Thursday, March 30, 2017


The thing that Olive missed most while we were out of town was her art supplies.  We try to do art projects and free time with art supplies regularly during the week so it was fun to see that she loves that part of our routine.  We have painted almost every day since we've been home.  It's become a quick, easy, NOT MESSY process so I thought I'd share our tips today.

1. Create a designated spot to do art with easy clean up.
We do art at our kitchen island or the kid table in the kitchen.

2. Come up with easy rules to remember.
Only paint on art paper or your hands.
Ask for help.
Don't walk around with paint.
Use your imagination.

3. Come up with a good routine and clear expectations.
Olive gathers the supplies from our craft closet.
I get the water.
She paints and I do the clean up for now.
Eventually I'll give her the wet paper towels to clean up.

4. I usually give her one thing to do or an activity to try and then she gets plenty of free time.
I'll show some fun painting activities that take seconds to come up with.

Favorite painting activities:
Trace your hands and your kids hands and then let them paint the fingernails.
My daughter regularly requests to paint our nails so this was a fun (cleaner) alternative to the real thing.  She took it a step further and declared that she was going to do the same thing with her hands.  It was neat to see her replicate the project for herself.

Paint a portrait of a favorite pet

Paint a rainbow

Free paint

Color mixing

Finger paint

Q-tip paint

Polka-Dot paint

We are currently displaying her art work on her bulletin board, our fridge and in her room.  She's so proud to see her pictures on display.  For the long term I have her pick her favorites to save and then I usually toss the rest when she's not around.  We just can't handle storing 5+ paintings a day for her life :)

Our current set of water colors is Melissa and Doug.
We use cheap art paper and I love Crayola brushes because they don't shed.

What are your favorite art projects to do at home??


  1. We love watercolors at our house! The kids love mixing colors. Cam is very into what color two mixed together make. Course most turn brown. Ha ha.

  2. I adore this! I love her little fingernail one! I am a big, big fan of doing art lessons with kids. These days we only get to it during breaks, but my kids still draw and color on their own almost every single day.

  3. Painting is always a favorite and still is at our house. These tips are GREAT Whitney. It can be messy but if you make some rules and keep thing structured it usually results in a fantastic time for all.

  4. Great tips friend! My girls would do arts and crafts all day long if I let them!! You are right- just taking a few extra steps to prep things makes clean up easier which makes for a more happy mama...which means everyone is happy!😉

  5. Love these tips! I need to get these out more often.

  6. I'm LOVING the fingernail painting idea!! I'm grateful Elizabeth is fairly tidy with crafts, because I love doing them!

  7. Connor would paint all day if we let him but because he has issues with messes that's not something we can allow BUT I have plans for some painting in our near future on a few canvases.


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Smiles, Whitney