How to make handprint paintings

This is a craft that I’ve been wanting to do with my girls for ages now – handprint paintings!

The girls are currently 9 months old and nearly 3 years old, so this seemed like the perfect time to do this sisters’ craft. The baby is old enough that she can make paint handprints (with an awful lot of help, of course!), but still young enough that she has cute baby hands, and you can easily see the size difference between the two girls’ handprints.

Although it looks like this handprint painting was done on one day, we actually did each girl’s handprints separately – it seemed like it would be so much easier that way, and less messy!

So when the baby was asleep, we did my toddler’s handprints first. I chose a few colours that went together nicely (red, orange, yellow and pink), and painted her hand. She loved to feel the paint squishing between her fingers! We did a few trial prints on some scrap paper first, just to get her used to it. Then we did a ‘real’ handprint on a piece of card that I had already cut to fit a frame I had lying around. Then we repeated everything with her other hand.

The next day, once the toddler’s handprint was completely dry, we did the baby’s prints using the same method. Obviously this was a two person job – my husband held the baby over the paper, and I held her hand to gently press it down.

As you might expect, the baby’s handprints didn’t turn out quite as neat as my toddler’s! But I’d like to think it just captures a moment in time, with a wriggly baby who doesn’t understand how to hold their fingers out!

After we finished doing out handprints, my toddler did some more painting on the scrap paper – so as well as this activity being an opportunity for me to get some beautiful artwork to hang on the wall, she also really enjoyed herself and was able to get a bit creative!

To make handprint paintings, you will need:

  • various colours of paint
  • scrap paper for practising
  • a piece of thicker card to make your final prints on
  • paintbrushes for painting the kids’ hands
  • plenty of wet wipes!

You could extend this activity by:

  • letting your child help to choose colours that will go nicely together, talking about why some colours look so good together (primary and secondary colours, complementary colours, etc.)
  • doing some colour mixing, e.g. blue + red = purple
  • doing footprints as well as handprints
  • making drawings using your handprints, e.g. adding a face, so the fingerprints make the hair
  • writing your children’s names and the date on the card in between their handprints, and framing it to hang on the wall

Leave a Reply