I made these cute little boats as bath toys for the girls. At least they were supposed to be bath toys, but as soon as they saw them it was love at first sight and they wanted to test them out right away. It was cold and grey outside, but the girls couldn't wait. I filled up an aluminium tub with water in the backyard and they had fun playing with them for a while, and then again later in the bath of course ;-). This is a Pinterest-inspired activity for us. You can view my board of sponge crafts here
to see the inspirations behind these boats. One difference with mine is I made the sail out of duct tape so it doesn't get soggy the first time it gets wet, and that idea worked a treat. They are very quick and easy to make, so if you are low on bath toys and have sponges, duct tape and craft sticks lying around then this craft might be for you!
You will need
• Kitchen sponge scourers or thick kitchen sponges
• Craft sticks
• Duct tape or gaffa tape that is wide, plus narrower duct tape of a different colour for the stripes - or you could just draw them on with a marker if you have none and don't want to splash out
• Craft knife, scissors, metal ruler and cutting mat
Cut the top two corners off the scourer evenly so it resembles a house shape. A large, sharp pair of scissors works best for this. Then, using your cutting knife, make a slit slightly wider than the craft stick in the centre to put the mast in once you've made it.
Test that the craft stick fits. If not, make the slit a little wider.
Overlap two pieces of the wide duct tape. A good guide when knowing how far to overlap them is that it should be about as wide as the short end of the scourer. The length should be longer than you need it because the messy ends will be trimmed down later. Turn it over and tape two more pieces of duct tape to the back so that the sticky part is all covered up.
Stick a stripe of thin tape down each side, then you can stick a third stripe visually in the middle.
Trim the messy ends off, making the sail the approximate length you want it to be for the boat. Remember it should have a bit of a bend in it to catch the "wind".
Cut a small slit at the top and bottom of the sail and thread it on the craft stick. To keep it in place I used a thin piece of tape cut in half length-wise and wound around the base under the sail, and added another at the top. This helps to keep the bend in shape. Stick the mast in the base.
And that's all there is to it!
Now it's time to play!
Miss K's boat is red and Miss R's is green
They tried blowing in the sails
Who's will win?
They passed the capsize test!
...and even the sail on the bottom of the water test
If they get water-logged (as sponges do) you just need to take the sail out and squeeze the water out, then push it back in again and it's good as new.
Miss K's pony had a very brief ride before he rolled off to the bottom of the ocean.
N.B. This sponge boat ALMOST carries toys too ;-)
The finished boats after play. The duct tape sail may not last as long as a real plastic one, but it is pretty quick to make another if it begins to go a bit yuck in the bath over time.
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