Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Art Time – Pretty Painted Suncatcher

blog pictures 007Since M seems willing to do more planned art and craft activities of late, I’ve had fun thinking up new things to do.  I recently re-organized my craft stash - all 2 carts, 6 drawers worth - and found an embroidery hoop that hasn’t seen the light of day for the past 5 years at least.

I remember seeing something about dot painters and fabric somewhere about a year ago, and that’s what I thought of when I started brainstorming ways to use this hoop.

I found some muslin that I was going to use for goodness-knows-what and put a large square of it in the hoop.  I gave M the choice between markers, watercolors, or his roller paints to decorate this.  He chose the roller paintsblog pictures 002 He enjoyed this and I love how it turned out.  I trimmed the extra fabric off and for now it’s still in the hoop, sitting in front of the window over my kitchen sink.  blog pictures 043
It did not take him long to make, but I love looking at it.  It just makes me happy. :)
Have a beautiful day! :)


  1. This turned out really pretty. You surely have A LOT of art supplies :)

  2. LOVE this!! I starred it in my Google Reader. :)

  3. This has the makings of a mother's day gift idea:)

  4. Aww, i would love to look at this all day long :)

  5. Hi Nicole,
    If you don't mind, I have a quick question on painting with toddlers in general. My DD is 21 months and loves playing around with paint, but we haven't really found a successful set-up yet. Either the cups of paint are too far away for her to reach comfortably, or else they're guaranteed to get knocked over by a wandering elbow or stray paintbrush. If we use 8.5x11 sheets of paper, we need a new sheet every 30 seconds because she fills them up so fast, but if we use larger sheets, her arms don't reach the blank bits. If we spread everything out on the floor, the paper doesn't stay flat, and if we put things on her little desk, she has to keep getting up and sitting down again to reach the edge of the paper or a far-away paint cup etc.

    Have you and M worked out any good set-up for toddler painting, where everything is accessible without being in the way? I figured that you guys do so much beautiful art, you must have tried every possible configuration by now!

    Thanks so much for any suggestions.

  6. Babusa's Mama - good questions! And thank you so much for your kind words. I'll tell you a few things we did when M was around the age of your daughter. First, I made sure he only painted when he was at the table in his booster seat (or if your highchair scoots up to the table that's good too), so he and his mess would stay contained until I made sure he was clean!

    Secondly, I bought a large roll of freezer paper at the grocery store. It is shiny and a bit slippery on one side, which is great for fingerpainting, and matte on the other side to use with brushes or what have you. It's also a nice large size. I'd pull off a BIG piece of it and tape it to the table in front of him. Masking tape works well, or you can try electrical tape too. Electrical tape isn't too sticky and so it's easy to remove and reuse if you think you'll be switching to a clean piece of paper for her (sometimes they aren't finished with painting as soon as we'd like them to be. :) ).

    As for the paint itself... I hear you about cups tipping over, etc. I bought a sturdy metal, 6-cup muffin tin at the dollar store. Then I stuck plastic cups from applesauce or pudding or whatever we had into each of the muffin cups with some poster tacky, and put a different color of paint in each cup. The muffin tin is heavy enough that it won't tip over (plus it's low, not like a cup). You could put paint right into the muffin pan, but I've found that they tend to rust after a day or so - thus the plastic cups. You can cover the whole thing with foil or plastic wrap and store your paints in the fridge. When/if they start to get old, it's easy to wash out the plastic cups or just toss them and add new ones in. I would place the paints on M's right side, right on top of a section of the paper so he had easy access and still had a large area of paper to paint on.

    He was never bothered by blank spaces on paper... maybe someone else will have an answer to that one??

    I won't say we never had any messes, but these things helped make painting fun for him and much more bearable for me!

    I hope this helps!!! Let me know if I haven't been clear about something. :)

  7. thanks so much for such a helpful response! Your muffin-tin idea is sheer genius, and I'll definitely try the freezer paper and taping the paper to the table. Thanks!


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