There aint no party like an Aquabeads party!

When we were approached to try Aquabeads, my very first thought was, Oh god, arts and crafts? More mess!! I spend enough of my time cleaning up after these four without adding to the load with scrubbing paint off the walls, picking play dough out of the carpet and scraping glue off the dining room table. But when I read the brief I discovered that actually, Aquabeads are very different to the crafts sets we have had previously.

“Aquabeads is a fun and safe arts & craft brand for children to enjoy hours of creative fun! The beads are uniquely made to stick together when sprayed with water. No heat, no mess! You can create based on the design template sheet, or free style and create your own original design.”

No mess? Sounds too good to be true right?

The girls were keen to get the party started and so we began with the Aquabead Beginners Studio, a really lovely starter pack which contains eight hundred beads in twelve different colours, a water sprayer to set the beads, a bead pen, four templates with a variety of designs and the best part is that the case doubles up as a storage case to keep everything nice and tidy. I particularly liked that fact!

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After a significant amount of time arguing over who got to go first, including an almighty scramble for the bead pen, we set to work and while Eva used the bead pen to place her beads, Megan used her fingers until she was finally allowed a turn and they swapped over. I think using their fingers was actually easier than the pen, although neither would admit it! I was worried initially that Megan would be a little too young for the Aquabeads as they do state they are suitable from four years old, but actually she was more than capable of creating her designs and under supervision I was more than happy for her to join in.

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The girls took great care with their designs, their little faces screwed up in concentration, their tongues just poking out at the side of their mouths, and particularly liked the jewelled beads which was no big surprise with my little magpies.

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It didn’t take very long to complete the smaller designs and then came the part they had been looking forward to…spraying them. This was definitely the girls favourite part, although I think it’s safe to say that it wasn’t Harrys!!

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Keen to keep the party going, we decided to try out one of the smaller packs we had been sent.

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The smaller packs contain over four hundred beads in six different colours, four template sheets and one 3D layout tray and if you’re not sure whether your child would enjoy Aquabeads then this is a great place to start.

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At £4.99 they are the perfect gift for a children’s birthday party. If your child is anything like mine they will be invited to at least one a week and I plan on stocking up in advance!

The true test of any activity for my girls is whether they are so engrossed in it that they forget to argue, and this really did keep them quiet the whole time. I have to confess to having a little try myself and it was actually quite therapeutic.

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It was a little frustrating when the beads kept moving as the tray became fuller and yet we found that a slight spritz of water in the bottom of the tray meant that the beads stayed in place better and didn’t move at all, even when Megan bashed the side of it just moments from being finished!

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The lovely thing was seeing how the girls reacted to their designs when they were complete. Unlike a lot of crafty activities where their creations are cast to one side ready to put in the recycling bin cupboard to keep forever, the girls actually created a game using the Aquabead creations, making little voices for the animals and using their imaginations to make sure that the fun didn’t finish with the end of the activity.

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From a parents point of view, aside from the bonus of no mess, Aquabeads are actually a really good way for children to develop their fine motor skills. Using pincer like movements to pick up each bead, or getting to grips with the bead pen, meant that the girls were learning as they played. Aquabeads also allowed them to use their imaginations, create their own designs and raise awareness of colours, size and shape. With Megan being hypermobile she can sometimes struggle with these fine motor skills and so for her, it was actually a really good exercise.

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In that respect I think it’s safe to say that Aquabeads got a huge thumbs up from me and the girls, and even Harry who, although I didn’t allow him to play with the beads as he is still a little small, was rewarded for his patience with his very own creation courtesty of his big sisters.

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If you’d like to have your very own Aquabeads party you can buy them by clicking on the link below and join us on social media with the hashtag #AquabeadsParty


I know exactly what will be on the top of my girls wish lists for Christmas this year and for once I won’t be worrying about the mess!

For the purpose of this review we were gifted the above Aquabeads products. All view are 100% my own.

 

 

 

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76 Comments

  1. September 15, 2016 / 5:00 pm

    What a fun activity! As as adult, I would probably enjoy it as well. Like you said… for therapeutic reasons 🙂

    • Laura Dove
      September 15, 2016 / 5:19 pm

      It really is good fun, just a tiny bit annoying having to pick them up off the floor afterwards!!

    • Laura Dove
      September 16, 2016 / 6:46 pm

      Definitely. I love an activity that is both fun but also helps them develop. Megans hypermobility does cause her some discomfort, it was lovey to see her using her fine motor skills playing with these. xx

  2. Laura
    September 15, 2016 / 6:49 pm

    My daughter discovered these after getting a small set for her birthday last month and promptly spent most of her birthday money on more sets 😃 We are drowning in creations though so she’s began making them as gifts – much better lol

    • Laura Dove
      September 16, 2016 / 6:45 pm

      Haha yes! We are a bit like that now too! I’ve started suggesting they give them away to the grandparents, hehe! xx

  3. September 15, 2016 / 8:22 pm

    These look great! I really like that you don’t have to iron the beads to set them, and little ones can do it themselves with the water spray.
    Alana x

    • Laura Dove
      September 16, 2016 / 6:44 pm

      Me too, I used to love hama beads but hated that my mum had to iron them when I wanted to be the one to do the magic!! The spray was definitely their favourite part! xx

  4. September 15, 2016 / 8:53 pm

    My boys are absolutely desperate for Aquabeads! I’m generally picking bits up off the floor constantly anyway so that bit doesn’t bother me – a tray of 500 qixels has tipped over before. I’ll have to show Father Christmas!

    • Laura Dove
      September 16, 2016 / 6:44 pm

      I honestly didn’t have to pick up as many as I thought I would. We put them on a tray in the end so there was no way of them escaping. My girls have already said they want the Frozen aquabead set for Christmas! xx

  5. Stephanie myers
    September 15, 2016 / 11:03 pm

    These look like such a fun activity, I might have to get some of these for my little girl, I’m sure she would love them!

    • Laura Dove
      September 16, 2016 / 6:43 pm

      I’m sure any child would. My daughter has spent the morning making jewellery out of her creations by fitting them to elastic bands, I just love her imagination! xx

  6. September 16, 2016 / 11:18 am

    My kids used to love these, they are great for dexterity and creativity. #FabFridaypost

    • Laura Dove
      September 16, 2016 / 6:39 pm

      They are fab, we’ve really enjoyed them and they kept them occupied on a few rainy days – always a bonus! xx

  7. September 16, 2016 / 12:29 pm

    Looks loads of fun! a bit like the hama beads I had as a kid #binkylinky

    • Laura Dove
      September 16, 2016 / 6:38 pm

      Yes we loved hama beads too, they are very similar but without the need for the iron! xx

  8. September 16, 2016 / 12:42 pm

    They look brilliant! I would definitely just use them for myself tho…. xx #fabfridaypost

    • Laura Dove
      September 16, 2016 / 6:38 pm

      Haha yes, that was my favourite part although my daughter was very insistent that I created a design to her specifications, then the pressure was on! xx

  9. September 16, 2016 / 1:09 pm

    Oh we did this too and really enjoyed it! It was our first time using aqua beads, I’ve just bought a set for my friends daughter for her birthday. Thanks for linking up to the #BinkyLinky

    • Laura Dove
      September 16, 2016 / 6:37 pm

      Ours too! I’d never even heard of them to be honest, I didn’t even know they were a thing! I picked up some more today in the Smyths sale, put them away for Christmas! Cant believe I’m even saying the C word!! x

  10. September 16, 2016 / 1:21 pm

    This looks such a good activity! Although I am not sure I would have the patience for it 🙂 #picknmix

    • Laura Dove
      September 16, 2016 / 6:37 pm

      Yes I think you do have to be patient, I found it therapeutic when the children were quiet. When they were screaming and crying I lost all patience!! xx

  11. September 16, 2016 / 3:49 pm

    Good work kids! We love Aquabeads (you just reminded me I need to order some more!) I don’t love picking them up off the floor afterwards though 🙂 #picknmix

    • Laura Dove
      September 16, 2016 / 6:36 pm

      Yes I didn’t love that part either although there was surprisingly few considering how clumsy they both are!! xx

  12. September 16, 2016 / 4:32 pm

    These are a dream come true for the day are providers like me who dread art time due to the substantial cleanup I know will be required! #momsterslink

    • Laura Dove
      September 16, 2016 / 6:36 pm

      Oh I can imagine!! We go to a messy play area locally and I sometimes look at the lady who runs it and wonder how on earth she can face another day of clearing up paint explosions and spillages! The only issue we had with these was making sure none of them were shoved up a nostril!! x

    • Laura Dove
      September 17, 2016 / 5:57 pm

      They are fab! Thank you for commenting! xx

  13. September 16, 2016 / 8:40 pm

    Eliza loves these but they go EVERYWHERE. I only get them out when her little brother is occupied elsewhere

    • Laura Dove
      September 17, 2016 / 5:57 pm

      Haha yes we had to fasten Harry in his high chair in the end as he just wanted to grab them every two minutes! xx

  14. September 16, 2016 / 9:14 pm

    Those look super cool! We love arts and crafts around here. I’m going to have to look those up! Thanks for sharing on #FabFridayPost!

    • Laura Dove
      September 17, 2016 / 5:54 pm

      They are fab!! Definitely worth a look at, especially with Christmas looming!! xx

  15. Petite Words
    September 17, 2016 / 9:49 am

    They are super aren’t they! Although they do somewhat take over life when kids first get them, “It’s magic!” he he he all good fun #FabFridayPost

    • Laura Dove
      September 17, 2016 / 5:52 pm

      Yes!! First thing in the morning til the last thing at night, it was all about the aquabeads!! I love seeing them be creative though, especially when there’s no mess involved!! xx

  16. September 17, 2016 / 10:19 am

    I love playing with aquabeads, I get totally engrossed in what I am doing, much to my nieces annoyance x

    • Laura Dove
      September 17, 2016 / 5:51 pm

      Haha yes at one point the kids were a bit like okay mum, our turn now!!! xx

  17. September 17, 2016 / 11:28 am

    What a fun time, and beautiful pictures of those sweetie pies! We have something similar, but instead of water, it requires an iron. We don’t iron our clothes, but don’t you know the Mrs., she takes out the iron for these! The first one, she melted the tray too… Water is ingenius and your family makes it looks like a good time for all. I’m glad to see they took the play further and started adding voices and such. Now that is creativity! M’wah! Great review.

    • Laura Dove
      September 17, 2016 / 5:50 pm

      Thanks Lisa. Do you mean the Hama beads? I had those as a child and they are a very similar concept, just without the need for the iron which is actually a fab thing since I really don’t do ironing either!! xxx

  18. September 17, 2016 / 4:05 pm

    Sending some linky loving from #FabFridayPost too!

  19. September 17, 2016 / 6:07 pm

    Great fun activity and no mess…what a winner!:) Lovely photos and post:)

    mainy

    #fabfridayposts

    • Laura Dove
      September 17, 2016 / 6:12 pm

      Always a bonus when there’s no mess involved!! Thanks for reading! xx

  20. September 18, 2016 / 9:49 am

    I swear there are more aqua beads on my floor and in my vacuum cleaner than there are in the box! #KCACOLS

    • Laura Dove
      September 20, 2016 / 5:15 pm

      Haha yes I thought that would happen but then we used the lids as the trays and they stayed confined to the table thank god. Other than when Harry came along and threw them all over of course!! xx

  21. September 18, 2016 / 11:53 am

    I haven’t seen this one! My son likes Qixels, which is similar but with cube-like pixels instead of round beads.

    • Laura Dove
      September 20, 2016 / 5:14 pm

      Oh I haven’t heard of those either! Must look them up, anything that is mess free is welcomed in this house! xx

  22. September 18, 2016 / 2:04 pm

    Hi Laura, these Aquabeads do look like fun and I love the concentration on your daughters faces. The winner for me would be the fact that they are mess free. Making them the perfect wet afternoon activity.

    xx

    • Laura Dove
      September 20, 2016 / 5:13 pm

      Mess free is always a winner for me too. We have enough mess to clean up each day without adding to it with arts and crafts so these are fab, definitely better for Mummy than playdough!!! xx

  23. September 18, 2016 / 2:10 pm

    Definitely a thing more for my girl than the lads I think! She’d love it though! #KCACOLS

    • Laura Dove
      September 20, 2016 / 5:12 pm

      Yep Harry was way too interested in throwing them around the table, anything to torment his sisters!! xx

  24. September 18, 2016 / 6:04 pm

    I always shy away a bit from messy play but these sound great! Max is a bit young as yet, but I’m keeping them in mind for a year or so’s time. I love that shot of poor Harry getting sprayed – it looks like everyone had a great time (I’m sure he loved it really!) Thanks so much for joining us again at #SharingtheBlogLove

    • Laura Dove
      September 20, 2016 / 5:11 pm

      Haha I think Megans favourite part was spraying Harry, although he really didn’t like that bit at all! They are such a fun activity, we’ve had them out most days since they landed! xx

  25. September 18, 2016 / 8:26 pm

    This is such an excellent activity! Keep them busy – check. No arguments – check. Make pretty little things that they can keep – check. And the Big Tick for it is no Mess! Check Check Check! I am so adding this to my Christmas tray! Thank you so much for a lovely review and joining us on #FabFridayPost Your girls are really creative. Well done girls! 🙂 xx

    • Laura Dove
      September 20, 2016 / 5:10 pm

      No mess deserves a HUGE check!! Oh and Harry really wasn’t allowed to get involved, he is so mischievous he just kept throwing them around so he ended up strapped into his high chair until the beads were firmly locked away!! xx

  26. September 18, 2016 / 11:20 pm

    Fab review! I’ve heard of these beads but we’ve never tried them. We had something similar over at Nanny’s house which she liked very well so we might try out this. 😀

    #kcacols

    • Laura Dove
      September 20, 2016 / 5:08 pm

      I had never heard of them either to be honest but they’ve been out for a while now. They are very similar to Hama beads but without the need for the iron which is definitely a bonus! My iron never sees the light of day! xx

  27. September 19, 2016 / 8:51 am

    Oh I love this!! I can’t cope with mess so this is a huge winner for me! My little one is just turning two so will wait a year or so before we try it. It looks like your girls loved it. I love their creations! Thank you for sharing. #KCACOLS

    • Laura Dove
      September 20, 2016 / 5:08 pm

      Thank you! Yes a year or so and she will definitely enjoy it. Harry is two and his idea of fun was grabbing the aqua beads and throwing them everywhere, either that or tormenting his sisters by nudging them every time they got to a tricky bit!! xx

  28. Becci - The Unnatural Mother
    September 19, 2016 / 4:24 pm

    This looks like the type of crafty party i could get stuck into with Harry. Far more fun than the loo rolls & paint we normally do. The girls look like they loved it X#binkylinky

    • Laura Dove
      September 20, 2016 / 5:05 pm

      Haha yes! Way more fun than junk modelling which goes swiftly into the bin!! xx

  29. September 20, 2016 / 8:45 pm

    Alice got a frozen version for her birthday last month and to be honest I hadn’t heard of them. She has been begging me to get it out and I thought it would be messy. But reading this I feel like a bad mummy, because clearly its not! She will think I am the best mummy when I get it out tomorrow afternoon 🙂 Thank you for joining us at #SharingtheBlogLove x

    • Laura Dove
      September 21, 2016 / 8:50 am

      Ahh I so hope she enjoys it! I always associate arts and crafts with mess but there really isn’t any. I would recommend a tray to put the beads on a tray or something so they don’t go all over the floor, but they are great fun. The girls have requested the Frozen pack for Christmas!xx

  30. September 21, 2016 / 8:10 pm

    We’ve never actually tried these, I’m not sure why as we have with the alternatives. I always end up helping which I’m quite happy about, definitely fun for adults too. Thanks for linking to #PickNMix
    Eilidh x

    • Laura Dove
      September 22, 2016 / 11:12 am

      I love a craft that I can get involved in, although the girls always tell me to stop taking over, I think I get more into it than they do!! xx

  31. September 21, 2016 / 9:12 pm

    I’ve seen them around, but have never had the chance to get some for T. I love the look of concentration on the girls faces, so cute! 🙂 x

    • Laura Dove
      September 22, 2016 / 11:10 am

      They’re definitely worth a try, really good fun and a whole range of uses! Concentration faces are always adorable aren’t they? xx

  32. September 22, 2016 / 11:16 am

    My daughter loves Aquabeads, she will sit for hours doing it! Thanks so much for linking up at #KCACOLS, hope you can come back again Sunday after next x

    • Laura Dove
      September 22, 2016 / 7:57 pm

      It’s lovely to find something they will happily sit and enjoy. Megan especially loses interest in most activities but she would have sat there all night if I let her! xx

  33. September 22, 2016 / 1:05 pm

    Wow all those sets will keep you all busy for a while! Love the look of these and your girls did a brilliant job with their designs. Thanks for linking up to #PicknMix

    Stevie x

    P.S LOVE your new header!

    • Laura Dove
      September 22, 2016 / 7:56 pm

      Ahh thanks Stevie! My husband designed it, just took me a while to figure out going self hosted, I think I’ve cracked it! And yes, I think they will see us until Christmas at the very least!! xx

  34. September 22, 2016 / 7:09 pm

    I think I’m going to get the kids some aquabeads for Christmas, they look like so much fun! x #KCACOLS

    • Laura Dove
      September 22, 2016 / 7:52 pm

      They really are! And you’ll love them too I’m sure! xx

  35. September 22, 2016 / 8:22 pm

    It looks like they had a lot of fun! Great review thanks for sharing on #fortheloveofBLOG

    • Laura Dove
      September 23, 2016 / 6:45 pm

      Thank you! They really did! xx

  36. September 30, 2016 / 11:55 am

    These look like great fun! My daughter’s a little young yet but I’m really looking forward to getting things like this for her, not least so I can play with them too. 🙂 #weekendblogshare

    • Laura Dove
      September 30, 2016 / 12:23 pm

      Haha yes, that’s the best thing about kids isn’t it? Getting to play with all of their stuff! xx

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