Saturday, July 4, 2009

Make It: Summer Bug Catcher

I'm not actually a fan of catching bugs. Creepy, crawly things gross me out. After moving from California to Texas a few years ago, my bug aversion has gotten worse. The bugs here in Texas are the size of birds, and are nasty things in the form of fire ants and scorpions - yuck.

But my kids like bugs and the summer-time is the perfect time to catch them. I whipped up this cheap and easy bug catcher for my girls, and they spent the whole afternoon hunting for bugs. Older kids (aprox. age 6-9, depending on hand-eye coordination skills) will be able to sew their own - with a little help - but younger kids will need Mom to do it!


1 piece of plastic canvas measuring 13.5 x 10.5 (about $ .30 at a craft/fabric store)


tapestry needle (plastic if your child is doing the sewing) or needle with large hole for yarn

button for the door knob (we used a butterfly button)


Step 1: Cut plastic canvas

Measurements will be aprox:
-3.5 x 5.25 for 4 sides
- 5.25 x 5.25 for top and bottom
- 2.75 x 3.75 - for door

*make the door cut-out (on the top square) smaller than the door.

Step 2: Sew door over the hole on the top square along one side.

Step 3: Sew all of the sides to the bottom square
Step 4: Sew up the sides to make the bottom of the box

Step 5: Sew the top to the box and snip all the loose strings. Last, sew button to the door, to make a knob for little fingers.

Step 6: hand box over to lil' bug-lover and let him/her fill it with grass and flowers

My kids didn't catch a single bug. But they certainly had a great time!




  1. That is so cute! What a wonderful idea to explore nature.

  2. Hmm, maybe I should have used that to catch those pesky black widows! Or maybe not :) We have the same nasty bugs around here that you have, but maybe we might get lucky and find some not icky bugs soon.

  3. My kiddos will love this! They always want a jar for some new creature they have found! Thanks for sharing!

  4. Genius! And it won't fall apart like the cheap crappy one I got at Dollar Tree!!

  5. I love this idea!!

    I usually keep empty peanut butter jars for this but how fun for the kids to make something like this!!

    Thanks for sharing


  6. Such a great use for plastic canvas! I love it :)

  7. SUper fun craft idea!! I've got plastic canvas invading my art studio as I type this and two little girls who can't get enough of the creepie-crawlies in our backyard! Thanks for a new fun summer craft idea : )

  8. I was wondering what to do with all my plastic canvas! The grandkids will love these. Thanks for the idea!!

  9. Just made these with a group of 9/10 year olds for my daughter's bug themed birthday party. My only complaint is that they took MUCH longer to make than I anticipated. Otherwise it was a HUGE hit and my daughter's box held a snake overnight (found in the yard right before the party) and now a Daddy Long Legs. Thanks for posting this idea and instructions.

    1. Anonymous~ EXACTLY how long would you say they took? I was planning on doing them with my one hour long art class full of 6-9 year olds. Perhaps I should split it into 2 classes??


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