Art activities, Craft, decorating, DIY, Holiday, Make, Create, & Share!, Painting

Salt Dough Ornaments!

Salt dough is fun and easy! The dough can be baked to harden, painted with acrylics and last for years! I had my nephew create some simple cut-out ornaments but you can also make 3-D sculptures with salt dough too! There’s various recipes for creating salt dough, and other similar dough – I’ve listed one below that we used with good results!

What you’ll need:

  • Flour
  • Salt
  • Warm water
  • Cookie Cutters
  • Rolling pin
  • Straw and/or Toothpick (or something to make holes in your ornaments for hanging)
  • Cookie tray
  • Acrylic paints
  • Paint brushes
  • Spray Sealer or Mod Podge
  • Ribbon
  • OPTIONAL SUPPLIES:
  • Beads to add to your ribbon
  • Glitter
  • Stamps – for making impressions on your dough
  • Sharpies
  • Hot glue or craft glue

Step one: Mix together 2 cups of all purpose flour, 1 cup of salt and 1/2 cup of warm water in a large bowl.

Step two: Add up to 1/2 cup more of warm water, one tablespoon at a time, until dough forms. Dough should not be sticky – if it is add a bit more flour!

Step three: Kneed your dough and roll it out on a flat surface – use flour to help prevent sticking if needed. We rolled it to 1/4″ – 1/2″ thick for cut-outs. You can also make sculptures with your salt dough instead!

Step four: Use cookie cutters to cut shapes out of your salt dough. Place cut-outs on a baking sheet (I lined mine with parchment).

Step five: Before baking your salt dough make sure to put a hole in your ornaments to hang from! A plastic straw works well or a toothpick for a smaller shape! Bake your salt dough for approx. 2 hours at 275*F or until firm and dried out. Time will depend on size and thickness. You can also leave your salt dough out to air dry. Be sure to fully bake/dry out pieces before painting and sealing to ensure they’ll last a long time!

Step six: Once your pieces have been baked or dried out, use acrylic paints to paint them with! We used acrylic craft paints!

Step seven: Paint your creations and let them dry completely!

Step eight: Once your paint is dry, seal your salt dough – I brushed on a layer of glossy Mod Podge. You can also use an acrylic spray sealer instead. Let dry.

Step nine: Add ribbon and beads to hang your ornaments from! Alternatively, you could also use pipe-cleaner or wire for hangers!

Step ten: Use a sharpie to add names, dates and details to your salt dough!

Step eleven: Hang those ornaments up!

We had a lot of fun making salt dough ornaments! Create your own ornaments from cut-outs like we did or create some 3D ornaments – you can use a little water to help pieces stick together. You could also make personalized gift tags & toppers, hand/foot print plaques, small sculptures (like snowmen!), key chains, pendents, pins, or magnets! Use Popsicle sticks, wooden skewers, or toothpicks for tools. Adorn finished salt dough pieces with pom-poms, pipe-cleaner, glitter, ribbon, beads, and other craft items! Try decorating pieces with marker instead of paint for easier clean up!

Art, Art activities, Craft, decorating, DIY, Make, Create, & Share!, Painting

DIY Painted Signs!

Create a custom distressed wooden sign to add to your dΓ©cor or to give as a gift!

What you need:

  • Wooden board – My example is approx. 8″x9″ and 1/4″ thick, but you can use any board or wooden plaque you have on hand!
  • Acrylic paints – I suggest acrylic craft paints in black or dark brown, white or cream, and a color of your choice (you could also incorporate multiple colors if desired). I used teal as my color.
  • Sandpaper
  • Rope or twine for hanging – I’ve drilled holes in my board but you could also staple the rope or twine to the back, or use a picture hanger instead!
  • Stencil or pattern – You can download & print the ones I used, or create your own!
  • Pencil
  • Masking Tape
  • Ruler
  • Paper Towels
  • Hairdryer
  • Optional: Minwax finishing paste in special dark or other sealer

Step one: Sand down any rough edges or spots on your board.

Step two: Paint your board with your black or dark brown color – paint the edges too!

Step three: Once your black paint is dry (you can speed this up with a hairdryer), cover your board with a layer of white or cream paint. Let the white dry – you may need to add a second coat of white/cream if you can still see a lot of your darker color show through. Let it dry!

Step four: Download and print out the desired lettering and designs for your board here or create your own! Follow these steps to transfer a printed design to your board!

Step five: Fill in your design outline with the color paint of your choice!

Step six: Make sure your board is very dry before moving on to this step! Sand your board to add age and a distressed look – I sanded more heavily around the edges of my board and lightly near my lettering. If you sand too much off you can always touch it back up with your paint!

Step seven: This is an optional step, you can leave your board as it is or add a sealer. I prefer to Minwax finishing paste in special dark!

Step eight: Add a rope for hanging (I drilled holes in my board and tied my knots in the front, but you could also staple a rope to the back). Hang your sign as is or hot glue some silk flowers for some pizzazz!

Art, Art activities, DIY, Make, Create, & Share!, Painting

Alcohol Ink & Yupo!

Experiment with mediums and surfaces in this project! Use alcohol inks on Yupo paper to create beautiful blooms of colors, then draw a design on top with a chalk pen! Yupo is actually polypropylene and allows the alcohol inks to sit on the surface and have fun reactions! Adding rubbing alcohol to the inks also creates more “blooming” effects!

What you need:

  • Yupo paper
  • Alcohol inks
  • Rubbing alchol
  • Paint brush
  • Chalk pens

Step one: Dot some colors of alcohol ink on your yupo surface!

Step two: Continue to add inks and begin to apply dots of rubbing alcohol with a paint brush – both on and around your alcohol inks.

Step three: Continue to apply inks and rubbing alcohol – I just added a section of color from corner to corner. Keep in mind, when choosing colors, your ink colors will begin to mix somewhat!

Step four: Let your ink dry completely!

Step five: Once the ink is dry, use your chalk pen to create a design on top of your ink!

Step six: Add details to your drawing – I just used a white chalk pen for the most contrast but you could use other colors as well!

Have fun creating blooms of colors! πŸ™‚

Art, Art activities, Make, Create, & Share!, Painting

Acrylic Moon Painting!

Create an out of this world moon painting with acrylics on canvas! In the video below I create my sky with multiple brushes/techniques (a stencil brush, sea sponge, flat brush & paper towel) you can use all methods or choose what you have on hand to create your sky with!

What you need:

  • Canvas – I used an 11″x14″ stretched canvas
  • Acrylic Paints – I used Apple Barrel craft paints in Bright Blue, Black, White, Bright Red, Bright Yellow
  • Paint brushes – A 1/2″ or 3/4″ flat brush and some smaller brushes for details
  • Paper plate
  • Pencil
  • Paper towels
  • Optional: Stencil brushes and/or sea sponges

Step one: Trace a circle on your canvas – I used a plastic plate. Paint your background all black!

Step two: Begin to add clouds to your sky with other colors – I used blue, red, & white (which made pinks and purples) – see the next step for more details!

Step three: Use a firm/stiff regular flat brush, round stencil brush, sea sponge or paper towel to create a cloud texture. “Pounce” or “Dab” your paint on your canvas with any of the tools listed to create this effect. You only want a little paint on your brush/tool. Dip in multiple colors or build layers of colors on your clouds.

Step four: If you have any clouds that are too bright, you can repeat the same technique, but with black paint to help it fade in. Be careful not to mix too many colors or your clouds can end up muddy! If that happens, let your paint dry, paint it over with black, and try again!

Step five: Water down a little white acrylic paint and splatter it on your sky for stars!

Step six: Mix white and a little yellow paint to create a cream color and paint your moon!

Step seven: Mix blue and little black paint together to create a dark blue paint and make random spots on your moon. These will be the moon’s craters!

Step eight: While the dark blue spots are still a little wet, take more of your cream color and blend the edges of your spots into your moon!

Step nine: Keep blending until you’re happy with your moon! Check out the video below for more details on creating your own moon painting!

Art, Art activities, DIY, Drawing, Make, Create, & Share!, Painting

Watercolor Crab!

Follow along to paint your own watercolor crab! My crab was created with just two colors – yellow and blue, however, you can make your crab any colors using these techniques! You can download the crab outline below and transfer it to your watercolor paper or draw your own crab outline (or outline of your choosing).

What you need:

  • Watercolor paper (I used Canson XL cold press 140lb)
  • Watercolor paints – I used Rembrandt brand in Azo Yellow Medium & Van Gogh brand in Phthalo blue
  • Sea Salt
  • Brushes
  • Pencil

Step one: Transfer the crab outline to your watercolor paper or draw your own outline! Download the crab outline above and follow this quick tip to transfer the crab outline here.

Step two: The crab is created with a wet on wet technique – I did sections of my crab at a time, starting with the shell, I brushed on a layer of water.

Step three: Before the water dries that you applied in the last step, add blue watercolor to your shell – the paint will spread wherever the water was placed.

Step four: While your blue paint is still wet, add dabs of green or yellow paints to your crab shell and let them spread! I used a little yellow painted mixed with my blue.

Step five: While your paint is still wet, sprinkle some sea salt on it! The paint pools under the pieces of salt, when the paint dries, we’ll gently remove the salt pieces and have a unique effect left on our papers created by the salt!

Step six: Repeat steps for all the crabs legs!

Step seven: If desired, flick paint, to add some interest to your background! I used watered down blue.

Step eight: Let your paint dry – I don’t recommend speeding up with a hair dryer when the salt is involved as it can blow the salt pieces around and disrupt the textured effect!

Step nine: Once the paint is completely dry, gently rub off the salt pieces. Enjoy your crabby painting! πŸ™‚

Art, Art activities, Craft, decorating, DIY, Happenings, Make, Create, & Share!, Painting

Painted Stepping Stones

Brighten your garden with a colorful hand painted paver! Paint just one or paint many and create a fun path through your garden!

What you need:

  • Cement Paver – The ones I’m using are 12″x12″
  • Outdoor primer
  • Pencil
  • Acrylic paint – I used Apple Barrel Craft paints in Bright Blue, Bright Yellow, Bright Red, Black, & White. You can also use Patio Paints for longer lasting results!
  • Krylon indoor/outdoor, gloss sealer

Step one: Prime you paver – I used an outdoor primer, brushed it on & let it dry.

Step two: Draw your design onto your paver (you can also use stencils or templates).

Step three: Begin to paint your design! I like to start with my background and work forwards.

You may need to apply more than one layer of paint with certain colors – if this is the case let layers dry between new coats!

If you want to blend colors it’s easiest to do so while the paints are still wet – brush back and forth to help blend colors!

Create effects with your paint – like splatters for stars or texture by “flicking” your paint!

Fill in your foreground with base colors…

Add your details! Leave your stepping stone as is or add in some whimsy with additional lines, colors, & patterns!

Step four: Finish your stepping stone by sealing your paint with krylon indoor/outdoor gloss sealer!

Check out the video below for more ideas or join us for a stepping stone class to create your own!

Be sure to send along a picture of your finished stepping stone! πŸ™‚

Art, Art activities, DIY, Drawing, Make, Create, & Share!, Painting

Sand Dollar Painting!

Follow along to paint your own sand dollar in acrylics! You can download the template for the sand dollar outline below or draw your own!

What you need:

  • Canvas (I used an 8″x8″ stretched canvas)
  • Acrylic Paints – I used Apple Barrel craft paints in Bright Blue, Teal, White, & Black
  • Paint brushes
  • Sand dollar template (unless you’re drawing your own) & Pencil
  • Paper towels

Step one: Draw your sand dollar on your canvas or download the outline below – cut and trace onto your canvas or use transfer paper.

Step two: Mix together a little black paint with some blue paint to create a dark blue and fill your background and inside details with it!

Step three: Pain the white portion of your sand dollar with teal paint. Then double dip your brush into the teal and dark blue and add a layer onto your background – it’s okay to see brush strokes and areas of different colors! Don’t wash your brush – we need it for the next step!

Step four: Using the same brush in the previous step, without washing out the dark blue/teal paint, paint your sand dollar with white paint (if you have a lot of dark blue or teal paint left on your brush make sure to wipe some off before applying the white). By using the same brush some of the dark blue & teal paint will come through on your sand dollar – creating a more realistic texture and a painterly style! Once your layer of white is dry you can add more white to brighten some areas if needed!

Have fun with easy sand dollar paintings! Try creating them in different colors or multiple sand dollars on one canvas! πŸ™‚