Crafts for Kids — Papier-Mâché Shoes

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Be inspired by the artwork of Claes Oldenburg and Coosje van Bruggen! “Supersize” a common object using papier-mâché as your art medium.
- Old newspapers to protect your work surface and for the papier-mâché
- Materials for the supporting form: cardboard, poster board, balloons, newspaper, and masking tape
- Scissors
- Ruler
- White glue
- Measuring cup
- Mixing bowl
- Tempera paints
- Paintbrush
- Container of water and paper towels to clean the paintbrush between colors
- Decorative items (optional)

Step 1

Decide on an ordinary small object that you would like to make extra large. Think of something that has personal meaning to you. For instance, if strawberries are your favorite fruit, you might want to make a colossal strawberry. Or, if you are a sports fan, how about a giant football or soccer ball?

Step 2

Make a supporting form to show the shape of the object you want to make. You can use cardboard boxes and tubes, balloons, wadded newspaper, or other scrap materials. Hold all of the parts together with masking tape. The form for the large shoe, for example, was made out of corrugated cardboard, poster board, paper-towel tubes, paper towels and tape.

Step 3

Cut strips of newspaper approximately 1" to 2" (2.5 to 5 cm) wide and 4" to 6" (10 to 15 cm) long. Mix two parts glue with one part water in the mixing bowl.

Step 4

Dip a newspaper strip into the glue-water mixture, then pull it between your fingers to remove the excess paste.

Step 5

Apply the glue-covered strip to your support form. Use wide strips in large areas and smaller strips when turning corners. Overlap strips for extra strength.

Step 6

Apply two or three layers of strips, smoothing over all the rough edges as you go. Let the form dry completely between layers.

Step 7

Paint your sculpture. Add textural decorations for effect, if you like.

Step 8

Excerpted with permission from "Making Amazing Art: 40 Activities Using the 7 Elements of Art Design" by Sandi Henry and published by Ideals Publishing.

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