Top 5 tips for using paint at home – the ARTventurers way!

Introducing your little artist to paint at home the ARTventurers way!

Baby playing with paint

As most parents will know, the thought of letting your little one loose in your home with paint fills you with horror! All those lovely white walls and carpets covered in paint? No thank you! However, allowing babies and toddlers to get messy can be SO important for them and their development, whilst giving you a great opportunity to bond! So, fear not, here are some top tips from us at ARTventurers when using paint at home with your little ones…

Think BIG!

Do you remember those old rolls of lining paper or leftover sheets of wallpaper that are stuck in the garage or loft gathering dust? Bring them out! These types of materials are ideal for covering your floor with and letting your little ones loose on. They’re easy to bin afterwards or even stick up on the wall to display the masterpieces and are a lot more fun to work with than small A4 sheets!

Paint on a white sheet
An example of the creative things that could be done on a big sheet of paper!

 

Make sure the paint is non-toxic and suitable for use!

Obviously, your child’s safety comes before keeping your house clean and tidy! So before you all get messy at home, ensure you know the paint being used is safe for use with small children. You can even try and mix it up with edible paint from cornflour, as we all know how much young ones want to put everything in their mouth! There are plenty of recipes online about how to make edible paint, so be sure to check them out.

Baby happy in paint
Looks like great fun!

 

Be prepared for the inevitable mess!

Cover your surfaces and floors with something easy to wipe down or bin, like an old shower curtain or plastic tablecloth! This protects your lovely house from getting covered in paint, but also allows young children the freedom to move about and be really creative with their whole body instead of sitting at a table. Stripping your little one down to a nappy also means less washing too as you can just plonk them straight in the bath!

Happy child with paint on feet
Feet are great for painting with!

 

Join in and get MESSY too!

Babies and toddlers learn from watching other people, so if they see you getting involved and covered in paint too, they will be curious and copy you! Who knows, you may enjoy it too?

Toddler and adult enjoying painting
It’s hard to tell who is having more fun here!

 

DITCH the paint brushes!

Unless your child is anxious about getting paint on their hands, leave the paint brushes in the box and use your body parts to create art instead! This allows them the freedom to investigate and explore the lovely colours and textures of paint, without having to pick up a brush!

Babies playing with paint
Very creative!

 

There are 5 tips and a bit of inspiration from the ARTventurers team that you can use at home to get creative with paint with your little ones. There are loads of benefits to letting children be creative with art from a young age, and these tips will help them do so! If the thought of letting your little one loose at home with paint still frightens you, an ARTventurers class takes the stress and worries away for you, so be sure to come along!

Easy Salt Dough Prints for Father’s Day!

If (like me!) you’re having a last minute panic about Fathers Day gifts then here’s the answer…..salt dough prints are fun to make and a lovely keepsake! Plus MUCH more personal than a pair of socks or undies!!!

 

To make the salt dough :

a cup of flour

half a cup of salt

3/4 cup of water

a squirt of ready mix paint to colour your dough

Mix the dry ingredients well first then add the water gradually, stirring until a dough begins to form. Squirt in your paint then get your hands it – knead the dough well until the colour is spread evenly and you have a smooth firm dough.

If it’s too sticky add a little more flour, if too dry and crumbly make a small well and then add in a teaspoon of water before kneading again

Flatten and shape your dough to the required shape!

Now it’s time to take your prints! Reading our blog post on how to get a good print from a baby or toddler might help – that was all about painty prints but some common principles apply! Press the foot/hand gently into the dough and press down to get a lovely clear print

If you have older kids you could get them to decorate the print at this point – you can press in beads or sequins or sprinkle with glitter in true ARTventurers style!

And if you are going to add holes for hanging as a hanging plaque then do this now too – you can do this by pushing a pen or pencil into the dough or using something thin like a skewer

To dry your print – you can air dry it for a few days in a warm and sunny spot OR you can bake it on a low heat in the oven for a couple of hours. Please keep checking it carefully if you are oven drying and DON’T use this method if you have decorated it with beads or sequins as they will just melt!

A layer of clear varnish is recommended to seal your finished plaque!

You can also add name/age with a sharpie marker – or any other Father’s Day message you like!

 

Christmas Hand and Footprints!

There is nothing lovelier than a home-made Christmas card…and even cuter if it’s got a little person’s hand or footprint on it! Here’s a little round up of our favourite festive hand and footprints……there’s a fingerprint one thrown in for good measure too!

If you’re struggling to get a good clear print (and we know it can be tricky!) check out our blog post all about how to get a lovely clear print!

And of course if you fancy joining in the arty fun at our classes in the New Year…..pop over to our Find a Class page to find out all about joining in the ARTventurers fun!