I loved arts and crafts as a child, and couldn’t wait to share that passion with my son as soon as he was old enough. At about 1 1/2 years old I thought I’d give it a try! I put together this easy painting project that would double as a keepsake, and we could give to his grandparents as Christmas gifts.
What you’ll need:
- Paint Brush Set
- Paint Set
- Printable Cardstock
You may have these things around the house already. If not, you can get most items at your local craft store.
Step 1: Printing – In Microsoft Word, or whatever publishing software you have access to, type out a phrase that is meaningful to your child, and select a font that you like. I used the font Bromello, if you’d like to use it, you can get a free download here. I displayed the saying, “Be happy”, because it is something my son just happens to say a lot. If you want to go with the same phrase, feel free to download the pdf of the document I created.
For each final art piece you want to make, print out two copies on 8.5×11 letter sized cardstock. So if you want to make 1 painting, print 2 copies; if you want to make 2 paintings, print 4 copies, and so fourth. It is better to print out on thicker paper so the paint doesn’t leak through or cause the paper to curl.
Step 2: Cut out and layer. Cut out the wording on one sheet of your printouts. Then place a piece of tape on the bottom and layer it on top of your other 8.5×11 sheet, right over the wording.This will protect the words from getting painted over and covered completely.
Step 3: Set up the paint area – you will want to line the table with something to protect it from any spills. I use a roll of wrapping paper and just spread it on the surface and tape the edges down to the table. Some tips for mom (I learned the hard way): Put a portion of paint onto the palette and have everything set up before sitting your toddler down. If you start opening the paints and setting up with him there, he may want to open it himself, spill it, dump it out – you know how opinionated our little independent toddlers are!
Step 4: Have fun! At this point let them explore the colors and how the brush feels pushing the paint around. Try to back off and let them experiment creatively. Note on the photo here: Some days my son can’t do anything without his buddy Mickey Mouse.
Step 5: Frame it! If you are making these into gifts or just framing for home, you can get simple frames at your local craft store.