scratch-n-sniff paintings

when someone yells, “KOOL-AID!!!” do you come bustin’ through the wall? i sure don’t. honestly, i’ve never bought kool-aid in my adult life, and i’m not sure my mom did when i was a kid either. (when i was little, we had a huge garden of fresh fruits, veggies, and even a scarecrow. in our backyard we had a hen-house that was home to 12 bard rock chickens who laid our eggs. i’m guessing mom thought kool-aid didn’t go too well with that diet.) however, i did recently make my first ever kool-aid purchase – for art’s sake! N and i made kool-aid paintings, and lemme tell ya, what an inexpensive, fun, and yummy-smelling way to color your afternoon!

an art teacher friend told me about this idea that you could paint with diluted kool-aid powder, and it behaves like liquid watercolors but smells way better, so we tried it. all you need to do is buy those individual packets of kool-aid in different colors (er, flavors) and add a half cup of water to each one to make the paint.

mixing colors

mixing colors

each packet cost me 10 cents at the grocery store (cheaper in bulk,) so it makes for a really thrifty playdate with your little one. we put one color in each bowl, and i assigned a brush to each color. i gave N a large sheet of watercolor paper (any heavy cardstock type of paper should be fine – you just want it to be able to absorb the water without ripping or rippling.) then N got busy making a delightfully fruity scented rainbow. she liked to sniff each color on the brush as she painted with it, and said, “these smell like lollipops!” it really made the whole house smell delicious!

artist at work

artist at work

after the paintings are dry, kids are able to then scratch the painting with their fingernail to release the scent — scratch & sniff paintings! how cool is that?!

smells like art!

smells like art!

a few notes: i found that the yellow barely showed up for us, and the purple appeared more like charcoal gray. i think it would be more purple if diluted with more water. and a brief word of warning before you try this at home — kool-aid stains tables and clothing. make sure to cover everything and that you and your kid are wearing smocks and artsy play clothes.

 

07.21

2009
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