Easy Thanksgiving Crafts for Kids

Kids love to lend a helping hand when it comes to decorating the table with easy Thanksgiving crafts. These easy-to-make Thanksgiving crafts ideas keep the spirit of the season front and center for children of all ages (and help hungry kids stay occupied until dinner is on the table). With place cards, centerpieces, decor, and more, these easy Thanksgiving crafts for kids will get your home ready for the big day.

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Fried Stuffing Balls

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A Table with Character

Two cross-stitch projects feature Pilgrims and Native Americans.

After you've added the cross-stitch design, fill the basket with fresh flowers for a fitting holiday centerpiece.

What You Need:

Join hands, with cross-stitch, to give thanks this season.
  • 3-1/2-inch-wide 28-count cream linen prefinished fabric band. (To determine length of cross-stitch band to purchase, measure around outside of basket and add 4 inches for finishing. One repeat of stitched design is 2-7/8 x 7-3/8 inches on 28-count fabric.)
  • DMC floss in colors listed on color key (see Step 1)
  • 1 skein of overdyed floss
  • Tapestry needle
  • Masking tape or sewing thread
  • Purchased basket


1. Download the free stitch charts and color key. (Downloading requires Adobe Acrobat software.)

Thanksgiving Characters Cross-Stitch patterns and key

Download Adobe Acrobat

2. Prepare the fabric. Overcast the raw edges of the fabric band with sewing thread or bind with masking tape to prevent the threads from raveling. Locate the center of the chart by following the arrows on the grid until they meet. To find the center of the fabric, fold it in half each way and finger-crease. Unfold.

3. Separate floss. Separate the six-strand embroidery floss, and use two strands to work cross stitches over two threads of fabric.

4. Cross-stitch the design. Begin stitching the center of design where the creases meet.

5. Add backstitching. When all cross stitches are complete, use one strand of red floss to backstitch the mouths. Use one strand of Dark Delft floss to backstitch the Pilgrims' eyes and the decoration on the Native American girl's dress. Use one strand of Light Topaz to backstitch buckles on the Pilgrim boy's hat and shoes. Use one strand of Black for all remaining backstitching (see photo).

6. Add border. Use two strands of overdyed floss to work two rows of mosaic stitch along the top and bottom edges of fabric band, referring to the stitch diagram.

7. Press. Turn completed stitchery facedown on a heavy towel and press, using a damp cloth and warm iron.

8. Wrap fabric band around basket. Fold under short ends and slip-stitch together.

Start a fun family tradition with these unique place cards. Each one stands about 3-1/2 inches tall.

What You Need:

(for each place card)

Easy personalized cross-stitch.
  • 3 x 4-inch and 1/2 x 4-inch pieces of 14-count, cream-color perforated paper
  • DMC floss in colors listed on the color key (see Step 1)
  • Tapestry needle
  • 3 x 4-inch piece of iron-on interfacing
  • Crafts glue


1. Download the free stitch charts and color key. (Downloading requires Adobe Acrobat software.)

Thanksgiving Characters Cross-Stitch pattern and key

Download Adobe Acrobat

These are real stand-up guys.

2. Trim 3 x 4-inch paper. Trim the cut edges of the 3x4-inch piece of perforated paper smooth to prevent floss from catching on them.

3. Locate the center top stitch on head of desired boy or girl on the chart. Locate the center of the perforated paper along one 3-inch side. Count down four holes; you will begin stitching center top of head here.

4. Cross-stitch the place card. Separate the six-strand embroidery floss; use three strands to work cross-stitches over one square of paper. For hands, stitch three rows with three cross-stitches in each row, using Spice for the Native Americans and Light Spice for the Pilgrims.

5. Add backstitches. When all cross-stitches are complete, use three strands of black-brown to backstitch desired name, using alphabet chart. Stitch name centered beneath the boy or girl, leaving one empty row between figure and name. Use one strand of floss for all remaining backstitching.

6. Add interfacing. Following manufacturer's directions, fuse iron-on interfacing to the wrong side of stitched figure. To trim excess paper from place card, cut along the first unstitched row of holes around top and sides of figure. Leave two unstitched holes beneath name.

7. Make stand. For each place card, fold 1/2x4-inch piece of perforated paper in half crosswise. Fold under 1/2 inch at each end of piece, making tabs. Glue tabs to wrong side of place card, aligning bottom and side edges of piece with bottom edge of figure; let dry.


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