Making Wall Worthy Kids Art with Stencils

Stencils are a great way for kids of almost any age to make wall worthy art. As long as they can hold a painting utensil or sponge, then they should be able to transfer paint onto the prepared stencil surface and have it result in something pretty decent!

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We recently took advantage of a cold rainy afternoon to do an art project compliments of Stencil Revolution. I picked out a neat seahorse stencil to go with our beach house renovation decor and set it up so my three-year-old son could do the painting.

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The first thing we did was head to the hardware store to get a piece of wood to use as a base. I also had a second Halloween themed stencil, so I got a 4ft. piece of wood to fit them both for just $9. After cutting it to fit both stencils I still had enough left over to make something else. After cutting the board to fit, I stained them a navy blue. You can also paint the boards a solid color.

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After the stain was dry, I taped the stencil where I wanted the design to be. My board wasn’t as wide as I should have been, but I just went with it. I realized later, as my son was really going crazy slapping on the paint, that it is best to have all the sides taped down really well. I was only able to tape down the top and bottom so it slipped a tiny bit, but not enough to mess it up in the end. You do need to have it secured better than we did if you want a crisp stencil edge.

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With our surface prepped, next we mixed our paints. We used acrylics in a metallic teal, blue and a dash of white. Our painting tool or choice was a sponge painter. My son took to sponge painting with gusto, scooping large blobs of paint out and slopping it down as I scrambled to make sure it wasn’t splattering beyond our small art mat.

At first I kept trying to limit his paint and show him how to do it, but then I just let him go with it and his unique blob painting technique actually resulted in a really cool texture! The bubbles and lumps make it look almost like the seahorse has scales.

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I made sure every spot was covered and then Mr. Impatient had to see his creation immediately, so I removed the stencil and we were both very excited to see something so pretty! I’m sure you’re probably supposed to let it dry and then remove it so you don’t risk smudging it, but it was hard enough to stop the flailing little arms from smearing the whole thing while it was on so I figured I’d better show him and then display it up high where he couldn’t touch it.

After I removed the stencil, I immediately rinsed it off and the acrylic paint easily came off with a little scrubbing. The stencil is made from laser cut 12 mil Mylar and can be used over and over again. It can also be cleaned with paint thinner if you choose to let the paint dry on it and have a harder time cleaning it off. Acrylics will usually wash off or peel off easily though, even when dry.

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So you can see our seahorse doesn’t have super crisp edges and isn’t “perfect” but I think that adds to its beachy vibe. I just have to add a little hook to the back and I’ll be hanging this little masterpiece on the wall. And thanks to StencilRevolution.com for sending the stencil for this fun little project!

For the Love of Noodles

My son loves noodles. Just plain spaghetti noodles with a little butter or olive oil. He doesn’t like to spoil it with any sauce. I keep trying to encourage him to try them differently- marinara, cream sauce, maybe some meatballs, but no. Just noodles. It makes me think of a photo of me as a little girl, where I’m eating spaghetti and it’s smeared everywhere. I expected this to be some sort of normal baby ritual- the spaghetti mess. But when my kid is done he just looks like he’s oiled up and ready to wrestle.

for the love of noodles
Pure Joy & Noodles

He loves them so much that when we went on a two week cruise where he could order absolutely anything he wanted for dinner, every single night he ordered plain noodles. One night he tried nuggets and sent them back in exchange for noodles.

So I’ve embraced this and now make a big batch of noodles all at once, put them in a gallon freezer bag and keep them in the fridge, ready to heat on-demand. That way, I can make noodles in 15 seconds instead of cooking them from scratch every time. I’ve also started getting those “Hidden Veggie” noodles and other healthier varieties rather than regular old pasta. So far, he likes them all the same.

To be honest, I’m just happy anytime he shows excitement about eating something besides chocolate and gummy bears. We have a lot of arguments over what consists of “real food” and why he needs to eat it. So if he loves noodles, I’ll make noodles!

He also went through a serious Puffs phase and a hot dog phase. As a first-time mom, I’m guessing this food fixation is a universal toddler (and child) trait. So what food is your kid obsessed with right now?