Cornstarch Paints

This was probably one of the first messy activities I did with baby Z and also what we consider his first finger painting. I did this activity with Z just after he learned to sit up on his own so he was still pretty young but it worked really well. Using painter’s tape I taped a piece of cardstock to his foam mats and whipped up some safe to ingest paints. This was actually the hardest part and the piece that I don’t have photos of. The paint itself was easy:

  • 1c cornstarch
  • 2c warm water
  • mix together and voila

The hard part was the colour. I didn’t want baby Z putting artificial colours in his mouth so I made my own food colouring. For blue I used purple cabbage, green I used spinach, red I used beets and for yellow I used saffron.  Yellow was easy because I just added the saffron to the cornstarch mixture until it was the desired yellow. For the other colours, I pureed the foods then stained them and added the strained colour to the cornstarch mixture. It took a bit of playing around the get the colours as vibrant as I wanted but it worked out in the end. Here’s a good link to making your own food colouring if you choose that path.

Now back to the main event. I poured a little blob of each colour onto a plastic plate and set baby Z down in front of the paper, with only a diaper on (easy to clean up). Then DH held the plate in front of Z and he stuck his hands in the gooey mixture and squished it through his fingers. Much to our surprise he actually put his hands right on the paper (I think it’s because the paper itself was different and he wanted to touch it too).  He tasted the mixture and rubbed it all over his body making an adorable mess. When it was all said and done we carefully peeled the paper off the foam mat and left it on the table to dry. Of course a bath was necessary after this activity, one of baby Z’s favorite activities. Baby Z’s first finger painting was a great success, one day I will do something extra special with the actual art work (for now it’s on the fridge in it’s rightful place).Image


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