Toddler DIY: Paper Roll Cats

Noah and I are a couple of weeks into an at home pre-preschool curriculum.  It’s been both fun and challenging but the best reward is seeing her put two and two together and completely grasp what we are studying.

A few weeks ago our theme for the week was kittens.  I took advantage of the fun theme and turned to Pinterest to find this awesome craft.  Kittens/Cats out of an empty toilet paper roll.
Toddler Craft:  Kittens out of Toilet Paper RollsThey turned out really cute and Noah had the best time making them.  Not only did they correlate with our theme that week but they work well with the pumpkin by the fireplace.  They could even be painted solid black if you wanted an authentic Halloween cat.  This is the perfect project to do to introduce paint to your toddler.

Toilet Paper Roll Cats

Here’s what you will need:

  • empty toilet paper rolls
  • washable finger paint (for the little ones), acrylic paint (for the older ones and daring moms)
  • white acrylic paint or paint pen
  • pipe cleaners
  • stapler or packaging tape


The Process:

  1. I know the box says “washable” but I didn’t want to take my chances so Noah stripped down to nothing but her underwear for this project.  She didn’t seem to mind.Toddler DIY Craft: Paper Roll Cat
  2. I covered her table in aluminum foil and squirted out a few dabs of paint onto the foil.
  3. This was her first time flying solo in the finger painting department so I stuck my finger in the paint to show her how it worked.
  4. She figured it out and got down and dirty with the paint.  I wanted her to have free rain of her design so I didn’t instruct her as to what color to use where.  So a few areas took a little longer than others to dry but she was so proud of her work.
  5. A nap time later the paint was almost dry so I pinched the top of the roll and secured it with packaging tape in the center instantly creating the ears..  You could use a stapler if you wanted I just didn’t want to take my chances with any sharp and small objects.
  6. Next we started painting the faces and ears. on.  By we I mean I guided the brush and let her little hand hold to so she could feel like she got to paint the face on too.
  7. Finally, I took a pipe cleaner, inserted it into a hole I had cut in the back of the roll, tied a knot to keep it sliding all the way through, and then rolled the pipe cleaner around my fingers.

Noah is so proud of her kittens and has enjoyed playing with them.  She must already understand the life of a cat because she has them frequently taking naps in various places around the house.  Currently they are snuggled up together on top of the stereo system in the den. Typical cat.

photo 2

I’ve also seen this done to make owls and reindeer.  I’m sure you could make a whole slew of animals from toilet paper rolls.  I definitely plan for us to try to make a few more.  What else are we going to do with our old toilet paper rolls?

What about you?  Have you made any cute crafts using toilet paper rolls?  Or maybe some other common household object?  I would love to hear what you have done!

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6 thoughts on “Toddler DIY: Paper Roll Cats

    1. Krystle Post author

      Thanks! I have been saving up all our empty rolls so she can make more. She really likes playing with the ones we have already made. I would love it if you stopped by and entered the Minted giveaway. 🙂

  1. Lauren

    Robbie and I made a bull/horse out of pipe cleaners. The animals environment was made with felt, cardboard and pipe cleaners!

    1. Krystle Post author

      Thanks! She really enjoys playing with them.
      I would love it if you stopped by to enter our giveaway from Minted, an online photo card and invitation company. 🙂


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