This Scratch Art tutorial for tweens and up is packed with colorful Christmas and Chanukkah craft ideas, and comes from our special guest blogger Dena Ann Adams.
We’re going to make some fun and casual holiday place setting decorations – whether you’re a crowd with complicated seating arrangements or just a few wanting color and creativity at your table, you’ll love these cards, treat bags, and name cards, color-coded for each guest!
This project is really geared toward tweens-and-up with an interest in art and the dexterity to do detailed work. Feel free to simplify, use blunt tools, and adapt for smaller artists, though – everyone loves Scratch Art after all!
Melissa & Doug Washable Paint Set, cards, envelopes and miniature treat bags.
Materials from Melissa & Doug:
- Washable watercolor set
- Wooden Alphabet stamp set
- Scratch Art Multicolor paper pack – For this project, the easy-to-glue paper is preferable to the board.
- Melissa & Doug wood stylus – I like to give my wood stylus a turn or two in a handheld pencil sharpener.
- Fine brushes – For more paint and for liquid decoupage medium
- Optional calligrapher’s tools: scratch knives #112/113 and type B dip pen holder (I do highly recommend these for anyone who advances in Scratch Art and loves it, and is old enough for the sharp small parts.)
- Clear drying glue for paper, or a matte decoupage medium (mixture of glue, sealer and finish for paper)
- Cards and envelopes (A2 sized cards)
- Place cards (White cardstock)
- Mini treat Bags
- Unscented Baby Wipes
- Pencil Sharpener
- Glitter glue
Step 1: Lay some color down on your blank cards with the Watercolor set. Be messy about it.
This is fairly straightforward, and this is something that’s best done by those in the youngest age bracket. The washable watercolors have a fairly pale appearance and take a bit of working up with the brush.
Step 2: Using the stamp set, stamp a repeating festive word or the name of the seat occupant onto your painted cards and treat bags.
Don’t worry about mistakes; you can wipe them with water and redo. Plus, a lot of this layer will get covered up.
Have fun here. This is a great spelling opportunity and creative wordplay opportunity. Mistakes are not a huge problem, either, since this layer will get partially covered up by your collage.
It is extremely helpful to have baby wipes on hand to clean the ink off each stamp as you change from one color to the next.
Step 3: Time to scratch. Use Scratch Art multicolored paper. The boards are great fun, but they are hard to collage with and don’t take glue as well as the paper.
Time to Scratch! You will use the Scratch Art paper PAPER pack, in multicolor (pink, white, yellow, red, green and blue). The wood stylus will work, but as it is in the pack, it can be a little imprecise. It also dulls and slips against the page. A few LIGHT turns in a pencil sharpener makes the perfect tool (This is a little sharper, so please be careful!).
The wooden stylus is the main tool we’ll be using for this project. It’s a great, versatile tool, and it handles curves smoothly. To improve your results (*if your kids are safe with a pencil-type point), turn the stylus one or two times gently in a pocket pencil sharpener. Repeat this if the point dulls.
For precision-inclined teens, you may want to consider a calligrapher’s type B dip pen holder and 112/113 scratch knives. These are fairly inexpensive items. You can use the 113 curved blade to gently scrape some whites out of the paper. (as shown.)
Scratch seasonal and fun images. Group colors and themes for each guest.
This is an example of the calligrapher’s correction tool. It is a specific dip pen handle and tip for scratching out ink mistakes. This is a little sharper and more specialized. If you press too hard the paper will rip. If you press just a bit harder than usual, the paper scratches past the color layer and you’ll get white.
You can use guides and stencils, trace around cookie cutters – there’s really no limit. I like the texture of knit fabric, and it’s just a series of little interlocking V shapes. Try a mitten: you can do it!
Follow these steps to make a realistic mitten. It’s easier than you might think!
Step 4. Glue It Up.
I like to spread matte, liquid decoupage medium over my Scratch Art first, and allow it to dry. It will dry clear and it will thicken your artwork to prevent glue buckling later, and take away the high gloss of Scratch Art paper, making it more camera and scanner friendly. Brush a thin, uniform layer of the decoupage medium over the scratched art, and wait. (Don’t worry, it WILL get clear!)
When the top layer dries, cut around your drawings, giving them a bit of a black border. Glue them into place on your cards. Allow this to dry.
Step 5: Glitter!
I love the look of raw kraft paper with the twinkle of glitter. The Melissa & Doug glitter glue set has matches for the scratch-art colors, and a great precision point for application. Drying takes quite some time, so make sure things are dry before handling them again.
Enhance cards, envelopes and bags with Glitter Glue.
Enhance cards, envelopes and bags with Glitter Glue.
You are done — lovely work! Your cards can be placed at place settings prior to dinner, and your treat bags can be put into place as dessert is brought out.
Even a random night can be a great night for a little personalized card – I hope this tutorial serves as ongoing inspiration! If you’d like more tips and details on my techniques with Scratch Art, please feel free to email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. You can also follow me on Facebook.
The Melissa & Doug Scratch Art and art supplies featured in this post were supplied to me at no charge by Melissa & Doug. Opinions are my own.
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