The Royal Opera House festive month of design, craft and making for all ages

The Royal Opera House is offering a suite of five unique, easy online craft activities (for all ages), so you have some festive fun and make your very own Christmas craft masterpieces.

Beginning on 1 December and released in weekly instalments, the craft activities will be led by five professional artists and makers including animators, prop makers and paper artists.

The online resource will include how-to videos, top tips and follow-along opportunities, with children and adults invited to try their hand at bringing the much-loved characters of The Nutcracker to life by creating a stop-motion animation film, a fun spinning top toy or their very own Nutcracker-inspired snow globe, rustling up delicious 3D gingerbread Christmas trees or making beautiful pop-up Christmas cards.

From 1 December, the first activity will invite participants to make their own beautiful pop-up Christmas card (featured image). This activity has been designed by Tracey Bush, a British artist who works with paper, and whose portfolio includes a wonderful range of artworks – from paper sculptures and drawings with collage, to artists’ books. To find out more about Tracey’s work, visit her website.

On 8 December, budding toymakers will be able to make their own spinning top. This activity was created by Reza Ben Gajra, a visual artist living and working in London and who runs art and animation workshops for children, families and adults around the capital, also leading interactive cine-literacy cinema sessions at the British Film Institute. His paintings and silverpoint drawings can be viewed on his website.

In the week before Christmas, from 15 December, why not make your own snow globe? In this activity, devised by the Royal Opera House’s very own Sarah Waterman, you will learn how to create a fun Nutcracker-themed Christmas decoration. Sarah is Project Manager of the Royal Opera House’s Design and Make and Design Challenge programmes, as well as ROH Bridge Programme Manager.

For the fourth activity, on 22 December, you are invited to make your own stop-motion animation inspired by The Nutcracker. This activity has been devised by Skidaddle Films, a visual arts partnership, consisting of John Harmer and Shelly Wain. John and Shelly are social engagement artists with a specialism in animation. Find out more on their website.

Christmas wouldn’t be complete without some delicious gingerbread. The fifth and final festive activity, rounding off Create and Learn Christmas, invites you to make your very own iced gingerbread decorations to hang on your Christmas tree – though we don’t expect they will be there long before someone eats them! This activity was devised by creator Zoe Philips.

Have fun!