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Tools & Materials : Nature's Own Summer Craft Supplies!

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This past week I was lucky enough to spend some time out on the beaches of Fire Island (a long, thin barrier island off the southern coast of Long Island, NY). And besides being blown away by their beauty, I was amazed at the variety of items I was able to find on and around the beaches that could be easily turned into fabulous craft projects and gifts.

Check out my finds below with a number of links to projects that you, too, can make out of these simple and readily available materials. Remember, it's never too early to get a jump on your holiday crafting!

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A lonely lifeguard chair...

1 A lonely lifeguard chair...

The long, flat beach and beautiful surf of Fire Island

2 The long, flat beach and beautiful surf of Fire Island

The dunes just beyond the beach

3 The dunes just beyond the beach

A scrubby forest of evergreens just beyond the dunes

4 A scrubby forest of evergreens just beyond the dunes

Marsh grass growing tall and lush in the more swampy areas of the island

5 Marsh grass growing tall and lush in the more swampy areas of the island

More marsh grass

6 More marsh grass

A beautiful (and fearless!) deer at sunset

7 A beautiful (and fearless!) deer at sunset

From candles to wreaths to flowerpots, there is no limit to what you can make and do with your summer shells collection. For project ideas, visit our Shell Crafts Gallery.

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Clam shells

1 Clam shells

Scallop shells

2 Scallop shells

Tiny clam shells

3 Tiny clam shells

Snail shells

4 Snail shells

Oyster shells

5 Oyster shells

Sea glass is the beautiful result of man-made materials meeting the relentless forces of the ocean. Check out our Sea-Glass Crafts Gallery for ideas of what to do with your unique finds.

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White, green, and brown sea glass

1 White, green, and brown sea glass

A sea-glass collection

2 A sea-glass collection

Blue, white, and green sea glass

3 Blue, white, and green sea glass

Sea glass and beach stones

4 Sea glass and beach stones

The coastal environment of sea spray and constantly changing weather makes it hard for many plants to make their home near the sea, but a number of hardy evergreen species (including scrub pines and the like) are able to endure. The perfectly shaped pinecones they produce are ideal for seasonal crafts such as those found in the our Pinecone Crafts Gallery.

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A perfectly formed pinecone still on the tree

1 A perfectly formed pinecone still on the tree

A scrub pine eking out a living in the sand

2 A scrub pine eking out a living in the sand

Pinecones on the sand

3 Pinecones on the sand

A perfect specimen

4 A perfect specimen

A sandy collection of pinecones ready for some crafting!

5 A sandy collection of pinecones ready for some crafting!

Besides the requisite collections of shells and rocks and sand, the seashore is a place to find little oddities that can be displayed on their own, like little pieces of natural art. Check out these Collection Frames to find out how you can proudly display your finds.

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Skate egg case

1 Skate egg case

Crab shell

2 Crab shell

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