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Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Kids Craft: Roll Printing

kids craft roll printing wrapping paper

This is another simple activity that Ana seems to enjoy, thanks to doing it as often as we can for various occasions. Basically, we use it to make simple, quick and unique wrapping paper.

When Ana was little, I would save all her easel paper paintings and use them as wrapping paper... and now I do that with Oggie's.

When she turned three, we started consciously attempting patterns on the paper to use for gift wrapping - either cover a large area of the easel paper with colorful dots or do rubber stamping or even meticulously peel the backing and stick stickers on to the butcher paper or easel paper to make unique wrapping paper. And, as she turned 4½ she found that a bit tedious - takes a long time to cover a decent amount of the easel paper with patterns of her choice.

So we started doing roll printing - not sure if that is the common term for it, but, it works for us at home. Basically, use some sort of a rolling mechanism to print large areas with patterns easily.

There are craft projects on the web talking about using the cardboard inner tube of the toilet paper rolls as they are about the right size for kids and are easily available.

We tried that and it was a bit cumbersome for Ana - just rolling the cardboard tube with her hands seemed a bit tedious. So, we started using the rolling pin. And that really made it fun and quick.

To make patterns, we used foam stickers as well as sponge-cutouts. Foam stickers are awesome and easy and fairly inexpensive. To make abstract shapes, we cut out shapes in cellulose kitchen sponge and glued them on to a piece of drawing paper or butcher paper, then put it on the rolling pin.

roll printing kids crafts

Items Used: Child-size rolling pin, foam stickers, toilet paper cardboard tube (or kitchen paper towel roll inner tube), butcher paper or easel paper, tempera paints, old baking pan (or any flat mat or surface), glitter(optional).

  1. Apply the foam stickers on to cardboard tube in any pattern, then insert the child-size rolling pin into this cardboard tube
  2. Use favorite colors tempera paints and spread them out on a flat surface for easy pick-up
  3. Pick up the paints on the foam stickers by rolling the cardboard tube over the paints
  4. Spread out a large desired amount of easel paper or butcher paper on the table, weigh down the corners if preferred
  5. Roll the loaded rolling pin over the paper as many times as preferred, picking up more paint in between
  6. Sprinkle glitter, if using, and allow to dry
  7. Voilà! beautiful, original design wrapping paper ready

We tried a few variations on the rolling mechanism:
  1. Tall plastic soda bottle: we liked this, especially if we left enough room at both ends for teeny hands, then rolling was much easier than the cardboard roll fitted with the rolling pin
    kids craft roll printing wrapping paper
  2. Rolling Pin stuck with Paper: we stuck a piece of paper to cover the surface of the regular size rolling pin, and stuck the stickers on to this paper. This certainly was my favorite as it covered larger areas
    kids craft roll printing wrapping paper

I am sure there are a few other rolling mechanism we can try out - Appa's paint-roller seems like a good one... but, basically, whatever mechanism works best for the kids would make this a nice and fun activity, I am sure... Maybe next time, if she is up for it, I'll leave it up to Ana to think up a different rolling mechanism and try it out herself.

And this simple roll printing is not restricted to wrapping paper - we use it on and off to create a set of greeting cards or note cards with similar pattern.

A set of home-grown note cards (with matching envelopes) used to be one of my favorite gifts to send to friends - a "Just Because..." gift - to gently nudge them to write back a handwritten note for me :)

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At 12:20 AM, Blogger Swapna Raghu Sanand said...

Great tips on rolling mechanism! Fun for kids and grown ups too!

At 3:24 AM, Blogger Kristine said...

My little one would love this. She has a few pens with roller ends but finds them difficult to roll evenly but I think this (using two hands) would allow for more even pressure.

At 7:41 AM, Blogger Dee said...

this is a cool idea!..good thinking...

At 4:20 PM, Blogger Reva said...

Beautiful! Loved all the craft/art ideas Sheela.. just been a little busy and hence no comments! Hope all of you are doing good.

At 9:24 AM, Blogger Sheela said...

::Swapna:: You are so right - fun for grown-ups too - I really enjoy this every time we do it :)

::Kristine::You know, I debated a while back about getting child-sized roller pin, but, of all the uses it has been put to since its arrival, this feels well worth the investment :)

::Dee:: Thanks! Can't wait for baby D to start doing stuff with her Mom :) Do you think K will like this? I liked the snowman card he had sent for Xmas!

::Reva::I was thinking about you and especially baby C... how is she doing? Is she in daycare still? Email when you have the time, no worries.


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