If you're looking for some wall decor to brighten up your childrens' rooms, or a fun, family-friendly piece of art for the living room or den, this little project might do the trick. A BIG plus is that you can make it with your kids!
The Handprint Canvas Kit from Red Envelope (seen here, $40) can easily be recreated for much less $$$ by shopping at your local art/craft supply store -most of the items you will need can even be purchased in the Wal-mart or Target arts & crafts sections, although the selection may be limited.
Decide how many handprints and/or footprints (or both!) you want to feature in your project, then purchase that number of canvases, in a size that will be plenty big for the print (you will also want to leave some room around the print). You should be able to find a pack of canvases for $4-$7, depending on where you shop. Here are some examples of reasonably priced canvases.
Pick up a few small (2 oz.) bottles of craft paint in the colors of your choosing ($1-$1.50 per bottle) - I recommend at least 2 (one light color, one dark color), but no more than four different colors in your project (in this case, 2 lighter colors, 2 darker colors). *Tip: Craft, or Acrylic, paint is non-toxic, water-based, and will clean up super easily! Look for brands like Ceramcoat, FolkArt, etc. Finally, you will need a cheap paint brush or two - flat brushes will work best, but do not use a sponge brush - it will soak up too much paint, and you will be working on the base color of your canvases for a LoooONG time.
1. Lay old newspaper on painting surface for easy clean up later.
2. Paint each canvas completely (front and sides), using a different color for each canvas. You may need to apply two coats of paint.
3. Completely covor the bottom of hand(s) or feet that will be making the print with paint that is a different color from the canvas. Try this method: Light print on dark canvas, dark print on light canvas. An example of light/dark colors is on the left. You can also copy the look of the Red Envelope item up above. For an art-deco look, just use black and white~
4. Continue making prints until your project is complete. Use as many canvases as you want! Let dry completely before hanging. (Canvases can be easily hung on the wall with a nail.) Get creative with the arrangement
5. Easy clean up! Wash off hands/feet, wash out paintbrushes, tightly recap all paint, and pick up the newspaper! You're done! A great way to spend a couple of hours with the kids on a rainy Saturday afternoon.
(I don't have kids of my own... maybe I can attempt this with my cat???)