Sunday, August 14, 2011

Tutorial: School Glue in Many Homemade Hues

You will be unsurprised to learn that we go through a LOT of glue around here. I try to buy the kids' glue only during back-to-school sales, when they're vastly cheaper than at other times, and I probably shop the back-to-school sales flyers even more avidly than the most penny-pinching parent of an institutionally-schooled kid, because whereas that parent might purchase one six-pack of Elmer's glue sticks for a dollar, I purchase ten of them.

The glue sticks give me agonies because of their plastic waste, but I still stock up because they're the best glue for all the daily little paper projects that the girls do, and they WILL go through 60 glue sticks in 12 months, I heartily assure you. I did better with the bottles of white school glue that I bought last year--I bought a dozen or so bottles (at a quarter apiece!) AND a gallon of Elmer's at the local office supply store. I took care of the small bottles, refilled them from the gallon jug as needed (as well as pulling from the gallon jug when I need glue for projects like gak and shaving cream puff paint), and did not need to purchase any new ones this year.

I over-purchased on the bottles last year (honestly, I DO know that even two children cannot each use six bottles of glue at the same time, three per hand) because I wasn't sure how durable they'd be for frequent refilling--those orange caps do break--but now that I've still got them, it's been in the back of my mind to do something fun with the extra bottles, to get them out of the glue bin and into the art rotation. I was thinking glitter glue, or perhaps tempera paint thickened with a little cornstarch, but finding this black glue and watercolor resist tutorial on the Pink and Green Mama blog was like some kind of personal jackpot for me.

I set out ten or so bottles of Elmer's glue--
--and let Syd pick out whatever colors she wanted from our collection of acrylic paints, then unscrew the cap of each bottle and squirt a couple of big squirts of one color into each bottle:
With that done, we reverted back to the black glue tutorial by shakeshakeshaking each glue bottle to mix the paint and glue together, then getting out the Strathmore watercolor paper to play with it all:
The watercolor paper is a nice choice because after the glue dries you can then add watercolors to your art, of course--
--although Syd found markers and colored pencils just as fun to work with on top of the glue.

My favorite part of this dyed glue is that it dries puffy, like the shaving cream + glue puff paint that the girls and I create sometimes, but unlike the shaving cream puff paint, this glue paint can live happily in its glue bottle on the girls' art shelves, to be taken down anytime they desire to make a little more art.

P.S. Do you love messy kid crafts? You might love my Craft Knife Facebook page!


CutiaRomaneasca said...

A great idea for my two little daughters. Thanks.

pink and green mama MaryLea said...

Love it!! You guys did a great job

pink and green mama,

Debbie's World of Books said...

Interesting idea! I went a little crazy and stocked up on glue too when they were having the $.01 sale. I wonder if this would work with food coloring?

Anonymous said...

Would this work with food coloring in the glue?

julie said...

It would certainly be worth an experiment. The coloring might not be as vivid if you used liquid food coloring, and it might be diluted, but those aren't necessarily bad features. And the addition of gel food coloring might even work better than acrylic paint.