Friday, July 19, 2013

Friday's Art Smarts: Magazine Strips Collage for Kids

Like Mother, like daughter.

Sometimes I forget just how much our kids want to be like us. And sometimes I get reminded of that when my daughter begged me to help her make a magazine collage - flowers, just like the one I made.

And it feels so good to be a mom in those moments. So I began wondering if there was a way that the kiddos could do this project themselves (because they would not be able to complete it using the steps that I went through...that was tedious and long even for me).

Turns out, there is. We did this project yesterday and it was so quick and simple - and I absolutely love the result! Definitely frame-worthy, I think.


Old magazine
cardstock (or other art paper)
Mod Podge
paint brush (for the Mod Podge)


Prepare for the project by cutting a few of the magazine pages into quarter or 1/2 inch strips. I used several strips leftover from the project I completed last week, and cut up a few other colorful pages for this project to round out our supply.

I started by giving each child a stripe of Mod Podge on their paper and told them to just start pressing on strips of paper.

After they filled up the area of Mod Podge, I brushed on a little more. We continued that way until the entire paper was filled.

Natalie kept her strips pretty vertical, as I instructed.

Daniel's were crazy-town, going here and there and everywhere. At first, I told him to stay vertical, and then I decided that it really didn't matter which way they faced and just followed him around the paper brushing on Mod Podge underneath strips he'd already put down.

Projects are never as orderly with Daniel. ;)

Here are the projects after step 1 was complete. Time to let them dry (it only takes 10 or 15 minutes or so).

Aaaand my favorite part. Really, guys, this next step was so much fun.

As I mentioned above, Natalie wanted flowers. So I got out a scrap piece of paper and drew a few ideas for her. She really liked the tulips, so I asked her if she could draw one herself...turns out, she could! So we flipped over her magazine collage and she drew three very nice tulips.

I added the stem and leaves at the bottom.

Daniel really wanted a moon picture, so we drew a crescent moon and several stars on the back of his magazine collage. I did all of his drawing. 

I also cut out the shapes for them, but while I was cutting, I gave them each some scrap pieces of the collage to practice cutting as well.

Step 2, complete!

Next, placement. 

Unfortunately, I didn't have colored cardstock on hand, and - in Natalie's words - the shapes were a little camouflaged against the white paper. So we ended up gluing some colored art paper scraps (a smaller piece for Daniel's and a larger piece for Natalie's) to the cardstock so that the shapes would show up better. And - bonus - now we have a little art mat!

I brushed on a thin layer of Mod Podge and told the kiddos to arrange their shapes in whatever way pleased them on their final piece of art paper. Then we worked on pressing firmly all around the shapes to get them to stick down. 

Natalie brushed on her final layer of Mod Podge, and I helped with Daniel's.

Three Tulips
Natalie, age 4

Moon and Stars
Daniel. age 3

Final thoughts. I absolutely love the way this project turned out! And I really do want to put them in frames and hang them in their bedrooms. I just think they're so cool looking.

As we worked, however, I realized that the skill level for this project is more elementary age than preschool age. There're just so many steps - brushing, drawing, cutting. If you want your children to complete this project all on their own...wait until they're a bit older to try it. 

We had fun with it, either way, though. And the kids were pretty excited and proud of the end result. Success!

*          *          *

If you enjoyed this post, please consider subscribing by email to receive updates on new posts!

You can also follow my blog through Instagram, Pinterest, Facebook, Bloglovin, or Google+.

For a list of all the parties that I link up to each week, please visit my Linking Up page!


  1. It's so cool you were able to modify the project to fit the kids. When my oldest was 3 (now 12) I used to do similar art projects with her. Once she learned to read she took over the lead in the craft department and hasn't stopped. Terrific!

    1. Thanks! It definitely felt good to do that project with them, especially after my daughter had asked about it. I hope she ends up loving art as much as your daughter!

  2. I loved yours and I love hers too! This is great!

    1. Aw, thanks! This has def been one of my favorite projects of theirs (so far) :)

  3. Very cool idea! Have pinned @romanianmum

  4. So special! Doing crafty and artsy things with kids is a wonderful way for them to find their own creativity! I love this project!

    1. Thank you! I agree that it's good for kids to get crafty - and they love it! It makes me happy to plan projects for them when they are all over it, too :)

  5. What a great idea! My children are elementary aged, so I think they could most of this on their own. If only we had magazines...

    1. Ah, yes, there is that. But you could totally do this with strips cut out of catalogs or those little circulars that you get in the mail. Anything colorful will work, really. And you only need a couple pages to get enough strips for this project. Have fun!

  6. Lovely idea- are def going to try this. Thanks for joining in the Monday Parenting Pin it Party

    1. Cool! Hope you guys have as much fun with it as we did!


I truly love and appreciate reading your comments!