Thursday, September 13, 2018

Kid's Crafts: Painting Memorial Marker Seashells

Kids have a hard time expressing their sadness and grief. Depending on their age, they might not even comprehend what is going on and how they should feel. This is the same with the loss of a family member, friend or even a beloved pet.

To help children learn to deal with their grief and to express their feelings, we've come up with an easy craft project for them to do. Once their seashell memorial markers are completed, they can place them on a grave of a loved one...including a lost pet. When making them, let the children paint whatever designs they want...including their choice of paint colors.
Kid's Crafts: Painting Memorial Marker Seashells

Kid's Crafts: Painting Memorial Marker Seashells

Large Clam Seashells
Acrylic Craft Paints, Variety of Colors
Paint Brush, Water Dish, Paper Towels
Disposable Foam Plate, Paint Palette
Old Sheets of Newspaper
Clear Acrylic Spray Sealer

Cover the work surface with a few sheets of old newspaper. Kids can be really messy when working with paint.

You'll want to fill a dish with water (we like to use old plastic disposable butter dishes), provide paper towels and use disposable plates for paint palettes. Squirt a few puddles of different colored paint onto the disposable plate. Show the kids how to wash out their paint brush when changing colors by dipping it into the water dish and drying it with the paper towel.
Painted Clam Seashells with Starfish Design

The kids can paint just the outside of the clam shell or both sides, entirely up to them. They can make a design that reminds them of the loved one that they lost and/or adding wording to the design. I feel it's important for the child to come up with their own unique & creative design which helps them to express their feelings.

Let the seashells thoroughly dry. If you're using acrylic craft paint, this can take up to 60-70 minutes. Take the shells outside and lay them down onto newspaper or an old plastic placemat. Have an adult spray 1-2 coats of the clear acrylic sealer on each seashell and let thoroughly dry. This will protect the painted surface from chipping, cracking and/or fading. It will allow the seashells to be displayed outside.

We do this project with the kids in our family every time a loved one passes on or with the loss of a beloved pet. They really look forward to it...from the preschoolers and on up. Some of the adults will get in on the action too! You can make them as fancy as you want, but I think basic designs look best. We hope you enjoy this crafting with kids project!

Tuesday, July 17, 2018

Kid's Craft Project: Hand Painted Seashells for Summer

Every time we travel down to the beach we always come home with a big bag of seashells. My grandchildren love to collect them while we're on vacation and then we use them in various craft projects throughout the year.

This project is a great way to use up some of those clam shells that you collected. All you need is a few bottles of acrylic paint and let the kids come up with their own painted designs. If you plan on displaying them outside you'll need to protect the painted finish with clear acrylic spray sealer. If you're displaying them indoors, you can skip that step.
Kid's Craft Project: Hand Painted Seashells for Summer

Kid's Craft Project: Hand Painted Seashells for Summer

Acrylic Craft Paints
Paint Brush and Water Dish
Medium & Large Clam Shells
Clear Acrylic Spray Sealer - Glossy Finish
Old Newspaper and Paper Towels

Lay newspaper down onto your work surface. Make sure your clam shells and seashells have been washed and thoroughly dried.

We use old plastic margarine bowls and their lids when painting. Use the bowl as your water dish and the plastic lid as your paint palette. Squirt a few colors of acrylic paint onto the paint palette and let the kids go to town painting their seashells. I feel that it's very important to let them come up with their own creative designs, not that fancy stuff that adults want to do just to have a Pinterest-worthy pin. Nope, let the kids be creative!!!

Once the shells have been painted you'll want to let them dry for 1-2 hours. Take them outside and lay them down onto newspaper and have an adult spray them with 1-2 coats of clear acrylic spray sealer. It comes in a matte, semi-gloss and glossy finish...we prefer the glossy. Let the shells dry for 3-4 hours (until they are no longer tacky). You can now use them to decorate inside your home or outside in your garden & flower beds.

Wednesday, November 1, 2017

Quick and Easy Halloween Crafts for Kids

My 8 1/2 year old granddaughter spent the weekend with us and wanted to work on some easy Halloween craft projects. She's been doing various arts and crafts since age 4 and loves to sit down and get creative. We headed into my craft room and she went through my "extra's bin" and pulled out a few things to work on.
Halloween Jack Skeleton Hand-Painted Clam Shell

First up...the Jack Skeleton Hand-Painted Clam Shell (Seashell) that took a few hours to make as she had to let the paint dry in between the coats. We used really large clam shells that we collected from the beach last month and each seashell measures about 6" wide at its widest point.

If you're looking for more Halloween Hand-Painted Seashells and Clam Shell designs, you can find them over on my main blog called Two Classy Chics. We have a large Crafting with Kids section where you'll find all kinds of cool craft projects to do with the kids!

She painted on two coats of white acrylic paint, leaving each coat dry for about 30 minutes before proceeding to the next step. Using black acrylic paint she painted on two black colored eyes, a nose and a mouth. You can see the shape, size and placement by referring to the photograph Let the face paint dry for about an hour.

Take the painted clam shells (seashells) outside and lay them down on a sheet of newspaper or aluminum foil. Lightly spray two coats of clear acrylic sealer (glossy finish) on top of the painted design. Let dry for several hours. The sealer will protect the painted design and you can use your painted seashells indoors or outdoors.
Hand-Painted Black Cat for Halloween

The second project was a Hand-Painted Black Cat which is totally appropriate for Halloween. I had an unfinished cat wooden shape in my craft bin that I had picked up on clearance at a local craft supply store last year for about a dollar. I had never gotten around to painting it or decorating it.

For this...she took aluminum foil and wrapped strips of foil around the rope hanging cord to protect it from paint. She took it outside and laid it on top of two sheets of newspaper. She used black spray paint to paint the front of the cat. She waited an hour, flipped it over and painted the back side. Waited another hour (make sure it's dry) and brought it inside.

Take the aluminum foil off of the rope hanging cord. She used a white chalk paint marker and wrote the word BOO! on the front of the cat. She kept it really simple which I like! After that was dry, we took it back outside and sprayed a light coat of clear acrylic sealer on each side of the black cat to protect the paint. This cat now hangs on the back door over at her house as a Halloween decoration.

Both of these projects are great for older kids to work on and they don't cost a lot of money. If you don't have access to large clam shells, go out and find some smooth river rocks and paint your design on top of the rock. You can always find unfinished wood holiday theme'd items in the clearance bin at your local craft store after the holiday for cheap! Pick up a few shapes this year, tuck them away and let the kids paint them for next year.