Thursday, July 21, 2011

Melty Crayon Canvas Art

I know I am  not alone in my Pinterest OBSESSION.... Recently I saw a Pin that was linked to a seller on Etsy for custom Crayon art. It looked to be crayons that were affixed to a canvas and melted down the canvas. I LOVED the look of the drippy, melty, colorful wax.. but my cheap ass didn't love the price tag. The artsy fartsy craftsy part of me just knew I could make this on my own.. for a fraction of the cost. So I did. And, lucky you, I will show and tell you how I figured it out!

Here is the one from Etsy. Awesome, isn't it?! This 16"x20" framed canvas sold for $65 or $75!!
Now, before mommy is allowed to do an art project (when the kids are awake), I have to find something fun for them to do! So... we tried sandpaper art. I *shocker* also saw this idea on Pinterest, but I believe they were making t-shirts. To be honest, I didn't click the link, I just re-pinned it and came up with this. On a clipboard, I  put down a piece of sandpaper, covered it with a piece of drawing paper, and gave them some twistable crayons.  They had a great time and I got busy on my own crayon project!

Our supplies.
 
They got busy right away. I love my righty and my lefty- it works well when they are sharing space on the Learning Tower!


But, apparently Benjamin decided he needed a little more elbow room!
 

You can sort of see the texture here. Not great, but it worked, I suppose.

Next time I'll get a tougher grit sandpaper. They loved it though and that's what matters!


  
Onto the crayon project! This was SUCH a cheap project!! Right  now Kroger has Crayola 24 packs of crayons on sale for .25 each (up to 4)!! Just typing that makes me want to go buy more!! Wal Mart will match it as well, so go get you some Crayola's!! 

Supplies:
2 boxes of Crayola 24ct. crayons (2 @ .25/ea = .50)
1 11"x14" canvas (3pk @ 5.14, so 1 = $1.71) (* I had an old 3 pack of canvases from years ago- don't know how much they would be now, but the price tag on them was $5.14!)
hot glue gun & glue
blow dryer
newspaper or other covering to cover your work area a.k.a. "the splatter zone"
Total cost = less than $2.50!! 

This is the back of the canvas I used. It's not the kind that is stretched over a frame.

So, of course you can use any color combination you wish, but for an 11"x14" canvas, two packs fit perfectly!! I did the rainbow, then the reverse rainbow. I left out the two white, two browns, and one black. There was space for one crayon at the end so I added a black. 

Step 1: Lay out your crayons in the order you want them to be on your canvas.

Step 2: Move them down towards the bottom of your canvas so you can begin gluing at the top. Using your hot glue gun, make two lines of hot glue, approximately 2"-3" long (depending on how quickly you work). Place the crayons individually on the glue, working quickly before it dries. Be sure to line them up straight and use the top of the canvas as a guide. I thought it was important for them all to look cohesive, so I made sure  "Crayola" was facing out on all of them. It would also be neat if you did it and showed the other side, with the names of each color showing instead.
 

My line got wonky and I had to peel a few crayons off. In the process Mr. Green broke his tip. (Aaaaahhhhh!!!). My immediate thought was to glue it back.. yeah, with hot glue. Any guesses how that worked out?....


Well poo poo on you for being a Negative Nancy and thinking it wouldn't work! Thinking that it would just melt and not stick... HA! It did melt and it didn't work...at first, but I overcame and conquered attaching the tip! Did it really need to be put back on? Nope, but the one broken tip just didn't sit well with me!

Step 3: Go outside and take a picture of your beautiful glued down crayons! It looked SO cool!!

This picture shows you the width of the canvas (and my little fella!). 

 So, I'm in Texas. It's summer. It's friggin HOT. You could cook a steak on your dashboard. Naturally, my first thought was to set it in the sun and let the sun do its work. This says it was 99, but that wasn't current, it was more than 30 minutes before  I saved this picture. Yesterday it reached 100 after 5pm, so I'm going with that.

 So, I found a sunny spot in the backyard, up against the house.

But, as you can see the sun was close to going behind the trees.

The kids played in the sand table.

I watered our pathetic, it's too hot for us to be alive, hanging baskets.

We had some popsicles..

If you haven't tried the Slow Melt Popsicles, you MUST!!! 

Ben dropped his green one, so he took mine...

At 15 minutes you can sort of see that the wax began melting in the wrappers and becoming translucent. But, no drippy-drippy. :(

I finished my popsicle. Here's the joke on my stick.


At 30 minutes: Yep, they are hot, but still NO drippy! I had to move the canvas up to the window sill because the sun had moved and it was beginning to get shady.

See?

Brooke finished her popsicle.



And Ben did too.


Phoebe said hello. 

And then we went inside and I hatched Plan B. This is where it gets serious and fun!

  Step 4: Get out your hair dryer.

Since it WILL splatter... protect your work area with newspaper or something similar. That is pink crayon. Oops.

Our little art project drop cloth is a plastic table cloth from the Dollar Tree. I had to place things on both sides to hold it up (would have been smarter to just tape it up, but oh well. I also had to put something in front of the canvas so it wouldn't slide down. 

Step 5: prop up your canvas at an angle so the wax will drip onto the canvas and not onto the surface below.

Step 6: Use your dryer on the "hot" setting. I started out with high and once the wax started melting I went back down to "low". The high will give more of a splattered look along with the dripping. I wanted the drips for this one, not splatter. I'll probably do this again and play more with the different things you can do with how the wax drips.

Here is a short video of the process. (sorry it is sideways...)

Step 7: Keep going along your canvas and go back and forth as you see fit. 

VIOLA!! Done!! That was seriously FUN! 

 Step 8: Take your finished masterpiece outside to admire it, photograph it, and upload the pics to FB to share with your friends!! SO awesome!


Since I also have a *slight* Instagram obsession... I had to Instagram the pic!  :)

Now I just have to figure out how I want to display this. It would be cool to mount it to a painted board, methinks!... This is great for a kid's room or a play room, or an art room, craft room... etc!

Have FUN and please send me pics if you make one! I'd love to see what you come up with! If you blog about this, please link back here!

I have added this project to many link parties, and here, and here! If you want to be inspired, check them out!
**EDIT** I have since figured out another way to do this with a little bit of a different drippy effect. You can find that post here!

75 comments:

  1. So cute! I may have to do this!

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  2. Here from "Under the Table and Dreaming"... love this idea! I'm thinking we might have to go for something like this in my daughter's room... maybe we'll just use the pinks and purples ;)

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  3. Hi Melissa! Thanks for stopping by! This is such a versatile project and the timing for doing this is perfect with all of the awesome "Back to School" sales on school supplies! I have purchased 25 boxes of crayons in the past few days for a grand total of $6! :) If you make one please send me a picture!

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  4. wow, I've never seen this!It's great!I'm definitely gonna try it!

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  5. Wow, that is a seriously brilliant idea. I'm off to locate my hairdryer (which I NEVER actually have time to dry my hair with) and put it to good use!

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  6. What a fun idea! I wonder if you just propped them in a cake pan in your car if they would melt faster? Of course you would have to be VERY careful to not get it on your upholstery! I will have to try this with my kids!

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  7. I love this idea! I am definitely going to have to make this. I love your blog :) I also have a Benjamin who looks about the same age and the exact same water table. I would love it if you would stop by and link up this post to the crafty link party I just started.
    http://linesacrossmyface.blogspot.com/2011/07/craft-link-party-1-cure-for-common.html
    :) Rachel

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  8. Very cool! I wonder if you started it in the sun in the morning and left it out all day if it would work....(trying to avoid the hands on time...lol)

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  9. Now I wish I were throwing an art party for my little one because this would be a SERIOUSLY cute way to add decor. Thanks for all the tips and the fun tutorial!

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  10. btanders- I'm thinking the cake pan would work and I'm tempted to try it tomorrow! It was "only" 106+ here today...

    Rachel- I just posted on your link party! Thanks for letting me know about it! My Benjamin was born Feb 2010, so he's in between your two! Oh, and he LOVES that water table!

    kpmattingly- I think it would for sure melt if left out all day, it's just that it probably wouldn't work in my backyard because of all of the huge trees we have. We are well shaded (and thus can't ever get satellite service). But, if you have a good amount of direct sunlight, I'd definitely give it a go! :)

    Thank you all for the great comments and for stopping by! I love to hear from you! Please send me pictures if you make one for yourself!!

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  11. So, so awesome!! Thanks so much for linking it up to my Summer Fun party. I'll be including it in a feature post soon and I'll definitely be trying it myself. I actually have a heat embossing gun that would probably do the trick to melt it without blowing too much air.

    Laura @ Come Together Kids

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  12. I've featured this today in my latest Five Fun Ideas post!

    http://cometogetherkids.blogspot.com/2011/07/five-fun-ideas-for-colorful-projects.html

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  13. How cool is that?! I didn't know that would happen. I have to try it.

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  14. Such a super cute idea. And I have to say... I LOVE the popsicle readings! SERIOUSLY CUTE!

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  15. I'm so happy I found your blog through Kara's linking party today.

    I'd like to invite you to share your projects at my weekly linking party sometime also. I'd like to grow my weekly party with nice quality projects just like this one. Here is the direct link if you'd like to check it out sometime. Thanks for the consideration.
    Tracy
    T.G.I.F. Linky Party

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  16. That is awesome! It would be a fun idea for teacher gifts.

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  17. I agree I love this idea! I think even my teenage niece would love this!

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  18. Hi! Thanks for posting this. I made 3 with the help of Texas heat. It took about 3 hours but they really ran. Some of the colors came out of the wrappers. :)

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  19. This is so cool. I am going to try this tomorrow morning. I live in phoenix where its like 112 everyday, and dry. So i think I could get them to melt outside. Thank you for sharing.

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  20. Hi Tracy, that was my Pinterest where you saw it, I just followed the link you left to here - I'm a cheap ass too! it will be a few months before our hot weather returns so I'm definitely trying this with my heat gun - thanks

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  21. Thanks for all of the compliments!
    @ Erica- I actually didn't pin it from yours, I left you a link on your pin to my tutorial to show you how to do it for yourself! :)

    I hope you send me pictures of your creations!

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  22. Tracy, I loved this art project very much. Such an easy way to add some color to a boring wall.

    Here is my attempt at copying you.
    http://kasbn07.blogspot.com/2011/07/melted-crayon-wall-art.html

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  23. Thanks for linking up last week. This project is being featured this week at Lines Across My Face so come on over and grab a featured button and link up another post.
    http://linesacrossmyface.blogspot.com/2011/07/craft-link-party-2-cure-for-common.html
    :) Rachel

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  24. You saw it on Etsy for $65 something and you made it for $2... now this is what I love about DIYs. It turned out to be perfectly well. How did you think of using the hairdryer. You are a genius!! Pinning it.

    -Tanya
    http://tanyaanurag.blogspot.com/

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  25. This is so fun! I will be pinning this one for sure. That way when I try it myself, I'll remember your blog and be able to give you credit for your awesome tutorial!

    If you're bored and looking for somewhere to link this, I just started a link party and would be so thrilled to see this again!

    Here's my link: www.familyeverafter.blogspot.com. Party starts on Friday.

    ps- i loved all your commentary. you seem funny :)

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  26. I'm NOT crafty at all - total spaz - but I think I could do this! My son is a hard core artist (he's 7) and I think he'd like to have this in his room.. although he might get mad at me for "wasting" crayons he could be drawing with!

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  27. I too found it on pinterest, and being an art teacher decided it was worth the shot! Plus, with a 2 and 4 year old, I figured being in the Texas heat would do it too... after all, they melt in my car when they accidentally leave them in there. But alas, my patience level with leaving it in the sun was like yours... non-existant! (maybe I should put them in the car!!!)... a side note, I used the cheap crayons from Hobby Lobby that were .99. They don't work. Well, some of them do. Red, Blue, a couple of the purples... I was surprised at that, but not really. Crayola is the only way to go. And don't forget to leave you an edge on your canvas when glueing down the crayons so you have room for a frame... I have one more canvas to use with real crayons, but I think I'll leave that to a 'conference period' at school...

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  28. Rach- I grabbed your button and will be sure to post up on Friday! Super cute blog you have, I am not following you!

    Cathy- great job! I'll include you when I do my post showing other people's creations!

    Rachel- Thanks SO much for the feature! I feel special! :)

    Tanya- Yes, that is quite a good savings, huh? And the pride in making it myself is priceless!

    Evin- pick up some Crayolas on the cheap right now and go to town! Surely once he sees how fun it is, he will be ok with it! :) I've got full confidence in you!! This project is good for everyone- even spazzes! ;)

    Stephanie- I didn't leave an edge on these because I think I will mount them on a board and hang them that way (a little out from the wall). We shall see. I've told friends about leaving the edge for framing and they did!

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  29. Can't wait to try this with my girls at this year's Grammy Camp next week. With temps over 100 now I may not need the hair dryer. Will see.

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  30. I am definitely going to try something like this. it is brilliant. I melt crayons in pots and do art projects with them a lot but I've never done it this way. very cool.

    kathryn
    www.thedragonsfairytail.blogspot.com

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  31. That is so great! I can't believe some of the prices on Etsy. Melting crayons like that looks like something my kids would have fun with.
    I am visiting from Not Just a Housewife. I have not seen your blog before but you are funny and your kiddos are adorable!

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  32. I love this! I hauled out last years school crayons (they have to have them every year and hardly use them) and did it. I used the heat embossing tool (like scrapbookers and papercrafters have). Thanks for this idea! I'm also planning on figuring out how to do it in a circle, using a few crayons at a time and turning the circle as I go so they all melt to the middle.

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  33. I.Must.Do.
    Thank you for sharing :)
    I'd love for you to check my blog out. I have some fun projects to do too! :)

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  34. Hi Tracey, You're a crafty mom after my heart. I love this project. I am setting up my very first craft room/jewelry design studio after crafting for 40+ years and this will be a great inspiration piece. I also, love finding art projects do do with my grandchildren when I visit them. They will love this. Thanks for sharing. Check out my jewelry making blog if you have a chance. http://mystiquejewelrybydesign-mequita.blogspot.com/

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  35. I don't know how to upload a photo to you but I did it in the oven and they were amazing. I proped it up on the oven door and left it open. It came out so good that I made two one for either sides of my window in the living room.

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  36. You can email pics to me at naptimecraftmommy@gmail.com :)

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  37. I'm thinking this would be really cool decor in my classroom!

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  38. I'm totally doing this! I wonder if it would splatter so much if I use a stretched canvas (I have a couple extra from another project) and used the blow dryer on the back instead of the front with high heat and low air flow? I guess I'll have to try it and see. Thanks for the great idea! -- Jenny

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    1. You should try the colors that wont fit, or other crayons that you wont be using as a tester and cardboard. Testing it before you actually do it. I was thinking the same using the blow dryer on the back. Good Luck!

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  39. This project is awesome. I also like your sharing of the jokes from the Popsicles.

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  40. I made one of these too! I didn't like the blowdryer when I tried it, and I used a stretched canvas. Here's our results:
    http://www.movesincurves.com/2011/08/melted-crayon-art/

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  41. This is such a cute project! I love the finished result. :)

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  42. This is nice, I have always loved Crayola crayons. I have a box I saved from 1976. You young people would call that 'vintage.' I didn't think the glue gun would work, but you proved it did. Thanks. My name is Loo.

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  43. Will have to do this! Here's a thought on a frame...make one out of a yard stick in keeping with the whole school theme.

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  44. Hi Kathy! I'm the owner of JK Create (the etsy shop with the crayon art your featured) and am so happy people are trying this craft out - it's such a blast! You were right on the money with the hair dryer. Crayons melt between 120° and 150°, so the sun would have to be SUPER intense to get things moving. But I've scaled up to a heat gun since it provides a little bit more control. And watch out for those wax splatters! They sure can be nasty, especially when they hit your cheek - OUCH (yeah, it's happened...). I love seeing this craft catch fire and go all over, and I can't wait to see what else you have on your blog! =)
    - Jessie

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  45. Jessie- LOL! I'm Tracy! :) I'm thrilled you found this and posted! Your little project sure has caught fire! It's all over blog-land! Isn't it fun to see something you made all over Pinterest and other people's blogs?! I'll bet your sales have skyrocketed as well. I have to admit... I just bought a heat gun today to try it out! I have some ideas that I'd love to try and that just makes the most sense! It was fun trying lots of different methods and seeing how they worked! Thanks again for popping in to say hello!

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  46. I saw this yesterday and knew I had to do this. It turned out so great especially with the twist I added. I can't wait to up them in up in my new apartment this weekend.

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  47. Love the yard stick frame idea!!

    Rachel- what twist did you do? I'd love to see it!

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  48. All I did was a paint treatment with inspirational words.

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  49. this is awesome! i teach elementary art - think it would be a cool piece to display in my classroom! :)

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  50. I love how your canvas turned out! My roommate and I just saw your page and we are definitely running out to get the materials to do this. By the way, your commentary is hilarious and you should keep posting awesome crafty stuff.

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  51. I too have a Pinterest obsessssssssssssssion!!! I cant decide whether to love my neighbor more or hate her for showing me that site! lol Yours is the first blog that told me to GLUE the dumb crayons down...duh...been wondering how they stick :-p Thanks for the info...off to do it myself!!! Look for me on Pinterest too... shesgawncountry :-)

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  52. Thank you so much for linking up at Savvy HomeMade Monday, Tracy. I hope you will party again tomorrow! Your crayon art rocks!

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  53. Love this! Made one of my own and wanted to give credit.

    Tammy
    http://tobyandtammythornton.blogspot.com/2011/08/crayon-art.html

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  54. We made this project today and used an embossing gun instead of a blow dryer. It worked much better!

    http://www.educatinglucy.com/2011/08/tea-party.html

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  55. Just finished this project, used super-glue instead of a hot glue gun and cheap crayons not crayola ones. Here's how it turned out:

    http://a-photo-a-day-keeps-the-doctor-away.blogspot.com/2011/09/day-120.html

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  56. I made this a couple of months ago and wanted to share my results. Thanks for the inspiration!
    http://hootingrightalong.blogspot.com/2011/08/melted-crayon-art.html

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  57. I had a go as well, but my picture didn't quite turn out as planned.

    http://twentytwoavenue.blogspot.com/2011/09/wachsmalstift-kunstwerk.html

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  58. I made one today and it's looks great! Thanks for the tips.

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  59. This is super cute. And I love how you posted what you did in the time you waited! So creative!

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  60. Hola me llamo Yolanda,te escribo desde España,lo primero felicitarte por estas ideas, me encanta tu blog. Soy profesora en un colegio de Madrid y cuando terminemos los trabajos que tengo para la navidad,vamos a hacer este que me encanta y a mis alumnos ya les ha entusiasmado.Aquí no tenemos crayolas son plastidecor, pero supongo que el resultado será el mismo, ya hemos empezado a guardar las pinturas.Gracias por compartir tus trabajos

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  61. WOW,WOW, WOW...as a former pre-school teacher I Loved this. Thanks so much for the idea, cuz I'm a cheap A*S too.

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  62. It's summer holidays in Australia and my girls finally had a go at this yesterday. We used your blog as a guide and it was so helpful, thank you! http://www.naomibulger.com/1/post/2012/01/summer-holidays-craft.html (I also blogged about this back in September, and linked back to this post)

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  63. my husband and i cracked up while reading about how to do this!! we will definitely try it :)

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  64. Can I use a poster board instead of a canvas? I want to do it for my class and teach them how to do it.

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  65. Enjoyed reading your blog. gonna do it here in Texas. 2-3-12 at 80 degrees today!

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  66. I can totally see making one of these and hanging it in my living room. I'm not crafty but I'm willint to give it a try. That's how bad I want one. Thanks for the tutorial and pics. Wish me luck!

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  67. Take pics of your kids dancing with their hands up like rain- cut em out detailed and glue em at base of canvas!!

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  68. I love this! Thank you so much for positing this tutorial. A relatively cheap and easy way to make a whimsical and colourful piece of art that really makes an area POP! I can't paint my apartment, but rely on colourful pieces of artwork and so forth to give it that bit of funk that I love. This is just awesome. Thanks again!

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  69. Wow, such an amazing crayon show by little ones, i want to paint with my son but he always look for some other things when i ask to join me. hope i get him for the next crayon canvas art.

    Amy Wil

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