DIY Lacing Plate

There are few things easier to make than a DIY lacing plate. All you need is a hole punch, pipe cleaners, a paper plate and some type of yarn or thread.

We live in a very natural, open area. Sometimes I feel like my kids get a lot of gross motor skills and sensory play but not enough fine motor skills. This craft really helps with precision and dexterity. It boosts fine motor skills and acts as a basic introduction to sewing. Your child will have such a sense of accomplishment once they complete their plate. It takes two minutes to put together and provides lots of entertainment for little minds!

You’ll need:

  • A plate
  • A hole punch or scissors
  • Some type of yarn or thread
  • A pipe cleaner

Take your plate and punch holes around the outside of it. I used the edge of my three-ring hole punch. You could also use scissors. You just need to make big holes that are easy for the pipe cleaner to fit through.

Next, cut a length of thread. I used yarn. You can use butchers twine, string….even dental floss would work! (mmmmm…minty)

Cut a 2″ segment of pipe cleaner and tie the string around it tightly. This is your toddler-friendly needle and thread.

Demonstrate to your toddler how to lace the needle through the plate holes. Pay special attention to how you lace the plate up. You hold the pipe cleaner, poke it through the hole, then flip the plate over and pull it through the other side. It’s actually a complex action for a toddler.

Then give them the plate. Practice being an engaged, quiet observer as you watch them try to mirror what you did. If they seem confused offer gentle encouragement. After several times of going through the holes they will be experts and you can leave them to their “sewing”. This keeps my girl busy for twenty minutes at a time.


Join in the discussion in the comments section below once you’ve tried it yourself! I’d love to see pictures of your plates.

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Thanks for reading!

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