Monday 4 September 2017

Shell Craft - Art Therapy for those with Alzheimer's

Meaningful activities are incredibly important for those with Dementia. I have found that creating something beautiful makes my mum extremely happy and shell craft is a wonderful activity for her. Shells are such lovely things to paint and making them into a wind-chime is a wonderful activity that my mum can be very proud of!

We take plain sea shells and colour them with felt tip pens, metallic Pro Markers and glittery nail polish to create amazing patterned shells!!

I drill holes in the centre of the shells with a small drill bit. I find its best to drill outside as it creates quite a bit of dust!

turn the shells upside down and drill inside them. I rest the shells on an old towel. Limpets are surprisingly strong and I have cracked very few drilling this way!!

Its best to drill the shells before they are painted but sometimes my mum colours them before I get a chance to drill so I have drilled holes in many painted shells ... they just need a bit of touching up around the hole!

My mum absolutely loves colouring the shells!! She makes some very beautiful patterns!!
We then use clear nail varnish to seal the colour. 

We have also sprinkled glitter on the nail varnish & used nail varnish with glitter in it. There are so many ways to make them sparkle!

We then thread twine through the shells with a few beads in between.

I use thick string / twine and beads with large holes so that my mum is able to thread them.

My mum still has a great eye for colour and has created beautiful wind-chimes in a variety of colour ways.

She's never happier than when she is crafting! 

We used a large shell at the top of this wind-chime and tied the strings around the top of the shell. We glued the strings apart on the back.

For this wind-chime we used a piece of wood from the garden which I sprayed with gold paint. We simply tied the twine with the shells to the wood.

My mum loves making handmade gifts ... here is a wind-chime she made and gift wrapped for her volunteer driver :)

Its amazing how plain sea shells can be so simply transformed into something so very beautiful!

Please visit my mum's Etsy Shop to see her beautiful wind chimes & crepe paper flowers!


  1. I have one of Mums beautiful wind chimes. It takes pride of place in my bedroom. Lots of lovely shades of pink. I love it

    1. Aww thank you Suzy :) So pleased you are happy with your wind chime :)