Salt Paintings

So, I started this post 10 months ago and somehow forgot about it ENTIRELY.

Friends, if that doesn’t sum up parenthood, not sure I know what does.

Anyhow, thought I’d share a fun art project that Fox and I did – a while back now, but still relevant!  We actually did a different version of this at one of our preschool co ops recently, so maybe I’m more timely than I think.  (Maybe not, but I’m going with it.)


  • heavyweight paper (I like to buy big pads of watercolor paper at JoAnn or Michaels with a 50% off coupon)
  • washable white school glue
  • table salt, coarse sea salt or kosher salt (you can also use epsom salt for an even chunkier, ice-like effect)
  • liquid watercolors (make your own!  DIY instructions below)
  • plastic pipettes or droppers


Start by squirting some glue out on your paper.  Oh, he lives for this.  Glue with no purpose!  Free from the restraints of pasting things together!  Glue, glue everywhere!

(Another way I can tell this was 10 months ago.  Check out that newspaper spread beneath his work.  Trying to protect the table.  Cute.  So cute.  Oh, that 10-months-ago-Sarah, so naive and innocent.)

When you have squirted to your satisfaction, grab that salt.  Let little fingers sprinkle a ton of that crystallized goodness all over their sticky design.  Don’t hold back – cover every bit!

His glue has been …. wait for it… ASSALTED!  (Oh you know that’s at least a little bit funny.)  Sigh.  Okay, whatever – moving on – gently shake off any excess salt.

Newspaper. Gone. She gave in to the inevitable. Good girl.

Time for those liquid watercolors.  If you don’t have any handy, you could use food coloring diluted in water in a pinch…. but making your own is easy and waaaaay cheaper than buying them.  Simply dissolve a watercolor cake (pop one out of a tray like this, that’s probably sitting around your house – or available at your nearby dollar store) in a few  ounces of hot water and store in a glass jar (this makes a nice, concentrated paint – perfect for paper or projects like this).  I found a great tutorial for this method if you’d like some visual instruction – thanks, Pinterest!

Stick a pipette in each jar and set your artist loose!  As they squeeze the paint on to the salted glue, you’ll see the color travel along the design!  It’s pretty magical.

All done!

Hates the camera.  So shy.

Still wet.

All dry.  (And poorly lit. So sorry.)



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