GIFT GUIDE: Spark some at-home creativity with these locally-made DIY kits

What should you get for that person who has everything? An experience. Unfortunately, many of the typical gifts that fall into the “experience” category are no longer available, due to shutdowns and restrictions caused by the coronavirus pandemic.

Thankfully, though, many local art studios and entertainment hubs in the Miami Valley have come up with innovative ways to bring their activities to your home.

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From pottery-making kits to nature-exploration guides, here are some of the best do-it-yourself to-go kits from local businesses, art studios and other local organizations.

🎁DIY craft kits from AR Workshop

Credit: Ann Puckett

Credit: Ann Puckett

If you don’t have time to head to AR Workshop in Centerville to create your one-of-kind craft at an in-person class, the workshop also offers opportunities to create these crafts at home. These DIY projects include Christmas ornaments, holiday signs and art projects, knit projects and other DIY kits.

Customers can purchase one of these Take & Make DIY-to-Go Kits that will be picked up at the Centerville shop. The DIY kits come equipped with supplies and detailed instructions on how to make each project.

For a full list of these projects and their descriptions, pay a visit to AR Workshop Centerville’s website. AR Workshop is located in the Cross Pointe Center at 101 E. Alex Bell Road, Suite 162, in Centerville.

ExploreDIY workshop in Centerville gives customers the ability to craft their own Pinterest-worthy creations

🎁Painting projects from Raise Your Brush

Credit: Contributed

Credit: Contributed

Give your loved one a booze-inspired art project with the help of Raise Your Brush, a DIY workshop and art studio located in Centerville. Customers will be able to choose from a variety of take-home art projects, including wood pallet signs, wine-glass painting, canvas painting, squirt gun painting and more. Each BRUSH at HOME Kit comes with either a canvas, wood or art materials, paint, paintbrushes, step-by-step instructions and how-to videos, which can be found on the studio’s website.

Most of the projects have to be picked up at the studio, although a few can be shipped to your home. Prices of the kits vary depending on the size and scale of the project.

Raise Your Brush is located at 169 N. Main St. in Centerville. For more information about the BRUSH at HOME Kit, pay a visit to

🎁Ornament Family Fun Pack from The Mosaic Institute of Greater Dayton

The Mosaic Institute of Greater Dayton is also offering gift givers the chance to purchase a distinctive at-home experience for their loved ones. For those who are unfamiliar with this art form, mosaics consist of patterns or images made of small regular or irregular pieces of colored stone, glass or ceramic, which is held in place by plaster or mortar.

Throughout the coronavirus pandemic, the Mosaic Institute of Greater Dayton has been offering customers a chance to create these works of art at home. The institute is now offering the Ornament Family Fun 4 Pack to-go kit that includes wooden-shaped ornament cut-outs, stained glass tesserae (or glass mosaic pieces), glue, grout, a water cup, gloves, directions and a bonus mosaic art history lesson. Customers can also opt to purchase a custom or standard mosaic art kit for $30 or more.

The Ornament Family Fun 4 Pack is $40, which includes a delivery charge, for those who live within 15 miles of the studio. Those who live outside of that area will have an additional $5 added to their charge if they opt to get their kit delivered. Customers can also opt to pick up their kits. Kits can be picked up at 1906 Brown St. in Dayton.

For more information about the Mosaic Institute’s to-go kits, go to

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🎁DIY Terrarium Kits from Now and Zen DIY Studio

The plant lovers in your life can create their own one-of-kind plant terrarium, thanks to the DIY to-go kits available from the Now and Zen DIY Studio. Gift givers will choose between Air Plant DIY Kits, Succulent Terrarium Kits and the Kids DIY Kit, all of which are available at varying prices. Each kit comes with everything that crafters need to make their own plant terrarium, including step-by-step instructions.

Customers can choose to either have their items shipped, or pick up items at the Now and Zen DIY Studio, located at 37 S. St. Clair St. in Dayton. It takes approximately three to seven days to ship the items. Not all DIY kits can be shipped.

Now and Zen DIY Studio is open on Fridays from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Saturdays from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.

For more information about Now and Zen DIY Studio’s Plant DIY Kits, go to

🎁COSI Connect Kits

For those looking to purchase the perfect gift for the young explorer and adventure enthusiast in your life, COSI has come out with its own line of take-home kits that are designed to bring the magic of the museum into any home. COSI is offering three different kits that push the boundaries of creativity and learning.

The water kit challenges children to explore water-related science activities, while the Nature Kit guides children as they explore the science behind plants, animals and ecosystems in their backyards. The Space Kit shows budding astronauts how to build a rocket, design a moon base and engineer the perfect parachute.

Each kit is $25 for members and $30 for non-members. The COSI Connects Kits are an interactive DIY project for children ages 5 through 12. Kits can be purchased at for shipping to your home.

🎁Nature-inspired kits from the Five Rivers MetroParks

The Five Rivers MetroParks is now offering take-home program kits that can be reserved starting on Friday, Nov. 20, and picked up at Cox Arboretum MetroPark or Wegerzyn Gardens MetroPark on Friday, Dec. 18.

The MetroParks will be offering a Handmade Soap Kit; a Holiday for the Birds Kit, with supplies to craft a colorful, artistic recycled bird feeder, food for the feeder, and resources for identifying birds; an 1880s Christmas Rag Doll Kit; and a Winter Beautiful Blooms bulb kit. The at-home kits can be reserved by visiting the MetroParks’ website at Upon reserving a kit, you will be given a time and place to pick up the kit.

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