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Wax Resist Painting with Watercolors


Wax Resist Painting with Kids

Here’s a melted crayons art project that even the youngest kid can do (unlike drawing on a hot cookie sheet, as we did recently)!

Wax Resist Painting with Watercolors


  • Wax crayons
  • Candle (optional)
  • Cheese grater
  • Watercolor paper
  • Wax paper
  • Iron
  • Watercolor paint

Wax Resist Painting with Kids


First, I had Maia select three crayon colors, which I then grated on a cheese grater. Pink and red are shown together above. The white one is actually a grated wax candle. She then arranged the crayon shavings on a piece of watercolor paper (kind of like when we make melted crayon stained glass).

Wax Resist Painting with Kids

Then, I set a piece of wax paper over the paper and the crayon shavings and used the iron (on a low setting) to melt the crayon.

Wax Resist Painting with Kids

Here’s the melted crayons design. Next time I think I’d use just the crayon and no wax candle, since the melted candle looks a little too much like grease stains to me.

Wax Resist Painting with Kids

Finally, as soon as paper cooled down, Maia painted over the crayon and paper with watercolors.

Wax Resist Painting with Kids

I love this!

To adapt this idea for realism, a child could draw a picture—a house for example—then add crayon shavings of one color within the lines of the roof, and crayon shavings of another color for the door, etc.

Wax Resist Painting with Kids

This is a project that even a two year old could do, but I think it’s one that an older child would enjoy as well. Or an adult. I’d personally like to make a rainbow out of different colored crayon shavings! Or flowers.

I think I need to start doing more art alongside Maia rather than just putting together projects for her!

For more wax resist painting ideas, see this post on 6 watercolor resist techniques.

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Wax Resist Painting with Kids


  • Reply
    December 4, 2009 at 9:37 am

    It’s really pretty, such bright colours.

  • Reply
    December 4, 2009 at 11:00 am

    That’s so cool! i might just try this today.

  • Reply
    December 4, 2009 at 2:53 pm

    I LOVE doing art with my kiddos! It’s just so fun and relaxing!!

  • Reply
    Parents' Ideas
    December 4, 2009 at 3:45 pm

    Thank you for the description of your new art-project. I think we will try it with our little daughter who is even younger cthan 2 yr.

  • Reply
    December 5, 2009 at 7:26 pm

    Okay so I tried this tonight with my 6 1/2 year old adn 2 1/2 year old and as I type they are still completely enthralled by this project! Thank you for a wonderful fresh idea!

  • Reply
    Jean Van't Hul
    December 6, 2009 at 10:58 pm

    Yay! Glad they loved it!

  • Reply
    December 7, 2009 at 10:11 am

    Oh, thank you SO much for this post. We tried a project with crayon shavings and wax paper a few months ago, and it was a disaster. I was so disappointed. This looks like a great method– I think we’ll try it out this week!!

  • Reply
    December 7, 2009 at 4:23 pm

    We just did this over the weekend (alongside a book you might like!) and it was a HUGE hit!
    Thanks so much for the idea :-)

  • Reply
    December 7, 2009 at 11:58 pm

    I absolutely love all of the creative ideas you have for nurturing creativity in children. We’ve been putting many of your suggestions to use around here, and have really been enjoying the process of exploring different artistic mediums.
    I would definitely recommend that you sit down with Maia and do the projects yourself. I’ve always loved art, but have been a bit intimidated by the process. I’ve found that getting involved with these easily accessible, open ended, process-oriented projects with my children has opened me up in ways I couldn’t possibly have anticipated!
    Thanks again for all you do!

  • Reply
    Jean Van't Hul
    December 7, 2009 at 8:14 pm

    Great! I couldn’t get your link to work for some reason — will try again later…

  • Reply
    December 14, 2009 at 7:06 am

    This is awesome! I always look for fun crafts for my 2 year old, and most are still hard for him. But this was SO FUN! We did this for a long time and have kept on getting the supplies out and doing some more. THank you!!

  • Reply
    February 24, 2010 at 5:49 pm

    This is soo cool. We have some old crayons that I have been saving for a great project..I think this is the one! Thanks for sharing!

  • Reply
    [email protected]
    March 26, 2010 at 10:25 am

    Your blog so inspires me! I teach a preschool art class and I’m always looking for fun new projects for my kids! Thank you!

  • Reply
    Aaron Legrand
    December 10, 2011 at 3:55 am

    Aaron Legrand

    Thanks for sharing, this is a fantastic blog article.Really thank you! Want more.

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