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Mommy & Me: Pretty Paper Factory

by Sara McClure on February 20, 2012

We love Eric Carle books. Alot. They are the books that we return to over and over and over again.

One of the things that make Eric Carle books so unique are the way he makes his illustrations. They are made from paper that he has painted and added texture to himself. (You can see more about his process by watching this video.) Once he paints his tissue paper, he uses it to create collages. (You can see more about his process by watching this video.) I think his process is fascinating.

Or, maybe I’m drawn to his creation process because it is attainable for even the youngest of artists…

Jonah and I had some fun during the “Plague of 2012″. I mean, there are only so many movies a kid can watch when he is sick and it’s raining outside, right?!?! As we were painting with watercolors, I took a white crayon and made a pattern on some paper when he wasn’t looking. When he painted over the white crayon, he thought it was magic.

“Mommy, look! How did it do that?!?!?!”

I explained how, this time showing him the process. He painted over it again just as bright-eyed as before.

“Mommy, can we make more?”

And so it began…The Pretty Paper Factory.

The only problem with the Pretty Paper Factory is that eventually, papers are drying on every flat surface. And then, once they are dry, I have a stack of treasures that Jonah won’t part with.

My solution: The Collage Box

Yes, I really cut up his watercolor pages into 4 smaller rectangles. I asked permission first.

To read about the Collage Box, you’ll have to visit Totally Tots. I’m sharing about The Collage Box over there today!

Want some other Pretty Paper Factory ideas? I’ll be back with more! Subscribe so you don’t miss them!

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{ 9 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Eddie - The Usual Mayhem February 21, 2012 at 7:07 am

The Collage Box is a stroke of brilliance! We have artwork piling up too, and I had been wondering what to do with it.


2 Sara February 21, 2012 at 2:10 pm

Recycle it, baby! :)


3 Honeybee52000 February 22, 2012 at 11:14 am

Oooo, I love this idea of ‘pretty paper factory’ and am certain my toddler would have a FIELD DAY water coloring and watching the designs [magically] appear! My question is, on your pretty papers, did you use a white crayon for the designs?


4 Honeybee52000 February 22, 2012 at 11:22 am

I’m sorry, I sent that reply prematurely :( I have watched the tutorials and re-read your post (silly mommy, had too much going on at once to FOCUS, sorry)… anywho, THANKS for such a greeeaaaat idea!


5 Sara February 22, 2012 at 11:30 am

Yes, we drew on white paper with a white crayon, then we watercolored over it. This works for “ocean” scene pictures, too. Enjoy!


6 JDaniel4's Mom February 22, 2012 at 2:44 pm

My son would love to explore the contents of this treasure box.


7 Sara February 27, 2012 at 10:12 pm

It was so easy to pull together! Hope you make one!


8 arty_momma February 23, 2012 at 3:31 pm

So pretty! The collage box is a great idea. I love that you just made pretty patterns vs something like snowflakes, etc.


9 Sara February 27, 2012 at 10:12 pm

Thank you! It is a lot of fun!


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