a big way, and the nostalgia is definitely sweet when we think back to art class and summer camp projects. I'm willing to bet more than a few of these projects will be a total blast from the past. Might be motivation enough to buy a pack of gel pens, right?
1. Friendship Bracelets
In my humble opinion, friendship bracelets are the ultimate '90s craft. Who didn't do these at every single sleepover?
2. DIY Denim
Decorating your own denim was huge in the '90s. Whether we were stitching patches onto our jean jackets or Bedazzling our favorite pair of Levi's, it was all about showing off your personality on your basic blue.
3. Tye-Dye Everything
Tye-dye was a huge hit at summer camps across the nation... which is why you probably have at least 10 tye-dye shirts folded up in your childhood bedroom.
4. Hand Turkeys
It wasn't Thanksgiving without making a hand turkey in school, right?
5. Embellished Shoes
Drawing on your shoes was the activity for kids in the '90s. Give us some gel pens and Sharpies, and we will decorate the white toe of a pair of Converse or Keds until you can barely see the rubber.
6. Decorating Book Covers
Remember when you got your first textbooks and were instructed to make covers for them at home? Whether you protected them with newspaper or an actual book cover from the store, you know you decorated the heck out of that while sitting in homeroom.
7. Paint by Numbers
Given that Paint Night events are so popular these days (bonus points if they involve wine), it's no surprise that Paint by Numbers pictures were a huge pleasure for kids growing up in the '90s. It was relaxing and fun!
Making delicate origami required both concentration and finesse with your hands. Mine always looked absolutely terrible, but the activity did make me feel very grown up.
9. Magazine Collages
Whether you were making a poster for a school project or trying to decorate your bedroom, you spent a ton of time building the perfect collages from images, words, and letters you found in magazines. They really represented you, you know?
10. Gel Pen "Tattoos"
AKA drawing on your hand when you were bored in class.
11. Vision Boards
Vision boards are still popular today, but for many of us growing up in the '90s, they were The Thing To Do. Some people compiled vision boards by using the aforementioned magazine collage method, but you could also buy stickers, cut out letters, and glue on special fabrics. After all, the pop star you were going to become in eighth grade needed a vision board to plan out their on-stage outfit rotation, right?