What we are working on: Paper Mache

The Artful Parent inspired me to break out the flour paste and get messy. I used to do a lot of paper mache projects when I taught elementary art. Here is what I learned:
  • Show your child how to dip than squeegee the extra paste off with their fingers.
  • If you have rodent issues do not use a flour based paste. My classroom was like the all you can eat buffet at the the mouse and rat Golden Corral. Use a commercial paste or glue and water.
  • Make your final layer white paper towel or white newsprint. This makes painting easier.
  • After your wee one is done making a mess go in and smooth down your little ones work. Help them fill in the gaps. I do not believe you should alter your little ones art but if it means major disappointment during the big reveal than yes no harm in checking the structure. This is more critical when doing a balloon based paper mache project. I have seen too many students crestfallen when their projects collapse. The paper towel final layer is kind of a great way to ensure everything is covered.
  • Cheap paint chips off paper mache so try to use the best quality paint you've got. Or seal with a layer of Mod Podge or similar.
  • Salt is suppose to prevent mold. I do not know this to be proven.
We are working on a Dinosaur Egg. There is a small plastic Dinosaur inside the balloon. This is a test run to see if I want to make 15 of these suckers for Lu's 4th birthday in the fall. Lu wants to have a Dinosaur Party. I was considering giving each child a giant egg to decorate with treats inside. The other project is a bowl. We may paint these or Mod Podge tissue onto them. I'll give Lu the choice.

Right now they are still soaking wet. Gloppy gooey paste is fun for a toddler so expect a long drying time! Plus it has been raining here so not the best drying environment.

Edit: to see the complete project click here.


Diane said...

visiting from Amy's RR.

this looks fun! thanks for sharing!

~~tonya~~ said...

Looks like fun...and messy.


pucktricks said...

What a fun idea. I think we might have to do that sometime for a party.

Anissa said...

Sounds fun! We are gong to use paper mache to make a globe of earth this year for school. TFS

MaryAnne said...

Thanks for the paper mache tips, it's especially good to know that flour and water paste attracts rodents! I didn't know the white paper towel/white newspaper final layer trick, either.

Amy said...

Thanks for sharing this idea. I love it. I hope to do it. Thanks for taking the time to join it. Yeah.

The Artful Parent said...

Thanks for the paper mache tips! I like the idea of using a paper towel as a final layer. We'll have to try that next time... -Jean

Amy said...

Thanks for sharing. Visiting from Amy's RR. what a great idea for a dinosaur party!

Preschool Playbook said...

We did these eggs in dinosaur camp. The kids loved them. Also, love the idea of using a clear white paper for the second coat.


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