Create a Bell

30 minutes

Paper cup, ribbon, pipe cleaners, wood beads, decorations

Turn your craft table into a bell foundry! Make a bell out of a paper cup, empty tin can, or small terra cotta pot. Get creative as you decorate your bell, experiment with different sizes and materials, and use your new instrument to ring in the New Year with the National Bell Festival.

You can use materials from around the kitchen and garden to make your own bell – just remember to have fun and be creative! To complete this project, you will need:

  • Paper cup, empty tin can (be sure the lid is completely removed and there are no sharp edges), or small terra cotta pot
  • Pipe cleaner, yarn, or ribbon to make a handle
  • Large wood beads and/or a jingle bells to serve as the clapper
  • Scissors, nail, or sharp pencil to make a hole
  • Paint, markers, stickers, or glitter to decorate

Here’s how to make a bell.

  1. Punch a hole in the bottom center of your bell structure. If using a paper cup, you can pierce a hole with a pencil or scissor. If using a tin can, you’ll need a nail and hammer. Most terra cotta pots will already have a hole in the center.
  2. Decorate the outside of your bell. You can draw with crayons or markers, paint stripes or pretty designs, add glitter, apply stickers, and more!
  3. Thread one strip of ribbon and one pipe cleaner through a large wood bead. Twist the pipe cleaner so that the bead stays in the center.
  4. Pull both ends of the ribbon though the hole you created in the bell. Tie a knot to keep the handle from sliding back through the cup, then tie both ends together.
  5. Affix one or two wood beads or jingle bells to both ends of the pipe cleaner. Adjust the length of the pipe cleaner so that the beads hang right at the level of the cup’s mouth.
  6. Add any additional ribbons, beads, or decorations you’d like to further customize your creation!
  7. Let it ring! Experiment in cup sizes and materials to create other bells. Which sound do you like best?

Go ahead. Be proud.

Share your bell creations online by tagging #BellFest in your posts! We’d love to see how you got creative and celebrated the New Year with your family.

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