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Portable Travel Tins

Jun 3, 2015

Believe it or not, summer is just around the corner! For many families, that means plenty of travel, adventures and outings. We tend to do a fair amount of all three, so in order to be prepared, I created some simple, portable travel tins to tuck into my bag.

All four tins were created with items we already had on hand and my hope is that they’ll come in handy during some of the flights, camping trips and restaurant visits we have planned for the summer.

What do you need to create your own portable travel tins? Well, tins of some sort, of course! We used empty hand cream tins, but mint tins, gift card tins or diaper cream tins would also work. 

We washed the tins and then spruced them up with a little bit of washi tape. You could paint your tins or just leave them as is.

With your tins ready to go, all you need are some fun and engaging goodies to fill them with! 

Here’s some inspiration:

Magnetic Play Tin

A tin filled with magnetic objects

Gather up some magnetic object from the house, add a stack of button magnets and you’ve got yourself a tin full of fun and creative opportunities!

We included:

  • a couple old keys
  • coins
  • magnetic marbles
  • paper clips
  • pipe cleaner coils
  • magnetic bingo chips

The best part is that the tin can be used as a base for your creations—it’s magnetic too!

Arts & Crafts Tin

A tin filled with arts and craft supplies.

This is probably the simplest tin of all. 

We included:

  • card stock squares
  • mini sticky notes
  • a stack of dot stickers
  • crayons
  • a mini pencil and eraser
  • roll of washi tape

All perfect for creating miniature notes, cards and pieces of art.  If you’re somewhere without a table, simply take what you need out of the tin, put the lid back on and then use the tin itself as a drawing surface!


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Dinosaur Play Tin

A tin filled with plasticine and a dinosaur toy.

If you have a little one who loves pretend play, he or she will adore this travel tin!

We included:

  • a favourite dino figurine
  • plasticine
  • a few small rocks and glass gems
  • miniature trees

Place the items inside the tin and you’ll have everything you need to create a small world on the go! The best part is that the inside of the lid makes a perfect playing surface, so there’s no need to get anything else covered in plasticine.

Building Block Play Tin

A tin full of building potential!

We included:

  • an assortment of colourful bricks
  • a couple specialty pieces
  • two minifigures

For an added touch, secure a base plate to the tin’s lid using a removable mounting square and you’ll have a built-in building surface.

There you have it! Four portable travel tins that will keep your little ones happily engaged, no matter where your adventures take you!

Article Author Jen Kossowan
Jen Kossowan

See all of Jen's posts.

Jen is a teacher, blogger, and mama to a spirited little lady and a preemie baby boy. She's passionate about play, loves a good DIY project, adores travelling, and can often be found in the kitchen creating recipes that meet her crunchy mama criteria. You can follow Jen on her blog, Mama.Papa.Bubba, and on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and Instagram.

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