Home-Made Watercolour paints.

I was on Pinterest the other day (just for a second, I was working, really!) and I came across a recipe for home-made water colour paints!  I found it from Happy Hooligan, a fantastic blogger that I love to PIN.  (The link to the website and PIN are below.)

Oh I was excited to try these out!

The ingredients were mainly really simple things I had in my cupboard,  vinegar, corn flour, bicarb of soda and food colours.  This would be easy!  The one ingredient I was not sure about was Corn Syrup.  What is that?   I asked my trusty sister who immediately googled it (why didn't I think of that?)  Turns out it can be substituted for Glucose.  Awesome!

So Glucose was on my shopping list for a while. I kept forgetting or running out of time to find it. (BTW - It's with the jam making things.)  Do you love having a list of crafty things in your 'to do' list?  I do....so long as it's not a 'to do' for more than 2 weeks.  Then it is a 'NOT to do' and a put it in 'the pile' which is the step before the bin in my house.


Here is the Recipe with my notes.


  • 8 tbsp baking soda
  • 4 tbsp white vinegar
  • 1 tsp glucose
  • 4 tbsp corn starch 
  • Food colouring (liquid or gels)
  • Small container to mix it all in. I use a measuring cup with a spout. This can be cleaned so you can use and re-use.
  • The container to keep your paints in. Remember they don't come out!   I used a mini muffin tin which was so scratched it was dreadful to use.

How easy is this:

1. Mix your baking soda and vinegar together.  After the bubbly fun 

2. Add your glucose and corn starch into the 'not so bubbly' mixture and mix well until the corn starch has dissolved. (I thought this would never happen but it does, just keep stirring.)

3. Pour even amounts into your containers. Half filled is good because you will need to add the water when you are painting.  The commercial ones are always half full. 

4. Move fast now because it becomes tacky quite quickly.

5. This is the fun part - making up the colours. I used old medicine syringes we don't use anymore. You could also use chopsticks or plastic spoons. Mix it well, I noticed there was often some white hiding down the bottom.

If you’re using liquid colours, you may have to add about 6 drops to get the intense colour.  Happy Hooligans suggested to add a pinch of extra corn starch to compensate for the extra liquid. I added a little too much, but the paint still works well, just need to add more water when painting.

6. Wait, wait, wait, wait!  24 hours is a long time for a little person, it should be enough.

Now have fun and paint again and again!  


The head mechanic asked 'Why are you making them instead of just going out and buying them?'  and then our visitor walked past and said 'You know you can buy these everywhere right?'  They obviously don't have the creativity and crafty gene. 

So it was fast and fun to make - I didn't get Lucas to help me because I was having too much fun on my own. 

Yes I am a messy cook. 

I put the paints in the laundry for 2 days and then had a busy Easter weekend (yeah I forgot about them.)  I was a little worried because I didn't concentrate when making them...'did I put in two tablespoons of that already?'  When I took them out they were dry and looking gorgeous. 

I have been wanting to try the craft where you draw with wax crayons on the page and then use some water colours to 'show' the picture.  So I used a white crayon and drew a car (of course) and a rocket and showed Lucas how to paint with water colours.  


Lucas had great fun painting so that he could see the lines and work out the picture.  (yeah he guessed the first image pretty quickly.) He also loved trying out all the STUNNING colours.  Oh yes I needed to use capitals.  These colours were so strong and vibrant...I have just discovered why I took 15 minutes out of my life to make them.  They are gorgeous.     

The head mechanic even got into the fun and decided to write his own message on a piece of paper for Lucas to discover.

Gorgeous works of art.   

We have a whole jar of glucose still to use, so I'm dropping off the recipe and the jar to a friend who has two sick little ones. I think mixing the colours will be a fun short task and then they have 2 days of drying time to feel better before they get into some fun painting!  

I could make these as birthday presents for all our little friends!  The most expense in the recipe is a tray to make them in.  OK - I'm off to the $2 shop to find some trays. 

Have a look at our Crafty Stuff board on Pinterest  here 

Have a look at the Happy Hooligan website.

Vroom Vroom

- Helle.