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Hobby in a box: all-inclusive weekend project kits

Weekends away are on hold just now but you don’t need to travel to enjoy your down time. These project ideas will make your Saturday and Sunday feel like a mini break at home.

Distill your own gin

Want to learn how to turn vodka into gin? Artisan Bottega’s gin kit will show you how. The kit includes an infusion jar, cork-lidded gin bottles, labels and filter paper. The secret is in the packet of traditional botanical blend, and in the instructions of course. Add your litre of basic vodka, and the result is a London Dry style of gin. Flavoured with juniper, coriander, licorice root and citrus. All it takes is 24 hours’ steepage on Saturday, and you’ve got your own handcrafted gin by Sunday. Free of artificial ingredients and preservatives to boot.

A cocktail glass filled with clear liquid

G&T’s just taste better when you DIY

Lavender heart embroidery

Go vintage with the Minuette heart kit from L’Uccello. The perfumed pouch will freshen your drawers and cupboards with the scent of locally grown lavender. And if you happen to live in a lavender grove, you can add your own dried flowers. The kit includes printed fabric inspired by L’Uccello’s antique textiles. Plus attractive ribbon and embroidery threads. To store your needles, add the vintage French seed packet needle keep. It’s designed and printed in Melbourne, with purple and pink pansies for you to add in simple running stitch.

Paint a 12-step watercolour

If you’re feeling creative in your downtime, put on your paint smock for a weekend of artistic abandon. For a step-by-step project, try Eckersley’s tutorial for painting a waterfront sunrise. There are links to the Winsor & Newton brushes and paints you’ll need. Plus plenty of tips for adding interesting streaks and textures.

Go totally 80s and make your own synth

Nurture your love of Euro techno with a DIY synth kit. You get to build three types of synthesisers and create your own new sounds. Full instructions are included, and you’ll gain some insights into how synths work. The only thing not included is the nine-volt battery you’ll need to make your synth go fahren, fahren, fahren auf der Autobahn.

Learn to make your own burrata

Mozzarella, ricotta, burrata, mascarpone. You won’t need to visit the deli for these goodies if you try Mad Millie’s Italian cheese-making kit. It includes enough ingredients to make up to 6 kilos – that’s one busy weekend of cheese-making. Or do you prefer yoghurt? With Mad Millie’s Greek yoghurt kit you can make traditional or soy yoghurt at home. The kit comes with enough live culture to make up to 10 litres of yoghurt. It also includes a litre jar, cheese cloth, stainless-steel thermometer, instructions and recipes.

A ball of cheese in a bowl

Oozy burrata is one weekend away

Tackle a 1000-piece jigsaw puzzle

Who hasn’t wished for enough free time to knock off a jigsaw overnight? A 1000-piecer is the ideal size for a weekend of relaxed puzzling. Dream of visiting outback towns as you complete the Portrait of Australia set. Immersed in those moody ochre and blue desert hues, it will be Monday before you know it. You’ll find the puzzle at Australian Geographic.

Refresh with a spa grade moon facial

Spend the weekend nurturing and hydrating your skin with Miss Fox Boutique’s Moon facial kit. Start your facial experience with a fruit enzyme mask to eradicate impurities. To soothe and replenish, follow with the mango mask of oils and fruit butter. Add radiance with nourishing avocado oil. Then hydrate with citrus-scented organic moisturiser. Your kit includes an online consultation with an expert skin therapist. They’ll share personalised kit application instructions and your skin regime recommendation.

Discover the art of pressed flowers

With Christmas and birthdays in mind, get a pressed flower art kit from Dymocks. The kit shows you how to press flowers and leaves to create your own personalised greeting cards. It includes cards, bookmarks and trinket boxes, so all you need to add is the foliage. The kit is suitable for everyone, including kids aged 5+. If you think you’ve found your dream hobby, add a flower pressing book. It’s filled with blank pages to paste your blooms. And to learn more about this age-old tradition, read Jennie Ashmore’s The Art of Pressed Flowers and Leaves.

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