I distinctly remember the first time I walked into a Michaels store for a craft session with my daughters. We entered the craft room and the aproned woman running the session looked up with doubt in her eyes. “How old are they?” was how she greeted me.
“Almost 3” I fibbed about my twins who were barely two-and-a-half. “But I’ll stay with them the whole time!” I rushed to explain. That satisfied her, and she instructed me to pay for our session in advance at the front desk and return with the receipt.
That day’s project was crafting forest creatures. My daughters were in their glory painting little terra cotta pots while I cut out foamy pieces to complete their squirrel and owl – crafts that still decorate their rooms to this day.
Michaels is a regular Saturday stop for us. We’ve crafted pictures frames, wall art, slime, t-shirts, fridge magnets, more slime, you name it. Sometimes I pay three admissions and craft right alongside my girls. I admit I’m a craft nerd and we have a dedicated space in the house where the girls have free access to all the maker supplies. And make they do! But we still adore visiting Michaels for crafts, and here’s why:
- Access to the world’s best craft supply cabinet. No matter how crafty you are, you can’t compete with a store full of just the right craft stuff for each and every project. Bonus, everything you need for the project of the week is in the craft room, ready to go.
- Price point. Kids’ Club crafts (Saturday Mornings) are $2 for kids aged 3 to 6, and $5 for the more advanced project designed for kids aged 6 and up. Make Break projects involve you purchasing the main part of the project, (eg. the wreath base for a wreath project) and everything else is supplied. You simply can’t beat the price.
- No planning. Don’t waste time scanning Pinterest for a project that you hope you have all the supplies for at home. Michaels craft schedule is set well advance, is usually seasonally themed, and is ready for you when you walk in the door!
- No cleaning! I may be raising craft nerds, but I still long for the day when they aren’t so darned messy with the glue, paint and slime! Do it at Michaels – the mess stays there!
- Creative expertise. Shout out to our favourite Michaels crafters Claire and Irene – they are helpful, kind and great creative resources with neat ideas for how to modify projects. They also know how to go with the flow when kids go rogue on a craft. Michaels projects are admittedly not the process art favoured by early childhood educators, but there’s nothing that says your kids have to make the project look exactly like the picture, and the staff members we’ve encountered get that kids are gonna be kids!
If you’ve never been to a Michaels Kids’ Club or Make Break, here’s how they work.
- For Kids’ Club, head to the checkout first, pay for your sessions. (You can choose from $2 or $5 projects. They are designed for different ages and abilities, but if your younger kid wants to do the more complex project, they won’t turn you down.) Take your receipt to the craft room, and the helpful attendant will get you all set up with your supplies. Parents can choose to leave the room and shop in the store while kids craft, but those with younger kids will probably need to stay and help out. Kids’ Club is done on a drop in basis, anytime between 10 am and 12 pm most Saturdays.
- For Make Breaks, head to the checkout to purchase the main portion of your project. (It’s usually just one item and often on sale as part of a promotion!) Bring your item to the craft room, and all the other supplies are provided. Make Breaks are for all ages, and usually held from 1 pm to 3 pm on Saturday afternoons.
Make It At Michaels:
When: Kids’ Club Saturdays 10 am to 12 pm, Make Breaks most Saturdays 1 pm to 3 pm
Where: Michaels Stores