Archive for January, 2012

Indian Block Printing

We made these beautiful Indian Block prints using acrylic paint and printing blocks.

First we tried printing with an ordinary black stamp pad,

which worked fine, but we wanted some colour…

We didn’t have any block printing ink, but I had heard you could use watered down acrylic paint:

We made a sort of ‘pad’ using folded kitchen towel in a little dish

and watered the paint to a creamy consistency.

The dish needs to be big enough for your stamps or blocks.

After a while the colours started mixing together on the blocks, which gave a really nice effect…

Sam painted the larger blocks, partly because they wouldn’t fit in the dishes and partly to get better coverage.

We put a folded old tablecloth under the fabric to provide a cushion and help to get a better impression.

If you don’t have any carved blocks, you could use old bottletops and other found objects instead. In fact I think we might try that next time too as it sounds really fun!

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Modrock Giraffe

Sam wanted to make a giraffe in the same way we made our modrock turtle recently.

So we formed the body out of brown packing paper and tape. We put wooden canes inside his legs and neck to give him strength.

Covered in modrock and drying in the sun.

He’s called Gerry!

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What’s in Black Ink?…

To discover what colourful wonders are hidden in an ordinary black felt tip pen: Draw some dots in the centre of a coffee filter or piece of blotting paper. Push a pipe cleaner up through the middle, and extend the other end down into a cup of water. Wait…

…and the colours won’t take long to separate…

We tried other coloured pens too but as you can see the black seems to contain the most colours.

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Colour Gel Mixing

It’s amazing how many science kits we’ve found  in charity shops. Our latest was this one:

You could easily do this experiment without the kit though, you just need water, food colourings, plastic cups, small sealable plastic bags, and corn starch (corn flour if you’re in the UK).

Put a little water and food colouring into a bag, add a spoonful of corn starch. Seal the bag and push the ingredients together carefully to mix them.

Leave them to ‘set’ for about an hour. They should turn to a jelly-like consistency.

You can push them around a bit more to get them to mix more evenly.

Then scoop some of each colour into a new bag.

Seal and have fun pushing the colours around.

It will last for a few days in the window before it starts going a bit yucky!

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Remembering Summer in the Garden…

Last year I spent some time tidying our patio and making a small pond in an old half-barrel. It’s grey and cold out there at the moment, but I found these pictures taken in the summer to remind me of how beautiful it is when the sun’s shining and how lucky we are to have this space to share.

It’s just perfect for hanging out…

For sorting vehicles into colours…

And for the small creatures to have their very own bonfire party.

I love the winter too but on particularly grey days like today it’s nice to remember what’s round the corner…

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