Have I mentioned my Kiwi Crate subscription before? I think I may have once or twice. Kiwi Crate is a subscription-based service that sends a box of craft supplies and instructions for two children’s craft projects to your house every month. I initially joined when it was featured as a deal on Plum District for half-off for three months and I recently renewed my subscription at full-price.
My kids love it and I love it, too.
A lot of the reviews I’ve read have said that the service is great for non-crafty parents who want to do art projects with their kids — which I certainly think is true — but I consider myself to be pretty dang crafty and it works really well for me too. Yes, I could scour the internet for kids craft projects every month (or I could think up some projects myself). And yes, I could go to a couple stores and buy all the supplies for those projects (and I could hope not to forget anything). If I was careful I could probably pay less for the supplies than the $19.95 I spend on our Kiwi Crate. I do all those things sometimes, but it takes a fair amount of work and advanced planning.
The days I really need those carefully planned and prepared projects are the days my kids are bored and at each others’ throats and they are driving me absolutely bonkers. Do I have the time and patience to plan and execute a clever and engaging project on those days? No. No, I do not.
But now that we are getting the Kiwi Crate, I can pull out a box filled with all the supplies for a fun project or two and we can distract ourselves by getting our craft on! It’s fun for them, and it’s fun for their crafty mom, too.
The boxes are themed and come with clear, illustrated instructions. Each project is also rated on a “messiness” and “grownup involvement” scale which is a nice touch. The kits we’ve received so far have focused on space, the ocean, pirates and wind. Though the projects lean toward the crafty side, there is a bit of a science tilt to them as well. They don’t realize it, but through Kiwi Crate projects my boys have learned about jet propulsion, object density, inertia and the scientific method all while honing their manual dexterity and spacial skills. Shhhhhh! They just think they’re having fun.
The boxes are designed for kids aged 3-7, which is the exact age spread of my boys. The activities can be simplified for three-year-old Augie when necessary, but seven-year-old Wyatt can run with them and focus on the areas that most interest him. Though the web site says the boxes are intended for one child, we have always had enough supplies for both kids to complete each project. The projects that don’t have two full sets of supplies lend themselves nicely to sharing. If I had more than two kids I would order the sibling add-on kit to avoid disappointment and squabbles.
I’ve been really pleased to see that the kids like to play with their completed projects too. One of the activities in the pirate kit was to decorate a treasure box, hide it and then draw a map to help a friend find it. My kids played hide and seek with that treasure box for an hour! They don’t do anything together for an hour! They have also happily fished for sharks and raced wind power cars side by side. Nice!
The quality of the supplies in the kits is very good. Each kit has sufficient materials to complete the projects but they throw in a lot of extras too. For example, when a project requires 4 sheets of paper we find 16 sheets in the box. This lets the boys choose the colors or designs they like best, gives them the freedom to experiment without fear of “messing up” and allows them to explore the materials outside of the scope of the project. Each box also has at least one higher ticket item that’s designed to last a while and can be used to create a great art supply box — scissors, tape, paints, pens, oil pastels or nice crayons. My kids love dipping into our pile of leftover materials (pictured below) and mixing them up with our other art supplies to come up with new creations.
So what’s not to like about Kiwi Crate? Nothing. I honestly tried to think of something I didn’t like about this product and I couldn’t come up with anything. I can just about always come up with something bad to say about products I review, but not this time. I really, really love our Kiwi Crate.
EDIT: Sorry — the giveaway for post is now closed!
Disclosure: I’m writing this review because my kids and I all love our Kiwi Crate subscription. I purchased our subscription and have not received any compensation to write this review. I arranged a giveaway with the generous people at Kiwi Crate because I like their product and I thought you would enjoy it too. Since I originally wrote this review, I’ve entered into an affiliate relationship with Kiwi Crate and if you purchase something via my link I receive a small percentage of the purchase price.