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Salt Dough, Paint, and Making Messes

salt dough beads

Emma made these lovely beads out of salt dough. We used 1 cup of flour, 1/4 cup of salt, and however much water it took to form a play dough-type consistency, then baked at 325 for maybe 20 minutes (larger objects would require more time). Then she painted them, mostly using a finger paint technique after deciding that she didn’t like the way the brushwork was turning out. So we finished off with a set of handprints to remember the day:

paint handprints

The handprints are significant, because I’m quite certain this is the first time my six-year-old has willingly put paint on her hands – in her life! It’s been an incredible journey to see her evolve from extra-cautious to throwing herself whole-heartedly into a project!

These little beads are surprisingly strong once baked, so they make great homemade necklaces, and are fun for kids to use for stringing practice as well!

MaryAnne lives is a craft loving educator, musician, photographer, and writer who lives in Silicon Valley with her husband Mike and their four children.

12 thoughts on “Salt Dough, Paint, and Making Messes”

  1. How fun! We still have some unpainted salt dough stuff from doing it a few months back. We have terrible time finishing our projects :(

  2. That is funny!
    Your whole family is so creative and artsy…I would never had pictured one of them being cautious of messy hands! I have one of those two…and it always shocks me! I love this project!

  3. My kids loooooove getting messy, and getting everything around them messy! Unfortunately, Cavan is still really into the eating the playdough stage. This may have to wait for another few months. Seems every time I let them play with playdough (homemade or store-bought) Christian and Cullen start yelling that Cavvie’s eating it!

  4. it’s hard for me to get Bear to get his hands fully covered in paint, too! so glad your kiddo finally took the plunge! great point behind this post… if you’re not getting messy, you’re not having fun!

  5. My kids still do not willingly let me do handprint paintings. They will cover themselves in paint on purpose, but if I try to do the handprint. Oh the horror.

    Very pretty handprints.

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