2025 Festival Dates: 5 & 6 July

Lets Make Art - Milk Bottle Bugs

The National Festival of Making has commissioned Lets Make Art to bring you some making tutorials using easily found materials that you’ll already have at home!  This is part of a small digital programme we have been producing to help us stay connected to our makers and audiences during Covid-19.

Milk Bottle Bugs


The second tutorial we bring to you is a how to make colourful bugs from recycled milk bottles, so clean out your used plastic and grab your family! We’ve provided you with written and photographic instructions or a video tutorial, so follow whatever suits you best!

You will need:


  • Empty, clean plastic milk bottle
  • Scissors
  • Permanent markers or paint pens
  • Hole punch
  • Scrap card/thick paper
  • String or suction hooks
  • Sellotape
  • Pencil
  • Pictures of bugs


What to do:


  1. Take the milk bottle and cut into sections – ask an adult to help you with this! Top tip: Follow the edges, cut off the handle at the top and keep intact as it makes a good feature for a bugs antenna.
  2. Once you have your pieces trace or draw bug outlines on them. Folding in half will get a symmetrical shape. Cut out your designs.
  3. Using permanent markers or paint pens colour in your bugs with patterns; spots, stripes, zig zags and other markings seen on beetles (here it’s a good idea to have a scroll through Pinterest or google images for bug pattern inspiration!)
  4. For the legs use a piece of card, thin paper or excess from the milk bottle. Alternatively cut up cocktail sticks, matchsticks or paper clip wire.
  5. Fold card in half and cut out leg shapes. Six per bug and attach with tape.
  6. Punch a hole and hang in the window with a suction hook or thread some string through and hang this way.


Top Tip


Another idea is to create a garland of all your bug designs and display this way.




Lets Make Art are a Bristol based arts organisation who lead workshops and work with schools, communities and festivals to get everyone involved in art. At National Festival of Making 2019 they delivered a costume making workshop inspired by the Bauhaus.


Photographs below by Robin Zahler and Derren Lee Poole from Festival of Making 2019



2019 Trusts & Foundations

The National Festival Of Making Delivery Team

National Festival of Making is supported by the Arts Council England, Blackburn with Darwen Borough Council, Brian Mercer Trust and Foundations and Partners. This project is part-funded by the UK government through the UK Shared Prosperity Fund.

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