We had a tragedy at our house last week.  We had a rainy day and had no finger paints.  My kids love to paint.  In fact they cheer when they wake up to cloudy skies because they know i will let them get out the paints and have a ball.  But this time, I had a major mommy fail.  Thankfully my kids have an amazing grandmother who saved the day by giving me her homemade fingerprint recipe.

You more than likely have everything you need already on hand ready to do this.  You will need about six or seven old containers.  I used old baby food jars and a few of the empty paint jars that I had not thrown out yet. Three table spoons of sugar, 1/2 cup of cornstarch, 2 cups of water, a half teaspoon of salt, and some food coloring.  To make your paints combine all ingredients except the colorings into a small sauce pan.  Heat over medium heat just until the mixture begins to thicken.  Remove from heat and allow to cool.  Once everything is room temperature divide the liquid between your containers.  Add in food coloring.  There is no exact measurement here, just add enough to get the colors you want.  This is pretty fun for the kids too.  I like to add the colors, fasten on the lids and let the kids shake them until the food coloring is all mixed in.  It can be a great lesson on mixing colors.  Or grocery store sells both regular food coloring colors and neons.  Both make for some pretty fantastic paints.

If you are worried about these being washable, you can add a dollop of dish soap to each jar and mix in. Don’t forget though, that if you add the soap, these are no longer “edible.” I haven’t had much trouble wasn’t up without the added soap, but I have heard others say it’s much easier with it.  For us though, we skip it.

There you have it, home made finger paints for a fraction of the cost!


-Stephanie Wright

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