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How to Do Glue Batik with Kids

by Jean Van't Hul
May 14, 2015

How to Do Glue Batik with Kids

The kids and I recently revisited one of our favorite fabric decorating techniques.

Glue batik

We used this fabric decorating technique to make some lavender eye pillows as Mother’s Day gifts for the grandmas as well as to sell as a preschool fundraiser. The glue batik seemed perfect for the small eye pillows (we’ve done it on curtains before and it was just too much).

I’ll share the instructions for the lavender eye pillows tomorrow or the next day, but today I wanted to show the step-by-step instructions for glue batik.

How to Do Glue Batik with Kids

How to Do Glue Batik with Kids

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*A note about the acrylic paint :: We’ve always used the thick stuff from a tube before and watered it down really well. This time, we used more of a liquid acrylic paint like this, and it was easier to work with. Go with what you have, but if you’re going to buy some paint specifically for this project, I’d go for the liquid acrylics.


Glue batik on fabric

1.  “Draw” your design on the fabric with the squeeze bottle of Elmer’s Blue Gel Glue. 

Glue batik on fabric

And yes, it’s gotta be the blue gel. We tried doing this with the clear gel kind once and it didn’t work nearly as well.

Glue batik on fabric

2. Let dry completely. We let ours dry overnight.

How to do glue batik on fabric

3. Paint over the fabric and dried glue designs with watered-down acrylic paint. 

If you’re interested in those little pots of acrylic paint, I bought them from Stubby Pencil Studio. We used those as well as some other liquid acrylics I bought at a local craft store.

How to do glue batik on fabric

Here’s one of Daphne’s bigger glue batik pieces (for a neck pillow rather than an eye pillow).

How to do glue batik on fabric

And here are some of my smaller eye pillow fabric pieces.

4. Let the paint dry.

How to do glue batik on fabric

5. Soak the glue batik fabric pieces in warm/hot water for one hour to soften the glue. 

(Yes, we have a peach-colored bathtub.)

How to do glue batik on fabric

6. Scrub the softened glue off with a nail brush or scrub brush.

how to make glue batik with kids

7. Dry once again. You can let them air dry or pop them in the dryer with an old towel. Iron if desired.

How to do glue batik

As you can tell, there are a fair number of steps to decorating fabric this way but it’s all easy. And worth it!

Update :: Here’s my post on how to Make Lavender Eye Pillows with Glue Batik Art

Have you tried glue batik yet? If not, I highly recommend giving it a try!

Some ideas for what to make with this technique…

Pin It for Later ::

How to Do Glue Batik with Kids

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