Homemade Watercolors & More
Fun for kids of all ages!

By Connie Goldin


Mom to Madre had fun in our “test kitchen” (also known as my kitchen) making DIY watercolors that we found on Meet The Dubiens family blog. It is very inexpensive and the ingredients are all things found in most kitchens: baking soda, cornstarch, white vinegar, corn syrup, and food colors.

Here is the Dubien’s recipe:

4 tbs. baking soda
2 tsp. white vinegar
1/2 tsp. light corn syrup
2 tbs. cornstarch
food coloring

The exciting part in making this, is that the soda and vinegar fizz. The colors need to dry out over several days before they are ready to use, which would challenge most young participants. Since we were making these paints to bring to several multi-age groups, no kids were frustrated by having to wait out the drying period! I was a little impatient, but I resisted trying them too early. Since I doubled the recipe and had deep wells in my plastic egg container from the refrigerator, the paints were a little gooey in the bottom, when we used them a week later. However the kids had a blast and probably liked the gooey texture better than regular watercolors.

When we bring an event to a group, we provide a bunch of fun stuff to paint with–tempera, glitter glue, watercolors, watercolor crayons and watercolor pens, etc.–and this time too, the kids eventually used many of these. The majority of the paintings are by the DIY watercolors alone, then the painters began to use the other options as well. The last five are “mixed media.” We used coffee filters, paper plates, and watercolor paper for our canvases. Here are the results of this fun experiment:

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