Get your Paper On
This part is tricky, and it’s purely due to skill level. The younger ones are going to need a little help! The older ones, probably just verbal direction. But if your kids are anything like my 10 year old, they know everything already anyway and you don’t have to worry about them.
Blow up a few water balloons. Water balloons are perfect for this project because they are small and mostly egg-like in shape. And very VERY inexpensive to get a hold of.
Take yesterday’s newspaper and cut it into 1/2 inch x 6 inch strips. The kids can totally get in on helping with this part. All measurements are approximate; you’re not going to be able to tell much of a difference in the strip sizes by the time you finish smearing them all over the balloon…so just guesstimate and have fun shredding a bunch of newspaper.
Now you are going to need all that paste stuff you made with the glue. I really recommend lining your workspace with something at this point, as things are going to get messy. I used freezer paper, with the plastic side up.
Take a strip of newspaper, dip it in the glue mix, then press it to the balloon. The Elmer’s instructions say to squeeze off excess glue, etc. etc., but 6 year olds and 10 year olds are really too excited to do this. They’ll slap it on the balloon saturated with glue, and you’re going to let them. It’s not a hard thing to fix!
Let your kid keep wrapping his balloon in layers of paper strips until he gets tired of it. This will probably take less than 10 minutes and he’ll want another balloon to drench in glue paste. Your job now is to even things out. Left to dry, the paper will buckle, and the surface will be uneven –and that part is livable. But it will take a massively long time to dry and it won’t want to peel off the surface you left it on when you do.
Take all those fabulous base layers they made and wrap dry strips of paper as tightly as you can around the balloon egg until it the egg looks like it will keep its shape and/or you may have to start dipping in paste again to get the paper to stick. Then use your hand to mold to a smooth shape. Just move the glue around! You are going to cover the egg in stuff anyway, you just want to smooth things down a little if you can.
Also, here is no limit to paper mache thickness here! Some artists actually cut their paper mache with saws and sand them their layers are so thick.
After you think your egg is ready to set aside to dry, do just that. I left all two dozen of mine overnight.
Want to see what we did on day 2 of our confetti paper mache Easter egg adventure? Click on, my friend!