Wednesday, October 13

Craft project that almost made me insane... but I love the finished product!

Do you want to do a fun project with your kids???  Do you need an idea for something to hang on their walls?  Have I got a project for you!!  You might hate yourself while you are doing it, you will probably make a mess (or two), you might be tempted to cry, you might micro manage your kids if you are a perfectionist, you might think I am crazy for suggesting it... Unless you only have one kid--then it's a piece of cake!!

So here it is... sometimes referred to as "Subway Art," masterpieces inspired by this blog post from Impress Your Kids.  I think it might be possible that I even impressed my kids a little bit.  Here is my story.

I discovered this idea back in July when Amanda did her post on "cutting letters, making stickers, fingerpainting w/ preschoolers." I knew that it was something I wanted to do, whenever God moved us to a larger house (wall space was nil in the trailer).  We moved 6 weeks ago, and I kept trying to figure out when we going to work on this project in the midst of our crazy life... then I saw the opportunity with an extra long Columbus Day weekend.  So I scouted for sales at Michael's and picked up canvases, buy one get one.  I bought craft paint on sale... and then I searched, and searched, and searched for contact paper, and kept forgetting to look whenever I was at Walmart.  FINALLY, I remembered Monday night (I am a procrastinator).  The kids had Tuesday off, too.

So I woke up Tuesday morning ready  to tackle the project.  I had the kids pick some verses, song phrases, and I put them in front of the TV and started cutting contact paper into nice letters as shown by Amanda's wonderful video tutorial, which I post here for your viewing pleasure.

This is where I started to panic... it took me forever...

and it filled the canvas faster than I thought it would... no room for the "tenderhearted, forgiving one another part."  Hopefully, he will remember it anyways!

Then my husband called in the middle and I had to find some car repair receipts and track down some budget info, and I totally stressed out about money and panicked, and then couldn't enjoy the project.
When I started to attach the contact paper to the canvas, it wasn't sticking, and I panicked some more, and stressed some more, and figured I was a failure at this mothering/crafting thing...

My kids watched way too much TV that morning.  Lunch became quick PB/J sandwiches and I put the girls down for naps...  and took a deep breath and tried again!

Once, I got Nathaniel's letter stickers attached, I set him up in the basement with his canvas and some paint, and he went to work, and I took pictures.
We let the red paint dry while I cut out letters for the next canvas.  We had some funny moments, it was nice to be silly with him and it was great stress relief.
and then he topped it off with some gold paint.

I cut more letters, more letters, and more letters (not such a great project when you multiply it times 4)
Things went very smooth when 3 of my 4 kids were napping!  :)  I was even convinced that I would be able to do all 4 in one day!! (and I did)
Once it was dry, Nathaniel pealed his letters off...
and it actually turned out!!!  I was soo excited, I couldn't wait for the girls to wake up so we could continue!

Silly faces from my silly girls... I took less pictures when they were working (I had more to focus on)
Sienna just got put on the floor... good thing it's water based paint.!

My little ray of sunshine with her canvas... I confess, I filled in some of her white spots when she was done, because I was afraid the letters wouldn't show up... (My perfectionism shining through). After the paint dried, I peeled all the stickers off, so I could take pictures!

and... the finished products!!

so all this to say, I highly recommend this fun project if you aren't a perfectionist, uptight mom like me!

ps. yes, my kids are all in their pajamas... it was pajama day! :)

EDIT to add: These would make great handmade Christmas gifts (on a smaller scale), with Christmas themed phrases or diecuts!  So I am linking it to Kid's Holiday Crafts at The CSI Project (December 2011)



  1. Hi Julie Anne!
    Thanks for stopping by my blog earlier. Really hope you and your family enjoy the soup. These little paintings are just too cute! I think we need to have a pajama day around here, too : ) Hope you have a wonderful weekend, friend.

  2. SO ADORABLE! You were ambitious w/so many words and canvases! But they turned out awesome. And whoa--seeing my face pop up on your post was scary! :)


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