to do some home improvement activities, D.I.Y., to tinker away at, to fiddle with  Iconspeaker_3
[knut-se-len, knut-sel-de, ge-knut-seld]

There’s not really an exact equivalent in English for "knutselen". It varies from a handyman doing some home improvement, Do It Yourself chores, or children fiddling with paper, scissor and crayons…Knutsel

– "Nina heeft een mooie collage geknutseld op school." 
("Nina has made a beautiful collage at school.")

– "Waar is Frank?" – "Hij is aan het knutselen in het tuinhuisje."
("Where is Frank?" – "He’s doing some home improvement in the garden house.")

– "Theo heeft het hele weekend besteed aan het knutselen aan zijn fiets." 
("Theo has spent the entire weekend on fiddling with his bike.")

Related words:
– Knippen: to cut, to use a scissor [verb] [knipte, geknipt].
– Plakken: to paste, to stick [verb] [plakte, geplakt].
– Kleuren: to colour [verb] [kleurde, gekleurd].
Prutser: screw up <person> [noun] [de prutser, de prutsers].

– "Frank is een totale prutser."
("Frank is a total screw up.")

– Prutsen: to blunder, to be messing things up [verb] [prutste, geprutst].
– Verprutsen: to mess up [verb] [verprutste, verprutst].

2 thoughts on “Knutselen

  1. Ooooh I’m so excited to find this site. My husband is Dutch, and well, I know next to nothing. I’m going to surprise him with my improved vocabulary.

  2. “knutselen” really is not about home improvements. It is what children do (and some adults): making an easter bunny out of a cereal box. Used in other ways it gets a diminutive meaning. If Frank is knutseling in the garden house, his improvements are more like a children’s job…

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