DIY Toddler Party Favors

Cheap & easy DIY toddler party favor idea! Make Gak (aka flubber) from Elmer's glue and Borax. Place it in the mini 4 oz. mason jars. A great alternative to candy!When it comes to children’s birthday parties and choosing favors can become stressful for moms reaching for that “perfect party”. This year I kept it simple and made them! Lily’s buddies went home with tiny mason jars filled with squishy, slimy homemade gak (or aka flubber).

For Lily’s first birthday I slaved away making sand buckets filled with a variety of toys and candy…yes cotton candy!!???? Some of the kids weren’t even one yet!!! The sand bucket alone would and should have been enough…but it was my baby’s first and I went overboard…way over.

I had purchased the 4 oz mini mason jars from Walmart with the initial intent to serve individual portions of homemade macaroni & cheese. Once I finalized the menu without the need for the classic cheesy noodle side dish I figured I would utilize them for the favors somehow. That’s when I found a pin that lead me to the adorable pink glitter gak given away at a party at Mama Papa Bubba.

When I made the gak I left the glitter and the pink color out since 95% of Lily’s buddies are boys. Dying it red and blue matched the BBQ theme this year and are unisex. I used some of the extra fabric from the DIY garland I created (post coming soon!) to make toppers for the jars. I found a glass bowl that was bigger that the width of the mason jars. I wish I actually made the circles a little bigger because when I screwed the lid over the fabric not enough stuck around the entire jar (that’s just my picky opinion!).

Items needed to make Gak (aka flubber) for some DIY toddler favors.To make these cute favors you need the following:

Containers (Walmart sells the 4 oz. mason jars in a 12 pack for $12.97)
Borax, 1 teaspoon (found at most stores near laundry detergent)
Elmer’s Glue 7.625 oz. bottle
Food coloring
Warm water
Note: I made 14 favors and I used 2 large (7.625 oz.) and 1 regular ( 4 oz.) bottle of Elmer’s glue. I made three batches with each individual bottle of glue. For measurement purposes with the 4 oz. bottle of glue, follow the same directions but use ½ teaspoon of Borax mixed with ¼ cup warm water.
Note: For all the moms out there that are worried about Borax being toxic…don’t worry. Borax has the same safety warning as salt and baking soda!

1. In a mixing bowl pour the glue out and fill the empty bottles with warm water.

2. Give the bottles a good shake and then pour the water into the bowl. Mix the glue and water (it will be a watery mixture).

3. If you want the gak to be a specific color drop in the food coloring into the glue mixture. FYI to get the color red you have to put a LOT in otherwise it will turn pink!

Easy steps in making Gak (aka flubber) for DIY toddler party favors.4. In a separate small bowl measure ½ cup of warm water and mix in 1 teaspoon of Borax until it dissolves.

5. Pour the Borax mixture into the glue and start to stir. It will notice a change instantly.

6. After you mix it with a spoon, finish with your hands to soak up the remaining liquid and finish creating the gak. The gak can easily be cut/ripped into smaller portions to fit the mason jars.

Gak is a lot of fun for kids to play with, just like playdough. Gak molds quicker to containers than dough and if you place it in a strainer the gak will eventually start to drain through it creating strings of slime! And if you have an older kid just pushing the gak into a container creates funny noises (aka fart sounds!). So if your looking for a cheap DIY party favor for toddlers try this one. Plus it’s a great alternative to candy!

View Comments
  1. Julie commented:
    February 21, 2014 Reply

    Hi! I love this idea, just curious if there is a shelf life? TIA

    • Amy Romano commented:
      February 23, 2014 Reply

      Hey Julie!
      I am not sure about the shelf life. I wish I could give you an exact date, but with all my research I found mixed reviews on how long it would last. If you are making a big batch for your kid to play with, as long as you keep it in an air tight container it should last weeks (from personal experience!). For this post I put a small amount in tiny mason jars for favors and we kept one for Lily to play with. I found that after a while of playing with the small amount it kinda dried up a bit. I just wet my hands and worked in the moisture to give it back the gooey consistency! She played with the favor (not everyday) for about 2 weeks before I tossed it and just made a larger batch for her to play with. Hope this helps!

  2. Kristen commented:
    February 25, 2014 Reply

    I love the chalkboard idea. How did u make it? And where did u get the bright colored chalk?

    • Amy Romano commented:
      February 28, 2014 Reply

      Hey Kristen!

      Thanks! Are you referring to the huge chalkboard with all the pictures from Lily’s 2nd birthday? Or the large Chalkboard that was outside that kids could play on? I will email you to confirm and shoot you in the right direction to find the info!

  3. Mecca commented:
    November 5, 2014 Reply

    Does the gak dry out? I am wondering if I do this 2/3 days before the party will it be an issue.

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    August 23, 2017 Reply

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One Trackback

  1. By Lily & Bliss | Backyard BBQ Party: part 2 on April 28, 2014 at 6:46 pm

    […] that creates a squishy & slimy substance that kids love to play with(read about the favors here). Some of the fabric from the garland was used for toppers on the mason jars. I used more of the […]

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